Programming

A man of God and his wife, who are dear friends of mine, were placed in an awkward but all too familiar situation recently. They were at a reception with other spiritual leaders when hard liquor was offered to them. They politely refused and slowly excused themselves, trying hard to mask their shock.

That is not the end of it. A “prophet” later confronted them and told them that they were being legalistic for not drinking. He went so far as to say that unless they got in line with the new “revelation of freedom,” their church would not grow.

 This is no longer a case of just saying drinking is okay. Now they are saying you should be drinking if you want to be in the flow. That “flow” is part of a scheme for rapid church growth that compromises many other areas of Christian life—and programs believers to backslide. The Bible predicted this deception…

Isaiah 59:15 says, “So truth fails, and he who departs from evil makes himself a prey. Then the Lord saw it, and it displeased Him that there was no justice.” Some pastors today are attacking church members who seek to be holy…accusing them of a having a religious spirit.

 Have we really come to the point where believers are making themselves a target by pursuing holiness?  The answer is a loud, “YES!” Many churches in America have become mere factories that are churning out converts who are preprogrammed to backslide. And don’t fool yourself, this church growth machine is found even in spirit-filled churches…even in so-called ‘revival’ churches.

 Holiness is now rejected and called a ‘religious spirit.’ Satan rejoices at this, because it has created the greatest display of false success in the history of the church. Many churches are now conveyor belts that attract large numbers of people only to have them rapidly fall off at the end of the belt.

In fact, the ones who fall off may be the fortunate ones, since there is a chance that they will crash and burn and eventually come to their senses in true repentance. But, woe to those who are backslidden and don’t even realize it, because they have been taught the lie that they can never backslide!

 

 The growth we celebrate today is a grand illusion that hides the greatest turnover ratio ever.

Doesn’t this explain why so many believers have been deceived by these false teachings, and have been reclaimed by the enemy? Doesn’t this explain why the church has no authority to push back against the flood of evil in our nation? How can we field an army of warriors when the church is setting them up to fail? Forgive me, but I am about to get passionate!

How can it be that the very vessels chosen of God to equip the saints, have instead conspired to create a system that rewards carnality and shames holiness?

Listen to most sermons today. They give the impression that the church has exhausted herself trying to serve God, or that she has overdone sacrifice—that now she needs vast portions of comfort food.  That’s the way it sounds when ministers keep telling them to relax, and quit trying so hard, because, ‘Daddy is so pleased with them.’

 Even after there’s proof that a congregation has become a listless, flabby, biblically illiterate club of moody consumers—preachers will still heap on them one more message of pampered entitlement.  Forgive me…but it’s kind of like handing a diabetic a case of Snickers bars.

Sundays are too often a celebration of how much God lets you get away with. Pastors are giving sermons full of soothing guarantees that confuse God’s love with His approval.

1 John 5:4 says “For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith.”

There are two things to take away from this promise. The first is that a major goal of the child of God is to overcome the world. That goal is largely missing in modern preaching—preaching that sees the world as a kind of ‘friend’ and not as a mortal enemy. (15 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. I John 2:15).  Secondly, it shows us the desperately urgent place of faith—faith that overcomes! That is also missing.

 We program failure when it is not clear at the moment of conversion that we must die to our own will, and Christ must become Lord of our existence. That is an ultimatum that cannot be postponed. Without it, you are producing new converts who will have no power to overcome evil. They will have no hope of growing in faith. You are robbing them of the joy of the Lord!

Repentance, spiritual warfare, and the authority of the believer, are all subjects that would protect the child of God and help them stand against the enemy. But these preachers never get around to these truths because they are afraid it will stop the influx of people. Think of that!

Gently suggest the church could go deeper—call for more prayer meetings—voice concern about inappropriately dressed women—tell them you don’t want to party with them, and they will scream, “YOU HAVE A RELIGIOUS SPIRIT!”

