Favoured for Fruitfulness
Sunday sermon by Pastor Rajesh Mathew, 25 Oct 2020
Call to fast and pray
To keep the fire of the Holy Spirit burning we have a fasting and prayer from Nov 1st to the 11th. 11 days. The Lord said, in the 11th month, pray for 11 days, just out of obedience. Definitely there is a blessing behind it.
Noah took120 years to build the ark. People around him may have mocked him saying it is such a waste of his time. But Noah just obeyed and he was blessed.
If you obey and pray, you will experience the rain of the Holy Spirit, a rain of His favour, rain of His blessing and supernatural release of His grace. Decide to obey! Ask HIM for grace to do so. There is deliverance, healing behind it.
Lot of diseases will leave you if you fast and pray.
Isaiah 54: 1-3- “Sing, O barren, You who have not borne!
Break forth into singing, and cry aloud, You who have not labored with child!For more are the children of the desolate than the children of the married woman,”says the LORD.
2 “Enlarge the place of your tent, And let them stretch out the curtains of your dwellings; Do not spare; Lengthen your cords, And strengthen your stakes.3 For you shall expand to the right and to the left, and your descendants will inheritthe nations, And make the desolate cities inhabited.
- Favour for fruitfulness. In these times, many people are worried and tensed. Many people are discouraged that COVID-19 has taken away time from their lives. Economy is shrinking. But in the midst of this, God is giving us this Word.
Enlarge the place of your tent- Even when people are going through uncomfortable times, the prophets are releasing a Word.
- God’s not planning your increase/ growth based on GDP and economic status. But if you hear His voice, seek His face and believe His Word, He will enlarge you. • I do not know India’s GDP may be coming down. People around you may be facing challenges. But God will increase His children. That is a fact!
Exodus 1:12-12 But the more they afflicted them, the more they multiplied and grew. And they were in dread of the children of Israel.
- Don’t worry about the world, or don’t look at your struggle. Jesus will make you grow and will bless you and enlarge you.
- The Joshua generation left Egypt, went through the wilderness for 40 years. And they were going to cross over into the promised land. The Jordan was overflowing and flooding at this time of crossing over. The people may have asked, ‘wasn’t there a better time to cross over into the land when the Jordan wasn’t flooded, Lord?’ But
the Lord said, ‘in the midst of this flood, when My priests, step into the waters with the Ark, the flood waters will stand tall and you will cross over.
Today when the Jericho stands high and the rivers are flooding all around you, just get into the Presence of God, step forward in His presence take a risk! It looks very risky! TAKE A RISK!
- In the same manner, some of us may be asking, Lord, in COVID – 19 times are you giving me such a Word?
- In the valley of dry bones, the prophet spoke to the dry bones and God raised up an army. In this morning, in the midst of your struggle, challenge and difficulties, in the midst of that, God has kept and planned a growth for you. If you can only understand that and receive it into your heart.
1 Kings 17:10- 10 So he arose and went to Zarephath. And when he came to the gate of the city, indeed a widow was there gathering sticks. And he called to her and said, “Please bring me a little water in a cup, that I may drink.”
The brook of Cherith had dried up. And the Holy Spirit said go to Zarephath. When the brooks dry, God has another source in mind for you. Don’t sit there looking at your dried brook and worry. Look to Jesus and he has kept a widow for you. Look unto His face, God will show you the next resource and He will lead you there. God is bigger than your challenge.
Ecclesiastes 11:4- He who observes the wind will not sow, And he who regards theclouds will not reap.
Don’t look for a favourable time. Don’t look for a perfect time. Just look for a favourable Word. Don’t keep asking, when will this situation change? When will this time change? But in the midst of whatever you are going through, if you take steps of faith, God will release His growth. The bread that you caste into the waters will return to you with a blessing. It will become your season to walk in favour for fruitfulness.
- Isaiah means Yahweh is salvation- the Lord who saves. That is what his name means. Isaiah’s first 31 chapters are corrections. This book is called a mini Bible. It is the Bible in capsule form. Chapters 40 onwards it is about restoration.
- Jehovah saves or ‘God Is salvation’ implies that we go to heaven from hell through Jesus. But in the Old Testament, that is not what it meant. While you are here on the earth, there is deliverance and rescue from people’s bondages. They can be released from their insecurities, strengthened in their weaknesses, walking in glory and flourishing. Most certainly you will make it to heaven through Jesus.
- Not just on spiritual aspects but even while you are here on the earth, God is concerned about you, your family, your children, your business. Even today the Lord is able. He will delivery you out of trouble, from danger and perilous times.
