Teaching

                                   

THE NECKLACE OF PRIDE
BY J.P. TIMMONS
OCTOBER 7, 2018
©2018 CCI PUBLISHING
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
 
 
“For I envied the arrogant; I saw the Prosperity of the wicked. They have an Easy time until they die, and their bodies Are well-fed. They are not in trouble like Others; they are not afflicted like most People. Therefore, pride is their necklace, And violence covers them like a garment.” † Psalm 73:3-6
 
 
 
Have you ever envied the rich? Ever wish that you had a few million dollars so you wouldn’t be concerned with paying your bills, affording a new car or house or putting your kids through college today which costs about $100,000 a year! Many years ago, about 36 to be exact, this month I received a revelation from the Lord about Psalm 73 where through a short dialog I had with Him He taught me that money “is the lowest form of prosperity.”
 
I have shared this testimony in other writings so I won’t go back over it here except to say that when I read this Psalm every month I always think back to that day and how the Lord began to reveal to me what true prosperity really is and it’s not money! The world even knows that! They have a saying, “Money can’t buy happiness.” And that is so true. But when the Lord first revealed this to me from this Psalm I began to think (and wrote), “Yes, nobody on his death bed ever wishes that he had spent more time at the office. Nobody who has a child with terminal cancer ever wishes that they had more money, do they?”
 
I’ve often shared with the lost when the subject of hell comes up— which it will invariably do because one of the devil’s great lies is: “If God is love, why does He send his children to hell?” But of course God doesn’t send anybody to hell. We are free moral beings and one of the perennial themes in the Bible is, “Choose life or death”; it’s your choice. But I often shock the lost when I tell them that going to hell is not the worst thing that can happen to a human being. They always perk up and listen real well because they are never expecting that type of a reply when they bring up hell. So I tell them, “No, going to hell is not the worst thing that can happen to you. Allowing your children to go to hell by not telling them the truth is the worst thing.”
Even the rich man that Jesus discussed in the Gospels was in such torment in hell but he didn’t wish to get out; he was concerned about his relatives going there—he wanted to spare them the agony of eternity in such a place.
 
Two of the most often discussed subjects in the bible are: 1) This one—why do the wicked prosper? And 2) Why do the righteous suffer. But as you mature and know God better you understand quite clearly
the answer to these questions. The wicked don’t prosper in eternity and the righteous don’t suffer in eternity. So it depends on our perspective doesn’t it? But when we look at things through God’s eyes with His thoughts then we see it quite clearly. And the more time that we spend in the Scriptures the more clearly we see the truth and fulfill Jesus’ words from John 8:31-32.
 
Of course the book of Job is one that we glean a better picture of just who it is that causes the righteous to suffer but we also learn that God can and does use suffering as a means to bring those so afflicted into a deeper relationship with Him after which, like Job, He rewards us openly. The name Job means, “Where is the Father?” Have you ever wondered that in your own life? Even the great prophet Elisha, when he began his ministry asked, “Where is the Lord God of Elijah?” Did you ever wonder why he asked that? After all, he had been in training under Elijah for many years and had seen the miracles and the life of Elijah. But because the Lord gave me the title for this teaching article, I want to focus particularly on the sin of pride. Oh what a terrible sin it is in the eyes of the Holy One and it’s much more rampant not just in the world but also in the church today. That is one reason we have so many apostles today—at least those who call themselves an apostle, but they are only apostles of pride. They wear pride as a necklace and that is very dangerous. Remember, it was pride that caused the most beautiful of all the angels, Lucifer, who ushered all praise into the Throneroom of God to fall from Heaven and lose his place of honor.
 
About 10 years ago a ministry couple from a church in Oklahoma came up to Colorado to see their son graduate from a ministry school that Dutch Sheets had at his church in Colorado Springs. They spent the night at our house and we accompanied them to the Sunday service at the church. During the service the Lord spoke to me while the ministry team was reciting 2 Chronicles 7:14 which we all know.
 
The Lord began quoting the Scripture: “If my people who are called by my name will humble themselves; if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves; if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves. Son, my people aren’t missing it on the praying part—there’s been much prayer made for America. They are missing it on the humbling part.”
And we know that this is true. So much pride in ministry. When I first went to Africa I was amazed that in all the churches a minister was always introduced as “the president and founder” of so and so ministry. Even there, so much pride, people trying to exalt and distinguish themselves from “the rest of the chickens.” So it’s very important that you be aware of the first hint of pride and snuff it out so that it doesn’t get control of you because it will lead you deeper into sin and could even cause you to fall from grace like Satan did. Just look at all of the Balaam boys (and girls) today—full of pride, a lying spirit and many other demonic spirits. They have been “charmed” by pride and are as proud as a peacock thinking that they are something but not realizing that sin and death are taking a toll on their bodies.
 
