Blessed Fruitfulness (Part 2)

This is the continuation of “Leafy Christianity”

If you remain in me and my words remain in you,

ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you.

Many times we wish things, while being disconnected from him, and expect the results that are for the privileged – only for those who remain in him. We expect God to bless us, while we disobey his commands and do not respect his boundaries. We think everything is fine with us, God somehow has to do it! Whatever “it” is. God may say, grow within the way I mold you and direct you, and you will be a fruitful harvest, a blessing to many! You are blessed if others are blessed through you. This is what fruitfulness does.

Well then, how to remain in Jesus?

It starts with love. It does not start with Bible knowledge or theological debates about what is correct in Latin and Greek and how much Hebrew you know and how well you can formulate your speeches.

As the Father has loved me,

so have I loved you.

Now remain in my love.

And how do we remain in Jesus’ love?

Yes, he has answered this question more than two thousand years ago. But we have not preached it in our churches. We have simply omitted the core of greatest importance. Jesus says, “If you obey my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have obeyed my Father’s commands and remain in his love,” (Jn 15:10) Think about it: when was the last time you have heard a sermon on “obedience to the commands of Jesus” from your pastor? I guess, he will be fired by his own church members before he would have even finished such a sermon! In a church that is fruitless, the one who comes to prune to make it fruitful for harvest is cut off. It’s too hard; it’s not our policy; what about our donors; and the church committee; we have not done like this before; our traditions! These churches just remain to be leaves, not fruit clusters. They like to suck all the energy and strength from the vine and look lush and lavish, but bear no fruit. The scary thing about them is that they will have all the characteristics of a vine plant and deceive others into believing that they are fruit bearing branches. They look alike, until you see the difference in how they love others and keep the commands of Jesus. To love your neighbor is to lay down your life for your neighbor. Jesus has already modeled it for us. As he has loved us, so should we love others. He calls those who obey his commands friends! He welcomes them into his exquisite club!

My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.

Greater love has no one than this,

that he lay down his life for his friends.

You are my friends if you do what I command.pruned

To remain in the Vine begins with selfless love, obedience to Jesus’ commands, which in turn will guide you and shape you into a pruned branch that bears much fruit. Remember, to remain in him is to be pruned daily, to bear fruit. No fruitful blessing without pruning. There is no other alternative or a shorter route to this. I have watched the farmers cut off up to 70% of the growth in the vineyards in the hilly slopes of my village, for a fruitful harvest. This happens every year, around the year. Just 30% of the plant is all the farmers need to see it bear fruit. That 70% can harm the 30% fruit-bearing potential within you. They are just energy suckers: ego, pride, jealousy, greed, lies, hate, anger… cut them off, you don’t need them in your lives. They produce disease and death. It destroys your life and others’.

What unnecessary 70% needs to be removed from your life to love others like Jesus laid his life for you? What dead woods (deeds) keep you from obeying the commands of Jesus? Would you allow Jesus to come to you with his pruning scissors to shape and guide you as he wants you to be – fruitful.

Leafy Christianity (Part 1)

I live in a small hilly village whose slopes are filled with vineyards. I take my evening walks among the vines and marvel at the work the farmers do there. Growing vine is a year round work. I have watched how the farmers carefully plant the vine, care for it, kill the weeds around the young plant and tenderly grow it. They let the new canes spread on the constructed wires. Then comes winter and most of the growth is cut off except for two or three dead looking leafless twigs. And I have wondered how they are going to survive the cold and the frost.

As Spring and Summer come again, miraculously these dead looking twigs grow buds and life kicks in. The farmers carefully select the potential canes and remove every other extra shoots and even fruit clusters because they first want the vines to grow strong roots and trunk. Again in Winter, the canes are cut back. As the trunk gets strong and firmly rooted, new growth happens once again next Spring. The farmer watches every little bud grow into a branch and decides whether he removes it or lets it remain.

“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener,” said Jesus.  

And what does the gardener do to his vines?

He prunes them to see them bear fruit.

