All Scripture quotations are from the Authorized King James Version of the Bible unless otherwise indicated.
July 19, 2010
HANDS FOR JESUS
P.O. BOX 18655
MILWAUKEE, WI 53218-0655
For more information visit our Web sites at:
2010 by Merle E. Koepke
All Rights Reserved
This is Part 3 of "Perfect Peace." It would be of a great advantage if you were to read Parts one and two of "Perfect Peace," before reading this part. The information in them will help you to understand how God has planned for you to have perfect peace at all times in your life. If you do not have perfect peace in your life, you need to find out why?
In Isaiah 26:3,4 it says, "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee...Trust ye in the LORD for ever: for in the LORD JEHOVAH is everlasting strength." This is a prophetic message for Christians today. Actually, the Children of Israel could not obtain unto perfect peace, for the Spirit of Peace was not given until after Jesus arose again from the dead.
The kingdom of God is "the reign of God" here on earth and in heaven. The kingdom of God is the Holy Spirit carrying out the will of God here on earth and in heaven. Without the Holy Spirit in operation as the one who causes the Word of God to manifest in the natural, man could not have perfect peace.
Once Christians have received the Holy Spirit as their helper, guide, comforter, leader, and teacher they can enter into the reign of God here on earth. In the Old Covenant, this was not possible for the Holy Spirit was not given until after Jesus was glorified (John 7:38,39).
According to 2 Peter 1:19-21, all Scripture is prophetic. That means that the Scriptures are prophesying of things past, present, and future. Much of the Old Testament is prophesying of things that were to come in the New Covenant. Much of what was prophesied to come, has already come and Christians should be living in the days of the greatest move of God the world has ever seen.
The kingdom of God is here and it is in operation right now. But, many have not understood the Kingdom of God, and many have not entered into the Kingdom of God because of a lack of knowledge of the prophetic Word written in the Old and New Testaments. The prophetic message of the Scriptures can only be understood by a revelation of the Holy Spirit. The natural man cannot understand the prophetic message of the Scriptures.
In 1 Corinthians 2:7-14 it says, "But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory...Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory...But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him...But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God...For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God...Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God...Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual...But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned."
What many Christians have not understood is that the natural man is still here with us. We have the new birth into the body of Christ. We have eternal life abiding in us (in our spirit). We are no longer in the flesh, but in the Spirit. Romans 8:9 tells us, "But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his." This is all true, including 2 Corinthians 5:17 which says, "Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. " Yet there is a problem with the translation of this verse of Scripture. The way it is translated will require that "we speak things that are not as though they were" (Rom. 4:17). Therefore, the way it is translated in the King James Version, it only applies to those who walk in love fulfilling the two commandments that were given us by the LORD in Mark 12:30,31.
God "...calleth those things which be not as though they were," knowing the end from the beginning (Rom. 4:17; Isa. 46:9,10). The LORD did the same thing in the book of Job. In Job 1:8, "the LORD said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?"
The LORD knew the end from the beginning. Job had a problem of self-righteousness, but the LORD was speaking to Satan things that were not as though they were. The LORD knew that once Job repented, He could turn the captivity of Job around and bless Job. Once Job repented in Job 42:1-6, the LORD did bless Job. Afer Job repented, he was "...a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?" (Job 1:8).
Therefore, God is speaking the truth when He speaks things that are not as though they were. For God always lives in the "Now," knowing the end from the beginning (Isa. 46:9,10).
Christians should also understand what the inspired written Word says in 2 Corinthians 5:17. The English translations are not correctly translated from the Greek to English. In the Greek it really says, "...he is a new creature: old things are passing away; behold, all things are becoming new." In the natural, our redemption is not complete at this time. It will not be complete until we leave this body of earthly flesh and bones and go to be with God for all eternity. In 1 Corinthians 15:51-54, it says, "Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed...In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed...For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality...So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory." When this takes place then our new creature in Christ will be complete.
While we are still living on the earth, we still have the old man of flesh with us (Rom. 8:16). The new creature in Christ is in the inward man of the spirit, not the outward man of the flesh (2 Cor. 4:16). We can still walk after the flesh, or we can walk after the Spirit, the choice is ours (Rom. 7:14-8:8). If we walk after the flesh, we cannot please God, we actually become enemies of God when we walk after the flesh. Therefore, we must learn to walk after the Spirit and not after the flesh.
This is the battle we must fight every day in our lives here on earth. It is called the good fight of faith. It says in 1 Timothy 6:12, "Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses." The good fight of faith is fought between the flesh and spirit. Which one will we follow, the natural man of the flesh or the spiritual man of the Spirit?
