Getting the Victory in the low places
INTRO: I want to talk to you today about getting victory in the low places. The place of discouragement, the place of debt, the place of distress, the place of potential DEFEAT! The God that you and I serve is the God that brings VICTORY in every situation!
1 Kings 20 King Ben Hadad – A vicious tyrant king who gave an ultimatum to King of Israel. I’m going to take your wives, your children and your money. A picture of the devil, comes to steal, destroy. Devil wants to come to you only to take from you! Your wives,children, money.
Let me tell you today that the devil wants your money. HE doesn’t want the church to be resourced and blessed. He wants to devastate your homes, wives, children and then second demand - he wanted to take anything that brought pleasure to the Israelites.
v. 6b And it shall be, that whatever is pleasant in your eyes, they will put it in their hands and take it.’ ”
This is what the devil wants to do to the church – take pleasure out of your life. Rob you of the joy of family life, marriage, work – make a misery.
God says Psalms 16:11 (NKJV) You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
The king says we are not going to let you do this. God gives the King a battle plan through the prophet, and then gave the Israelites a great victory the next day.
The next year King Ben Hadad renews his battle against the Israelites because he has been advised the God of Israelites is only the God of the hills and can be defeated on the plains.
The Lord is incensed by this and “I’m not just king of the hills but I’m Lord of the valleys – I’m still God when my people are in the valley, in the plains, in the low places. The place of discouragement, the place of debt, the place of difficultly. I don’t abandon my people when they are going through the valley. But I give them a plan for victory as they walk through their valleys!”
God wants to say to us that the greatest victories of our lives will come from the low places!
Illustrate: 1993 Eco-scientists in Arizona re-created a BUBBLE environment of perfection for 3 years. Desert, ocean, rain forest – no one came in, no one came out – a perfect bubble world. But then the trees began to break at the top branches because there was no wind and the trees lacked strength in the upper branches and became brittle and broke off.
Because there were no storms and no wind or rugged weather they broke up and broke down.
Could it be that we need our enemies, could it be that before God can do anything great in our lives He has to take us to a low place before we He can take us to the high place.
Your friends will be used to comfort you but your enemies will be used to bless you.
Ps 23:5 God says “I will prepare a table before you in the presence of your enemies”
I want to say to you today that you need your enemies! Opposition is what makes us strong.
Losers focus on what they are going through!
Winners focus on what they are going to!
Don’t focus your eyes on what you are going through – Jesus Christ focused on what he was going to –
Hebrews 12:2 (NKJV) looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
When we get into that valley we need to discover he is the Lord of the valley. Take you to three valleys in Scripture when you can find the victory over your enemies.
1. Valley of Rephaim – 2 Samuel 5
A valley of not just one giant but a valley of giants
Have you been in that place when you are not just facing one giant but an army of giants all at once? Problems that seemed so big and you seem so small.
We see here that the reason why the philistines attacked David was because of the ANOINTING of God on his life.
2 Samuel 5:17 (NKJV) Now when the Philistines heard that they had anointed David king over Israel, all the Philistines went up to search for David. And David heard of it and went down to the stronghold.
Did you know that the enemy will not fight you or come against you on the basis of what you are now, your present condition, but he fights you on the basis of the prophecy and the destiny that God has mapped out for the future of your life!
When God gives you a vision it is a powerful thing. It shows you a picture of what you are to become.
There will be three obstacles for the vision to become a reality.
- Present conditions – when God shows you a victory in the future it will always be contended for by your current condition. REALITY. The vision is greater than your present condition.
- Present resources – they will never seem to match the vision that God has given to you. “You’ve got to be kidding God! How on earth am I going to do what you’ve shown me when I look at the little I may have now!”
Friends let me tell you about the word PRO-VISION. Never will you have the resources before the vision. That’s why it is called PRO-VISION – meaning BEFORE the vision. God will always give you the vision before the PROVISION. HE gives us the vision so we can begin to GO AFTER it and chase it down by FAITH.
So don’t be defeated by present resources – you have to walk by faith in order to walk into the destiny of God.
- Present Self – as opposed to the future self. God shows you a better you down the track – the FUTURE YOU. When God gives you a vision it is to help us get a picture of what we can become. The reason why we need the vision is to battle the present self – the present reality of who we are in order to get to the person that God shows you that you can become in that vision! AMEN.
When he gave the vision he gave it to a man called Abram (exalted one) – but by the time the vision came to pass he was no longer Abram he was Abraham(father of a multitude)! The future man had become the PRESENT MAN!
He gave the vision to a man named JACOB which means WORM or DECEIVER, but when he came into fulfillment God said I am no longer going to call you JACOB but you shall be called ISRAEL – one who has struggled with God!
2. Valley of Dry Bones – Ezk 37
Ezekiel 37:1-4 (NKJV) Eze 37:1 (NKJV) The hand of the Lord came upon me and brought me out in the Spirit of the Lord, and set me down in the midst of the valley; and it was full of bones. 2 Then He caused me to pass by them all around, and behold, there were very many in the open valley; and indeed they were very dry.
This is the place of dead dreams and visions. The place of failure. Barren valley, death and discouragement, bleached bones, ruined dreams and total discouragement.
But then God told the prophet to open his mouth and prophesy over those dead dry bones.
3 And He said to me, "Son of man, can these bones live?" So I answered, "O Lord God, You know." 4 Again He said to me, "Prophesy to these bones, and say to them, 'O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord!
Prophecy is not for super spiritual people only! What is prophecy? Simply speaking over situations what God has said about that situation to that situation.
The difference between believers and un-believers is that believers have learnt to SPEAK to DEAD THINGS. If something is drying up or dying – you need to learn to open your mouth and speak to that dead dream and situation and prophesy to that thing.
No MARRIAGE – you will not die – you will live and declare the works of the LORD!
No Business – you will not go bankrupt!
3. Valley of Baca – Ps 84
Psalms 84:5-7 (NKJV) Ps 84:5 (NKJV) Blessed is the man whose strength is in You, Whose heart is set on pilgrimage. 6 As they pass through the Valley of Baca, They make it a spring; The rain also covers it with pools. 7 They go from strength to strength; Each one appears before God in Zion.
Baca – weeping.
God has got you on a journey but along this pilgrimage you will pass through the valley of Baca, times of tears.
Jesus – John 11 – Jesus wept
Paul – served God with many tears.
Key is not going through it and staying there – but going through it and getting out of the valley up on the other side.
You may be in there because of a loss of a loved one, broken dreams, failed business, child gone off the rails. Listen to what Jesus has to say about this valley of Tears:
Luke 17:6 (NKJV) So the Lord said, "If you have faith as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, 'Be pulled up by the roots and be planted in the sea,' and it would obey you. – faith as a grain of a mustard seed if you will say to the mulberry tree – the weeping tree – known in Jewish culture.
In other words, your faith can pluck up that weeping tree and turn your mourning into dancing, your sorrow into joy.
= Remember when we first met the Lord? – the joy and the laughter and the good times. Then we started to find a few valleys and we also found some tears along the way.
Listen friends, don’t allow the devil to bury you in the valley of Baca – in your tears and sorrow – but allow the spirit of faith – the size of the mustard seed - to speak to that valley of weeping and pluck the weeping tree up BECAUSE your God is the God of the low places, every valley, every tear that has been shed!
- time to speak what God says over your valley
- time to prophesy over those dry bones
- time to pluck up that mulberry tree (weeping tree)
- Time to see your PRESENT SELF become the FUTURE SELF that God has shown you can become in Christ.
- TIME TO GET SAVED TODAY!