Jesus is the true vine, rooted firmly in his Father he said, “I do nothing on my own, but speak just what the Father has taught me” (Jn 8:28). Jesus came to do the will of his Father; not his own will. He remained in his Father and was one with him.

“Remain in me, and I will remain in you.

No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. 

Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.

 I am the vine; you are the branches.

 If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit;

apart from me you can do nothing” (Jn 15:4,5).

I have watched what the farmers do to the branches that want to grow in their own ways, stretching out long twigs and bearing many leaves but do not have any fruit cluster in them. They are mercilessly cut away from the vine, collected and burned in fire. Whereas, those that bear fruit are pruned. They are carefully down-sized in their growth. So the energy from the vine can go into bearing fruits and not be sucked away by the many leaves.

You can easily differentiate between those who bear fruit and those who don’t by just looking at how their lives are pruned. Pruning is not a one-time experience. It happens daily. Pruning scissors come in many forms: lack of financesleafy-vine, rebelling teenagers, unanswered prayers, people lying about you, and so on. All these test how you come out bearing godly fruits, how you can still love your unlovable teenager, and how patiently you trust God while your bills are still unpaid and reminders keep coming. Every situation exposes that which needs to be cut-off from within us. The reason for pruning is to bear fruit and be more fruitful!

Pruning is nothing else than shaping and guiding how the branches should grow. Pruning is the removal of unnecessary growth within us. And we do have a lot of unnecessary things in us, like ego, pride, hate, jealousy, greed, lies, hypocrisy, double standard life, a private and a public life, cheating, cursing, deceiving and more. These are the dead wood that bring death to oneself and others around them. It destroys life, not produces life. They are dead because they are disconnected from the main Vine; they do not receive life from the main Vine. Death has to be removed and buried.

He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit,

while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes

so that it will be even more fruitful, (Jn 15:2).

It is just not good enough to be a branch that only bear vine leaves and suck away the energy that is supposed to go to those branches that bear fruit clusters. There are lots of leaf-bearing branches in God’s vineyard that suck the time and energy and every effort of those who bear fruit. When the gardener goes through his vineyard he will mark those “energy suckers” to be mercilessly cut off from the vine. To remain in Jesus is to be fruitful. Fruitfulness means multiplication, which leads to filling the earth. This is the original and true blessing of God. Be fruitful, multiply and fill the earth.

Being successful, especially measured in the amount of wealth and splendor one has achieved, is not a blessing. That may be a payment of mammon. You work for mammon and he pays you with what is his. The devil led him up to a high place and showed him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world. And he said to him, “I will give you all their authority and splendor, for it has been given to me, and I can give it to anyone I want to. So if you worship me, it will all be yours” (Lk 4:5-7). Wealth can be a deception that mammon blinds you to believe a blessing. Wealth can make you greedy and can strangle you from not being a blessing to others. If that is true in your life, check out, you may be worshiping, serving a wrong god!

God’s blessing is always life-giving, birthing, being fruitful, multiplying and filling the earth with his presence and glory.

To be continued in “Blessed Fruitfulness” (Part 2)

God looks for oneness and he finds egos!

God looks for oneness and he finds egos!

The way we understand oneness and the way God means oneness are two different things.

Oneness is to leave behind individualism and self driven-ness, and to merge into each other as one entity. Father God and his Son function fused and glued in each other. Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father, said Jesus in Jn 14:9. Jesus simply refused  to be an individual. It was not about his Self. My words are but my Father’s, he said in Jn12:49.  I do exactly what my Father has commanded me to do, Jn 14:13.

P.C modernhdwallpaper

P.C modernhdwallpaper

And he blended his disciples into the oneness that he had with his Father.  I have revealed you to those whom you gave me out of the world… I gave them the words you gave me… I have given them your  word… I have given them the glory that you gave me… I have made you known to them… In a world full of egos and Selfies and self-promotions, I-me my-mine, how often do we stop to think for a second, why am I doing what I am doing? What is the driving force of my motives? Ego? Greed?

