Power from on High, Part 2
“There is such a great, exploding resolve in my heart to get the Gospel of our precious Lord Jesus out to as many as possible before it is too late, for this is God’s purpose for this prophetic hour!”
When the anointing comes, it will affect every part of your being, “like oil into his bones” (Psalm 109:18). That anointing from on high brings power.
Remember when the Holy Spirit’s power came on the apostles? They became giants for God and took their world for Jesus! So it is today, for the Holy Spirit’s anointing is available so that every day you can live as God wants you to live, so you can know forgiveness, love, and be made alive by His power, and you can have a fire in your soul to serve the Lord with boldness and fervency!
Get ready to receive what He has in store for you! All He wants is your life to be a vessel of honor for Him!
The first 14 years of my life were spent in Israel. It was a landscape filled with olive trees, but only after my conversion did I begin to understand their significance.
God’s touch is symbolized in Scripture by the oil found in an olive. And the growth of the tree is fascinating. Do you realize that olive trees thrive best in extremely rocky ground?
Rocks portray the Church of Jesus Christ:
“To whom coming, as unto a living stone, disallowed indeed of men, but chosen of God, and precious, Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 2:4-5).
Even more exciting is the fact that oil also comes out of rocks: “He made him ride on the high places of the earth, that he might eat the increase of the fields; and he made him to suck honey out of the rock, and oil out of the flinty rock” (Deuteronomy 32:13).
It is still happening. Oil comes out of the rock, either through olives planted in the rock or from the rock itself, and that Rock is Jesus. He is the ointment of the anointing, and if you want to receive the oil, you need to first receive Him.
A Flourishing Tree
Are you grounded in the Rock? If you want to see your tree bring forth oil, plant yourself in Him, among His church:
“But I am like a green olive tree in the house of God: I trust in the mercy of God for ever and ever” (Psalm 52:8).
The Lord wants you to be a flourishing green tree, not a dying, dry one. In Israel, many olives that are harvested contain over 50 percent oil.
The church is described as an olive tree (singular). Christians, however, are described as olive trees (plural)! In fact, we were “grafted” into the olive tree of Israel. Speaking of the Gentiles, the Bible declares:
“And if some of the branches be broken off, and thou, being a wild olive tree, wert grafted in among them, and with them partakest of the root and fatness of the olive tree” (Romans 11:17).
We are now one tree in Christ!
So can you imagine the revival that would take place if half of all churches had a fresh, continual anointing of the Holy Spirit?
The question remains: How do you get oil out of the olive tree? The answer today is much the same as during Bible times.
Every harvest season, the husbandman—the one who takes care of the trees—checks to see if the olives are ripe. Then the harvesters take a long pole and begin shaking the tree, even hitting it with force. Then, when the ripe olives begin to fall, the workers collect the good ones, and discard the bad ones, then they place the olives in large vessels and begin to crush the mounds of fruit with a large, round, smooth rock. Quickly the oil gushes out!
In life, God must do those same things before the oil of anointing begins to flow out of you. First, He will shake you, then He will crush you. And if you are not prepared for that to happen, it is evident that you really do not want the oil to flow.
Do you remember reading that if a tree drops its fruit before it is shaken, it is cursed? Deuteronomy 28:40 states:
“Thou shalt have olive trees throughout all thy coasts, but thou shalt not anoint thyself with the oil; for thine olive shall cast his fruit.”
The oil that falls to the ground without the Lord’s guidance will spoil and be of no value. But when God shakes you, it means He is smiling on you; He is blessing you. That is the only way He can produce oil. When He sees that you are ready, the shaking begins.
Like the olives, we are shaken with a pole, which represents the cross. We are crushed with a rock, which is the Rock, Jesus Christ. And when the anointing comes, it will affect every part of our being, “like oil into his bones” (Psalm 109:18).
The anointing penetrates!
Almighty God not only desires to fill you with His oil, but also to fill you to overflowing!
Where Does the Anointing Begin for You?
Where does the anointing begin? Repentance!
To the crowd that gathered around the apostles as they came out of the Upper Room, Peter said:
Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the LORD our God shall call. (Acts 2:38-39)
The steps to Pentecost could not have been clearer. Peter said first, “Repent.” Then “be baptized.” And “ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.”
What were the last words Christ uttered before He ascended to heaven? They’re very clear as well:
“But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth” (Acts 1:8).
What a promise—you shall receive power!
