Listen to the Interview with Rev. James Henry Harris, PhD.

Chutzpah

Chutzpah is a Yiddish term meaning, “gall, brazen nerve, effrontery, sheer guts plus arrogance. English words cannot do real justice to this word. Instead, here’s a story that allows us to understand this word to use its message in our giving.

 

A little old lady sold pretzels on a street corner for 25 cents each. Every day a young man would leave his office building at lunch time and as he passed the pretzel stand, he would leave her a quarter, but never take a pretzel.

 

This went on for more than three years. The two of them never spoke. One day as the young man passed the old lady’s stand and left his quarter as usual, the pretzel lady spoke to him. Without blinking an eye, she said: “They’re 35 cents now.”

 

This story captures one definition of chutzpah, but it also shows how generosity and duty are so intertwined with each other and deeply ingrained in the Jewish culture. With present-day Christians who are supposed to have an encounter with Jesus Christ, generosity is such a struggle.

 

 

Your weekly dose of prophetic wisdom and anointing awaits you. Join our LIVE Conference Call!

1) Call 515-604-9266

2) Go to startmeeting.com, and use the login: BishopJordan

How does generosity and duty intertwine for you?

Listen to the Interview with Rev. James Henry Harris, PhD.

A Divine Attribute

Having the tzedakah spirit, or a philanthropic spirit is a divine attribute, since God upholds the cause of the fatherless and the widows (Deut. 10:18). If God does so, then the one who gives to those who need it, partners with the Lord. Giving to the poor is regarded as an essential element of the righteous life. It is not enough to simply fast and do your devotions. What good is that if there is no fruit?

 

The Prophet Isaiah castigated those who fast and do nothing afterwards. He is telling the believers to fast and share their bread with the hungry or take the poor into your home. Action must back up your faith. Action reveals the faith of the person.

The Prophet Ezekiel (16:49) prophesied about the destruction of Sodom because of its lack of charity: they “had pride, excess of food, and prosperous ease, but did not aid the poor and needy.” King Solomon talked about the noble wife to give generously to the poor, her hands being stretched out to help the needy (Prov. 31:20). Here’s another passage that is interesting, “Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the Lord, and will be repaid in full” (Prov. 19:17). How amazing is this word? When you are generous, it is the Lord whom you are lending to, and it is also the Lord who would pay you back in full. King Solomon also wrote to do what is right (tzedakah) is more desired by the Lord than sacrifice (Prov. 21;3). The Lord values the one who goes beyond what the Law says.

 

 

Experience the Power of Prophecy as a gift to open your mind to receive the Mind of Christ.

Is generosity the same as obedience when it comes to giving?

 

Listen to the Interview with Rev. James Henry Harris, PhD.

Social Justice

The Bible has repeatedly stressed the obligation of the believer to aid those who are in need. The reason the Lord provides for us is for personal sustenance and to help others who need it. When we only use our income for personal gain, then we are moving in social injustice. We are not doing our part to contribute to society. Even when the Bible stressed this obligation to help the less fortunate, there is no specific term for it.

Tzedakah is something the Rabbis adopted to apply to charity in the context of social justice. Tzedakah’s literal meaning is “righteousness” or “justice,” as in the famous biblical phrase, “tzedek, tzedek, tirdof” (“Justice, justice, shall you pursue”; Deut. 16:20). Charity is not merely a generous or magnanimous act.

In the church service, the appropriate way is to submit to the person in-charge. Even if you feel you can still prophesy more, but the lead pastor said it was time for prayer already, then you submit to his authority. Always be humble. Moreover, be teachable. If the lead prophet pulls you aside to tell you that you can do better, listen to Godly counsel.

 

When we prophesy, we say, “thus saith the Lord.” There is no part in this statement that says we are to judge. Even if we see a prophetic picture of the sins of a person, we must not judge them, because we are well-aware that no one is righteous, and no one can save himself. We are all dependent on the glory of Jesus. The prophetic word we are giving is to help this person live in the freedom that Jesus won for them. We are just the messenger.

 

For the Israelites, giving is the performance of a religiously mandated duty to provide something to which the needy have a right. By providing the chance to carry out an important mitzvah, the poor man gives the giver more in accepting the alms than the giver does for the poor man in giving him charity. How come? The poor man allows the giver to be blessed a hundredfold.

 

Your weekly dose of prophetic wisdom and anointing awaits you. Join our LIVE Conference Call!

 

1) Call 515-604-9266

2) Go to startmeeting.com, and use the login: BishopJordan

 

Have you ever allowed someone to bless you so that they can prosper?