How did Jesus attain this oneness with the Father? He chose to voluntarily submit to his Father. He let go of his ego. Right before his horrible death, he agonized to his Father, “Take this cup from me, yet not what I will but what you will.” Submission to his death! What a model to follow as his disciples!

My woman-friend and I were serving another lady last week, casting demons out of her life. We have not served together before. We were quite surprised to see how we were flowing in one accord. It felt like we both flew with one set of wings, so to say. Where she left I continued and where I left she continued without any disruption in the flow for the next three and a half intense hours. We were one in our spirits, one in our mind and thoughts, with God and each other. Why? Because it did not matter who did what. It did not matter who has more authority in prayer and how much the devil shudders. All we did was to submit to God and each other and the devil could find nothing of him in us; all he had to do was to submit to the One in us. He saw no division within us, but oneness through submission to God and each other.

Oneness is not – be by myself as one person.

Ego, fear, envy and hate for others are the strongest enemies (demons) of oneness that God wants to see in his bride. Cast those out; they are nothing but just demons!

Apostle Paul stood FOR women, not agaist women!

Today 8th of March is celebrated as the International women’s day by the whole world. This year the campaign theme is #pledge for parity. They push that urgent action is needed to accelerate gender parity all over the world! Everytime I feel the pressure, I ask “why?” Why is the agenda of gender equality pushed into this generation when God has created a clear and divine order of  Head-Body relationship? What is really lying behind this agenda to destroy the divine order of God by making male and femal equal? Sadly, many Christians ignorantly join this gender parity movement without a clear understanding of God’s divine order!

I have attached a file here, Paul’s Kingdom perspective on women, chapter 27 from my book, “The King’s Woman” to have a better understanding of Paul and his forever misunderstood verses in 1Tim 2:9-15. Please have a read and if you want to read more you can order the book here:

Kingdom Passport

Introducing the “Kingdom Passport Project”

Every human is a migrant! Some flee from bombs and destruction, others flee from religious or political repression, but most people flee from the traumas of their own past.

KP_Cover_w_StickerThe urging question is, “where to run?” Europe is not really the promised land. Where is the country that so many people feel homesick for, without ever having been there? This booklet addresses that best kept secret of the world.

We are launching a new missionary project that aims at explaining to the above mentioned migrants of all three categories how to become naturalized citizens of the Kingdom of Jesus Christ. The goal is not to make more proselytes for the religion of Christianity, but to seed into them the Gospel of the Kingdom in such a way, to directly become “citizens of heaven” (Phil 3:20), without the detour of man-made religion. The readers are encouraged to start “Kingdom communities”, explained in the booklet, with the imagery of the Ark. While the entire world increasingly drowns in a whirlpool of events, the house-boats of God do swim! They are the earthly beachheads for the colonies of the Kingdom of heaven, and provide the only firm and secure ground in a world seemingly spinning out of control. This message is also an important topic for the post-Christian societies of the cultural West, which is facing economic, political and moral challenges of dramatic proportions. That is why there is no better way to prepare ourselves for the future than to become determined citizens of the most fascinating domain that will dominate the future of the world ̶ the unshakeable Kingdom of God (Heb 12:28).

This project is different from the classical evangelistic tract distribution which usually aims at leading people to a conversion and membership of a traditional church. This is explicitly an apostolic sowing initiative. Instead of a come-message, this booklet contains a go-message that can and should spread virally. We will only be able to harvest what we have sown. Let us therefore, give this world a new kind of seed! Jesus Christ said it like this: “This Gospel of the Kingdom shall be proclaimed to all people groups, and then the end shall come.”

We distribute these 28-pages, passport size (A6) booklets for free in various languages. The electronic versions can be downloaded at the website www.kingdompassport.eu. It contains the basic, minimum information of the Gospel of the Kingdom. At the end of the booklet we include the most important Laws of Christ, so that anyone can know beforehand what legal framework he can expect in his new home country and start living by it immediately.