Notice, however, that this is a conditional promise. The power does not come until “the Holy Spirit comes on you.” The result of that experience will make you witnesses of Jesus Christ. When you receive the Spirit, you will not rush out to tell the world what you are like. You will tell them what Christ is like. You will have a revelation of Jesus Christ.
The message is not concerning what a miserable sinner you were and what a great Christian you have become. No! The Holy Spirit is given that you will declare what a mighty God, merciful Savior, and great High Priest you serve.
But what is the first step? Repentance.
In Hebrew, the idea of repentance is represented by two verbs that mean to return and to feel sorrow. In the New Testament, the word translated as “repentance” in the English is the Greek word metanoia, which is a compound word meaning “after the result of perceiving or observing,” or, simply, “to think differently after.”
The born-again experience does not mean that you come to the altar, shed a few tears, say, “I’m sorry, Lord!” and then go out the door to continue to live in your sins. That is not repentance. Salvation is a supernatural experience that you cannot accomplish by yourself. It is a gift of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost.
Repentance changes the direction you are going and puts you on the road that leads to the fire of Pentecost. He said, “I promise you power,” which is the destination. But repentance is where you start.
Repentance means confessing and forsaking. It means believing and behaving! You must settle the question of sin—otherwise you will never know the power of the Holy Ghost experience.
The apostle Peter preached:
“Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost” (Acts 2:38).
This is the step to salvation. This is the step to restoration. This is the step to a new future. This is the step to the Holy Spirit’s anointing.
But why do you need the power of the Holy Spirit? It is not to give you spiritual goose-bumps that make you tingle with excitement. The Holy Spirit was sent so that every day you could be more like Jesus, so you would know forgiveness, love, and be made alive by His power, as well as having a fire in your soul to serve God with boldness and fervency!
Those who have a fresh touch of the Spirit are easy to recognize: they can’t stop talking about Jesus. When Christ is no longer a part of your conversation, it is time to examine your spiritual life.
The Great Infilling
What about speaking in tongues? There is no question that tongues are scriptural and for the church today, but for many believers, the purpose and practice has been so misunderstood that its effect has become commonplace and often meaningless.
There are those who think they speak in tongues, but it is nothing more than gibberish. To hear it you would think the Spirit is an imbecile, unable to speak with power and authority. To be blunt, I believe many people have lost the power of the Spirit and are only trying to imitate the real thing. But speaking in tongues is not something you turn on and off like the tap on a faucet. You must be genuinely moved by the Spirit.
It is easy to tell the authentic from the phony. The genuine is spoken with perfection and with power. Paul wrote:
“And even things without life giving sound, whether pipe or harp, except they give a distinction in the sounds, how shall it be known what is piped or harped? For if the trumpet give an uncertain sound, who shall prepare himself to the battle?” (1 Corinthians 14:7-8).
It is unfortunate, but the gift of tongues has been so misused that the world has made it a laughingstock. Comedians today even mimic the practice on stage. But I want to tell you that they will never laugh when the real power is in operation. They will fear. They will be in awe. And they will get converted.
The Purpose of the Great Infilling
The Bible says that tongues “are for a sign, not to them that believe, but to them that believe not” (1 Corinthians 14:22). If you are not bringing people to Christ, it is time for a reexamination. Make certain that your utterance is under the unction of the Holy Ghost. Nothing else will do.
What about the gift of prophecy? So often it is spoken with such a lack of anointing that believers do not even recognize it. The church may respond by saying “Amen!”—but the words are pointless and empty. Let’s get back to what is real. Don’t say “So be it!” until you know it is directly from the Lord. The power of the Spirit gives you discernment.
Do you realize that all the gifts and fruit of the Holy Spirit become activated when the power is present? All God wants is your vessel! And once He fills it with His might, you will begin to function as God Himself functions.
Five Simple Words
How do you receive His mighty power? Following repentance, you must act on five simple words: “Ask, and ye shall receive” (John 16:24). What happens next is that the Lord will deliver on His promise, for “ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth” (Acts 1:8).
Stop fighting the Spirit. After my conversion, I don’t think there was anyone that sought it more. I would stand and hold that pew in front of me—squeezing it until the blood stopped flowing out of my fingers. I cried at an altar, pounded the floor of my room, and even tried playing a tambourine. But that was not the answer. I was filled with the precious Holy Spirit when I realized that He was a person who was lonely for my fellowship. I looked up and began to communicate with the Spirit and was filled to overflowing. And that relationship has continued without fail.
