CHARGE YOUR BATTERIES
Dr. D. K. Olukoya
Father Lord, we lift up your name for you are a great God. You are the keeper of Israel who neither slumbers nor sleeps. If it was not the Lord that was with us, what would our Israel now say? Thank you heavenly Father. Accept our thanks, in Jesus’ name. Speak to us through this message. Put your fire in our spirits we bind every spirit of tragedy, in the mighty name of Jesus. Thank You heavenly Father, in Jesus’ name. Amen.
No matter how intelligent a person is, it would be very difficult for the person to switch on his torchlight in the dark and it will come on when the batteries are dead. Our message this week is entitled, “Charge your Batteries.” If the batteries inside your torchlight have rusted and grown old, although you may have a new bulb, you would still have a problem because you need power, which comes from the batteries to run the bulb. Matthew 5: 6: “Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.” Notice the strong phrase: ‘they shall be filled.’ That is, without fail, it must happen. In that passage we can see that the condition for being filled is to hunger and thirst after righteousness. The Bible says that those who fulfill this condition shall be filled. Jeremiah 29: 13: “And ye shall seek me, and find me, (under what condition?) when ye shall search for me with all your heart.” (it didn’t say with a part of your heart.) That is, God is asking for 100 per cent of your heart. In Luke 6: 21, our Lord also says, “Blessed are ye that hunger now: for ye shall be filled.” This is repeating what we read in Matthew 5: 6. In John 7: 37, a spectacular thing happened. Normally, Jesus does not raise His voice but in this verse, He did. Wherever you read about Jesus raising His voice in the Scriptures, know that it must be a very serious matter. John 7: 37 says, “In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, if any man thirst, let him come unto me and drink.” Please raise your voice and pray like this: “I drink now from the well of salvation, in Jesus’ name.
From the four Scriptures we have read, we can see the key to charging our spiritual batteries. The Bible says that in the last days men shall become lovers of money, lovers of themselves and that they would love pleasures more than God. It also says that there would be a lot of uproar and evil men shall wax stronger and stronger. So, we, as believers, cannot afford to sit down and be rejoicing about what happened yesterday, or what happened last year, or about how we prophesied the other time. We must continually charge our batteries. Our spiritual batteries have to be on fire. Any serious Christian must have at least one or two days in the week for fasting and praying. The reasons you need to do this one is to charge your batteries and get your cup filled over and over. Somebody asked a great preacher called D. L. Moody the following question: “Mr. Moody, why are you always talking about being filled and filled with the Holy Spirit?” Mr. Moody answered thus: “I always talk about us being filled and filled because we all leak and have to be re-filling and re-filling.” The power of God will manifest in your life all the time and the enemy cannot catch you unawares when you keep charging your batteries.
The devil is catching many Christians unawares because they are not charging their batteries. It is commonly said that when fire has gone from the cooking place, all kinds of insects and reptiles would have the confidence to go there. But when you have red-hot fire at the cooking place, it would be very difficult for a lizard to come near it. It is not possible.