What was once normal discipleship is now ‘legalism.’  Anything that dampens their festivities is judgmental. What have we done?  We have unleashed a counterfeit liberty.  These are not the features of a Spirit-led people.  These are the clear symptoms of people with sick souls deceived and careening toward disaster.

 But the final nail in the coffin of this deception is this: It is utterly unnecessary to compromise to get a crowd. Jesus never had trouble getting a crowd. That is why He focused on changing the crowd. Go ahead and boast about growth, but you must do it at the expense of truth—the truth that while churches grow, the nation is dying—and the very people tasked by God to save America are having zero impact!

The greatest gift God can send a church is a holy child of God whose heart is for revival.  A holy child who longs for the fire, glory, and power of God to electrify the church.  Make them your enemy and you have also made an enemy out of God. Woe unto you, if you have ever called holiness a religious spirit.   God bless you, if you love holiness and understand what a treasure it is!  1 Timothy 6: 6 “Now, godliness with contentment is great gain.”

 Thank God that at this critical hour the Holy Spirit is separating to Himself a core of Christians. These are pastors and regular believers who are praying to go deeper into God. They are busy saying to each other, “This sideshow is not God! There is so much more! No way can Satan win if we take our stand on the authority of the cross!”

 He is imbuing them with boldness, wisdom, signs and wonders, and most of all…a blazing passion for holiness!

 “Pursue peace with all people, and pursue holiness, without which no one will see the Lord.” – Hebrews 12:14 

 

 

What happened last night

 Tonight, in the tent at Weber Point Event Center, the Holy Spirit had me do something I had never done before. The event center union required us to hire security guards. One of these guards happened to be standing next to a woman that I knew Jesus was healing. I looked at the guard knowing he was not a believer and asked him—by the Spirit’s direction—to place his hand on her shoulder.
His eyes began to water as he felt the power of God flowing through his hand. She was healed and he experienced living proof of miracles. It was such a touching and beautiful moment! The kind that only Jesus can create!
This was the very beginning of a river of healing that filled the tent. The next miracle was for a young man who was devastated. He had been healed of diabetes sometime ago, but the disease had come back.  The Holy Spirit granted me a word of knowledge about his story, an explanation, and faith to declare a total miracle.
I told him to remember the fervent commitment he had made to be used of God right after his healing, to win lost and dying souls. He burst into tears as he realized how true this was. The forceful healing power of Jesus came upon him−and then something else overtook him−he received a mighty prayer language as God gave him a fresh baptism!
This was followed by one healing after another, and of course, Satan had to chime in. Suddenly, hecklers began disrupting and saying vile things against the meeting. For some, this was very disturbing, but to the veteran soldiers of the cross in the tent, it was cause for rejoicing, because they knew that demons were being stirred up by the moving of the Holy Spirit. It proved we were on the frontline and it meant that the devil knew something big and threatening was starting to happen.
One might think that such heckling would have caused confusion, but instead, the enemy was defeated. I gave a clear appeal for lost souls to come to Jesus, and apparently, none of the disturbance had fazed them. They stood all the way across the front of the tent and surrendered their lives to Christ and received the gift of eternal life. Glory to God!
Tomorrow night promises to be one of the most explosive nights of miracles. If you can, come and experience the healing power of the Holy Spirit. If you know someone who needs a miracle or proof of the power of God, do what you can to bring them to the tent!
“Let anyone who is thirsty come. Let anyone who desires, drink freely from the water of life!” −Rev. 22:17

 

 

 

ALL ON THE LINE

This is not a figure of speech or a literary device—or an attempt to manipulate a reaction out of you. Today, Mario Murillo Ministries lays it all on the line. That is a stone cold fact.

For the last 12 months, I’ve carried a deep anticipation.  I knew there was a day of reckoning in my future. That day is today.

Months ago, I felt a strong impression to reread the books of Exodus and Joshua. I suspected that reading them would answer a question that has been gnawing at my spirit. That question had to do with the concept of ‘breakthrough.’ When I say breakthrough, please don’t think I mean a breakthrough in my personality, or a relationship, or even a financial challenge. None of those things come close to what I mean.