In Africa, witches can and do charm spirits into people and they can charm the spirit of the peacock, which is pride, into a person. So you should check up on yourself at least once a year as I recommend in MSDK and take an inventory of your sins while repenting of them and how you are progressing in the Fruit of the Spirit which determines how close to the Son you have become in appearance.
 
Now in the spirit realm these things can be seen as we all know. But because most churches are still operating in the old, tired and nonscriptural pastor ministry model (though now, there are “world pastors” and other nonsensical and non-biblical titles which demonstrate pride), most Christians have not been properly developed in their gifts and callings so the Church remains weak (1 Cor 12:13-27, 14:12). Remember, we are supposed to minister our spiritual gifts to
one another as well as to the world to win the lost. So if you are not operating in your gifting then the Church is weak and I submit that this is one of the main reasons that most churches are weak today. In addition, if you are not operating or developed in your spiritual gifting then you are weak as well. If your prophetic anointing is not developed, for example, then God may be trying to speak to you through one of the revelation gifts like Discerning of Spirits but if you have not developed your gift then you don’t pick it up when He speaks that way. Remember, ultimately it’s your responsibility to develop your gifts because Jesus will hold you accountable for them—remember the parable of the minas.
 
In 2012 I ministered a message at a church in Pennsylvania from 2 Kings 6 titled, Spiritual Blindness. And it’s a powerful message that you need to hear. You all know the story, Elisha the prophet was reading the king of Syria’s mind and knew his thoughts for battle so Elisha warned the king of Israel. So the Syrian army comes down and surrounds the town of Dothan where Elisha lived. And we learn from this passage of scripture that even though Elisha had a young man— one of the sons of the prophets—in training under him the young man could not see! He suffered greatly from spiritual blindness. If you are called to the office of prophet then you had better be able to see,hear, etc. by the Spirit. Otherwise, if an angel comes to hand you a scroll with instructions on it you won’t see him and thus won’t receive it. And I always encourage people to keep a diary as well as a prayer journal. In the diary you should record your visions, revelations, etc., that the Spirit gives you. Over time as you mature you will begin to understand what certain symbols mean—remember, Paul wrote about the language of the Spirit in 2 Corinthians. He often speaks to us in Dark Speech—symbols that must be interpreted because they mean something spiritually. For example, whenever I see somebody in the spirit who has touched the silver and gold of God I always see that their right hand and about half way up their right arm is always leprous and as white as snow. Now in the physical that arm looks fine—no deformities or anomalies but in the spirit realm it is as leprous as can be. Now this is not only a sign to me that they have touched the silver and gold but that leprosy of the spirit will affect the whole body just like if they had physical leprosy they would die.
 
Now if I see a person by the Spirit who is wearing a gold chain about their neck in the spirit realm it means that they have wisdom—a gold chain symbolizes wisdom (cf. Daniel 5:29). Rubies also symbolize wisdom so make a note of these things when you experience a spiritual vision or dream.
 
But back to pride because pride actually is also seen as a necklace but it is not made of gold, though from a distance it resembles gold. It is actually a necklace made of brass which of course looks like gold but is the symbol for sin in the Scriptures. So whenever I see a prideful person I will see a brass necklace around their neck and the more prideful they are the larger will be the rings on the necklace and the heavier it will be on their neck. For example, if they are extremely arrogant and prideful the necklace will be bending their head down from the sheer weight in the spirit. Perhaps this is why the Scriptures say that pride “goeth before a fall.”
So in closing just let me say to be vigilant concerning the sin of pride— it is right now destroying the USA from its political weight in Washington. As I wrote in MSDK almost 30 years ago, “the dominant spirit over Washington, D.C., is a lying spirit” but today pride is taking over. Yes, children of the devil will always lie and they will be prideful. But we should be vigilant as Christians and keep it out of our churches and not let it have any grounds in us. Remember, it’s “Christ in you, the hope of glory.” It’s only because the Holy Spirit is inside our bodies
that we have any value or worth so we have nothing in our flesh to be proud of. So always be grateful to the Lord for all He gives you each day. Be humble, contrite and quick to repent of sin. Then you will be living the kind of life that is a testimony to the Kingdom of God and the Lord Jesus Christ who bought you with a price.
 
 
Maranatha 
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