INGREDIENTS FOR CHARGING OUR BATTERIES
God wants us to charge our batteries and the ingredients that will keep our batteries charged are known as spiritual hunger and thirst. So, two things that you must never lack in your spiritual life are hunger and thirst. Immediately they are gone from your life, forget it. It is a nice thing when you feel hungry to pray, read the word of God, or hear the word of God and it is a feeling of demotion, when you lose interest in these things. Wanting fire to remain in your life without this hunger and thirst, is like players gathering in a football pitch without a ball. The players cannot play any game. Hunger is the football in the football pitch, without it, there is no game. “Blessed are those that thirst and hunger after righteousness for they shall be filled.” It is time for many of us to pray that the snail anointing should get out of our spiritual lives. Sometime ago, in England, I preached the gospel and ministered to an English boy. I spoke to him on a Tuesday, and by the time we met again the following Tuesday for another meeting, this boy of about 17, had read through the whole Bible for the first time. He sat down and read the Bible through in one week. There are many people who have been born again for many years but are yet to read through the New Testament. Some people start, only to give up half way. Some have been saying, “Well, I will make sure that on weekends I’d keep my programme low so that I can be alone with God, pray, fast and read the word of God.” They boasted and started off only to give up by the third week. Such people cannot hope to charge their batteries. Do you want to receive great power from God? Then this hunger is a must; there is no two ways about it. Hunger for God is one of the greatest signs of spiritual people. Why is it that some people can pray for three or four hours non stop? It is because there is something inside their lives. When a person can read the whole of the book of Matthew at a sitting, there is something special inside the life of such a person. It is not possible to climb a spiritual mountain without any discipline. It is not possible for you to receive power without doing any consecration. Out of all the spiritual gifts in the Bible, the one that you see easily in people’s lives is prophecy. There are very few people in other areas because not many people are ready to consecrate themselves and drop a few things so that they can gain the power of God. It is very sad that true and powerful men of God are reducing in number.
Women are even a lot lower in number and this is very sad. Unless we as an end-time church, decides to pick up the mantle and determine that we must affect our own generation positively, God will blame us for allowing so many evil things to happen. Do you want this great power? Hunger is a must. Thousands of people come to the house of God, listen to the word of God, pray the prayers, come to all the services and join the groups but they remain unchanged. Some have already made up their minds on what to do before coming to church. They pick and choose from the messages. When you come to God like that, He would turn His face away. God does not want people who have made up their minds. He wants people He can mould into what He wants. Have you ever decided on your own to fast and pray for days just to be with God and for His power to fall upon your life not because of problems? A certain man said that when somebody is hungry he would not find any fault with the food. He would forget whether there is salt or none in the food. It is only when a person is not hungry that he begins to complain that the food is not okay. When you are hungry for God like that, the hunger drives you closer to God. A hungry man would learn something no matter who is preaching. It can be so sad for people to come before God and leave the same way they came. I pray that the Lord would open up our understanding, in Jesus’ name. Proverbs 8: 17: “I love them that love me; and those that seek me early shall find me.” Many start to seek the Lord at old age. Many always think that there is time and a lot of people don’t bother about God until they go to the cemetery. The above Scripture is saying that the time to seek God is now. Now is the time to be hungry for God not when you are older; not when you can no longer stand and pray for two hours. Some people feel that they have sufficient time to play around a little bit and be serious later. There is no time to be serious later, the time is now because you do not know when your time here would be up. All the excuses of “I am so busy in the office; my schedule is so tight, etc” would be useless. How sad it would be for you to tell the Lord that you spent all your life working in one office or reading Physics on the day of reckoning. A certain little boy who was hungry after God asked his father, “Daddy, what would I do to be on fire for God continually?” His father asked if he really meant what he was saying and the boy said yes. His father then took him to a small pond. Immediately they got there, his father bounced on him and pushed his head underneath the water. The boy began to struggle for air and as he was doing that, he was gulping water. At the third gulp, his father then released him and asked: “What did you desire most when I dipped your head inside the water?” The boy said, “Fresh air,” and the father said, “When you are hungry and thirsty after God like the way you thirsted for air now, fire will fall upon your life.” Beloved, that is it. Our aim should be for God to use us to cause a supernatural revival of apostolic signs and wonders. The apostles moved in the supernatural. They cast down strongholds, uprooted demonic trees, trampled upon satanic powers, worked earth-shaking miracles, turned cities upside down for Jesus, burned demonic materials and God used them to lay the foundation for what we are enjoying now.
WHAT IS THE PROBLEM OF PRESENT DAY CHRISTIANS?