Listen to the Interview with Rev. James Henry Harris, PhD.

Tzedakah

According to Moses Maimonides, a great medieval philosopher, there are eight degrees of tzedakah (with number 1 being the ultimate and number 8 being the most basic) still followed today:

  1. Seeing to a person’s independence by providing a person with a job, entering into a partnership that allows the person to establish a business, giving an interest-free loan, giving a grant.
  2. Giving tzedakah anonymously through a reputable third party and without knowing who will receive the aid.
  3. Giving anonymously to a known recipient.
  4. Giving publicly to an unknown recipient.
  5. Giving without being asked.
  6. Giving generously after being asked.
  7. Giving gladly but not generously.
  8. Giving grudgingly.

The highest form of charity is when you prevent others from ever becoming poor, such as by offering a loan or employment or investing in someone’s business. It is much harder for people to emerge from bankruptcy than for them to be helped before their business fails. When a donkey’s load begins to slip from its back, a single man is capable of adjusting it and keeping the donkey from falling. Once the animal has fallen, however, even five people cannot get it back on its feet. The second highest level of giving is found in the rabbinic ideal of giving to the poor, where neither the donor nor the recipient knows the identity of the other. In descending order, the next levels of charity are the donor knows the recipient, but the recipient does not know the donor; the recipient knows the donor, but the donor does not know the recipient; giving directly to a poor person without being asked; giving only after being asked; giving cheerfully but less than one should; and giving grudgingly.

 

 

Experience the Power of Prophecy as a gift to open your mind to receive the Mind of Christ.

What form of tzedakah do you find yourself doing more often?

 

Listen to the Interview with Rev. James Henry Harris, PhD.

Power and Protection in Numbers

There is safety in numbers. When authentically focused on Jesus, there is so much love in a prophetic group. There should not be a misconception that a prophetic group—similar to that of the School of Prophets—will create a verbal beating from a prophetic people. This group is intended to be a blessing to people.

God wanted prophets in the ancient times and today to belong to prophetic communities so that within this group, they can experience protection, encouragement, impartation, and growth. Together, a prophetic people can empower believers to fulfill God’s purposes for their individual lives, and as one Body of Christ.

 

In theory, people are relational beings. Another theory is that prophets are the least relational in the church. There is a stigma that prophets can offend them, and people don’t want their “dirty laundry” out for all to see. They tend to distance themselves from prophets. However, being a prophetic people as a church changes the perspective for the prophetic gift.

 

In a group, the prophets can weigh their words, as well as the words of others. They can help each other and safeguard each other. There is safety in numbers in the prophetic ministry, because prophets can come together to weigh one another’s word. Paul suggested for two to three prophets to speak, and for the others [other prophets] to evaluate what is said (1 Cor. 14:32). This practice is not to prove that one prophet is better than another or to be contradictory. The practice is intended to make sure the prophetic word is pure. Of course, this goal can only be done out of love.

 

When false words are given, they can do no further harm, because others can test and discern them, and they can be thrown out. The use of the gift of discernment encourages the prophetic ministry to take more risks as a group. We know that if we do miss a word, then the word is unlikely to do any damage as they can deal with it immediately in a loving and constructive manner.

 

Character building is a significant area that is developed within a prophetic community. When the group gathers, there is sharpening of iron (Prov. 27:17). If a person in a group is undergoing some challenges in his personal or ministry life and someone else in the group has already been there, then counseling and mentoring comes in. The wisdom that comes through others really helps us recognize what the Lord is looking for in our lives and what He is doing in the seasons we are in. It’s a blessing to walk with more mature prophets who have experienced what younger prophets are experiencing in their current season. Being in a prophetic group can allow prophets to keep each other sharp. You can read about prophecy and understand your gift. However, you receive the gift of prophecy in a group. It’s about receiving impartation. You need the anointing of the Holy Spirit. Being around prophetic people simply positions you to receive prophetic anointing, in the way being around the school of prophets enabled Saul and his men to prophesy in 1 Samuel.

 

 

 

Your weekly dose of prophetic wisdom and anointing awaits you. Join our LIVE Conference Call!

 

1) Call 515-604-9266

2) Go to startmeeting.com, and use the login: BishopJordan

 

 

How has your character been developed in the local church community? Or, if you are already part of a prophetic community, how has this community developed your character?

Listen to the Interview with Rev. James Henry Harris, PhD.