We invite anyone who is interested to become a partner in this project. You could help by posting the Kingdom Passport pdf file on your website. Please let us know if you want to be a translator, a distributor, a sponsor (for printing, translation, logistics), or an intercessor of this project. If we want “to harvest without ceasing” (Gal 6:9), we need to start sowing a seed that multiplies itself. And only the seeds of the Kingdom can do that.

If Jesus Is The King, Why Do We Need Leaders?

More and more people are discovering my book The King’s Woman through word of mouth. I have hardly advertised it and yet it is wonderful to here positive and encouraging responses from readers. Below is an excerpt from this book and if you want to read more you can place your order at simsonmedia.com

Enjoy reading this snippet from Chapter 21.

“If Jesus is the King, why do we need leaders?
The Kingdom of God provides ample space for women to be freed from sin and become and be all that God wants them to be. In the Kingdom, even stones could cry out if humans remained silent. How much more does God desire for his precious daughters to rise up, fly, speak, minister, prophesy, plant churches, drive out demons and do all he commanded them to do. The Kingdom of God is not an order-free zone, an anarchy like Israel in the days of Judges, without any human king, while stubbornly rejecting God as their King. In the Kingdom of God, God rules. It is the domain of his uncontested rule. And one of these rules in the Kingdom is, “Wives, submit to your husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything” (Eph 5:22-24). The act of submission of a wife to her husband is very crucial to the Church, since a submitted wife is the only model that God has on earth to demonstrate on a personal level how the ekklesia, on a more corporate level, submits to Christ. Satan, who rebelled against God, is still out there attacking all wives that lend him their ears. He contaminates them with his demonic cry for equality. His biggest lie is, “You are as much the head as your husband. You don’t need to submit; you rule, you lead, you govern, you guide and you control. Don’t submit, and please do not model submission!” He knows that this would put the entire religious church at the risk of waking up to the truth and order of God and slipping out of his fingers! Remember, women are his direct threat and enemy. Satan doesn’t want her to align to the order of God. If she does, his rule will come to an abrupt end.

Jesus submitted to God before he even became a human being. This kind of submission required absolute obedience and total sacrifice. “Your Kingdom come (not mine), your will (mot mine) be done on earth as in heaven” (Mt 6:10), he prayed. What blueprint of submission do we need to copy here on earth from heaven if not his submission of absolute obedience and total sacrifice? If Jesus is the King and rules over all of us, why bother about who leads whom? He will create just the exact place and space for all of us, men and women alike, to function properly under his headship. The whole concept of leadership, with which the religious church is so obsessed, is only created because Christ is effectively de-throned as King and therefore not the undisputed leader of his ekklesia. The New Testament does not even provide us with the concept of human leaders, male or female, in the ekklesia, or worse, with a pyramidal hierarchy of “leadership levels.” The Greek word hegemon used in Heb 13:7,17,24 and often translated “leader” is far better translated “the one who stands up first”, similar to presbyter (which means elder) or episkopos (which means bishop), and not “leader”, which suggest a hierarchy: those that are led are under the directives of the ones leading them. The term hegemon even appears in Lk 22:26 in the meaning of servant. If Jesus is not our leader, his leadership, of course, is desperately missed. This vacuum has been taken over by human leaders, who now endlessly discuss if men should lead women, if women should lead men and who should ordain whom. In the absence of Jesus and his Kingship, religious people of all times look up to something else to lead them all, their founder, their superstructure, their denomination, their leadership group, and discuss with enormous effort how such a self-imposed superstructure should look like.

In the Kingdom, such disputes are futile, because the case is settled. If Jesus Christ is our King, then all of his people are his subjects and do as they are told; end of discussion. Submission is our natural human response to his Kingship. If we do not understand this, we have not understood the Kingdom at all. And that means we cannot be hidden in his Kingdom, whether we are men or women. This is probably the biggest reason why so many self-declared leaders and preachers feel they have to parade their status and promote themselves and push their ministry with everything they have got. Nothing is more alien to the Kingdom than such a behavior.

If we accept through our submission and practical obedience the fact that Jesus is our King and therefore our hiding place, all our desire to prove ourselves, to show the world what we’ve got, all that flexing of our spiritual muscles, all that selling and marketing of ourselves, implodes and becomes futile. Because there is so much a better way – the Kingdom way.”

The Parable of the Ground

This is the continuation of the last post.

“A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up. Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow. But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root. Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up and choked the plants. Still other seed fell on good soil, where it produced a crop — a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown.”

In this parable, Jesus emphasizes that the seed is not the problem. The gospel of the Kingdom is not the problem, but the ground. According to the parable above, statistically speaking, 1/4th of those who hear the gospel of the Kingdom will misunderstand it, or misinterpret it for church, or Christian business, or even heaven — somewhere far up there, unreachable at this moment. 1/4th of those who hear the gospel of the Kingdom will quickly accept it, run ahead and build shallow kingdoms that will wither away pre-matured. They will leave behind a “burned earth” where it will be impossible to sow Kingdom seeds anymore. The moment such a ground hears the word “Kingdom,” it shuts the door and shows a cold shoulder. 1/4th of those who hear the gospel of the Kingdom will choke the life out of the seeds that are sown through their never ending pessimistic, sarcastic comments, empty arguments, and useless debates of “what ifs” and “what if nots.” Such grounds are often visible in facebook and blog comments. Ego, fear, worries, doubts, jealousy, and the deception of riches and wealth, name and fame, literally kill the seeds of the gospel of the Kingdom of God.

Jesus, the Sower of Kingdom seeds, explains in the parable in Matthew 13:3-8 that only about 1/4th will understand the gospel of the Kingdom of God and will die thoroughly to ego to produce a crop that is multipliable. “Unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed.” Kingdom seeds must die in order to have Kingdom growth. Dying is not cheap; it does not come easy. The seed cast to the ground is buried under dark, wet, and cold dirt. It remains hidden, away from spotlights and microphones. It begins to decay. No one knows, no one recognizes, and no one cares! It has to die to its Self, its image, its identity. And even when the time comes to present itself to the world, you don’t see it ever in its old form. It is no more a seed; it germinates. When everyone else is waiting to see it break forth out of the ground, it grows pushing downwards, taking deep roots first, to build a firm anchor to carry the truth and to withstand the weeds. Then the unimpressionable, (not to be taken seriously and easy to reject) vulnerable tender stalk sprouts. It has to survive the scorching heat, storms and hail, a hard period of growth. Sometime later, the head comes out, with hopes of multiplication — the full kernel in the head. And the same process repeats again. His Kingdom grows on earth. Kingdom seeds have the potential to produce a crop – a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown.

Not everyone who says, “kingdom, kingdom” understands the Kingdom. Just like many who say, “Lord, Lord” also do not understand what that Lord says; otherwise they may eventually obey and do what that Lord says!

Jesus was born as a savior but he is to return as the acting King. While on earth, he preached the gospel of the Kingdom of God. To enter it, he says, requires a radical repentance. “Repent, for the Kingdom of God has come.” Repent means, stop doing what you have been doing so far, turn around and return to the orders of the King. Repent, because he is the King and we are not! Most of the King’s parables on the Kingdom of God do not end delicately but they end with fierce consequences. Repent…, “or else you will be thrown into a fiery furnace where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth!” The Kingdom of God is not a sphere where we can play our little games of kings and queens. We may play our own games in the churches, but not so in the Kingdom. In the churches, one can notice an awkward absence of sermons on repentance and obedience. Its the cheap grace and love, isn’t it? But listen to what Jesus says, “If you love me, you will obey my commandments” (Jn 14:15). And one of his commandments is, “Repent!”

Jesus never stopped scattering his Kingdom seeds. The question to answer is what ground are we?  If we are anything other than the good soil, we should know what to do.

A friend of mine posted this inspiring video on her facebook, I am sharing it here as an encouragement.