The Blessedness of Divine Encounters
Sunday sermon by Pastor Rajesh mathew, 10 Jan, 2021
Revelations 5:5-6-5 Then one of the elders said to me, “Do not weep! See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has triumphed. He is able to open the scroll and its seven seals.” 6 Then I saw a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain, standing at the center of the throne, encircled by the four living creatures and the elders. The Lamb had seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth.
Without an encounter with God’s presence, our life will be unchanged. Divine encounters will open a new chapter in your life.
Divine encounters decorate the individual's life.
Destiny is revealed in encounters.
Every great story is traceable to divine encounters.
2021 is the year of favour for supernatural encounters with the Lord. This morning let there be hunger, prayer and worship for this very thing to become real in your life. Lord, ‘give me divine encounters.’ Pray in the Spirit and ask God for an encounter.
HOW DO YOU POSITION YOURSELF FOR A DIVINE ENCOUNTER? The Lord spoke to Abraham in the Book of Genesis and told him to get out of the land of his and that God would make him a great nation for God’s glory. It is an encounter of Lord Jesus Christ that makes you great. Your family, business, ministry is made great by the Lord Jesus Christ. The One who makes you great is the Lord Jesus Christ.
- Out of obscurity Moses became a mighty prophet because of an encounter with God. Saul became a Paul; fishermen became the greatest apostles of all time.
Abraham had such a great encounter of God that in heaven Lazarus is lying on his bosom. On the earth, there is so much of blessing in that encounter which is made available to us through the death of Jesus.
It is the encounter that makes the difference, Things are going to change in my life. 2. Gideon was weak but God showed up and His angel called him a mighty man of valour. Encounter with God makes the weak strong.
The Holy Spirit is saying long standing problems are being resolved by the Lord. Get up and walk.Long pending legal cases are going to turn around in your favour. Your health issues are going to be healed in Jesus name.
Encounter is what delivered the Israelites from years of bondage to the Midianite yoke.
- Be excited in your home. Declare that you are readying yourself for a supernatural deliverance from the Lord! Read the Bible. Solomon had an encounter with God.
Every child of God is programmed for divine encounters.
In John 10, Jesus says that MY sheep will hear my voice and follow me. If you are his sheep you need to hear His voice. Only there you will receive direction. If you can't hear, you can't follow. It is the same thing in ministry, only if you can hear and follow the voice of the man of God in the church can you follow and stay connected to that church. Jesus said God has programmed His children to hear His voice.
God has a settled plan about your life. God is not confused about what he has for you in 2021.
There is no product in the market which is not pre-determined in the factory. Only after testing the product, it is released in to the market. There is no product that is ‘trying to find its purpose’. No! God is not wondering what to do with your life! Only if you have an encounter with God can you understand God’s purpose in your life. Cabbage doesn’t try to become a carrot. A cat doesn’t think about becoming a dog. They know their purpose.
Jeremiah 1:5: Before you were born while you were in your mother’s womb, I ordained you to be a prophet.
- This is revealed in an encounter.
Galatians 1:15-16- But it pleased God who separated me from my mother’s womb.
- Saul was a nuisance. He was the head of a quotation team. He had no dignity. He tormented the children of God. But when he had an encounter with Christ, he asked “Who are you Lord”? There his purpose was revealed. That was HIS START!
- In 2021. Some of you who were a nuisance will understand your purpose. The Holy Spirit will reveal it to you. God is releasing it upon your life. Even today we preach what Paul wrote. Even if generations pass and years go by, the grace and purpose of God in your life will come to pass. That kind of supernatural grace and anointing is being released upon your life. • Is calling only for people in ministry?
Abraham was not a preacher. He was a businessman. But he knew how to trust God. He knew that by obeying God he will be blessed. Who taught Abraham first about the tithing? How did he know that he will grow if he gives unto God? When he met Melchizedek, he knew it was from the Lord.
- Gideon was a deliverer. IPS or IAS or military commander or superintendent of police. That was his call. Esther an orphan poor Jewish girl becoming a queen of the largest empire of the time. The calling in her life.
- Gods encounter will get you to the level that God wants you to. His encounter will get you to your purpose. Let the HOLY spirit reveal that over your life. Open your heart
Everyone who is saved through JESUS Christ is a candidate for divine encounters.
- We think calling is only to minister behind the pulpit. Besaliel had a respectable profession. He had a responsible job. It was his calling. How do you know that it is calling? If you are called to be a doctor, then when you place your stethoscope over patients, God will move upon people. My spiritual father's wife was a doctor. Her stethoscope would cast out demons in hospitals during her duty! His calling will heal more people more than the profession that you have. God releasing that anointing upon some doctors and nurses. Receive that anointing in the Name of Jesus.
HOW DO I EXPERIENCE DIVINE ENCOUNTERS?
