No, not Barnum & Bailey.
This show will be like no other in the history of humankind or since the foundation of the earth â€“ it will be the mightiest move by the mightiest Being ever known â€“ the coming move of the Holy Spirit!
The Great Wave
Many years ago, one of my kids, then around 10 years old, had a dream. Now you have to understand my kids. They had lots of spiritual dreams when they were growing up, and I must add that they thought George Lucas, director of Indiana Jones and Star Wars fame, had hung the moon! Consequently, in one of their dreams, Lucas and Steven Spielberg were watching in awe as a massive wave of water covered the earth. An astonished Lucas said to Spielberg, â€œWe canâ€™t replicate this!â€
â€œDad, what does this mean?â€ my kid said.
I laughed out loud, knowing that it is childlikeness that inherits the earth (Matt. 18:3):
And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven (NIV).
â€œItâ€™s about the great wave of God in the last days in which the Holy Spirit will be poured out on all flesh,â€ I said. â€œNothing, no one will be able to stop it.â€
The interesting thing about the previous verse is that childlike faith gets you born again (John 3:7), which means, quite simply, that you realize you cannot save yourself â€“ get to heaven on your own merits and that you need a Savior, the Lord Jesus. But this verse has a double meaning because becoming very childlike (not childish) also allows you enter into the ways and moves of the Holy Spirit, if youâ€™re thirsty and dependent enough. This means total dependence on Him for the spiritual work you do. Everything else, human inspired works, emanates out of the fleshly mind, whether itâ€™s religious or not.
Â Now the mind of the flesh [which is sense and reason without the Holy Spirit] is death [death that [f]comprises all the miseries arising from sin, both here and hereafter]. But the mind of the [Holy] Spirit is life and [soul] peace [both now and forever].7Â [That is] because the mind of the flesh [with its carnal thoughts and purposes] is hostile to God, for it does not submit itself to Godâ€™s Law; indeed it cannot (Romans 8:6-7, Amp).
God loves the mind, but it most often opposes Him, as we see in these verses, particularly the prideful intellect. Without a great amount of explanation, this whole deal goes back to the Garden of Eden when our forebears, Adam and Eve, ate from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. This little fruity snack put the brain in charge and the spirit of mankind, which is to be controlled and filled by the Holy Spirit — and to receive the â€œdownloadsâ€ from heaven — moved to the back of the bus. In other words, the soul part of us, the psyche, became the controller of ourselves. O say can you see how this is a problem?
Looking backward, from time to time, some Old Testament types understood this power of the Holy Spirit, which allowed God to do miraculous things through them. The people of their day saw unbelievable miracles from the hands of such people as Moses, Elijah, Elisha, Jeremiah and others. The Book of Acts (chapter 2) tells us it wasnâ€™t until Pentecost (50 days from Passover when Jesus died on the cross) that â€œregularâ€ people had a chance to get in on His Acts (pardon the pun).
For the first time in HIStory, the power of the Holy Spirit was poured out on a group of 120 people who had been waiting for His Presence. Immediately, people like the disciple-fisherman Peter, who had stumbled and bumbled his way through three years of on-the-job training with Jesus, began to do mighty miracles. On the day of Pentecost, when he preached to the crowds milling about Jerusalem, 3,000 were saved. Incidentally, on the day the Law was given by Moses to the Israelites, 3,000 died (Ex. 32:28). Just remember, The Law kills, but the Spirit gives life! (2 Cor. 3:6), and God hates a false balance (Prov. 11:1 NASB)!
From that day until this, this amazing Holy Spirit has taken every advantage afforded Him to continue to do great and mighty things in the earth! Only unbelief stops Him, and sometimes He chooses to override peopleâ€™s hardness, anyway, to glorify the coming King, Jesus. As religious people opposed Jesus in His day (see primarily Matt. 23), so those today, steeped in their â€œcorrect doctrinesâ€ (so they think), continue to argue, with unbelievable stubbornness, that â€œmiracles passed away with the first century.â€ Hmmmâ€¦ Still eating off that wrong tree, huh?
The knowledge of the Lord
One Bible promise says, â€œThe earth will be covered with the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the seaâ€ (Habakkuk 2:14). How so? Not because people could or would make this happen. Fortunately, thereâ€™s one Who can. The greatness of the Lord will be known everywhere because of this move of the Holy Spirit! And, like the days of Acts, persecution will arise, and also like the many who preached this message in those days, followers today will, like their Savior and his Followers, die at the hands of satanically inspired people (see the Book of Revelation). Whereas American Christians wonder â€œif the church will go through the Tribulation,â€ thousands of Chinese Christians and others professing His name today in countries hostile to the Gospel, die horrible deaths simply for believing in and following the Lamb.
The sad part of this move of the Holy Spirit, where multitudes get saved, healed and delivered, is always the presence of hucksters and the flakes, who would sell God for a buck, if they could profit from it themselves. This turns off would-be believers. These charlatans are an affront to the Lord Himself and His wonderful Holy Spirit, as well as, an embarrassment to His Body, those who name the name Christian and mean it. Always remember: Where thereâ€™s the Real Deal, thereâ€™s a counterfeit lurking somewhere nearby!
Are you playing church or preparing to be a vessel for the miraculous of the Holy Spirit?
A friend of mine had a dream several years ago that also involved a wave, or should I say waves? My friend (now deceased) was standing on the beach as an observer while others were surfing huge waves. There were others just watching the surfers as well. This, to me, meant by interpretation, that many Christians would indeed ride the coming mighty spiritual waves of God while others will merely watch (nothing new about this). Anyway, in the next scene (you know how crazy dreams can be!), people were sitting in customized old cars that couldnâ€™t move out of a garage whose doors were being held shut (a door no man could open â€“ Rev. 3:7). All of a sudden, the doors burst open, and these cars began to move like something out of NASCAR! Again, to me, this means this huge move of God would involve a â€œSuddenly,â€ a kairos time (Godâ€™s appointed time), when the Holy Spirit will be poured out in an even greater measure on people of our planet than ever before. Are you ready for it?
Everything considered, you may say, as an old friend of our family named â€œSmittyâ€ used to say when he didnâ€™t believe something, â€œI.W. Harper.â€ (That meant somebody had been drinking whiskey — LOL!). Godâ€™s ways are not our ways, but we can get in on them, if we believe.
Hate it or love it, â€œThe Greatest Show on Earth,â€ in effect, has already begun, as millions of people the world over are coming into the kingdom of God, some by way of signs and wonders. You wonâ€™t read about it in the New York Times or see it on ABC News Tonight, but when masses of people everywhere on the globe begin to experience this awesome move of the Holy Spirit, somebodyâ€™s going to wake up and smell the coffee!
*Josephâ€™s new book, â€œDeeper Water for Thirsty Souls, can be found at Amazon.com.