I knew that history was littered with tales of armies who had won a couple of battles and then lost the war. Thinking you are winning when you have only had victory in skirmishes is a sad proverb of war.

God told Israel to conquer the kings who currently inhabited the Promised Land. Land that had been promised to Israel. Long before Israel got there, these kings heard that the people of God were coming. They knew that the Children of Israel had once been slaves. The inhabitants of the land had heard of the miracles God had performed in Egypt−but remember−these kingdoms were under the control of the kings who were not about to give them up without a fierce fight.

The first victory the Children of Israel had in Canaan could be dismissed as beginner’s luck.  The second one could be considered a fluke. The third was to be so significant that Joshua and the commander’s of the armies of God got involved.

Joshua 5: 13 “And it came to pass, when Joshua was near Jericho, that he lifted his eyes and looked, and behold, a Man stood opposite him with His sword drawn in His hand. And Joshua went to Him and said to Him, “Are You for us or for our adversaries?” 14 So He said, “No, but as Commander of the Army of the Lord I have now come.” And Joshua fell on his face to the earth and worshiped, and said to Him, “What does my Lord say to His servant?” 15 Then the Commander of the Army of the Lord said to Joshua, “Take your sandal off your foot, for the place where you stand is holy.” And Joshua did so.”

What did Jericho represent? A victory that would melt the fighting will of the pagan kings. It meant a launching. The walls fell and with them all doubt that God would take the land.

I knew in advance that we would see victories in our first two Living Proof Tent Crusades. But I also knew they could be explained away. Last year, I knew Stockton was our Jericho. Believe me, there are walls around this city. Trust me, there is demonic power nested here that boggles the mind.

We have openly declared victory over this city. Doing that was an act of courage for all of us. We sent workers into the neighborhoods of Stockton. That is our equivalent of marching around Jericho. Our battle plan for Stockton was not based on human effort. It flies in the face of everything that the world calls ‘marketing.’ It made no sense to march around Jericho. That is no way to fight a battle! But we can sense that the hand of God is here, and He will fight the battle!

There was a day when Joshua and the armies of God stopped marching—took their positions—and then shouted and blew on their horns. Today is our day to do the same.

We have poured tens of thousands of dollars into this. We have shut down virtually every aspect of our ministry for this. Our staff has relocated to Stockton.  We are literally hanging our lives on the promise of God regarding these next 5 days.

We are putting it all on the line today, and all I am asking of you is one thing: PRAY!  Pray fervently. Pray specifically. Pray as you have never prayed for us before. This is our Jericho! Pray for the walls to come down!

 

 

P.S. Oh, I know I said ‘one thing’ but I am actually asking for two more. If you live within 50 miles of this tent, please come to see the power of Jesus Christ perform miracles−and bring with you anyone you know who needs a miracle!

 

 

 

 

A NEW KIND OF LEADER

In the next few years, you will see social media virtually ban all preaching. Not only that, but there will be a concerted effort to marginalize the church in ways you never imagined. Does that mean that Bible-based Christianity is over in America? Absolutely not! You watch: God will come out of nowhere to meet this threat.

Remember I told you this…a new kind of Christian leader will soon appear. They will not fit any present mold. They will be the catalysts. They will usher in the next great awakening.

A few of them will be in pulpits. More of them will be in politics, business, science, law, entertainment, music, or a thousand other fields of endeavor.  They will not introduce subjects—they will introduce eras.  

WE INTERRUPT THIS BLOG WITH BREAKING NEWS MARIO MURILLO’S BLOG JUST HIT  6 MILLION VIEWS!  A HUGE THANK YOU TO ALL OF OUR READERS!

No one will be able to buy them off or get them to change the subject. They will operate on a disquieting plane of holiness and consecration. I believe A. W. Tozer was describing them when he said, “They serve God and mankind from motives too high to be understood by the rank and file of religious retainers who today shuttle in and out of the sanctuary.”