1. By walking in the Spirit
Galatians 5:16-17--- 6 I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. 17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish.
- It is actually easier to walk in the spirit than walking in the flesh because the Holy Spirit lives inside of you and wants to fellowship with you. We need to walk in the spirit and most of us believe we need to do it only when we have to minister.
- God can encounter you not just in church. It can be inside your home. Jose chachen was given spiritual songs while he was bathing. Whether it is in the morning or noon or evening, encounters can happen. I experienced the anointing of God in the early days of my ministry when I was eating idlis. Encounters can happen even while eating idlis! It is no about the idlis but it is about walking I the spirit. The anointing is not in the idlis but walking in the spirit.
Revelations 1:10--- 10 I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s Day, and I heard behind me a loud voice, as of a trumpet, 11 saying, [a]“I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last,” and, “What you see, write in a book and send it to the seven churches [b]which are in Asia: to Ephesus, to Smyrna, to Pergamos, to Thyatira, to Sardis, to Philadelphia, and to Laodicea.” 12 Then I turned to see the voice that spoke with me. And having turned I saw seven golden lampstands,
- John became in the Spirit in Patmos. He was all alone. He could have just slept. There was no pastor, apostles, alone but he became in the Spirit. He saw heavens opens and had an encounter with Jesus. No choir, no prayer partners But he was alone…STILL HE WAS IN THE SPIRIT.
- The radios frequency has to be first tuned into to listen to the sounds. You need to position yourself to have an encounter with God.
I met someone and prayed for a long time in the spirit. He had this testimony---God called him to go to a town to meet a friend. He thought he would meet another day but again God told him to go. He obeyed and left. After he got there, he saw a board that he is away on vacation and back after a week. He wasn't sure if God spoke to him. He doubted. But the same voice told him to find a peaceful place. He found a place and sat there. When he called on God the Holy Spirit lifted him up in the spirit. He encountered God for 18 hours in that place. God showed him very clearly what he had to do. That is where his ministry started. There are about 21000 vehicles that are parked at the entrance of their church. One year before lockdown, they bought 1230 new buses to ferry people to church. Except 42 countries, in every other country their church is present and, in some nations, it is one of the biggest churches in the nation. If he had not listened to the still small voice of the HOLY Spirit that day, he would have missed out on the encounter. 50000 people attend one service in this Man of God’s church. And the church has 4 services on Sundays. It all began with an encounter!
Many people miss out by being spiritually careless. Do not be spiritually careless. Walk in the spirit. It is not an emotional experience. You can shake and shiver in the spirit. It is OK. But you need to receive direction from the Holy spirit. Only then can you move forward.
- Life happens in phases. In these phases, if you need a new chapter in your life, you need an encounter. You cannot depend on the knowledge gained in your older life phases to step into a new phase of your life.
I was asked to move out to a place outside of the city to minister by the Lord. Many said it is inconvenient for people to come there. But we are only OBEYING God. We can't fear man and disobey God.
- Some of us want pastor to remain in the same level. They want to increase and enlarge but they want me to stay at the same level, available for prayer and all that etc. Every church has different phases. We are not here to please man. But to do what the Holy spirit is asking me to do whether you like it or not. If you are in the Spirit, you will also feel that way and have the same convictions. Otherwise you will be insecure and fearful whether you are lagging behind but if you walk in the Spirit you will know!
God’s encounters will give you communication from the Father. If God tells you to turn right and you continue driving straight, nothing will happen. You should know the pulse of the Holy Spirit.
When a dog barks, we don’t understand it but other dogs understand it. Every encounter has Gods communication within it. God speaks to guide us and not to give us some effect.
2. By walking in love
1 Kings 3:3- 3 And Solomon loved the Lord, walking in the statutes of his father David, except that he sacrificed and burned incense at the high places.
- It was that night that God met with Solomon to speak to him.
Love for God QUALIFIES YOU FOR divine ENCOUNTERS
- David was a man after gods own heart. His heart was for God. Is the depth of your heart for Jesus? The depth to your love determines the clarify of your encounter with God. Be hungry for God. Early will I seek you. Where the deep calls unto the deep. David, a man after God’s heart. He was the one who said I will rather be a door keeper in tent of God rather than dwell in the courts of the wicked.
- God told Abraham to get out of your people. Go to the land I show you.
In Genesis 15, God told him to circumcise all menfolk in their midst. Did Abraham doubt it? Did he ask “What if” somebody dies?” No, he did not. He loved the Lord more than anything else. God asked him for his only son Isaac. God could have asked for Ishmael which would have been easier for Abraham to give away. But God asked for Isaac whom Abraham loved. But Abraham’s heart was for God.
- We want God to do this and that before so and so time. But we need to realise that it can’t be on your terms but His terms. Not in your time but in His time.
If you love God the Holy spirit will give you a fresh chapter. Declare this by faith, “I love you Jesus”.