The Old Testament Prophetic Team

The old TesTaMenT ProPheTic TeaM

The prophetic is a team ministry. Most people think prophets are a strange breed. When you look at Old Testament prophets, you might think that a prophet is a loner, a man called by God to speak His words and to display His heart to the people. Just look at how Jeremiah was called:

Today I have made you like a city that has a high wall around it. I have made you like an iron pillar and a bronze wall. Now you can stand up against the whole land. You can stand against the kings and officials of Judah. You can stand against its priests and its people. They will fight against you. But they will not win the battle over you. I am with you. I will save you,” announces the Lord. (Jeremiah 1:18-19)

 

In this account, it’s easy to think a prophet is the one man against all odds. However, this “one man” is a false impression of the prophetic ministry. Even in the Old Testament, the prophetic is often a team ministry, as evidenced by the school of prophets.

 

Even in the Old Testament, there were already prophetic teams. There were schools of prophets in Jericho, Gilgal, Ramah, Bethel, and Gibeah. I give a more in-depth history and exegetical analysis for this in a different book. Nevertheless, we often saw groups of prophets ministering the word of the Lord. It is quite clear from the Bible itself that the prophetic ministry is a team effort.

 

Nevertheless, we often see groups of prophets ministering the word of the Lord. It is quite clear from the Bible itself that the prophetic ministry is a team effort. Elijah, in the earlier parts of his ministry, was a loner. He got depressed and believed the lie of the enemy that he was alone.

 

Elijah fled in fear to a cave in Horeb. He had a spiritual meltdown. Twice in 1 Kings 19, he was saying he was the only one left, but the truth was God preserved 7000 other faithful men (1 Kgs. 19:18). Alone, the prophet feels distressed. A prophet, like any other person, needs the support of other people. As a human being, a prophet is still a social being.

 

Our template, the model of a prophetic person, is in the New Testament. We see it in the person of Jesus. Jesus had a team. Yes, he withdrew to spend personal time with the Father, as we all should. However, Jesus did everything with a team of people around him. As a prophetic people, we must value the community of believers we surround ourselves with. It’s dangerous to be alone as a believer.

 

Let’s face it, you cannot spend quiet time with God 365 days a year, 24/7. If this was God’s plan for you, He should have taken your life the moment you got saved. No, you are called to go and to make disciples. An essential key in fulfilling this mission is to be with other believers. Without other people, we can easily fall into the trap of the enemy, as Elijah did. Without faithful friends in the Lord speaking life into our spirits and sharing their wisdom with us, it’s easy to believe the lie of the enemy and to be self-centered. Elijah is a wonderful and powerful prophet, but he is not Jesus. Jesus is still the highest standard of what a prophetic person should be.

 

 

 

Your weekly dose of prophetic wisdom and anointing awaits you. Join our LIVE Conference Call!

1) Call 515-604-9266

2) Go to startmeeting.com, and use the login: BishopJordan

Who are three prophets you consider friends? Name them and define how this person is important in your spiritual walk and your prophetic ministry.

Listen to the Interview with Rev. James Henry Harris, PhD.

Ministry with Wisdom

Have you ever received a prophecy that made you feel uncomfortable? However, it was given in a “thus saith the Lord” manner, and so you feel that if you reject the prophecy it was disobedience towards the Lord. As a recipient of the prophecy, you may have ended up feeling confused and distressed instead of receiving clarity or confirmation, encouragement, and peace. This dilemma can cause great pain to new believers.

 

If you are this believer who received a negative or “off” prophecy, I pray that you will experience freedom from this negativity. Moreover, I pray that the power of this word spoken over your life will be broken, so that you can experience confidence to receive a new word from the Lord.

 

 

Do you know that prophecy can be a form of abuse when it does not give room for the recipient to weigh it up whether the word is from the Lord or not? Even if the word is encouraging, the believer must have the freedom to inquire of the Holy Spirit. If the word is mistaken, it has the potential to bear a negative fruit in the recipient’s life, until it’s broken in Jesus’ name.

 

When you share a prophetic word, it is beneficial that you give the person or group you are prophesying over freedom to weigh up the prophecy and receive it or set it aside. You can accomplish this by using “releasing” language, such as “I believe the Lord is saying…” or “Does this mean anything to you?” or “I sense…” This communicates to them that you see yourself as a human vessel, and even with a prophetic gift, you can still miss the mark. Thus, you are submitting the prophetic message to them for their personal assessment, according to their faith in the Lord.

 

This tip is not to say that prophesying as though God was speaking in the first person through you is always inappropriate. In fact, this approach can be incredibly powerful, especially when the prophecy is being accompanied by the impartation of an anointing or spiritual gift. However, it takes a certain level of experience and maturity in the prophetic maturity for the confidence to come through in this linguistic approach.