Today they suffer. Their agony is what happens when worlds collide. They see their destiny. It’s big and dangerous. A part of them glories in the potential to know God intimately and represent Him bravely. They see themselves rebuking kings, tyrants, and warmongers. They see themselves commanding the transfer of the wealth of the wicked into the control of the righteous. (Is. 60:5)

 God is warring to save America. You must find your assignment in that war. But how can we know our assignment?

The secret to finding your assignment is your heart. God speaks to the heart and then the heart must control the mind. Today, many spirit-filled believers are unwittingly involved in New Age practices. They relate to God as if He were some kind of ‘force’ rather than a Person.

They think that audacity and confidence will unlock gifts, authority, and direction. They speak of “activating gifts” as if there was a formula to supernatural manifestations. My friend, it comes through brokenness, not arrogance. The ‘force’ is a farce.

The gifts and anointing of the Holy Spirit always come through relationship. Sorry, but Christianity has always been, and always will be, family owned and operated. So then how can we know our assignment?

Your assignment in the Army of God is your individual expression and extension of Christ’s destruction of the works of the devil. You are a destroyer of the works of the devil. God will give you a way to do it that is unique to you.

Until that gets through to you—until you admit and agree to those terms—God will remain silent about your assignment.

Because the situation today in America is an impossible one, only one kind of person will make a difference now. They must be armed with divine certainty. They must own an unshakable, bone-deep conviction that they have been chosen for this task.

Without this, we have zero hope of removing the bloody talons of Satan from the throat of our nation. Without it, we are doomed to another embarrassing misfire, pawned off as revival.

Next, you must face the fact that very few believers are supposed to be teachers, preachers, or pastors (see James 3:1). For too long, we have listened to the voice of God through a filter. In the past, whenever God has moved someone to serve Him, we have assumed it meant ‘ministry.’

This assumption of ministry has sent many Christians to Bible College who didn’t belong there. Worse yet, it has filled pulpits with people who should have never been ordained. This reminds me of why President Woodrow Wilson once said, “One of the proofs of the divinity of the Gospel is the preaching it has survived.”

This filtered view of service is one big reason the church lost influence in our nation. God tried to send people into education, law, medicine, business, art, media, and yes, even politics−but instead, we herded them into “Christian service.”

You see it in the Bible. You see it in the stories of heroes of faith throughout history who altered the course of their generation. At the dawn of their mission, God infused them with incontestable certainty.

This certainty plays a critical role in their survival. Think of it like the escape velocity of a rocket. Escape velocity is one of the biggest challenges of space travel. In order for a rocket to break free of the Earth’s gravitational force it must reach a speed of seven miles per second. That’s 25,000 miles per hour!

Evil convulses at the approach of a new vessel of God. Hell instantly puts chosen ones on a hit list. The child of God must be blasted by divine certainty into a trajectory that will escape the pull of devils, the seduction of fame, withering criticism, and the dark night of the soul that comes to all who are called of God.

From his death bed, John Wesley wrote his last letter to William Wilberforce to encourage him as he fought in Parliament to abolish slavery in England. In this letter, Wesley confirms the urgency of divine certainty: “Unless God has raised you up for this very thing, you will be worn out by the opposition of men and devils. But if God be for you, who can be against you?  Are all of them together stronger than God? O be not weary of well doing! Go on, in the name of God and in the power of his might…”

Understand this child of God! The same Spirit that is awakening a passion and direction in you is doing the same thing to millions more. Soon an army will emerge that will invade every area of our culture.

Today it is sporadic fire, here and there, but soon the prophetic core of God will obey and embrace their assignment. They will come together in a chorus of victory that will be unlike anything we have ever seen.

Never forget, Christianity will survive without America−but America will not survive without Christianity.

