How to Train the Human Spirit

 

“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

Foundation Scripture: Hebrews 8:10

For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will imprint My laws upon their minds, even upon their innermost thoughts and understanding, and engrave them upon their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. Hebrews 8:10 AMP

I.  How to train the human spirit:

  • By giving the Word first place in your life
  • By meditation in the Word
  • By practicing the Word
  • By instantly obeying the voice of your spirit
  • By praying in the Spirit

II.  Give the Word first place in your life

  • First place means first place. First place means that you exalt the Word of God above all the words of man.
  • First place means that when you have a choice, you believe the Word of God and not your circumstances, your feelings or what your head tells you.
  • Proverbs 4:20-22 AMP – My son, attend to my words; consent and submit to my sayings. 21 Let them not depart from your sight; keep them in the center of your heart. 22 For they are life to those who find them, healing and health to all their flesh.
  • Proverbs 7:1-3 NKJV – My son, keep my words, And treasure my commands within you. 2 Keep my commands and live, And my law as the apple of your eye. 3 Bind them on your fingers; Write them on the tablet of your heart.
  • The only way you can make the Word of God first place in your life is if you know it—if it is in your heart and mind—if it abides in you and you abide in it.
  • This is how you make the Word part of who you are:

III. Meditate on the Word

  • The Word of God will not work for you if you just mentally assent to it (agree with it). It will only be effective if it becomes part of you—if every thought you have, every word you say and every action you take is governed and regulated by the Word that is in your heart.
  • Joshua 1:8 AMP – This Book of the Law shall not depart out of your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, that you may observe and do according to all that is written in it. For then you shall make your way prosperous, and then you shall deal wisely and have good success.
  • Meditate means to reflect on, contemplate, or ponder something.
  • The Hebrew word for “meditate” means “to murmur. It is also translated in the KJV as “mutter”; “imagine”; “roar”; “speak”; “study”; “talk”; “utter”.
  • Psalms 1:1-3 NKJV – Blessed is the man Who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, Nor stands in the path of sinners, Nor sits in the seat of the scornful; 2 But his delight is in the law of the Lord, And in His law he meditates day and night. 3 He shall be like a tree Planted by the rivers of water, That brings forth its fruit in its season, Whose leaf also shall not wither; And whatever he does shall prosper.
  • This man is truly blessed—because he fully embraces God’s life-giving Word!
  • Because you delight in the Lord, you drink deeply from His Word and you meditate on His Word day and night; the result is that you bring forth fruit in season, your leaf doesn’t wither, and whatever you do prospers!

VI.  Practice the Word

  • James 1:21-22 AMP – So get rid of all uncleanness and the rampant outgrowth of wickedness, and in a humble (gentle, modest) spirit receive and welcome the Word which implanted and rooted [in your hearts] contains the power to save your souls. 22 But be doers of the Word [obey the message],Italic and not merely listeners to it, betraying yourselves [into deception by reasoning contrary to the Truth].
  • If you refuse to be led, directed and changed by God’s written Word, how in the world do you think that you will recognize or obey the voice of His Spirit?
  • 1 John 5:8 NKJV – And there are three that bear witness on earth: the Spirit, the water, and the blood; and these three agree as one.
  • Water is symbolic of the Word. The Spirit and the Word will never contradict each other.
  • Matthew 7:21 AMP – 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.
  • Romans 6:17 AMP – But thank God, though you were once slaves of sin, you have become obedient with all your heart to the standard of teaching in which you were instructed and to which you were committed.

V.  Instantly obey the voice of your spirit

  • Proverbs 20:27 NKJV – The spirit of a man is the lamp of the Lord, Searching all the inner depths of his heart.
  • The Lord will lead and guide you through your heart—not your head.
  • You can trust your heart when it is trained in the Word of God and submitted to God and His Word.
  • Romans 9:1 AMP – I am speaking the truth in Christ. I am not lying; my conscience [enlightened and prompted] by the Holy Spirit bearing witness with me.
  • Your spirit and your conscience are one and the same.
  • Hebrews 5:14 AMP – But solid food is for full-grown men, for those whose senses and mental faculties are trained by practice to discriminate and distinguish between what is morally good and noble and what is evil and contrary either to divine or human law.
  • When you spend a lot of time in the Word of God, even your senses become trained to know what is right and wrong.
  • 2 Corinthians 10:4-5 KJV – (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) 5 Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.
  • Do not allow your carnal mind to rule you. Submit your thoughts completely to God’s Word.