If we sow to the flesh, we will reap corruption which is the opposite of eternal life. If we sow to the Spirit, we will reap life eternal. We still have a choice as to whom we will submit ourselves to in this life here on earth. Our redemption is not complete, and will not be complete until we leave this earth for the last time.
Therefore, we must not try to understand the inspired written Word of God according to the natural man, but rather receive the revelation of the inspired written Word as it is spiritually discerned by the Holy Spirit (1 Cor. 2:9-14).
Why do Christians still have situations in their lives which cause fear, torment, confusion, sickness and disease? If the Scripture is true, why are we still being held in bondage to the things that Jesus already obtained our freedom from when He went to the Cross and paid the price for our full redemption?
All over the world, Spirit-filled Christians are suffering from the same problems in the mind and in the body that the Children of Israel suffered from throughout the Old Testament. There is still sickness and disease among many Spirit-filled Christians. There is still fear, torment and confusion among many Spirit-filled Christians.
The Apostle Paul was a Spirit-filled Christian, called of God as an Apostle, when he wrote in Romans 7:14-23 of his own struggles with sin in the flesh. Then Paul made a statement in Romans 7:24, saying, "O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?" If the Apostle Paul still had problems with the flesh, what about Spirit-filled Christians today? Are they free of the problems the Apostle Paul had? No, not unless they do what the Apostle Paul revealed in the inspired written Word. In Romans 7:25, Paul wrote, "I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin." Then in Romans 8:1-8, the Apostle Paul explained what He was taught by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit in the Scriptures.
If we are to be free of all that Satan comes against us with, we must walk after the Spirit and not after the flesh. If we walk after the flesh we could experience corruption, which is the opposite of eternal life (Gal. 6:7,8).
How can Christians today, have perfect peace in their lives here on earth? It can only come by knowing and following "the Prince of Peace," which is Jesus Christ, Himself. In Isaiah 9:6, it was prophesied, "For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace."
Perfect peace comes when we know the Truth, and the Truth sets us free (John 8:31,32). The Truth is the Word of God which manifested in the life of Jesus Christ, who is the Prince of Peace. The Word of God makes it very clear, we cannot walk in darkness and still have fellowship with God (1 John 1:5-6). The Word of God also makes it clear that in this life we still have sin in our flesh (1 John 8,10). The Word of God also makes it clear that if we repent of all works of darkness and walk in the Light, the Blood of Jesus cleanses us from all sin (1 John 1:7). The Word of God also makes it clear that if we sin, we have an advocate with the Father, which is Jesus Christ the righteous, who is making intercession for us (1 John 2:1,2).
In Hebrews 7:24,25, speaking of Jesus, it says, "But this man, because he continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood...Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them."
With this in mind, we must remember with every promise of God, there is a condition. That condition begins with the two commandments that Jesus gave us in Mark 12:30,31. It says, "And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment...And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these."
If we "are not" keeping the two commandments that Jesus gave us, then the promises of God are of none effect in our lives. If we do not repent, we are serving the Devil. If we are serving the Devil, we cannot have fellowship with God. Without fellowship with God, we are no different than those of the world who do not know God.
Remember Cain (the first son of Adam and Eve). Cain knew what was right to do. But Cain's heart was not right before the LORD. When the LORD came to Cain and revealed what the Devil was doing in his life, Cain did not listen to the LORD. Cain continued in his sin, and therefore in 1 John 3:7,8, it says, "Little children, let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous...He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil." Here in 1 John 3:8, most of the English Versions of the Bible are incorrectly translated. Where it says "He that committeth sin is of the devil..." it should read, "He that continues in sin is of the devil..." In 1 John 1:5-10 it makes it clear that all Christians commit sin. If we say we do not sin, we lie (1 John 1:8). But if we repent and confess our sins God is truthful and just and will forgive us and cleanse us from all sin (1 John 1:9). But those Christians who continue in sin are following the Devil, who is called the Wicked one in 1 John 3:12.
So let us go on and look at what it tells us in 1 John 3:9. It says, "Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of." Again, in many of the English Versions of the Bible this verse is translated incorrectly. It should say, "Whosoever is born of God doth not continue in sin..." Those who are truly walking in the Light cannot continue in sin. While a Christian is walking in the Light, the Spirit of God within them will lead them to repentance, and forgiveness of all sin. If we are not walking in the Light, then Satan has a place in our lives, and we are not cleansed from our sin. Therefore, 1 John 3:10-12 explains this. It says, "In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother...For this is the message that ye heard from the beginning, that we should love one another... Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew his brother. And wherefore slew he him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother's righteous."
