The best sermon I’ve ever heard : New teaching and notes

First—Friday I taught at New Wineskins Ministry on “Becoming Unoffendable,” and my son Skylar ran up to me when I was done and said, “Dad, that was the best sermon I’ve ever heard!” And, get this, it was nearly two hours long!

Go to and search for “Unoffendable” and listen to that sermon. I regularly hear that it’s one of the most powerful messages people have ever heard.

Also, I strongly urge you to listen to Sundays teaching on the Prophetic Mandate for the Church. I’ll include those notes below. It’s also found at and as of today it’s the most recent message (should be right on top).

I discuss four key messages that we’re mandated to run with including the pandemic of ‘false assurance of salvation’.

Here’s the notes. (The first segment is from last week’s sermon and this week’s picks up at “The Terror of Hell”):

Some Key Prophetic Mandates for the Church

1. Introduction

a. We’ve been given a clear mandate at Revival Church to help introduce revival to Detroit.

i. This means the way things are now must morph into something very different.

ii. The most successful way to ensure the coming outpouring remains for decades is to introduce reformation before it arrives.

iii. It’s the upper room strategy—respond to an extreme lifestyle call and carry it out forever.

iv. Do you ever get frustrated when a new road is under construction forever?

1. This situation is just like a road under construction—hundreds of thousands will benefit from it. But, it’s still being built. We are not those who are frustrated, we are the ones with the hard hats and gloves on. We are the workers!

2. The fact that it’s a long term project doesn’t frustrate us because we understand the scope of the project. We know it takes a long time to pull together a work force, to survey the area, to bring in the bull dozers, to dig, to lay asphalt… for it to harden, and on and on.

3. We need the work force to simply show up for work every day.

4. Greek: technites- an architect, one who plans, calculates and constructs a building

5. Have you ever gotten frustrated watching construction workers just standing there by the side of the road doing nothing while you are backed up in traffic?

b. Hebrews 11:8-10 (ESV) 8 By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place that he was to receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going. 9 By faith he went to live in the land of promise, as in a foreign land, living in tents with Isaac and Jacob, heirs with him of the same promise. 10 For he was looking forward to the city that has foundations, whose designer and builder is God.

1. The process of building is critical

2. This passage is true for individuals, and it’s also true for mission driven churches.

3. Luke 6:46-49 (ESV) 46 “Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do what I tell you? 47 Everyone who comes to me and hears my words and does them, I will show you what he is like: 48 he is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. And when a flood arose, the stream broke against that house and could not shake it, because it had been well built. 49 But the one who hears and does not do them is like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation. When the stream broke against it, immediately it fell, and the ruin of that house was great.”

4. Now, the enemy understands what a unified group of people who are determined to build can do.

5. In fact, he borrowed this Godly strategy himself and was on pace to do great things for his kingdom.

6. Just as the Holy Spirit is calling us together to build, an unholy spirit was orchestrating things behind the scenes here.

c. Genesis 11:1-8 (ESV) 1 Now the whole earth had one language and the same words. 2 And as people migrated from the east, they found a plain in the land of Shinar and settled there. 3 And they said to one another, “Come, let us make bricks, and burn them thoroughly.” And they had brick for stone, and bitumen for mortar. 4 Then they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city and a tower with its top in the heavens, and let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be dispersed over the face of the whole earth.” 5 And the LORD came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of man had built. 6 And the LORD said, “Behold, they are one people, and they have all one language, and this is only the beginning of what they will do. And nothing that they propose to do will now be impossible for them. 7 Come, let us go down and there confuse their language, so that they may not understand one another’s speech.” 8 So the LORD dispersed them from there over the face of all the earth, and they left off building the city.

1. We are seeing the enemy do to the church what God did to his mission—people are being scattered.

2. So, our goal, and God’s goal is for us to put on the hard hats, pick up the shovels and have one language.

    1. Rom 8:31 What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us?

i. If we agree, if we align ourselves together in the purpose of God for Detroit- who can stop us? Who can be against us?

ii. Every noble work is at first impossible. Thomas Carlyle

1. On the contrary, if we are not aligned, we cannot win- we need each other, in a place of agreement, in a place of health and maturity and fully devoted to taking city for Jesus!

2. I challenge you—take inventory of your alliances. Who and what you are aligned with will determine your destiny.

3. Agreement is a powerful force.

ii. Matthew 18:18-20 (ESV) 18 Truly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. 19 Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. 20 For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.”

1. This is usually used when talking about prayer—but this is really talking about mission.

2. Do you see the focus is on being together and warring against the enemy and moving ahead in agreement?

iii. You know the old saying, "United We Stand, Divided We Fall." This saying is applicable within the church too. In the battle for Stalingrad during World War II the Russian commanders ordered their soldiers not to give up any more ground. Any soldier who fled from the Germans was shot on the spot. The Russian commanders knew that if even a couple of soldiers fled their post the Germans would have an opening through which they could pour into the city. Likewise, when the church is divided, Satan finds it so much easier to attack and to conquer.

1. We have to know that we are aligned, agreed, together and committed as builders, workers and warriors.

iv. Tonto and the Lone Ranger were riding through a canyon together when all of a sudden both sides were filled with Native American warriors on horses, dressed for battle. The Lone Ranger turned to Tonto and asked, "What are we going to do?" Tonto replied, "What you mean ‘we,' Whiteman?"

v. 1 Cor 1:10 I appeal to you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another so that there may be no divisions among you and that you may be perfectly united in mind and thought.

1. In a Peanuts cartoon Lucy demanded that Linus change TV channels, threatening him with her fist if he didn't. "What makes you think you can walk right in here and take over?" asks Linus. "These five fingers," says Lucy. "Individually they're nothing but when I curl them together like this into a single unit, they form a weapon that is terrible to behold." "Which channel do you want?" asks Linus. Turning away, he looks at his fingers and says, "Why can't you guys get organized like that?"

2. So, what must we be agreed on?

2. The Terror of Hell

a. Intimacy

b. Salvation

a. Many in the church will be surprised one day, just as you were surprised in the dream, to find themselves under the control of demons as they are taken to hell.

a. Proverbs 14:11-14 (ESV) 11 The house of the wicked will be destroyed, but the tent of the upright will flourish. 12 There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death. 13 Even in laughter the heart may ache, and the end of joy may be grief. 14 The backslider in heart will be filled with the fruit of his ways, and a good man will be filled with the fruit of his ways.

b. Matthew 7:21-23 (ESV) 21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ 23 And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’

b. This message is probably the number one mandate from God for me.

a. It’s all about two things:

i. Intimacy- seeking, knocking and finding Jesus, hunger, desire

ii. Lawlessness- in control of ones own life, not surrendered, not responsive, following Jesus on one’s own terms like the Rich Young Ruler.

1. There’s an anti-authority, anti-submission, scattering spirit in the church today, and it’s exceedingly dangerous!

2. 2 Peter 2:9-10 (ESV) 9 then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trials, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment until the day of judgment, 10 and especially those who indulge in the lust of defiling passion and despise authority.

c. House of prayer movement

a. The house of prayer is not a splinter movement, it is a call to calibration for the entire church.

b. Luann Zettle- "..a house of Prayer for all Nations..yep, totally agree with you John. Biblically this is so clear. And there are SO many I know that do see it that way. But, I think the biggest problem is that we don't know how to get there from here. The current church structure just seems to throw prayer in as an "add-on" or an additional ministry/program or that 10 minute exercise we do in the morning as opposed to the driving furnace of the Church, through which all other church Life flows. And i agree. IHOP,KC looks a lot more like Church than most anything else I've seen. "

3. Reformation in the Church

a. 20 Elements of Revival

b. Ancient and emerging

c. Dangerous scattering in the church

d. Cares of life

e. Misunderstanding of the purpose of the church

i. A wrong understanding of why we go to church will immediately result in a faulty understanding of how to participate.

ii. Many are saying that they don’t need the church anymore, or they only need the church a few times a month. This is an indicator of a wrong understanding of what the church is.

iii. Have we ever considered whether the church needs us?

iv. Can you imagine the USA military being strong if the soldiers only reported one day a week? No way! America would have been defeated and held captive long ago—and this is what has happened to the church.

v. Old paradigm- God first, family second, ministry third

vi. New paradign- all of it happening in the same places at the same time

1. We’ve come to believe that our families are healthier as we sit in front of the TV together instead of in the prayer room.

2. We might have a measure of personal health as we participate at a low level, but it comes at the expense of the church.

f. Some are saying that the Kingdom must advance out of the four walls of the church and into society. I agree! But, this can only happen if we are strategy minded and mission oriented in a place of burning prayer within the four walls of the upper room.

4. Encountering God

a. Making it easy for people to thoroughly enjoy God

b. We want people to know God, not just know about God.

c. 2 Chronicles 7:1-3 (ESV) 1 As soon as Solomon finished his prayer, fire came down from heaven and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices, and the glory of the LORD filled the temple. 2 And the priests could not enter the house of the LORD, because the glory of the LORD filled the LORD’s house. 3 When all the people of Israel saw the fire come down and the glory of the LORD on the temple, they bowed down with their faces to the ground on the pavement and worshiped and gave thanks to the LORD, saying, “For he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever.”

5. Prophetic Atmosphere

a. A command center for the region.

b. Manitou Springs—a revival command center for the nations.