Men can see from the outside but they can’t see the heartbeat. Every part of your heart is going ‘JESUS I love you’. I am weak, I am uneducated, I don’t have talents, no gifts nothing, but I love you Jesus.
John 21:15-17--- God asked Peter, “do you love Me?” Peter relies, “Lord you know! You know I love you. I made a mistake but I love you.” You can't love God without knowing. He knows and you know.
I have been with Jesus since I was 20 years old and as each passing day goes by I keep increasing in my love for Him.
Love Jesus dangerously! Love Him more than anybody else in this whole Lord. His word will cause you to step into divine encounters
3. Walk on obedience
- When you obey your last instruction, you will get a fresh one.
- The Lord told a man of God, “I am committed to leading you, if you are committed to following me.”
- Many of you haven’t obeyed what God spoke 5 years ago to you and you expect a fresh leading from HIM. God will never do that.
- I remember a small thing: I had an issue and I was discussing that with one of my mentors. He told me to read the book of Ezekiel 47. After a year, when I discussed that issue with the same person, again the pastor told me to read Ezekiel 47...I thought he lost grace! I was wondering what's the connection between my issue and Ezekiel. Again after 6 to 7 months I asked him and
he said the same thing ---read Ezekiel 47...I understood that without reading Ezekiel 47, I will not get my answer.
God will never give you fresh instructions if you haven't obeyed the last one. It may be a simple thing like pray, worship. JUST DO IT!
4. Be Praise-full
Isaiah 30:39-30- You shall have a song
As in the night when a holy festival is kept,
And gladness of heart as when one goes with a flute,
To come into the mountain of the Lord,
To [h]the Mighty One of Israel.
You shall hear his voice when you are praise full and when you have joy in your heart. Depressed people cannot have an encounter with God. 21 days of fasting but all you did was crying. That won’t help. If you have lost anything be praise-full because God is the reason why you haven’t lost everything. I will praise God. I have not lost everything.
The cure for depression is praise.
5. Be zealous for His Kingdom
1 Kings 19:10-11- 10 So he said, “I have been very zealous for the Lord God of hosts; for the children of Israel have forsaken Your covenant, torn down Your altars, and killed Your prophets with the sword. I alone am left; and they seek to take my life.” 11 Then He said, “Go out, and stand on the mountain before the Lord.” And behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind tore into the mountains and broke the rocks in pieces before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake;
I have been zealous for THE Lord God. God commissions you to do certain things because you are zealous for Him. Jesus says in the New Testament that “the zeal for your house has consumed me.” These are the things that produces God encounters in your life.
May God baptise you with fresh zeal. Zeal for His Name, His house, His Word.It is better to sync with God than to shine without Him.
Zeal for God will blind your eyes. When I stepped out only thing I wanted was to live for Him...other things like how will you eat, live, marry etc don’t bother us. You are blinded because of zeal for the Lord. Nobody needs to push you when you are zealous for God. There is nothing that energizes life like zeal.
6. Most of the divine encounters come through the Word
1 Samuel 3:21- 21 Then the Lord appeared again in Shiloh. For the Lord revealed Himself to Samuel in Shiloh by the word of the Lord.
God revealed himself by the Word of God. God washes us with His Word.
I asked God, “Prosperity, is it from you?” Until then even for a keyboard we fasted and prayed fr so many days. Because my thinking was that we should leave everything. If that is the case, how do we serve God? Wait for ever? Wait for some foreign funding? But I understood form the Word that it is
not your prayer and fasting, it is the covenant with God that will drive you into the blessing. If you keep your part. The Windows of heaven will be opened. Nobody can shut it. Malachi 3 says so. Doors that nobody can shut will be opened up over your life. Yes, you won’t borrow. You will lend.
- Psalms 34 says that those who look to me will never be put to shame.
I will look unto the Lord! Anytime you are looking to man, you are not looking to Me, says the Lord! If you do, God will release resources supernaturally into your life.
- In my 26 years of ministry, I have never once asked any man to give me offering for serving God. Even this morning, encounters will change your financial destinies.
Every encounter demands spiritual sensitivity, not revival.Elisha was told by Elijah, if you see me when I am lifted up, then you will receive the double portion. He had walked with him for years! But no, he had to be sensitive to see him being lifted up (at that moment).
- If you are not positioned as God wants you to, you will only survive. But if you sensitively position yourself in the Lord, you will have an encounter.
Your encounter is tied to your assignment and place.
- God gives His encounters to people through his servants. God visited Egypt through Moses. He visited the widow in Zarephath through Prophet Elijah
- Mathew 10 talks about the reward of a prophet for those who offer a glass of water to a man who is a prophet. It is an encounter moment.
- God releases encounters for His purpose. Yes, Lord, I receive. I want to have my eyes open to see You. I want to surrender myself to have encounters with you through Jesus Christ