VI. Pray in the Spirit

  • Praying in tongues helps you develop a sensitivity to the voice of the Holy Spirit and your own spirit.
  • 1 Corinthians 14:14-15 NKJV – For if I pray in a tongue, my spirit prays, but my understanding is unfruitful. 15 What is the conclusion then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will also pray with the understanding. I will sing with the spirit, and I will also sing with the understanding.
  • When you pray in tongues, your spirit man rises up, even as your mind grows quieter.
  • 1 Corinthians 14:2 NKJV – For he who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God, for no one understands him; however, in the spirit he speaks mysteries.
  • Jude 20 NKJV – But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit.
  • Praying in the Holy Spirit builds you up in your faith, drawing you closer to God and His will for you.

 

WHAT IT MEANS TO BE THE HEAD OF YOUR HOUSEWHAT IT MEANS TO BE THE HEAD OF YOUR HOUSE

“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

But I want you to know and realize that Christ is the Head of every man, the head of a woman is her husband, and the Head of Christ is God. 1 Corinthians 11:3 AMP

For the husband is head of the wife as Christ is the Head of the church, Himself the Savior of [His] body.
Ephesians 5:23 AMP

According to the will and the Word of God, Jesus Christ is the Head of the body of Christ. He is the head of every man and every woman. On earth, and in the family, He has set the husband as the head of the wife and therefore the head of the family. What does it mean to be the head of your house? If you desire to please God, then it certainly does not mean that you lord it over your family or boss them around, neither does it mean that you get to control them. Ephesians 5:21 AMP says, “Be subject to one another out of reverence for Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One).”

Jesus washed his disciples’ feet and told them that their job was to love and serve others, just as He had loved and served them. Jesus laid down His very life for us and He asks us to do the same for others. Why would we serve others and not our own family? The husband is head of the wife, just as Jesus is Head of the church. Jesus put us ahead of Himself. He considered our need as greater than His own.

Ephesians 5:25 tells husbands to love their wives, as Christ loved the church and gave Himself up for her. How does Jesus love His Church? That’s how you should love and treat your wife. The word for “love” here is agape – the God-kind of love – not mere human love, but God’s love. The love that sees others as valuable and precious; the love that can love sinners; the love that can love the unlovable! Not a conditional love, but an unconditional love.

Jesus is never mean or selfish with us, neither is He controlling or manipulative. He respects our free will and He gently, yet firmly, leads and guides us. All His plans for us are good and beneficial plans. He brings freedom and peace and joy to our hearts and lives. Ephesians 5:28-29 tells husbands to love (agape) their wives as much as they love their own bodies, because she is your own body – you are one flesh! It also says that the husband who loves his own wife loves himself. No man ever hated his own flesh, but he nourishes, carefully protects and cherishes it, just the same way that Christ does the church.

Husbands, love your wives [be affectionate and sympathetic with them] and do not be harsh or bitter or resentful toward them. Colossians 3:19 AMP

In the same way you married men should live considerately with [your wives], with an intelligent recognition [of the marriage relation], honoring the woman as [physically] the weaker, but [realizing that you] are joint heirs of the grace (God’s unmerited favor) of life, in order that your prayers may not be hindered and cut off. [Otherwise you cannot pray effectively.] 1 Peter 3:7 AMP

The Bible does tell wives to submit to their own husbands. However, the Lord is not pleased when husbands demand submission from their wives. He is not pleased when a husband is harsh, bitter or resentful toward his wife. In fact, if you treat your wife roughly, the Lord will not answer your prayers! If a husband treats His wife like Jesus treats the Church, she would willingly and happily submit to him. If she doesn’t, then she obviously needs you to take your place as the priest and prophet of your home and love and pray for her! There are very few wives who wouldn’t respond to the God-kind of love from their husbands. Wives naturally want to please their husbands and to make them happy. If you are kind and understanding with your wife and if you make an effort to meet her emotional needs, you will have a happy wife and a happy life!

The Hebrew word for “head” means captain or chief. Husband, you are the captain of your own ship – your family. The direction your family goes in is in your hands. Joshua declared, “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” (Joshua 24:15) The first and most important thing you need to do is to serve God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength, yourself, and to teach your children to do the same. They will follow and serve God if they know how much He loves them. You teach them how much God loves them, by loving and nurturing them yourself.

