In my meditation and prayer times, I have been hearing strongly that the Body of Christ is entering an intense time of training. I saw in a vision a scene from the first Rocky movie. Rocky was running up the 68 steps that are the entrance to the Philadelphia Museum of Art and when he got to the top he was strong and victorious. He jumped up and down with his hands in air. As he jumped his face changed – hundreds of times over and over from my face to yours and on and on. I got the message. I was seeing a strong fully trained physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritual ready Body of Christ. I knew I was specifically seeing the USA Body of Christ, though this image can apply to the world-wide church, Rocky so much represents the American spirit.
No matter the opponent, no matter how imposing or how strong, Rocky found courage and trained for the battle ahead. In this first movie he was overweight and winded. He ran to get in shape and could barely make it up the steps when he started but, he kept training and kept training until finally he could run up all those steps in power. It wasn’t until he had done it many times exhausted and out of breath that he could finally with great strength jump up and down victoriously.
That was the moment he won the fight. We concentrate on the fact he out-punched the opponent and accomplished his goal. But, the truth is he became a Champion when he didn’t give up, give in or quit during the grueling time of preparing for the battle.
Then the Lord spoke to me: YOU ARE A VICTORIOUS CHAMPION! I know this statement is not only for me or our ministry here, it is a nation-wide decree out of heaven.
Though the church in general is like Rocky when he first started training: out of shape, winded, defeated, weary. The church’s faith muscles are weak. Many can barely stand on the gospel and some are rejecting all or portions. Arms are hanging down unable to fully wield the weapon of the Word. Some folks are in better condition that others, but overall we have a couch potato church that talks big just like Rocky, but can’t go the distance. A church that has given up on the promises of God and forsaken her destiny for the world’s ways. The church is so much like Rocky who had given up on his dream to be a contender. He kept up the appearance of a fighter, but he was a ham and egger. He’d turned to being a money collector for the mob.
Yet, in all that negative imagery we can apply to the church – God says to us YOU ARE VICTORIOUS CHAMPIONS!
He’s calling us out of the mediocre – he sees a Champion in YOU! He sees the church in the USA as More Than Conquerors.
31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things? 33 Who shall bring a charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. 34 Who is he who condemns? It is Christ who died, and furthermore is also risen, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36 As it is written:
“For Your sake we are killed all day long;
We are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.”
37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. 38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, 39 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
More than a conqueror means we are huper-nikao (pronounced: hooper nick cow). Or, another way to put it is you are a SUPERNATURAL OVERCOMER! Whenever huper is added to a word in the Greek language it makes that word over the top more than the meaning of the word. Nikao alone means we are such amazing overcomers and conquerors that it is the word used for Jesus conquering death hell and the grave. That’s an amazing thing – yet, Paul says we are even more than that through Christ Jesus. We are VICTORIOUS CHAMPIONS BECAUSE A VICTORIOUS CHAMPION RESIDES IN OUR HEARTS! (Hebrews 12:1-3) A WOW is in order here!
Oh how Jesus loves us! He loves the USA! Every Soul in the USA! The church in other nations is growing faster than any other religion in the world. Intensely amazing miracles are occurring in Africa, South America, India, China and more.
Our God is saving souls by the millions and He wishes to do that here too! No way does He wish to destroy us. His heart is always to renew refresh revive and expand His Kingdom!
We, the Body of Christ, must do something. We must submit fully to our TRAINER! Jesus is looking us straight in the eyes right now USA church (Luke 20:17,18) and says: “Then what is the meaning of this scripture—‘The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone?’The man who falls on that stone will be broken, and the man on whom it falls will be crushed to powder.”
In researching this scripture and studying it with one of my mentors, she mentioned that Jesus walked the earth during the time of the second temple. Solomon’s temple had been destroyed and the Ark of the Covenant and the other golden objects in the Holy Place had been taken to Babylon. The Ark was no longer in the Holy of Holies. During Jesus’ time, all the other objects had been replaced in the 2nd Temple: the Lamp Stand, the Laver, the Shewbread table, etc. So, curiosity grabbed us – What was in the Holy of Holies?
According to my research of Jewish history, expecting that God would restore the Ark to them at some point, there was a stone platform in the Holy of Holies where the Ark would be placed upon its return.
The Pharisees were cut to the quick by Jesus’ statement because the phrase “chief corner stone” referred to this stone platform. The High priest, at the prescribed time of entry, sprinkled blood on this stone. It had become the mercy seat. Jesus was saying to them two things: first that they needed to repent for their pride and arrogance and second that their rejection of Him was rejection of the chief corner stone. They were rejecting the blood sprinkled mercy seat and their arrogance was about to destroy them.
Proverbs puts it this way: A haughty spirit goes before a fall, pride before destruction.
Right now because of His intense love for us He is beckoning! Throw yourselves upon the stone, come to the mercy seat sprinkled with His blood, be broken in repentance and humility at His feet. It’s a good good good breaking! One that brings healing and refreshing to our lives so we can be a healing and refreshing presence in other people’s lives.
Here is the issue: if we will not submit in willing humility, that stone will become a grinding stone. It will find all the pride, selfishness, thanklessness, idolatry, unforgiveness, bitterness, greed for power and money, lust after the world… and grind it right out of us. It’s His blood shed for us and His mercy at work here. He wants us to be just like HIM!
To accomplish that goal, He will allow things to happen that challenge our actions, beliefs and attitudes. He will put us in circumstances that are not life threatening that grind on us. It can be ugly rough sandpaper, but it’s good for us. It’s GOOD for you!
Have you got a rough sandpaper circumstances working on you? Ask Him what He wants to say to your heart and what it is you need to let go of, or do or not do, that is preventing your miracle. Throw yourself on the Stone! You have ears to hear God. Listen during this breaking process and do what you hear!
Think of the process this way: physical strength training in the natural for our body is painful and hard to do at first and every new step forward to get stronger is also painful and hard until you build up muscle and endurance. The training camp of a Champion is tough work – it crucifies the flesh and makes it do whatever is needed.
It is no different in spiritual training. It is important we go through the training of soul for our sake and more importantly for the sake of others. It is so we can stand strong in Christ Jesus representing Him as His body, Holy set apart, foot washing servants walking in His love and power.
Know this real good: He is determined to mold and shape, transform us into victorious champions whether we want it or not! You signed on at salvation and the Holy Spirit never gives up on you! He has begun a good work in YOU and He will complete it.
Part 2 coming soon!
Copyright 2012 Cheryl S. Birch