“For My house shall be called a house of prayer for all nations.” (Isaiah 56:7b, NKJV).
God’s house, the spiritual center for city transformation and global impact, is a house of prayer. If we are to see a culture of spiritual renewal flourish in the Church, we must align our vision of God’s house with His vision of His house. In its full expression, God’s house is not self-referential, but rather, is designed to be a source of life, blessing, and change for all the nations of the earth.
This House of Prayer is also known as the House of David. David was determined to see God’s kingdom authority established on the earth. No cost was too high; no sacrifice too great.
David’s house--the tabernacle of David--was a place of worship and prayer--a place of unfettered devotion in the Presence of God. This was David’s priority. He couldn’t wait to get the Ark of the Covenant back in the central place it was meant to be.
David’s tabernacle was not an impressive building. In fact, it was merely a tent. But God wasn’t concerned about that--He liked what was going on inside. David, along with the priests and Levites he appointed, led God’s people in extravagant, whole-hearted worship. They sang endlessly, danced raucously, shouted, knelt, clapped, and lifted up skilled music to God. They did this constantly--twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, three hundred and sixty-five days a year. This Davidic worship was the key to Israel’s success and well-being.
Today, wherever God’s Presence is not prioritized among His people, we see prayer dying out, and the spiritual vitality of the people dying along with it. Once abandoned, the structures that contained the house of God begin to decay themselves. After the spiritual life dissipates, people eventually stop going through the motions as well. First the pews become vacant. Then the buildings crumble or are shut down.
However, I also see another reality arising. Throughout the nations, there is a pressing into prayer as we’ve never seen before... The nation of Brazil has experienced massive Christian revival in prayer and worship. The Chinese Church never stops crying out and has multiplied at an unprecedented rate in the last century. Christian prayer gatherings of multiple millions can be found in African nations like Nigeria. The tabernacle of David is being restored in our day.
There’s a reason Jesus prayed to His Father, “Your kingdom come, Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven,” (Mt. 6:10, NKJV, emphasis added). The answer to the earth’s problems is heavenly. And it takes those who will intercede and sacrificially dedicate their lives to pulling the answers, resources, blessings, and miracles out of heaven to be manifest in the earth.
When we gain authority in the heavenly realm, we see transformation in our families, cities, and nations. Intercession is the key to the ministry of reconciliation we have been entrusted with by God. Prayer is the vehicle that moves eternal realities forward, and gives them power and authority in this realm. We need to fulfill our calling!
“Coming to Him as to a living stone, rejected indeed by men, but chosen by God and precious, you also, as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ,” (I Peter 2:4-5, NKJV).
We are biblically instructed to be a holy priesthood--our primary calling is to minister to Him in His Presence. I’m not talking about attending a service. I’m talking about giving our lives to the purposes of God. We are called to come alongside one another in unity, to bring our gifts and strengthen the work of the Lord, for local and global Kingdom expansion.
There is an amazing strategy the Lord is using to bring in the harvest of souls in this hour. The singers and dancers will once again lead the army of God into the battlefield! Warring for the souls of a generation, these anointed creators will release the sounds and sights of heaven onto earth, and unbelievers will flock to them, sensing deep within their hearts that this is what they have been searching for all along. This is different from the crossover artists we have seen in the past. The new minstrels and artists will build a bridge, but the crossing over will be done by the world, by unbelievers streaming into the Kingdom.
Another godly strategy is extremely potent and is gaining understanding in our day: it is the power of the Psalm 133 blessing in God’s house—the unity of the elders in the city: “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!” (Psalm 133:1, NKJV). This is not merely cooperation or participation, but true unity—the same quality of unity that God the Father and Jesus share. That is the kind of unity Jesus prayed we would have. It is a unity that prefers others over ourselves, considers the cause of the Kingdom over our own needs, and is free from selfish ambition and impure motives.
As this quality of unity rises in the Body of Christ, we will see a release of authority in God’s house. I believe in the realm of the natural, we will see governmental officials coming to the Church for answers to societal problems like illiteracy, homelessness, and drugs. Imagine the authority we will possess when we speak to the school boards of this nation with a united voice, representing thousands.
As representatives of God’s house, we as the Church must live by God’s priorities of worship, prayer, and unity, moving together as the house of prayer that will release transformation to the world around us. May we see the expansion of His Kingdom in our day!
Hey friends! At our recent conference I had a chance to sit down with Michael Koulianos. Michael shared about his personal walk with the Lord and the importance of spending set aside time with him. Listen in and be encouraged!
Hanukkah is about miracles.
At this time, all around the world the Jewish people recall the “miracle of the oil."
Around 165 B.C.E., Judah Maccabee took back control of Jerusalem from invading kingdoms, cleansed the temple and sought to re-establish worship to the one true God. The symbol of their worship was the lighting of the lampstand or Menorah.
Jewish tradition says that they discovered there was only enough oil to keep the flame lit for one day, but miraculously the lamp continued to burn for 8 nights. This time of year, Jewish people all over the world celebrate this miracle in the festival of Hanukkah, rejoicing in God’s supernatural provision.
Hanukkah is about rememberance.
One traditional Jewish prayer recited over these days is "Praised are You, Our God, Ruler of the universe, Who made us holy through your commandments and commanded us to kindle the Hanukah lights." Each night another candle on the Hanukkah menorah is lit as a rememberance of the supernatural sustaining of the oil.
Hanukkah is about dedication.
The Hanukkah story is set in an important moment of Jewish history. As Judah Maccabee regained control of Jerusalem, his first priority was to clean out and re-dedicate the Temple. While the invaders had occupied this sacred space they had desecrated it with their own falsegods and vile practices. The Jewish people removed all the idols, ended the practice of idol worship, and re-established worship to the One True God. In the Temple, the lamp stand shone in the Holy Place, it was a sign of true worship. God honored this act of obedience and supernaturally sustained the oil in the menorah. Though they only had oil for one day the lamp burned for 8 nights. Hanukkah is a time for us to again welcome the cleansing of our "temples" that we might be full of His Light and Love.
In years to come the festival was called the "Feast of Dedication" as the Jewish people took this special holiday as an opportunity to commit themselves to the God of Israel. Jesus even participated in Hanukkah, the account can be found in John 10:22-23. He came up to Jerusalem for the Feast of Dedication.
How are you going to embrace the message of this season? What can you do to remember, dedicate and commit your life to be a bright shining light in this world?