Is sin our problem? No. The Apostles too were not perfect people. Is our problem insufficient quantity of the Holy Spirit? No. We have the same Holy Spirit as they had. Is our problem civilization? No, because it is actually Christianity that brought about civilization. Is it economic problem? No. The Bible says, “The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof.” The problem is lack of hunger. The present-day Christians are not thirsty after God. The Lord picked up Peter who was fishing and catching nothing. And after Jesus picked him up, He said to him” “I will make you fishers of men.” So, God’s purpose for the life of Peter was to be a fisher of men. But the same Peter ran away in John 21 to do something else, the very thing that he was delivered from originally. What is causing our lack of hunger for the Lord these days can be found in the question Jesus asked Peter. John 21: 15 says, “So when they had dined, Jesus saith to Simon, (here, Jesus called him Simon instead of just the new name, Peter, which He had given Him. Meaning that something was wrong. Peter means a rock while Simon means a reed) son of Jonas, lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord: thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my lambs. He saith to him again the second time, (may be Jesus was suspicious of the first answer) Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, feed my sheep. He saith unto him the third time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? Peter was grieved because he said unto him the third time, Lovest thou me? And he said unto him Lord, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. Jesus saith unto him, Feed my sheep.” Peter failed at a profession in which he was an expert. Many, too are failing woefully today at what they know how to do because of lack of the hunger for Jesus in them. Jesus was asking Peter if he loves Him more than all the disciples, more than his boats and more than his fishing. Today, He is asking you the same questions.
Do you love Jesus more than the world? Do you love Jesus more than all the glamorous things that are around you? Are you the kind of person who would abandon fellowship because you want to go to a worldly party? Do you love Jesus? It is the love for Him that would create the hunger. A story I read about Peter said that Peter was eventually arrested and locked up somewhere in Rome and as the soldiers were going to kill him, he escaped when he had the opportunity to do so. On his way out, he met Jesus and asked Him, “Lord where are you going?” and Jesus said. “To go and die for you the second time.” When Peter heard that, he walked back with his own legs to the Prison from which he had escaped because he remembered the words of the Lord to him; Do you love me? Feed my sheep.” He went back and they promptly caught him and as they were going to crucify him he said, Sirs, don’t crucify me the way you crucified Jesus.” So they turned Peter upside down and crucified him. That was how he died because he loved Jesus. The Bible says, “And they loved not their lives unto death.” The reason some people are afraid of death is because they don’t love Jesus. When you love Jesus, and the devil sees that you are no longer afraid of death, he will run away from you. A careful consideration of the following questions will help you to test your level of spiritual hunger for the Lord: Have you forgiven everyone who has offended you? Is there any malice or hatred in your heart? Another year is going now and God is putting everything on record. Do you cherish grudges in your heart? Have you refused to be reconciled with somebody you quarrelled with?
Do you get angry? Do you still lose your temper? Or do you boil internally? Do you get jealous? Is envy in your heart? Are you sweet and clean under heavy pressure or circumstances? Are you easily offended? Does it hurt you when somebody ignores you? Are you disturbed when you are neglected? Is there pride in your heart? Do you always like to be noticed? Are you always dishonest when it comes to money? Do you gossip about people? Do you discuss other people behind their backs in a negative way? Are you on assignment for Jesus? Do you obey Him all the time? Do you steal, particularly God’s money? Would the people of the world regard you as being different from them? It is sad when an unbeliever looks at a Christian and what he or she likes about the Christian is her kind of lipstick and finger nails polish instead of the holiness and righteousness of God in your life. Such a Christian is advertising vanity instead of advertising God. The person has become like Hezekiah who when some people came to visit him, he took them around and showed them the beauty of the temple and they left. Then God asked him, “Hezekiah, what have they found in your house?” He couldn’t talk. God said, “You advertised to them all the decorations and beauty but you refused to talk to them about the God of Israel that added 15 years to your life. Shouldn’t that be the first thing to talk to them about?” God had to deal with him. Have you wronged anyone and you don’t want to make restitution? Are you a spiritual-yes person? Do you receive anything from the Holy Spirit? Have you received the spirit of Zacchaeus? Do you steal spoons, beds, chairs, office equipment, etc from hotels and offices? Are you an extortioner? These are the things that kill spiritual fire. Are you a fornicator or an adulterer? Do you get anxious or worried about any small thing? Do you pretend to have forgiven somebody when you have not really forgiven the person? Do you disobey men of God? Are you guilty of immorality in the heart? Do you harbour in-pure or unholy imaginations? Are you the kind of person who exaggerates? Do you tell lies to cover up your faults? Do you pray for others? Are you guilty of the sin of prayerlessness?