The Bible says that a man who seeks to serve and have a position of leadership in the Church must have unquestionable integrity and be the husband of only ONE wife. That not only means “one at a time” it means “only one”! This is good advice for every husband, not just ministers. If you are a minister, remember that your ministry is only as strong as your marriage.

Husbands, your first priority is to love God with all your heart; your second priority is to love your wife with all your heart; your third priority is your children; your fourth is your career or your ministry. A man who has his priorities in order, and who obeys God’s word regarding his wife and family, will have the fruit of a beautiful loving family, who serve the Lord together with him.

Praise the Lord! Blessed is the man who fears the Lord, Who delights greatly in His commandments. 2 His descendants will be mighty on earth; The generation of the upright will be blessed. 3 Wealth and riches will be in his house, And his righteousness endures forever. Psalms 112:1-3 NKJV

Seven Commands for Believers from Hebrews 10



Therefore, brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus, 20 by a new and living way which He consecrated for us, through the veil, that is, His flesh, 21 and having a High Priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. 23 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, 25 not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching. Hebrews 10:19-25 NKJV

1. Draw near to God with a true heart:

“…let us draw near with a true heart…” Hebrews 10:22

These people draw near Me with their mouths and honor Me with their lips, but their hearts hold off and are far away from Me. Matthew 15:8 AMP

Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded. James 4:8 KJV

But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving of the soul. Hebrews 10:39 KJV

2. Have a pure conscience:

“…having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience…” Hebrews 10:22

And herein do I exercise myself, to have always a conscience void of offence toward God, and toward men. Acts 24:16 KJV

Now the purpose of the commandment is love from a pure heart, from a good conscience, and from sincere faith.

1 Timothy 1:5 NKJV

Holding faith, and a good conscience; which some having put away concerning faith have made shipwreck.

1 Timothy 1:19 KJV

3. Have clean bodies:

“…our bodies washed with pure water…” Hebrews 10:22

Not only should we have a clean heart, but we should have clean hands as well. Clean in motivation and in works. We are washed by the Word of God.

That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word. Ephesians 5:26 KJV

Who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord? or who shall stand in his holy place? 4 He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart; who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully. Psalms 24:3-4 KJV

4. Have unwavering faith:

“Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering…” Hebrews 10:23

For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.

Romans 1:17 KJV

Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all. Romans 4:16 KJV

He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God. Romans 4:20 KJV

Be keeping a watchful eye ever open. Be standing fast in the Faith. Be showing yourselves to be men. Be mighty in strength. 1 Corinthians 16:13 Kenneth S. Wuest

5. Provoke others to good works:

“And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works…” Hebrews 10:24

Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

Matthew 5:16 KJV

For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:10 KJV

In all things showing yourself to be a pattern of good works; in doctrine showing integrity, reverence, incorruptibility, 8 sound speech that cannot be condemned, that one who is an opponent may be ashamed, having nothing evil to say of you. Titus 2:7-8 NKJV

6. Be regular church attendees:

“…not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some…” Hebrews 10:25

Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do. 1 Thessalonians 5:11 KJV

7. Exhort one another daily:

“…but exhorting one another…” Hebrews 10:25

But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.

Hebrews 3:13 KJV

Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.

2 Timothy 4:2 KJV

Now we exhort you, brethren, warn them that are unruly, comfort the feebleminded, support the weak, be patient toward all men. 1 Thessalonians 5:14 KJV

These things speak, and exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no man despise thee. Titus 2:15 KJV

WHAT IT MEANS TO BE THE HEAD OF YOUR HOUSE – PART II

“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

But I want you to know and realize that Christ is the Head of every man, the head of a woman is her husband, and the Head of Christ is God. 1 Corinthians 11:3 AMP

The husband is the head of the house. What does that mean? It means that you are responsible – you are responsible before God for the well being of your family – your wife and your children. To be responsible means to be accountable – especially to the Lord. The Lord has given you a divine position and a divine responsibility and you will give an account on how you led your family – whether you loved them, provided for, and protected them – or not. How can you fulfill the responsibilities of this position and live up to the expectations that God has for you? Not in your own strength! You have to trust in Him and not lean on your own wisdom or understanding!

As the head, the leader, the chief, and the captain of your own ship, you are ultimately responsible for the direction your family goes in. No matter what choices anyone else makes – for good or bad – you must still follow your Heavenly Father and do what you know is right from the Word of God.