Remember, the Spirit begins His work with repentance. To repent means to “turn around.” Your heart will no longer seek the things of the world. You set your affections on something much higher. Repentance begins by asking Christ to forgive your sin. But it continues with a daily crucifixion of the flesh. It is more than shedding a few tears and saying “I’m sorry.” Repentance is a daily battle of saying “No” to the flesh and saying “Yes” to God.
Have you known the Spirit and somehow lost Him? Get back to repentance. Return to living a crucified life. He will fill you once again with His power—and again, and again, and again. You may even reach the point that you will say, “Stop! I just can’t take any more.”
The Lord is looking for a tender heart. The psalmist said: “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise” (Psalm 51:17). He also said: “The LORD is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit” (Psalm 34:18).
A Broken Heart
Jesus talks about two men who went to the temple to pray. One man boasted: “The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican. I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess” (Luke 18:11-12).
But the another man “smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner” (Luke 18:13). Then Jesus said:
“I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted” (Luke 18:14).
It was a broken heart, not a crying, defeated heart that looks to man for strength, but a repentant soul, ready to receive what God has promised.
When the Holy Spirit’s power came on the apostles, they became giants for God and took their world for Jesus! Stephen shook Judea and Samaria. Philip charged boldly into Egypt. They were willing, surrendered, yielded vessels who were transformed into strong, potent forces for the Kingdom.
God is waiting to release that same power of the Holy Spirit in you. It begins with one word: Repent!
Catch the Mantle
Again and again, people have come to me and asked, “Pastor Benny, how can I receive the anointing?”
My advice is to stop waiting around for it to happen. Get up and move to where God’s power is flowing. The anointing is not taught, it is caught!
Get close to the anointing and determine that it is going to fall on you. Remember, there is no Joshua without a Moses, no Elisha without an Elijah, no Peter, James, or John without Jesus, and no Timothy without a Paul.
Literally “wrap” yourself in what God has for you. That is what Elisha did. The prophet Elijah found him plowing in a field: “So he departed thence, and found Elisha the son of Shaphat, who was plowing with twelve yoke of oxen before him, and he with the twelfth: and Elijah passed by him, and cast his mantle upon him” (1 Kings 19:19). Elijah went up to him and threw is cloak around him!
From that moment, Elisha was a transformed man. The anointing was so powerful that he slaughtered his oxen and gave the people a free barbecue—“And he returned back from him, and took a yoke of oxen, and slew them, and boiled their flesh with the instruments of the oxen, and gave unto the people, and they did eat. Then he arose, and went after Elijah, and ministered unto him” (1 Kings 19:21).
After spending years with Elijah, and as the time neared for the prophet to depart, Elisha insisted the older man not leave him. Why? He did not want to be separated from the anointing.
When the Lord was ready to take Elijah up to heaven and the two men were on their way from Gilga1, Elijah said to Elisha, “Tarry here, I pray thee; for the LORD hath sent me to Bethel. And Elisha said unto him, As the LORD liveth, and as thy soul liveth, I will not leave thee. So they went down to Bethel” (2 Kings 2:2).
Elijah then insisted the younger man stay behind while he went to Jericho, but Elisha refused to leave his side. And even when Elijah explained that the Lord was sending him to the Jordan river, Elisha repeated: “And he said, As the LORD liveth, and as thy soul liveth, I will not leave thee. And they two went on” (2 Kings 2:6).
Elisha wanted to stay close to the mantle, to God’s anointing! And at the river, “Elijah took his mantle, and wrapped it together, and smote the waters, and they were divided hither and thither, so that they two went over on dry ground” (2 Kings 2:8).
Finally, when they reached the other side, Elijah asked Elisha, “Ask what I shall do for thee, before I be taken away from thee. And Elisha said, I pray thee, let a double portion of thy spirit be upon me” (2 Kings 2:9).
It was obviously a major request, and Elijah said so: “Thou hast asked a hard thing: nevertheless, if thou see me when I am taken from thee, it shall be so unto thee; but if not, it shall not be so” (2 Kings 2:10). Like before, the two men continued to move forward, for God will not give the anointing unless there is action.
Get up and start moving!
Elisha did. He was not going to miss his historic opportunity: “And it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven” (2 Kings 2:11).
Then comes the most amazing part—as Elijah’s mantle fell, Elisha grabbed it—he literally caught the anointing. The double-portion power was upon him!