Christians do not have eternal security. Christians have an advocate with the Father, who is Jesus Christ, the righteous, making intercession for us. That intercession does not give us eternal security, it only helps us to walk in the Light as He is in the Light, so that the Blood of Jesus Christ can cleanse us from all sin.
When Christians do not have "perfect peace," they need to find out where they missed it with God. They need to start by checking their lives in comparison to the two commandments that Jesus gave us. Are we keeping the commandments that Jesus gave us? If not, then repent and receive forgiveness and keep the commandments that Jesus gave us.
If we keep the two commandments that Jesus gave us we will have perfect peace, for Jesus is the Prince of Peace. Jesus is our "...Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace" (Isa. 9:6). When we are walking in the Light, which is the Word of God, we will have "perfect peace."
God is a personal God. God dwells in each one of His Children personally. Each one of God's Children are personally responsible to keep the two commandments that Jesus gave us. Not keeping our two commandments is what causes depression, confusion, fear, discouragement, torment, and etc. These affect each Christian personally. Not all Christians walk in fear and confusion. Only those who do not know the Prince of Peace and continue with sin in their lives. Those who do not understand how to be led by the Holy Spirit and taught by the Holy Spirit will "at times" experience depression, confusion, fear, torment, etc.
God will do His best to comfort and sustain the Babes in Christ. God will work through mature Christians to set the Babes in Christ free. But when it comes to those who should be walking in the Light and are not walking in the Light, their lives will be miserable until they repent and return to walking in the Light as God is in the Light.
When Christians, who should be mature in the LORD do not walk in the Light, they are accountable to God for their sins. Their sins will find them out. They will experience the attacks of the enemy. Not because that God does not love them, but, because they are walking in darkness and not in the Light. The Blood of Jesus only cleanses us from all sin when we are walking in the Light.
Jesus said that "...repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem" (Luke 24:47). This repentance is not just for those who are not born again. It is for everyone who is not walking in the Light. If any Christian is walking in darkness, they need to repent, and walk in the Light to have their sins forgiven and washed away by the Blood of Jesus Christ.
Most Christians that I have talked with that have depression, fear, confusion, etc. will admit that they have stopped praying and studying their Bibles on a daily basis. When they do that, they open the door for Satan to attack them in their minds. When they try to operate from their mind only, and not from their spirit they get deeper and deeper into depression, fear, and confusion. In James 3:16 it says, "For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work." Strife is "striving to obtain that which we desire by our own ability." Christians should be led by the Holy Spirit every day in their lives. Christians should be walking after the Spirit and not after the flesh every day. The lusts of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life are not from God (1 John 2:15-17). If it is not from God, then Christians should not be involved with it.
Depression, fear, and confusion are the beginning symptoms of Satan at our door, trying to get us to follow his plans for our lives. Cain did not rule over the thoughts that Satan was putting in his mind, and because of Cain's disobedience, he became of the Wicked one (the Devil).
Christians have a responsibility to keep the two commandments of the LORD, and to walk in the Light as He is in the Light. This is the only way to keep Satan from leading us in the wrong direction, which could end up in the wrong place in eternity.
God is for us, and not against us. God will do all He can to help, guide, comfort, lead, and teach us. But, if we do not do our part, God cannot help us. We must do our part so that what Jesus has done for us will be effective in our lives. The Blood of Jesus cannot cleanse us from sin if we continue to live in sin. In 1 John 1:6,7 it says, "If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth...But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin."
When we see the word "if" used in the Scriptures, we need to find out why it is there? "If," many times is a condition that needs to be observed to obtain the promise. With every promise from God there is a condition. We must meet the condition to obtain the promise.
Christians should study Romans 1:18-32 very carefully. In Romans 1:18-32 it explains that Christians, who do not glorify God and are not thankful for all that God has done for them through Jesus Christ, could end up with a reprobate mind.
In Romans 1:28 it says, "And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient." Romans 1:28 is not speaking of those things which are listed in Romans 1:22-27. But, Romans 1:28 is speaking of those things listed from Romans 1:29-31. Christians who continue in the sins listed in Romans 1:29-31 can have their minds turned over to a reprobate mind, which is a debased, rejected mind.
Once the Holy Spirit turns a Christian's mind over to the Devil, there is not much hope for them. They will not have control of their own mind.
