Sunday, February 24, 2008

The Iron Gate

By Scott Presson

Message preached by Pastor David Minor to the Rock Ministerial Family Conference, January 21, 2008.


Look at this passage from the Word:

“ about that time King Herod Agrippa began to persecute some believers in the church. He had the apostle James (John's brother) killed with a sword. When Herod saw how much this pleased the Jewish leaders, he arrested Peter during the Passover celebration and imprisoned him, placing him under the guard of four squads of four soldiers each. Herod's intention was to bring Peter out for public trial after the Passover. But while Peter was in prison, the church prayed very earnestly for him. The night before Peter was to be placed on trial, he was asleep, chained between two soldiers, with others standing guard at the prison gate. Suddenly, there was a bright light in the cell, and an angel of the Lord stood before Peter. The angel tapped him on the side to awaken him and said, "Quick! Get up!" And the chains fell off his wrists. Then the angel told him, "Get dressed and put on your sandals." And he did. "Now put on your coat and follow me," the angel ordered. So Peter left the cell, following the angel. But all the time he thought it was a vision. He didn't realize it was really happening. They passed the first and second guard posts and came to the Iron Gate to the street, and this opened to them all by itself. So they passed through and started walking down the street, and then the angel suddenly left him. Peter finally realized what had happened. "It's really true!" he said to himself. "The Lord has sent his angel and saved me from Herod and from what the Jews were hoping to do to me!" After a little thought, he went to the home of Mary, the mother of John Mark, where many were gathered for prayer.” (Acts 12:1- 12)

Peter had every expectation that he was getting ready to die. He was sitting in the same jail where James had been put to death and he was no doubt thinking he was next. But God had a plan.

The Bible says “the Church was praying”. It seems that so many Christians nowadays are suffering with issues. We’re the Overcomers and yet we are struggling with the same issues that people in the world are dealing with. We pray and pray and yet the answer we need appears to be farther away than ever.

How do we pray with knowledge and understanding? How do we pray knowing that what we are asking for is God’s will and that He will answer our prayers? To some extent we’ve been praying in ignorance. We’ve been praying not for His will to be done on earth as it is in Heaven but for our will to be done on earth. There is only one way that we can pray with an absolute certainty that what we are praying is God’s will. That is by praying in the Spirit! When we pray in our heavenly prayer language, then we are praying what God wants to do on earth. Did you ever think that the devil knows every language on earth but one? The devil doesn’t speak the language of Heaven!

How did the Church know that it wasn’t God’s will that Peter be put to death? Remember Jesus had told him, "Thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church.” The word of God had not yet come to pass. This event with Peter happened after the Day of Pentecost so the Church was praying in the Spirit in their heavenly prayer language and by doing that they were praying for God’s will to come to pass.

Suddenly, a ministering angel came and awakened Peter and released him. It’s interesting to note that Peter didn’t seem to be worried. He was asleep. The angel awakened Peter and said, “get dressed, put on your coat. They passed a couple of guard posts and they came to the Iron Gate and it opened all by itself.

God has been speaking to me a word for this hour. God showed me this scripture and as I began to study it, God began to give me a revelation about it.

In the Bible, iron speaks of unbending authority, hardship, oppression, fear and pain. God told He is supernaturally opening the Iron Gates in our lives! That gate led into the city of Jerusalem. Jerusalem literally means, "Teaching of peace". God is leading us through a gate and into the place where He is teaching us how to walk in peace!! This passage says, “…this opened to them all by itself”. “Them” is the angel and Peter. If the angel didn’t open the gate then who did? God! He is opening a gate that only He can open and it is to us a gate to Peace. The Church was praying for God’s will and it came to pass. We have all certainly been praying and we need to remember that we what we have sown in tears, we will reap in joy. Our prayers according to His will have been answered!

In Isaiah 62:10 the Bible say, “Pass through, pass through the gates! Prepare the way for the people. Build up, build up the highway! Remove the stones. Raise a banner for the nations.”

“Remove the stones…” we are to remove the stones for ourselves and others. The obstacles are to be moved so we can walk through freely.

The hour of release is here. Ecc.2:26 says “…the unrighteous are storing up for the hand it over to the one that pleases God.”

If there’s a “storing up”, then there’s a day of release and its here. But it’s not just wealth that’s being released, it’s also us releasing. If offended, you must release it. If hurt, you must release it. If angry, you must release it. If you’re worried, release it. You have to walk in the promises of God because they are yes and amen. They are done. Finished. The devil loves to make us think there’s unfinished work that God has somehow overlooked. He hasn’t and he didn’t. God’s doing an on-going good work in us. Pray in the Spirit every day so you will be praying God’s will for your life and others. Walk by faith, not by sight…, God is opening the iron gates in your life! Take Him at His word and believe it. Remove any obstacles of doubt and unbelief. Remove the hindrances that have come in and stolen your joy and diverted your attention from the Lord. Walk in “Release” into the place of Peace that God has ordained for you!

No comments:

James Jones--Publisher
This blog is provided as a public service to the Coudersport Gospel Tabernacle Church and it's worshipers. The material published here is selected by the publisher and does not necessarily reflect the opinions or policies of the church.