RESCUE IN A DIFFICULT TIME
Some say, ‘Pastor this is a very difficult time’. You need to know that heaven has seen your difficulty and pain. Don’t be burdened. The Holy Spirit is here to stir you up. Let the Holy Spirit give you strength, comfort and an assurance that the Lord will open heavens over your life to help you grow and increase.
So, after trouble, discipline comes restoration.
Restoration is not a makeover or a patch up! Restoration, biblically, means ‘better than the original state’
- It is not like sealing a small crack to temporarily stop the leak.
- When God restores you from an emotional difficulty, you will have more emotional strength than before. More joy, more memories! That is the Lord’s restoration. May the Lord release a restoration anointing upon your life.
Let the Lord heal your body and restore. The Lord is touching somebody with kidney stones, some kidney stones are being dissolved by the Lord. Somebody who has swelling in the knees is being totally healed.
When the Lord restores you, you receive the best. When you make it to heaven, there will be streets of glory. You will judge the nations with the Lord. You will have glorious mansions.
Restoration means the Lord is releasing something better. God is releasing something better in your life.
HOW WILL THIS HAPPEN?
Isaiah 6:1 onwards- 6 In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord sitting on athrone, high and lifted up, and the train of His robe filled the temple. 2 Above it stoodseraphim; each one had six wings: with two he covered his face, with two he coveredhis feet, and with two he flew.
There is an episode and experience in this chapter that changed the prophet
- You need to know how Great your God is, not through your head knowledge but through the BIBLE, through your prayers and through your worship. In these days as you fast and pray, God will take you higher into a newer dimension of the Spirit.
- Some things need to die; only then you can see the king. When King Uzziah died, he saw the KING of Kings. When one king died, he could see the king of kings through his spiritual eyes.
- You are His temple: The trail of His robe and His glory filled the temple. • We are His temple! Even this day, in the midst of your struggle, when you look to God, His glory fills you!
- The Word favour means divine help. It is heaven helping you. Jesus will help you. The Holy Spirit will help you. You cannot survive without the favour of God. You cannot make an impact without the favour of God.
- If His glory doesn’t fill you, your dream and vision can never be fulfilled. But heaven is coming alongside you to help you. It is coming by your side. The glory is coming to you. His temple was not filled with not with judgement, struggles, pain, punishment but with His glory! It is God standing with you throughout your journey.
- Paul says that no one stood with me at my first defense but the Lord stood by my side and strengthened me. In the midst of the prison and the struggle, God stands with us.
- You will have a testimony in these COVID times. Many may have left you, your family may have let you down. But God’s glory will visit you!
- It is said of Joseph that God was with him. Joseph was actually a slave. But the titles are not important. Through he was a slave, Potiphar’s credit card, locker keys and all critical documents were handed to him! Get ready for heaven helping and God showing you favour!
- Many people will say, ever since this person came in, our company’s face changed. The situation in my family changed ever since she started going for prayer.
People carry something, either you carry the Holy Spirit, the favour of God and blessing of God or you carry the opposite. Don’t give anybody and everybody access to our home. If you let people without vision into your life, they will quench your own vision.
- When Mary went to Elizabeth’s house, the baby in her womb leaped with joy in the spirit. Mary carried a promise in her womb. Both had a vision, both were carrying the Promise. When the one with vision meets another one with vision, the fire of God comes there. When one worshipper meets another, glory falls! Timothy and Paul, worshipped together. John and Peter worshipped together.
- Don’t give everybody access to your thoughts, your life, your conversations. Any conversation that has given access to negative things about men of God will make the Presence of God leave your life and the devil will follow around you. When people who pray, have faith worship and stand together, God’s favour will descend.
What do you notice in people? Do you notice favour or do you notice the beautiful churidar? Be someone who has a spiritual and heavenly perspective.
Potiphar’s recommendation letter for joseph would go something like this:
“After this guy came into my family, things changed. God works on his behalf all the time. I can trust this guy with anything! Everything he touches prospers. God’s favour is with him.”
The Jailer gave him the keys of the jail. He sat in jailors room watching IPL sitting in AC! that is favour!
God’s favour gives you preferential treatment.
- Some people wherever they go, they create some trouble. Even if they come to church the same thing will happen but if God’s favour is upon someone, when they come in, families are blessed.
- One person with favour can generate blessings to the entire family. • Exodus 20 talks about curses that gets passed on to 3-4 generations. That would eb around 200 years of curse into that family. However, if one who worships God in Spirit and in Truth, 1000 generations are blessed. If one person walks blameless with God, in prayer in worship, 1000 generations will be blessed. Your city, your family, 1000 generations will be blessed.
Favour will make you esteemed
- Favour has not equality. Gender equality, racial equality. Everyone is fighting or equality. You may be rich or poor, a man from the forests, a Chinese villager from Shinko, or wherever else, if God’s favour is upon you then you will be blessed. You are esteemed.