 

THE PRICE

America faces the greatest threat she has ever faced. Now it is you who are the vessels of God who must die to self in order to get out of God’s way and confront this threat head on. Not with words alone but with undeniable signs and wonders so notable as to invoke both unbridled joy and the fear of the Lord. In view of the state of our nation, nothing less will do.

You want to see the lame walk—the blind see—and the deaf hear?  You want your days of powerless ministry to end?  You want to unlock the how and why of the way God grants power to do mighty signs and wonders?  Do you want to know why so many have asked but so few have received the gift of healing and working of miracles?

It is time to peel back misconceptions.  It is time to be brutally honest.   We have been able to create mind-bending technological breakthroughs and we can now do in an instant what previously took decades…but we will never find a shortcut to supernatural power.

I am preparing for miracle rallies in the tent in Stockton, California. I already know God’s fiery passion to work miracles in that tent. I am equally aware of the fervent hope so many have who are bringing loved ones with life-threatening diseases to be healed. It is a lot to take in. The burden of all this drove me to review the truths that have been my best friend in so many past events when I relied on nothing other than the healing power and presence of Jesus.

Read on, and learn the price of God’s miracle working power.

The Holy Spirit’s work never changes.  His process of taking raw material, such as you and I, to make a living breathing conduit for His power has never changed.  In 2,000 years, the process has not been shortened or compromised one iota.

If you seek glamour and riches, skip this message.  If you are dazzled by the people you have seen being used powerfully to perform miracles, save us both time—do not seek this power—you have no heart for it.

A young man, enthralled by the power he witnessed, ran up to Smith Wigglesworth and begged for the gift.  Smith said, “You don’t want it.  Before God is through with you, you will feel as if a thousand switch-trains have run over you.”

Before God uses you greatly, He will wound you deeply.

You still yearn to be used?  You still want power—real power, and not the fluff of so many hyper-emotional meetings?  Then proceed, with caution.

The reason for our lack of power and miracles is plain—we are just not willing to pay the price.  If you are willing, the Holy Spirit will take you through the process to power.  Here then is the price of God’s miracle working power:

It’s all about self-emptying. Listen to E. M. Bounds: “The preacher must throw himself−with all the abandon of a perfect, self-emptying faith and a self-consuming zeal−into His work for the salvation of men.  The men who take hold of and shape a generation for God must be hearty, heroic, compassionate, and fearless martyrs.”

A.W. Tozer said they would “…serve God and mankind from motives too high to be understood by the rank and file of religious retainers who today shuttle in and out of the sanctuary.  They will make no decisions out of fear, take no course out of a desire to please, accept no service for financial considerations, perform no religious act out of mere custom; nor will they allow themselves to be influenced by the love of publicity or the desire for reputation.”

Oral Roberts despaired of life itself in his hunger to understand miracles.  He was pastoring, without power, when he went to Kansas City to hear William Branham.  That encounter with the supernatural was his line in the sand.  He went into fasting and prayer.  Oral went into the prayer closet and there, he died to himself, completely.

In her desperation to understand the supernatural, Kathryn Kuhlman visited several healing meetings.  She often left disgusted and broken-hearted. Her tears and prayers reached critical mass and she made a holy vow to conduct meetings that were full of power and dignity. And she never looked back. Kathryn traced the moment of her power: she said, “I died.”  From that moment on, there was no Kathryn Kuhlman, only an utterly devoted shell.

Compassion: Oral Roberts, T.L. Osborn, Charles S. Price, and Aimee Semple McPherson all reported being overcome by compassion for the sick. Their level of caring rose to divine heights−they agonized for the lost, the sick, and the dying.

Matthew 14:14: “And when Jesus went out He saw a great multitude; and He was moved with compassion for them, and healed their sick.”  Such compassion cannot be faked.  It emanates from Christ Himself.

Hatred for sickness and evil: Few understand how the anointing is a product of hatred. Hebrews 1:9 says: “You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness; therefore God, Your God, has anointed You with the oil of gladness more than Your companions.”