Are you neglecting the Bible? How many chapters a day of the Bible do you read? Do you witness about Jesus to people? Do you have compassion in your heart for souls that are perishing? Have you lost your first love for the Lord? How can a person planning for heaven buy a tie worth N20,000 whereas he cannot spend N5,000 to buy tracts and distribute to people so that they can at least enjoy the benefits of Jesus? Do you attend parties of unbelievers and start to look around and hope that nobody from your church is there to see you because if they see you, you would be used to preach the following Sunday and so you stay in the dark areas? These are the way check the level of your hunger for the Lord. Beloved, think about these things. James the son of Zebedee, an apostle, loved the Lord until his death. When he was going to be killed, he witnessed to the Roman soldiers who were taking him away. The executor became interested and when they got to where James was to be killed, the soldier said, “Sorry, you have to kill us together. I am not killing this man. His colleagues reported him. So James did not die alone. He died with the soldier that was meant to kill him. They loved not their lives unto death. Under harsh conditions, some Christians would deny Jesus. This is very sad. The reason masquerades and other things are running after many people in the dream is because they are afraid of death. The apostles passed that level. They loved not their lives unto death. We read that Philip was dragged on the ground until the whole of his clothes were torn and he was terribly wounded before he was nailed on the tree. Matthew was made to sit down and clubbed to death. They loved not their lives unto death. Stephen was stoned to death. Brother Andrew was crucified naked on a cross with an ‘X’ shape. The man who wrote the book of Mark in the Bible was dragged on the ground before an idol while he was preaching until his flesh was torn into pieces. They loved not their lives unto death. Almost all the apostles died a terrible death because of the gospel. Are you hungry for Jesus? Is the hunger for God in you now higher than what it was last year? Now that another year is coming, are you still at that same level of breaking down and crying instead of standing your ground and fighting the enemy? What then do we do now? We need to pray seriously that the Lord should close down every factory of the enemy in our lives. It is from this factory that anger and all kinds of evil things are coming out. All satanic factories should be closed down because their existence will entrench lack of hunger for God and kill spiritual fire. We also need to pray that the power of resurrection should enter into our lives afresh. When the power of resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ comes upon you, you will not be afraid of anything because since Christ is still living in you, nobody can kill you. We also need to pray that every spirit of death and hell should depart. The spirit of death and hell operates in two ways: 1. They sponsor untimely death. 2. They deposit people in hell fire. We have to stand against them so that the fire of revival will enter into our souls and when this happens to us, you need not tell somebody that God has done a miracle in your life. People will know that something has happened to you. You have to go to the mountain where God wants you to be and if you need to be pushed, for you to get there, you shall be given the push. One practical way of getting started is to get serious with your Bible study. Another practical way is to decide to pray for a minimum of half an hour per day and stick to it no matter what happens. Please pray the following prayer points with these four things: holy stubbornness, holy aggression, holy violence and stubborn faith.
1. Every factory of the enemy militating against me, fall down and die, in Jesus’ name.
2. O Lord, send your resurrection power into my life in the name of Jesus.
3. Every spirit of death and hell, my life is not your candidate, in the name of Jesus.
4. Every evil root growing in my family, be uprooted by fire, in the name of Jesus.
5. Inherited demotion, fall down and die, in the name of Jesus.
6. Every power sitting on my promotion, be unseated by fire, in the name of Jesus.
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