Some men blame their wives for all the problems in the home and some wives blame their husbands, but each person is responsible before God for their own role and their own attitude and choices. As the husband and head of the home, if there is a problem that seems insurmountable and issues that can’t be worked out, do not be too afraid or too prideful to take your family into counseling with a godly counselor – with the emphasis on godly!

In the same way you married men should live considerately with [your wives], with an intelligent recognition [of the marriage relation], honoring the woman as [physically] the weaker, but [realizing that you] are joint heirs of the grace (God’s unmerited favor) of life, in order that your prayers may not be hindered and cut off. [Otherwise you cannot pray effectively.] 1 Peter 3:7 AMP

As the head of the house by God’s design, you are instructed love your wife like Christ loves the Church – giving your life for her; you must realize and understand that she is more sensitive than you are physically and emotionally; you must be gentle, kind and considerate toward her. If you don’t do this and if you treat her harshly, roughly or inconsiderately, then your own prayers will be hindered and remain unanswered.

House and riches are the inheritance from fathers, but a wise, understanding, and prudent wife is from the Lord.
Proverbs 19:14 AMP

Only the Lord can give you a godly wife. This means that the Lord can give you a great wife to marry – OR – if you are already married to a wife, who is not so great, then the Lord can work on her and change her heart and make her a great and a godly wife! A great marriage takes two people, who are committed to God’s will and plan for their lives, above all else. Pray for a wife from the Lord. When you get a wife, treat her like the gift from God that she was intended to be.

Nevertheless, in [the plan of] the Lord and from His point of view woman is not apart from and independent of man, nor is man aloof from and independent of woman; 12 For as woman was made from man, even so man is also born of woman; and all [whether male or female go forth] from God [as their Author].
1 Corinthians 11:11-12 AMP

Contrary to modern opinions and attitudes, men and women do need each other. Not all men and women, but one special man for one special woman. Men are not superior to women and women are not superior to men. Comparing men to women is like comparing apples and oranges – they are completely different, but they are both important. Men are created differently from women – and women from men. Men are important and women are important. They each have a specialized function and a unique place in the family. We can say that they are “hard-wired” differently by God. This unique hard-wiring gives husbands and wives each their special place, specialized gifts and specialized strengths.

God created us all differently so that we could “complete” each other and not “compete” with each other. Competing is completely fruitless and unproductive, but cooperation can accomplish great things.

Husband, your job is not to Lord it over your wife and kids, but to be the priest and prophet of your house and to lead them with the help or the Lord. In order to do this, you must be completely submitted to the Holy Spirit. Serve God yourself – honor His word and His Spirit. Never use scriptures to dominate, manipulate or control your family, but to bless and edify them. Remember that it takes a huge dose of unselfishness to be a great husband and father!

For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother and shall be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh. Ephesians 5:31 AMP

A man must leave his family behind on the day he gets married. That means that he and his wife are starting a fresh new family. If a man can’t “cut the apron” strings, then he shouldn’t get married. If a man is not ready to grow up and leave the safety and comfort of his parent’s protection, then he is not ready to get married – no matter how old he is. Love and honor your mother and father, but do not allow them to control, interfere with or meddle in your marriage. You are the new head of your house – stand up and take your place! You are the head of your new family and must make godly decisions on their behalf.

THE JOY OF BEING A WOMAN, WIFE AND MOTHER

“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

And whatever you do [no matter what it is] in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus and in [dependence upon] His Person, giving praise to God the Father through Him. 18 Wives, be subject to your husbands [subordinate and adapt yourselves to them], as is right and fitting and your proper duty in the Lord. 19 Husbands, love your wives [be affectionate and sympathetic with them] and do not be harsh or bitter or resentful toward them. Colossians 3:17-19 AMP

Doing “everything in the name of the Lord Jesus” means bringing honor to Him in every aspect and activity of your daily life. You are a representative of the Lord Jesus Christ and you represent Him everywhere you go and in everything you do! Even and especially in your home! The “do everything in His Name” rule applies to husbands and to wives in the context of their marriage and family as much as it does to outside of the home. Husbands and wives have a specific role and specific function in the home, two working together as one, to accomplish the same goal – a blessed and godly family. It’s not a competition to see who’s smarter or better, but it is a team effort toward the same end result.

Husbands are instructed to love their wives with the agape love of God. Not mere selfish human love, but unselfishly and unconditionally. They are called and ordained by God, to be the head of, and the leader in, their homes. Every endeavor needs a head or a leader. Just as the human body has one head, so also the Body of Christ has one leader, Jesus Christ, and the family has one leader, the husband and father. As the saying goes, “Anything with no head is a monster and anything with two heads is a freak!” In order to have order in the family, as in anything else, there needs to be one head. God made us and He says that this responsibility belongs to the husband. Therefore, if a wife will honor God in her own life and respect His word, she will be content to allow, support, and encourage her husband to be the head of the family that God intended him to be.

In this passage in Colossians, mentioned above, and the next few verses after that, Paul gives the rules for three sets of household relationships – a) husbands and wives; b) parents and their children; and c) masters and slaves, or servants. Each category has mutual responsibilities – to love and to submit; to encourage and to obey; to work hard and to be fair. We must measure ourselves against God’s standards, and work to make sure that our life and relationships line up with His word. A godly marriage involves mutual submission, submitting ourselves to the lordship of Jesus Christ, and subordinating our own personal desires for the good of the ones we love. Marriage is not 50-50, it is 100-100! When we each put our spouse first, then we can’t help but have a successful marriage. The same goes for children. Raising a successful, happy family requires a great deal of unselfishness and sacrifice on the part of the parents. You put their welfare above your own. God also put our welfare above His own when He gave up his only begotten Son on our behalf!

Be subject to one another out of reverence for Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One). 22 Wives, be subject (be submissive and adapt yourselves) to your own husbands as [a service] to the Lord. 23 For the husband is head of the wife as Christ is the Head of the church, Himself the Savior of [His] body. 24 As the church is subject to Christ, so let wives also be subject in everything to their husbands. Ephesians 5:21-24 AMP

The word “submit” or “submission” means: to subordinate yourself; to put under; to be under obedience; to give over or yield to the power or authority of another; to defer to another’s judgment, opinion, decision. Men were created by God to be focused, to make decisions easily and to be natural leaders. Women were created by God to be very adaptable and flexible. Every team needs a captain. The team is lost without a captain to pull it all together, but a captain would be nothing without his players. If a team needs leaders and followers, if a business needs leaders and followers, then so does a family. In God’s eyes neither one is less than the other. When each takes their place with humility and grace, they are all together a powerful and successful team.

The devil has tried to make women feel inferior to men. When they do then they either become doormats or they fight so hard to show that they are equal or better than men that they lose sight of the beautiful gift of God that they are to their husband and family. Being the vice-captain of your team is not a more lowly job, it is a very important supportive position. The husband is there to cover, defend and protect his wife, and the wife is there to nurture, support and encourage her husband. Submission is not a dirty word. It is a collaborative and cooperative word. They say that behind every successful man there is a great woman and that is the truth. The virtuous woman, in Proverbs 31, is the ideal wife that the wise man seeks and hopes to find.

Proverbs 31:11-12 says that the virtuous wife’s husband trusts in her confidently, relies on her, and believes in her and is secure in the knowledge that she will do him only good, as long as there is life within her! He can trust her with his money; he can trust her with his children, with his heart and with his life. She is his comforter and encourager. Jesus said that the Holy Spirit would be our comforter, standby and help. As women, we are created, ordained, and anointed, by God to fulfill this great earthly role in our husband’s life! It is not a burden, but it is a privilege! Proverbs 31:23 says that the virtuous woman’s husband is known in the city’s gates, when he sits among the elders of the land. In other words, he has a prominent place in the community – he is a successful man – and she has a huge part in that.

A woman who takes her rightful place – as a strong, secure woman – under the headship and leadership of her husband is not a weak woman. She is a woman of strong character and a woman who pleases God.

A virtuous and worthy wife [earnest and strong in character] is a crowning joy to her husband, but she who makes him ashamed is as rottenness in his bones. Proverbs 12:4 AMP

Testimony by Emmanuel C.

The other night I got a breakthrough, there where some things in my heart that were holding me back from receiving. I realized that I need to get my heart pressed into His presence and receive my deliverance. He is for me not against me. I will stand on the Word and see the salvation of the Lord

What Do You Love?