When the Devil has control of a Christian's mind, they are without hope, and without the ability of set themselves free of the attacks of the enemy. The only way they can be set free is by the anointing of the Holy Spirit working in their lives. If they refuse to obey the leading, guiding, comforting, helping, and teaching of the Holy Spirit from within them, the anointing will not set them free.
Not obeying the Holy Spirit from within themselves, is walking after the flesh. Walking after the flesh brings corruption. Corruption brings eternal death (Gal. 6:7,8). This is serious business. Christians need to be fully aware of the plan and purpose that God has for their lives. Christians need to submit to God and resist the Devil (James 4:6-8).
Without the help of the Holy Spirit we are no-match for the Devil. We do not have the ability to stop the Devil without the power of the Holy Spirit working in our lives. To submit to the Devil, and not to the Holy Spirit is not good to say the least.
In Acts 5:1-10, Ananias and Sapphira gave place for Satan in their heart, and lied to the Holy Spirit. When a Christian submits to the Devil, and lies to the Holy Spirit it is serious business to say the least.
The Scripture does tell us that the Father has given all judgement to the Son (John 5:22). It also tells us that the Son does not judge anyone at this time. In John 12:46-48 Jesus said, "I am come a light into the world, that whosoever believeth on me should not abide in darkness...And if any man hear my words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world...He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day."
In all of this, it does not say that the Holy Spirit will not judge those who follow the ways of the Devil. The Holy Spirit will turn Christians over to a reprobate mind, if they are not thankful and do not glorify God and retain God in their minds. If they continue to do the works of the Devil, and do not submit to the leading of the Holy Spirit they can be turned over to a reprobate mind.
In Hebrews 6:4-6, it says, "For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost...And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come...If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame."
Concerning Christians who do not follow the leading of the Holy Spirit, Peter wrote, "For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning...For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them." (2 Peter 2:20,21).
Christians must not give any place for the Devil in their lives. God has made it possible for Christians to obtain everlasting life in heaven. But, God has not given us eternal security, whereby no matter what we do we will still enter into heaven.
There are conditions to every promise of God. We need to know and understand the conditions. We need to observe to do what Jesus told us to do. We need the help of the Holy Spirit to overcome the wicked one. We need the anointing to destroy the works of darkness in our lives and the lives of others around us.
It is sad that today many Churches are teaching another gospel, which is not the gospel that Jesus and the Apostles taught. Many are teaching a gospel of grace without obedience and repentance. This is not the gospel that Jesus and the Apostles taught. Repentance must come before grace can become effective in our lives. When Christians do not repent, Satan has control in their minds, and leads them into destruction.
The second commandment that Jesus gave us is just as important as the first commandment. The second commandment is, "Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these" (Mark. 12:31).
In Acts 5:1-10, Ananias and Sapphira, did not keep the second commandment that the LORD gave Christians. They lied to the Holy Spirit, and kept back part of the money they received for the property they sold.
Christians who do not walk in love toward one another, are listening to the wrong spirit. Ananias and Sapphira let Satan fill their heart to lie to the Holy Ghost.
Lies are always a work of the Devil. The Devil is the father of lies, for he lied from the beginning (John 8:44). Christians cannot serve the Devil and the LORD at the same time. We must submit to the Holy Spirit and resist the Devil.
It is important for Christians to understand the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives. The Holy Spirit is here to prepare us for eternity in heaven. In heaven there are no works of darkness at all. Revelation 21:4 says, "And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away." Then in Revelation 21:6-8 it says, "And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely...He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son...But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death."
Christians must overcome the works of darkness in their lives. We cannot permit the Devil to have any place in our lives. We must walk in the Light as God is in the Light if we are to be cleansed from all sin by the Blood of Jesus.
In heaven there will not be any who do not walk in the Light. Those who submit to the works of the Devil will not be in heaven. God is Love, and all who love God will walk in love one to another, keeping the first and second commandment of our LORD Jesus Christ.
Those today, who submit to the Devil and serve the Devil by doing their own will of the flesh are in great danger of losing the greatest blessing that God has for those who keep the two commandments the LORD has given us.
In heaven there is no sin or works of the Devil. In heaven there are not any who do not love one another. Christians must love one another, and keep the two commandments of the LORD.
This is Part 3 of "Perfect Peace." Get the following parts to this mini-book series, they will help you to turn your life in the right direction and keep yourself following Jesus. All books on our Web sites are free. You can download as many free books as you desire. Go to our Web sites at: