Connecting to the True Vine
I am sure like me many of you have read John 15, where Jesus says, ‘I am the Vine, you are the branches and My Father is the Husbandman.’ There is a wonderful little book that was written many years ago by Andrew Murray called The True Vine.
While this pandemic has been on, I have spent over ten weeks studying this passage of scripture. I have been asking myself the question, where is the real anointing of Christ and why does the world seem to be in such a mess, the established churches and their leaders so weak and ineffective? I have come to the conclusion as many prophetic people around the world have that Satan is now present on the earth and is establishing his kingdom. We are told in the word of God that the time will come when Satan will be allowed by Almighty God to establish his kingdom upon the earth and go to war with the saints. Many years ago, Pastor David Wilkerson of Times Square Church, New York, preached a message Satan’s Final War Plan Exposed
He brought out the point that if we allow the fly in the ointment (Ecclesiastes 10:1), which refers to the anointing of God, then it turns the oil to putrefaction, which is the same with the anointing of God. This is in direct correlation with John 15. If we allow unconfessed sin into our hearts and our lives then there is a disconnect with the True Vine, Jesus Christ.
Over the many years, I have seen a lot of nonsense in pentecostal churches. Like Pastor David, I have seen people fall on the floor, I have seen people writhe on the floor like snakes, I have seen people scream and shout, but sadly when they get back up off the floor they are no different. I believe the true anointing comes through the word of God by allowing the word of God to permeate through our souls, to become obedient to what the word is saying and put it into action in our lives.
There is a major word that is missing from many ministries across this world. Is the first word that Jesus preached in Luke’s gospel, it is the first word that John the Baptist preached to the Pharisees and the Sadducees and the people of his day. Peter preached it, also Paul, and it is a word that is lost from our churches and sadly our ministers. It is the word repentance. Many Christians today do not understand what true repentance is. They are living under the delusion that their sins are forgiven, past, present and future, and they can behave in any manner they choose, as grace covers a multitude of sins. Many people would call this hyper-grace. I would call it deception. There is nowhere in the New Testament where it tells a believer we can live like an angel on a Sunday and a pig on a Monday.
I personally believe this COVID-19 is a wake-up call for the world and the body of Christ. The Chief Executive of Christian Concern, Andrea Minichiello Williams, recently has put out a YouTube video where she states clearly where is the voice of the true body of Christ?
Why are there not senior church leaders standing up for the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ? Sadly, we all know the answer to that if we are close to Jesus. God our Father, Jesus Christ our Saviour and God the eternal Holy Spirit are allowing Satan to set up his kingdom. Satan does not have to go after the minions; he has already got them. He does not have to go after the media; he owns that. He does not have to go after the Internet or Hollywood; he is in total control of all this media. So what can we do? If you are a born-again, Spirit-filled believer, you can revoke your BBC TV licence as you are allowing filth and degradation to come into your homes. You can write to your MP to ask them to push back the abortion laws and promote the freedom of speech and the decency of our nation. You can vote with your feet and not buy videos or watch Netflix with programmes which blaspheme the name of God or use foul language. You may say that you are strong enough spiritually to withstand this onslaught but I would like to tell you, you are deceiving yourselves. If more of us in the body of Christ stood for holiness and righteous lives I believe the spiritual dimension of this nation would change. If we spent more time on our knees seeking our Father than the box in the corner or our hobbies I believe we would see a true major revival in our land and across the world again, but as long as we compromise with the world and the world system we affect the anointing that only comes from Christ.
Many years ago, the former Pastor Reinhard Bonnke said, to understand the anointing we need to understand the anointed one, Jesus Christ. We as ministers have no power of our own. We are as Pastor Bonnke once said, no more than fuse wire, but I am led to believe the most perfect conductor is pure gold. So if you want to be effective in the body of Christ, you need to go and open yourself up to the Holy Spirit and allow Him to clean out the garbage and to purify you. Your pastors, your elders are not the answer. We are told in the word of God to seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things will be added unto us, and we are also told to look unto Jesus the author and perfecter of our faith. So if you are tampering with sin then I can assure you, you are drawing your source from another system. So I leave these challenges with you as I am challenged too as I believe it is time now to prepare ourselves for the return of our Lord Jesus Christ. I personally do not believe we have long, but that is dependent on God.
Rev Ross Rennie