“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

But understand this, that in the last days will come (set in) perilous times of great stress and trouble [hard to deal with and hard to bear]. 2 For people will be lovers of self and [utterly] self-centered, lovers of money and aroused by an inordinate [greedy] desire for wealth, proud and arrogant and contemptuous boasters. They will be abusive (blasphemous, scoffing), disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy and profane. 3 [They will be] without natural [human] affection (callous and inhuman), relentless (admitting of no truce or appeasement); [they will be] slanderers (false accusers, troublemakers), intemperate and loose in morals and conduct, uncontrolled and fierce, haters of good. 4 [They will be] treacherous [betrayers], rash, [and] inflated with self-conceit. [They will be] lovers of sensual pleasures and vain amusements more than and rather than lovers of God. 5 For [although] they hold a form of piety (true religion), they deny and reject and are strangers to the power of it [their conduct belies the genuineness of their profession]. Avoid [all] such people [turn away from them]. 2 Timothy 3:1-5 AMP

This segment of scripture talks about four things that people love. Three of them are unhealthy and detrimental to your spiritual, physical and emotional well-being; and only one of them is healthy, good, productive and blessed. There are people who are lovers of self, lovers of money and lovers of sensual pleasures; and then there are those who are lovers of God. If you truly love God, you can’t love these other things. If you love these things, then you are not a lover of God!

Lovers of self:

Lovers of self are selfish and self-centered. The Bible says that they are disobedient to parents, abusive, blasphemous, scoffing, ungrateful, unholy, and profane. They are without natural, human affection, callous and inhuman, relentless (admitting of no truce or appeasement), slanderers, false accusers and troublemakers, treacherous betrayers, rash, and inflated with self-conceit. They are self-willed, arrogant and presumptuous. Because they are so selfish and self-centered, they do not care for others – for their feelings, their well-being, or even their life. Selfishness brings strife and division and also cruelty and cruel acts.

But by your callous stubbornness and impenitence of heart you are storing up wrath and indignation for yourself on the day of wrath and indignation, when God’s righteous judgment (just doom) will be revealed. 6 For He will render to every man according to his works [justly, as his deeds deserve]: 7 To those who by patient persistence in well-doing [springing from piety] seek [unseen but sure] glory and honor and [the eternal blessedness of] immortality, He will give eternal life. 8 But for those who are self-seeking and self-willed and disobedient to the Truth but responsive to wickedness, there will be indignation and wrath. Romans 2:5-8 AMP

Lovers of money:

Lovers of money are covetous and greedy. They are aroused by an inordinate, greedy desire for wealth, and are proud and arrogant and contemptuous boasters. Jesus tells us in Matthew 6:24 that we have to make a choice between God and mammon (deceitful riches, money, possessions, or whatever is trusted in). You cannot serve both.

For the love of money is a root of all evils; it is through this craving that some have been led astray and have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves through with many acute [mental] pangs. 1 Timothy 6:10AMP

The love of money will harm and destroy the one who loves it and other people as well. The Pharisees were all pious on the outside, but they were covetous and lovers of money on the inside. They opposed Jesus, not because He was wrong, but because their hearts were turned away from God because of greed and arrogance (Luke 16:14-15). Hebrews 13:5 AMP tells us: “Let your character or moral disposition be free from love of money [including greed, avarice, lust, and craving for earthly possessions] and be satisfied with your present [circumstances and with what you have]” – because God will never fail you nor let you down!

Lovers of sensual pleasures:

Lovers of sensual pleasures are addicted to pleasure. The more they get, the more they want and yet, they are never satisfied! The Bible describes them as intemperate and loose in morals and conduct, uncontrolled and fierce, haters of good. They are lovers of sensual pleasures and vain amusements more than and rather than lovers of God.

In James 5:1-5, James rebukes the people who are rich and trust only in their riches and he tells them in verse 5 (AMP); “Here on earth you have abandoned yourselves to soft (prodigal) living and to [the pleasures of] self-indulgence and self-gratification. You have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter.” And Jesus warned us in Luke 21:34 NKJV: “But take heed to yourselves, lest your hearts be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness, and cares of this life, and that Day come on you unexpectedly.”

[Or] you do ask [God for them] and yet fail to receive, because you ask with wrong purpose and evil, selfish motives. Your intention is [when you get what you desire] to spend it in sensual pleasures. 4 You [are like] unfaithful wives [having illicit love affairs with the world and breaking your marriage vow to God]! Do you not know that being the world’s friend is being God’s enemy? So whoever chooses to be a friend of the world takes his stand as an enemy of God. James 4:3-4 AMP

Lovers of God:

Lovers of God submit to Him – His Word and His Spirit – and they walk in newness of life and in obedience to Him in every aspect of their lives.

