• ISHMAEL OR ISAAC

    A Prophetic Experience Given to Bob Jones

    Written By Keith Davis

    The Lord recently gave Bob a powerful prophetic experience that helps bring understanding to the difficult wrestling that many Christians are presently experiencing. This was not a vision but a prophetic experience in which the Lord gave Ishmael and Isaac as an instructive analogy to demonstrate the cleansing of our soul from the seeds of the fallen nature in order to present our lives as a living sacrifice before the Lord. There are many teachings that can come from the lives of Ishmael and Isaac... this is strictly a prophetic teaching experience utilizing these biblical characters to present a valuable lesson to assist us in fulfilling our spiritual destiny.

     

    THE ADMONITION
    THE LORD SPEAKING TO US SAYING...

    What will you be? The outcome of that question is determined by your individual decisions... not by others, you see, but by the decisions that are within thee. By birth you are like Ishmael but through sacrifice it is determined what you will be. Ishmael has an independent spirit, he is a wild ass, even mocking things that he does not understand. When you are born again your spirit is cleansed but your soul remains a mixture, like Ishmael, part seed of promise and part worldly. Therefore, in your soul remains the unholiness of the fallen nature... the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the boastful pride of life.

    The development of self-control is essential for bringing your thoughts into captivity to the obedience of Christ and renewing your mind daily. It is the nature of fallen man to have "altars" built to himself in recognition of past victories. The natural man, which is enmity toward God, desires that people acknowledge past anointed ministry appealing to the pride of life.

    Even Ishmael will enjoy the outpouring of the Holy Spirit because he remains the seed of Abraham and heir of divine blessings. A well of flowing water will be provided in the desert for Ishmael because of his heritage-Genesis 21:19. Even so, Ishmael remains a representation of the unsanctified soul demonstrating a mixture of the natural man and spiritual man. The nature of Ishmael, like Esau, is contentious and at strife with the seed of promise. Therefore, you are admonished to wrestle with your own soul bringing it to a point of death according to (Romans 8:13) - for if you are living according to the flesh, you must die; but if by the Spirit you are putting to death the deeds of the body, you will live. (NAS)

    (Jeremiah 12:5) "If you have run with footmen and they have tired you out, then how can you compete with horses? If you fall down in a land of peace, how will you do in the thicket of the Jordan? (NAS) -- If you become weary continually wrestling with your fallen nature within the footman, what will you do when the greater hardships come from without-the horses. When you are taken to new levels in the Spirit you will also encounter new devils. The inner-wrestling must be accomplished before you encounter the greater satanic opposition. You can overcome the Ishmael mixture in your soul by becoming like Isaac and the One he typified... willingly being offered on the altar. Both Ishmael and Isaac are heirs of spiritual blessings yet Isaac received the greater blessings as a living sacrifice

    (Romans 12:1). Isaac yields to the Spirit and seeks to have a broken and contrite heart, dependent totally upon the Lord not controlled by any source other than the Holy Spirit. His desire is to bless people rather than control them, without seeking the praise of man for past victories. His heart's desire is intimacy with the Lord and to do only those things that he is led by the Spirit to do.

    The nature of Isaac would be appalled to receive glory due the Lord; nor would he allow altars built to himself in recognition of past victories. Greatness to him is through servitude and self sacrificial living.

    Many people have been experiencing this wrestling within themselves. For many, this wrestling has been with the fallen nature of your own soul rather than external demonic opposition. By wrestling with your soul and getting the victory you have been putting to death the deeds of the flesh. The apostle Paul acknowledged this battle when he said that he wrestled within. This will bring you to the place of joy as a living sacrifice.

    (Romans 7:23-25) but I see a different law in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind, and making me a prisoner of the law of sin which is in my members. Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of this death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!

    (Romans 12:1) I urge you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, {which is} your spiritual service of worship.

    The highest purposes of the Spirit cannot be realized if you are attempting to serve the desires of the flesh and the desires of the Spirit. The high calling of God is accomplished only when the purging power of the Spirit sanctify’s your soul and you present your body as a living sacrifice, taking up your cross daily.

    (Galatians 4:30-31) But what does the Scripture say? "Cast out the bondwoman and her son, for the son of the bondwoman shall not be an heir with the son of the free woman." So then, brethren, we are not children of a bondwoman, but of the free woman.

    These battles must be won within your own soul before you can wrestle with principalities and powers, rulers of darkness, and spiritual wickedness in high places with the intensity required for end-time ministry. If seeds of the fallen nature remain in you then it would remain an open door for the assault of the enemy. You must become partakers of the divine nature and free from the corruption that is in this world according to its lusts. Hardships and unavoidable problems are imminently facing this world... without the divine nature residing in you, these times will be exceedingly difficult. By putting to death the deeds of the flesh and the desires of the fallen nature, you will then overcome the battle with the “footman” and be prepared for the “horses”- (Jeremiah 12:5)

    (2 Timothy 2:20-22) Now in a large house there are not only gold and silver vessels, but also vessels of wood and of earthenware, and some to honor and some to dishonor. Therefore, if a man cleanses himself from these {things} he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified, useful to the Master, prepared for every good work. Now flee from youthful lusts, and pursue righteousness, faith, love {and} peace, with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart.

    You must be willing to have your life placed on the altar, as did Isaac, in order to present your life as a living sacrifice. All of this is for the purpose of the church becoming the great source of blessing she was intended to be. Holiness is essential for the Abiding Presence. There will be no place for man elevating man, for no man shall receive glory for that which is soon coming to the earth. Seeds of self glorification must be laid upon the altar before qualifying to participate in the fullness of the last day's ministry.

    Make Romans 12:1 a reality in your life during these final days of preparation. Many have spoken of becoming a martyr for the sake of the Gospel... will you become a living martyr and offer your life daily for the sake of the Gospel?   What will you be? Will you be an Ishmael, or through sacrifice, an Isaac and child of promise?

     

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