The Bible says that Elisha returned immediately to the land of the Jordan: “And he took the mantle of Elijah that fell from him, and smote the waters, and said, Where is the LORD God of Elijah? and when he also had smitten the waters, they parted hither and thither: and Elisha went over” (2 Kings 2:14).
It was evident that everything was suddenly different about him: “And when the sons of the prophets which were to view at Jericho saw him, they said, The spirit of Elijah doth rest on Elisha. And they came to meet him, and bowed themselves to the ground before him” (2 Kings 2:15).
Today, God arranges times when we are near the anointing, but if we are blind to it, His touch will pass us by. Don’t expect an angel to appear and say, “Hello! I’ve got something for you.” That’s not the way it happens.
Activate your faith! Get ready to receive what God has in store. That is the advice Naomi gave to Ruth when something unprecedented was just ahead, for the older woman said, “Wash thyself therefore, and anoint thee, and put thy raiment upon thee” (Ruth 3:3) If you want to reap the harvest, you’ve got to get ready.
It is time to rise up and anoint your faith—your shield. As Isaiah said, “Prepare the table, watch in the watchtower, eat, drink: arise, ye princes, and anoint the shield” (Isaiah 21:5).
Peter and John did exactly that when they were at the Gate Beautiful. Peter looked at a man crippled from birth and said, “Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk” (Acts 3:6).
The apostles released their faith, then they told the man to act:
“And he took him by the right hand, and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength. And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God” (Acts 3:7-8).
Anoint your shield! Let your faith rise! Then act on your faith!
A Clean Vessel for a Greater Anointing
When I first received the anointing, it was just a drop. The Lord gave me only a small touch to see what I would do with it. Then He gave me more, and more…until today I have a greater measure than I have ever known.
If you want to receive everything He has planned for you, start living in the Spirit, not the flesh. Even the instructions given to Moses in preparing the oil of anointing was that it was to be applied to what is sacred, and upon the “flesh shall it not be poured” (Exodus 30:32).
To be in a position for God’s blessing, you must be clean. You don’t wash your garments after you receive the anointing, but before: “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service” (Romans 12:1).
Get your house in order. Timothy makes that point clear:
But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honour, and some to dishonour. If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified, and meet for the master’s use, and prepared unto every good work. (2 Timothy 2:20-21)
God doesn’t say, “I will use him” or “I will use her.” You are not chosen for the anointing by chance. Not at all!
The Lord looks for a vessel who is clean and pure. And Scripture makes it clear how that is to happen. The psalmist wrote: “Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word” (Psalm 119:9).
If you want a Holy Ghost “bath,” wash your life daily with the Word. God will not pour precious oil into a polluted vessel.
I believe the Lord has a special anointing prepared for you. Come to Him with repentance, with a surrendered heart, and with a life cleansed by the Word. May the cry of your heart be, “Lord, I hunger for a double portion. Let your mantle fall on me.”
Only then will you be ready for the amazing harvest that is coming!
That is my prayer for you today!
Watch for next week’s continuation of the Power from on High teaching, “Get Ready for the Coming Outpouring.”
Help Me Tell the World About our Wonderful Lord Jesus Christ!
In closing, let me say that there is such a great, exploding resolve in my heart to get the Gospel of our precious Lord Jesus out to as many as possible before it is too late, for this is God’s purpose for this prophetic hour!
This is why He anoints us—to be used in a mighty way to bring salvation and healing to the needy and hurting around the world.
How privileged we are to be called His people, and how privileged we also are to take His Gospel to the nations during these momentous times.
Yet we have much to do, and I want to earnestly ask for your help. As you give to take the message of God’s love and redemption far and wide, will you agree with me in prayer that He will move powerfully during the coming days?
I believe that the weeks and months that follow will be the greatest season of harvest of souls that we have ever seen! I have received numerous prophetic words about what God is going to do in our midst, and I truly sense that this is the hour that prophets of old spoke about and believers through the centuries have anticipated with great expectation.
We are in a powerful, prophetic hour, and the most glorious days are just ahead…yet we have so much to do to be prepared. This is why I ask for your help with your special seed-gift.
Our Lord Jesus Himself taught:
Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again. (Luke 6:38)
Those who sow into the Gospel God will honor beyond description.
And what we do, we must do quickly, knowing that soon we will hear His words, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant” (Matthew 25:21).
Now is the time!
I look forward to hearing from you very soon.
For the glorious and eternal cause of our precious Lord Jesus Christ,