Alexander Dowie saw miracles happen after a plague struck his church and killed 40 of his members in Sydney, Australia.  An inner rage transformed him until he called out to God with a pure heart, and was rewarded with so much power that it left his entire congregation free of plague.

John G. Lake saw his wife die, and it unlocked a fury against evil that swept the world with healing.

Power always has a purpose. Luke 4:17: “And He was handed the book of the prophet Isaiah. And when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was written: 18 “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, Because He has anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed; 19 to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.”

The most powerful part of those verses is this phrase: “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me because…”  Your “because” ruins you for all other plans, purposes, and goals.  You must surrender to the one thing you are assigned to do.  You must be able to list your purpose, articulate it simply and clearly, and execute it with extreme focus.

Every vessel of God has one life message.  It is an outstanding theme of their life and a distillation of all that the Holy Spirit has ever had them say.  T. L. Osborn’s life reached millions, and his life said something astonishing−and what it said is something that he never compromised or changed.

God is giving you power to do one special work.  You cannot deviate from that divine intention. It will be a true work of God.

Wait. Acts 1:4 “And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father.”  This is the key! Abraham could not wait, and Ishmael was the result.  King Saul could not wait, and it cost him his kingdom.  Esau could not wait, and it cost him his birthright.

How long will you have to wait?  AS LONG AS IT TAKES.  All the powers of hell will challenge your decision to wait.  Satan has too much to lose if true healing power begins to flow.

It will not come easily. Your flesh will scream for release from your vigil. But, wait for true miracle power.  Do not settle for the life you had before this quest.  Your patience will be rewarded beyond measure.  The Holy Spirit will come in power!

 

 

 

YOUR CHILD WHO IS RUNNING FROM GOD

Satan is stealing young people who have been raised in strong Christian families.  I get letters that are gut-wrenching. They are from parents whose child has been blinded by the enemy. They write, “I am so confused and stunned. I don’t understand how this could have happened. They denounce God, and nothing I say gets through to them.”

This is a crushing heartache. Especially to the remnant who have kept their love for God fervent in this dark and evil time. What is going on?

Last night, the voice of the Lord came to me. This blog is the result of His message to me. He told me to comfort you. He told me about a miracle He holds in reserve for you and your child.

Proverbs 11:21 promises you this:

You can be very sure the evil man will not go unpunished forever. And you can also be very sure God will rescue the children of the godly.

God Himself will activate a rescue mission.   The seed of the righteous will be redeemed by an appointment with God.  He has set a time for His power to come upon them.

Here’s what you need to know right now:

This crisis happened because of Satan.   You can’t waste time punishing yourself or searching for a root cause for their rebellion. The reason it happened, despite your best efforts and a Christian upbringing, is not a mystery. This is the work of Satan. The Bible tells us that the god of this world has blinded these young ones. (2 Corinthians 4:4) The devil has stolen their faith and continues to shut out the light.

This is an important starting point. Realizing how this happened releases you from guilt, and allows you to fight back effectively.

David Wilkerson said, “It doesn’t do any good for a parent to try to look deeper for a reason behind it.  It’s all the work of Satan.  He wants to keep that child bound, confused, and in sin.  The problem goes way beyond counseling, preaching, or parenting strategies.  It’s going to take a miracle, plain and simple.”

What you have sown into them is greater than the power of the devil, and it will prevail. God has set a time for His power to come upon them.

Your child has been attacked unfairly. They will also be blessed ‘unfairly.’  When Jesus announced His ministry and read from Isaiah, He finished by declaring the year of God’s favor.  There is no way around it—favor is favoritism.  This is how God’s favor falls out: just as you have been unfairly attacked, so shall you be highly favored.  Your child will be impacted by that favor.

You and God are now partners in the salvation of your child.  We must take our stand in the Spirit. That is where this evil originates, and that is where it will be destroyed. Our battle is in the supernatural. It will demand a presence of God in your life such as you have never known. But it will be worth every sacrifice. You must believe that the manifest presence of Jesus will make Satan powerless against your loved one.