So kill (deaden, deprive of power) the evil desire lurking in your members [those animal impulses and all that is earthly in you that is employed in sin]: sexual vice, impurity, sensual appetites, unholy desires, and all greed and covetousness, for that is idolatry (the deifying of self and other created things instead of God). Colossians 3:5 AMP

For the grace of God (His unmerited favor and blessing) has come forward (appeared) for the deliverance from sin and the eternal salvation for all mankind. 12 It has trained us to reject and renounce all ungodliness (irreligion) and worldly (passionate) desires, to live discreet (temperate, self-controlled), upright, devout (spiritually whole) lives in this present world, 13 Awaiting and looking for the [fulfillment, the realization of our] blessed hope, even the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Christ Jesus (the Messiah, the Anointed One). Titus 2:11-13 AMP

For This Purpose I Came to This Hour – Part I

“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

“Now My soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save Me from this hour’? But for this purpose I came to this hour. John 12:27 NKJV

Jesus came for this purpose:

1. To save from sins:

And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins. Matthew 1:21NKJV

2. To be King of the Jews:

Pilate therefore said to Him, “Are You a king then?” Jesus answered, “You say rightly that I am a king. For this cause I was born, and for this cause I have come into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice.” John 18:37 NKJV

3. To fulfill the law:

Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill. Matthew 5:17 NKJV

4. To call sinners to repentance:

But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy and not sacrifice.’ For I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.” Matthew 9:13 NKJV

I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance. Luke 5:32 NKJV

5. To bring division:

Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword. 35 For I have come to ‘set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law’; 36 and ‘a man’s enemies will be those of his own household.’ Matthew 10:34-36 NKJV

6. To give rest:

Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30 NKJV

7. To save from destruction:

For the Son of Man did not come to destroy men’s lives but to save them. Luke 9:56a NKJV

8. To give His life for the church:

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her. Ephesians 5:25 NKJV

9. To redeem from iniquity:

Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. Titus 2:14 KJV

10. To seek and save the lost:

For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost. Luke 19:10 NKJV

11. To make a New Covenant:

For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins. Matthew 26:28 NKJV

But now He has obtained a more excellent ministry, inasmuch as He is also Mediator of a better covenant, which was established on better promises. Hebrews 8:6 NKJV

And for this reason He is the Mediator of the new covenant, by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions under the first covenant, that those who are called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance. Hebrews 9:15NKJV

12. To put away sin:

He then would have had to suffer often since the foundation of the world; but now, once at the end of the ages, He has appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself. Hebrews 9:26 NKJV

13. To suffer for people:

Now My soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save Me from this hour’? But for this purpose I came to this hour. John 12:27 NKJV

For Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive by the Spirit. 1 Peter 3:18 NKJV

Therefore, since Christ suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves also with the same mind, for he who has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, 2 that he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh for the lusts of men, but for the will of God. 1 Peter 4:1-2 NKJV

14. To ransom (redeem) people:

Just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many. Matthew 20:28NKJV

For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, 6 who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time. 1 Timothy 2:5-6 NKJV

15. To preach and heal:

The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, 19 To preach the acceptable year of the Lord. Luke 4:18-19 KJV

How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him. Acts 10:38 NKJV

But He said to them, “Let us go into the next towns, that I may preach there also, because for this purpose I have come forth.” 39 And He was preaching in their synagogues throughout all Galilee, and casting out demons. Mark 1:38-39 NKJV

And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease among the people. 24 Then His fame went throughout all Syria; and they brought to Him all sick people who were afflicted with various diseases and torments, and those who were demon-possessed, epileptics, and paralytics; and He healed them. Matthew 4:23-24 NKJV

Leadership

By me kings reign and rulers decree justice. Proverbs 8:15 AMP

God holds all men accountable for their choices and actions. Those in leadership are held to an even higher standard. We should expect our leaders to demonstrate the following characteristics, and if they don’t, we should hold them accountable.

Leaders should be trustworthy

Moreover, you shall choose able men from all the people — God-fearing men of truth who hate unjust gain — and place them over thousands, hundreds, fifties, and tens, to be their rulers. Exodus 18:21 AMP

A leader should be trustworthy — honest, faithful, dependable and reliable. The people should be able to safely put their confidence in their leaders.