Favour will even fight battles for you
- Abraham went against 4 kingdoms to fight. 318 people from his household went with him for the battle. These 318 included those who clean his front-yard, cook his rabbit stew, milk the cows and wash the camels, they and their children (318 in all) went to fight nations and actually won against them!! How? The favour of God! The chief
cook and butler went too! Against all odds, thy became victorious!
- No matter how big the forces that are opposing you are. No matter how weak you feel, you have victory in the name of Jesus.
You will reach where others have not reached in life. Why? Because of the favour of God. You will advance God’s kingdom
God’s favour is like a canopy.
- It is like a rainbow in the sk y for you. Like a covering. I am under the canopy of God’s favour.
Favour means approved of God.
- You plus God is a majority. Glory unto the name of Jesus.
- In the Old Testament, favour is from the word ‘CHANAN’, in Hebrew. Hannah comes from that word. There was no fruitfulness. She was barren. She was belittled by Penninah. Hanan means mercy and favour. Amidst provocation Hannah was sustained by the favour of God.
- In Daniel 3, Hannaniah also derives its meaning from the same word, meaning favour. In the midst of the fire, God can descend to rescue you. His name is Jesus. Even if it is COVID-19 and there is fire all around you, Jesus will descend there. You may be listening from the ICU. Jesus died for you, rose gain on the 3rd day and He is able to help you and descend in the midst of your trouble.
Favour is excessive kindness
Favour is obvious. It is called divine backing.
- You will never be at the back when He is backing you! It doesn’t matter who barks at you, when HE backs you!
- Lift up your hands and thanks the Lord!
Favour is God showing you consideration.
Favour is to be spoilt by God.
- May the Lord carry you and walk, wipe away your every tear.
- The God who doesn’t forget even if your own mother forgets you. May He kiss you with His kisses and fill you with His love.
Isaiah 54:2-2 “Enlarge the place of your tent, And let them stretch out the curtains of your dwellings; Do not spare; Lengthen your cords, And strengthen your stakes.
- The word used here is ‘Stretch’! It involves pushing and pulling. If there needs to be growth, there has to be stretching. Unless you stretch you cannot put a step forward. If a mother has to give birth, she has to stretch. You cannot grow without stretching. • God is looking at a people who are tired and lying down and saying stretch!
Isais 55:2- from the message Bible- “Clear lots of ground for your tents! Make your tents large. Spread out! Think big! Use plenty of rope, drive the tent pegs deep. You’re going to need lots of elbow room for your growing family. You’re going to take over whole nations; you’re going to resettle abandoned cities.
The words used here are
➢ Barren which means unable to bear fruit. It is not just women but men of a nation. No fruitfulness!
➢ Desolate means alone, nobody with you to help. I am abandoned! Nobody to help you achieve your goal and your objectives. No body to help you get there. That is where God is saying He will bless you!
God is saying in this verse:
- THINK Big
- Clear lots of place for your tent---Enlarge the place (and not the tent!) • The place and not the structure. You need to first expand the land. Without doing that first your structure won’t grow. Buy what is nearby too!
- Tent = structure –usually it is said that before structural change there has to be a foundational change.
- Place means the environment, the belief system. For example: A young man told his dad that he wanted to get married. When the dad asks him why he suddenly felt like it, he responds that he had watched a movie where he saw a young boy and a girl run around trees, singing songs, exchanging ice creams and roses and that inspired him to get married. That was his place or his premise to get married. This was the thinking he had. So, he gets married but realises that his wife doesn’t like ice cream and neither does she appreciate other people having ice creams due a diabetic history in her family! Now even if he prays for years for a blessed marriage nothing will change because in his mind his idea of a happy marriage is still running around trees and exchanging ice creams. His premise needs to change!
- Similarly, another example, with regard to ministry. A person wants to do ministry. Why? He sees the pastor get in and out of cars, people welcoming him with flowers. He thinks that is ministry. Only when he steps into ministry does he know the difficulties of it. He will get flowers only one day in a year. The remaining 300 days he is only gets thorns! And then you wonder why your ministry is not growing. Your premise and belief system need to first change.
- Another example, a lady wanted a baby. She sees a beautiful picture of a well-rested mom and baby in the Johnson’s baby ad. She found that cute and prayed for a child. God blessed her with a baby but this baby is nothing like the one she had seen in the ad. Her baby sleeps during the day and lies awake at night. She is tired and broken
and doesn’t want baby anymore.
The issue is that the perspective and the belief was wrong. The place where the structure was supposed to come was wrong.
Nothing wrong with marriage, nothing wrong with wanting to minister, nothing wrong with wanting a child but your premise and your belief behind it has to be correct for increase to come. May you find FAVOUR FOR FRUITFULNESS!