Remember our awesome God and hold up your child before Him.  Hold in your mind a picture of that child serving God.  Keep that portrait vivid in your spirit.

Yes, they often get worse when you start declaring a miracle, but don’t be fooled.  Remember how rebellious Saul of Tarsus was, right up to the moment of his violent conversion.  Trust in the inevitable and supernatural intervention of God.

Nehemiah 4:14: And I looked, and arose and said to the nobles, to the leaders, and to the rest of the people, “Do not be afraid of them. Remember the Lord, great and awesome, and fight for your brethren, your sons, your daughters, your wives, and your houses.”

Do not lose heart! These current conditions remind me of those that existed right before the Jesus Movement swept California and we saw the hardest cases in the youth culture saved and delivered.  They too had abandoned their parents’ faith.  They went into extreme immorality and showed no sign of turning back.  Then they encountered the power of God.

Lift up your eyes all around, and behold: They all gather together, they come to you; your sons shall come from afar, and your daughters shall be nursed at your side. –Isaiah 60:4

The greatest promise is Joel 2:28:

And it shall come to pass afterward that I will pour out My Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy.

That is the promise of God for a worldwide harvest of souls, and I am convinced it is our children who will be the harvesters!

YOU NEED TO STOP

It looks terrible when you drink alcohol in front of people. You are damaging your body. You are weakening those who watch you.  And, it is a wicked thing to do in front of a former drinker who is struggling to stay sober. It is equally bad to do it in front of those who have never indulged, because they might start drinking when they see you doing it.

None of the old excuses work anymore, and God help you if you defend even moderate drinking as some sort of display of God’s goodness, your claim to personal liberty, or as a crusade against a ‘religious spirit’. That is total bunk.

Here are new and compelling reasons you need to stop now.  And yes, I have upgraded my position on this.  Before, I said that the Bible condemned drunkenness, but not drinking in moderation.  But I said the Holy Spirit was leading certain individuals into an alcohol-free life for a deeper anointing.   Now I am saying that every Christian needs to lose the booze.

Here are the new reasons:

-There is no safe dosage of alcohol. A few years ago we were told that a little red wine was good for your heart. We now know that is false. We now know there is no safe level of drinking.  Kate Lelland in an article from Reuters entitled “Major study debunks myth that moderate drinking can be healthy, reports: “Blood pressure and stroke risk rise steadily the more alcohol people drink, and previous claims that one or two drinks a day might protect against stroke are not true, according to the results of a major genetic study.”

The research, which used data from a group of 160,000 Chinese adults, many of whom are unable to metabolize alcohol due to genetic intolerance, found that those who drink moderately, consuming amounts even as small as 10 to 20 grams (that’s 1/3 to 2/3 of an oz.) of alcohol a day, raise their risk of stroke by 10 to 15 percent. Do the math, for drinking larger amounts…

For heavy drinkers, those who consume four or more drinks a day, blood pressure rises significantly and the risk of stroke increases by around 35 percent, the study found.

 “The key message here is that, at least for stroke, there is no protective effect of moderate drinking,” said Zhengming Chen, a professor at Oxford University’s Nuffield Department of Population Health who co-led the research. “The genetic evidence shows the protective effect is not real.”

They went on to say, “It’s not a good idea to start drinking alcohol to protect yourself against heart disease. Simply put, it’s just not worth it. With alcohol and the heart, it’s a benefit and risk trade off. So, for example, while alcohol’s anti-clotting ability might protect against heart attack to a limited extent, it may increase the risk of hemorrhagic stroke (i.e.: when a blood vessel bursts causing bleeding inside the brain).  Alcohol’s potential small benefits for the heart are outweighed by its increased risks of developing other very serious illnesses, such as liver disease or cancer.”  And speaking of cancer…

 -Alcohol causes cancer. The CDC (Center for Disease Control) in Atlanta said, “Drinking alcohol raises your risk of getting six kinds of cancer—mouth and throat cancer; voice box (laryngeal) cancer; esophageal cancer; colorectal cancer; liver cancer; breast cancer.” https://www.cdc.gov/cancer/alcohol/index.htm

 -Alcohol and brain damage: SAM BLANCHARD HEALTH REPORTER FOR MAILONLINE wrote: Disturbing scans reveal how brain damage caused by alcohol continues on for up to SIX WEEKS after you stop drinking. Experts in Germany and Spain scanned the brains of alcoholics and non-drinkers, and they found there was less activity in the brains of those who drink−even weeks later.