Furthermore, he must have a good reputation and be well thought of by those outside [the church], lest he become involved in slander and incur reproach and fall into the devil’s trap. 1 Timothy 3:7 AMP

A leader should have a good reputation inside and outside the church. He should personally submit himself to God’s word in every area of his life. He should avoid the very appearance of evil.

Leaders look out for the people’s best interests

And Moses said to the Lord, 16 Let the Lord, the God of the spirits of all flesh, set a man over the congregation 17 Who shall go out and come in before them, leading them out and bringing them in, that the congregation of the Lord may not be as sheep which have no shepherd. Numbers 27:15-17 AMP

As I live, says the Lord God, surely because My sheep became a prey, and My sheep became food for every beast of the field because there was no shepherd — neither did My shepherds search for My sheep, but the shepherds fed themselves and fed not My sheep. Ezekiel 34:8 AMP

A leader’s responsibility is to look out for the best interests of ALL the people. He should never think that the people are there merely to serve him and his interests, but he should give himself to serve the people and put their interests ahead of his own. Many leaders have become dictators out of selfish ambitions. A leader should not play favorites either. Some leaders take from some to give to others — this is not biblical and it is a system doomed to fail.

Leaders should represent God in their decisions

He appointed judges throughout all the fortified cities of Judah, city by city, 6 And said to the judges, Be careful what you do, for you judge not for man but for the Lord, and He is with you in the matter of judgment. 7 So now let the reverence and fear of the Lord be upon you; take heed what you do, for there is no injustice with the Lord our God, or partiality or taking of bribes. 2 Chronicles 19:5-7 AMP

Leaders should remember that they are accountable to God and they should govern humbly and in the fear of God, looking to Him and His word for wisdom and guidance.

Leaders should receive advice

Where no wise guidance is, the people fall, but in the multitude of counselors there is safety. Proverbs 11:14 AMP

An arrogant leader is a bad leader. A good leader has wise counselors and is not too proud to admit that they don’t know everything or that they were wrong about anything. A good leader is willing to change to be better.

Leaders must serve others

And Jesus called them to Him and said, You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great men hold them in subjection [tyrannizing over them]. 26 Not so shall it be among you; but whoever wishes to be great among you must be your servant, 27 And whoever desires to be first among you must be your slave — 28 Just as the Son of Man came not to be waited on but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many [the price paid to set them free]. Matthew 20:25-28 AMP

A good leader serves the people and does what is good for them. A bad leader serves himself, by giving the people what they want, even if it’s not good for them. A dictator dominates the people and does only what is good for him.

Leaders should sacrifice for others

I am the Good Shepherd. The Good Shepherd risks and lays down His [own] life for the sheep. 12 But the hired servant (he who merely serves for wages) who is neither the shepherd nor the owner of the sheep, when he sees the wolf coming, deserts the flock and runs away. And the wolf chases and snatches them and scatters [the flock]. 13 Now the hireling flees because he merely serves for wages and is not himself concerned about the sheep [cares nothing for them]. John 10:11-13 AMP

Leadership requires many sacrifices and you should not seek a leadership position unless you have counted the cost. A bad leader will sacrifice the people and their interests to further his own.

Leaders should be obeyed

Let every person be loyally subject to the governing (civil) authorities. For there is no authority except from God [by His permission, His sanction], and those that exist do so by God’s appointment. 2 Therefore he who resists and sets himself up against the authorities resists what God has appointed and arranged [in divine order]. And those who resist will bring down judgment upon themselves [receiving the penalty due them]. 3 For civil authorities are not a terror to [people of] good conduct, but to [those of] bad behavior. Would you have no dread of him who is in authority? Then do what is right and you will receive his approval and commendation. 4 For he is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, [you should dread him and] be afraid, for he does not bear and wear the sword for nothing. He is God’s servant to execute His wrath (punishment, vengeance) on the wrongdoer. Romans 13:1-4 AMP

God gives us leaders so that there can be order and peace in the nations. These leaders in turn must lead in a good and honorable way.

Leaders give an account to God for their actions

Obey your spiritual leaders and submit to them [continually recognizing their authority over you], for they are constantly keeping watch over your souls and guarding your spiritual welfare, as men who will have to render an account [of their trust]. [Do your part to] let them do this with gladness and not with sighing and groaning, for that would not be profitable to you [either]. Hebrews 13:17 AMP

Rodney Howard Browne bringing Revival to Louisville KY