(http://healthmedicinet.com/i/disturbing-scans-reveal-how-brain-damage-caused-by-alcohol-carries-on-for-up-to-six-weeks/)

Areas of the brain controlling emotions, behavior and memory were affected.

Although drinking can make people feel happier and more sociable, overuse can cause damage to those parts of the brain that control thoughts and movement.

Scans showed there is significantly less electrical activity in the brains of drinkers than of teetotallers– even after two weeks of sobriety. The changes were still present in the brain after six weeks of no alcohol, according to the research published in the Journal of the American Medical Association Psychiatry.

The researchers said their findings go against the conventional idea that damage from alcohol ends when the drinking ends.

Dr. Santiago Canals, one of the authors of the study, said: “Until now, nobody could believe that in the absence of alcohol the damage in the brain would progress.”

The scans showed that the two areas that were affected the worst, were the hippocampus and the prefrontal cortex.

Memories, emotions, decision-making, and behavior are controlled by these parts of the brain, suggesting these characteristics could be particularly altered.

“We found that at two and six weeks of abstinence, the micro-structural changes progressed,” the scientists wrote in their report.

 AND FINALLY:

 -It is an empty defense to say that Jesus drank wine. No one really knows what He drank, and we do not know what the level of alcohol was, if any, in the wine at Cana.  We do know that He didn’t drink anything close to modern alcoholic drinks. The best estimate is that today’s wine contains 300% more alcohol than most wines in the first century.  Distilling was not invented until centuries later. We know that Jesus gave up all wine after the Last Supper to prepare for His crucifixion (Luke 22:18). He even refused it at the cross.

 -It is inaccurate to say that Paul recommended alcohol to Timothy.  Drinkaware, a secular website devoted to drinking says this: “Put simply, alcohol irritates your digestive system. Drinking–even a little–makes your stomach produce more acid than usual, which can in turn cause gastritis (the inflammation of the stomach lining). This triggers stomach pain, vomiting, diarrhea and, in heavy drinkers, even bleeding.” Okay. Do you think Paul would recommend alcohol as a cure for Timothy’s stomach?

It wasn’t because the wine contained alcohol that Paul recommended that Timothy “no longer drink water.” Many Bible scholars believe that Paul was telling Timothy that his stomach problems were being caused by the water where he was located. Paul added, “but use a little wine for your stomach’s sake and those frequent infirmities of yours” (I Tim. 5:23). Paul was recommending that Timothy forgo drinking the local water, perhaps because of the many types of water pollution common in those times, such as dysentery, Guardia, lead poisoning, pollution, etc.

Of course, there are many other issues we need to cover, including nutrition, wholesome conversation, bad company, financial integrity, and sexual purity. But right now, the enemy is capitalizing on the subtly of alcohol to cause many vessels of God to plateau and cease growing in holiness, and even to destroy their anointing, their power, and their walk with the Holy Spirit.

We are about to lose our country. Do you want to be remembered as one who championed the cause of social drinking? You know you want power.  You know you yearn for a greater presence of God on your life.  Don’t let a crude habit sabotage your destiny.

Remember, a real disciple gives up what they want now, for what they want most.

Prov. 31:4-5 “It is not for kings, O Lemuel, it is not for kings to drink wine; nor for princes, strong drink: 5 Lest they drink, and forget the law, and pervert the justice due to any of the afflicted.”