 

Experience the Power of Prophecy as a gift to open your mind to receive the Mind of Christ.

Give three (3) examples of prophetic words with releasing language.

Listen to the Interview with Rev. James Henry Harris, PhD.

Practical Matters for Giving a Prophecy

In giving a prophetic word, it is most important for the receiver to understand the prophecy. There is no need to use Old English, as it was used in the King James Bible. You can speak in plain and simple English. As in any communication process, getting the message across is the priority—not simply appearing spiritual or eloquent.

 

The demeanor of the one speaking the prophetic word must match that of the Holy Spirit. In other words, the prophet must be humble, compassionate, and must move with wisdom. Also related to this point, the prophet must be sensitive to the movement of the Holy Spirit. If the Holy Spirit is causing the prophet to flow or to stop, then the prophet must submit to the guidance of God.

 

Like what Paul said in 1 Corinthians 13, if you prophesy without love, you are just making senseless noise. Love must be at the center of everything we are doing. Our motive in prophesying must be to bring out the best in people, and to lead them to Jesus. If you are prophesying for any other reason, then you must stop prophesying.

 

In the church service, the appropriate way is to submit to the person in-charge. Even if you feel you can still prophesy more, but the lead pastor said it was time for prayer already, then you submit to his authority. Always be humble. Moreover, be teachable. If the lead prophet pulls you aside to tell you that you can do better, listen to Godly counsel.

 

When we prophesy, we say, “thus saith the Lord.” There is no part in this statement that says we are to judge. Even if we see a prophetic picture of the sins of a person, we must not judge them, because we are well-aware that no one is righteous, and no one can save himself. We are all dependent on the glory of Jesus. The prophetic word we are giving is to help this person live in the freedom that Jesus won for them. We are just the messenger.

 

In giving a prophetic word, it is most important for the receiver to understand the prophecy. There is no need to use Old English, as it was used in the King James Bible. You can speak in plain and simple English. As in any communication process, getting the message across is the priority—not simply appearing spiritual or eloquent. The demeanor of the one speaking the prophetic word must match that of the Holy Spirit. In other words, the prophet must be humble, compassionate, and must move with wisdom. Also related to this point, the prophet must be sensitive to the movement of the Holy Spirit. If the Holy Spirit is causing the prophet to flow or to stop, then the prophet must submit to the guidance of God.

 

Like what Paul said in 1 Corinthians 13, if you prophesy without love, you are just making senseless noise. Love must be at the center of everything we are doing. Our motive in prophesying must be to bring out the best in people, and to lead them to Jesus. If you are prophesying for any other reason, then you must stop prophesying.

 

In the church service, the appropriate way is to submit to the person in-charge. Even if you feel you can still prophesy more, but the lead pastor said it was time for prayer already, then you submit to his authority. Always be humble. Moreover, be teachable. If the lead prophet pulls you aside to tell you that you can do better, listen to Godly counsel.

 

When we prophesy, we say, “thus saith the Lord.” There is no part in this statement that says we are to judge. Even if we see a prophetic picture of the sins of a person, we must not judge them, because we are well-aware that no one is righteous, and no one can save himself. We are all dependent on the glory of Jesus. The prophetic word we are giving is to help this person live in the freedom that Jesus won for them. We are just the messenger.

 

Your weekly dose of prophetic wisdom and anointing awaits you. Join our LIVE Conference Call!

 

1) Call 515-604-9266

2) Go to startmeeting.com, and use the login: BishopJordan

 

Give five practical things you have learned about giving prophecy that you consciously apply or consider when giving a prophetic word.

Listen to the Interview with Rev. James Henry Harris, PhD.

Prophetic Etiquette

Words that are spoken in the right circumstances are precious (Prov. 25:11). Believers can earnestly desire to prophesy (1 Cor. 14:39-40) so that they can bless people and shift the situation according to the will of the Lord. Believers must also consider how the spirits of the prophets must be subject to the prophets (1 Cor. 14:32). They are in control of when and how they give a prophetic word. There are instances when prophets must withhold from giving a prophetic word and it’s a part of understanding the etiquette of the prophet. The three significant instances we must remember when we must not give the prophetic word is when we are angry or there are strong negative emotions. When you speak out of anger, whether toward to the person you are prophesying to or because of something that has happened to you, then it is hard to have a clear mind to hear from the Holy Spirit. The enemy can even use this situation for you to offend or hurt the person receiving the prophecy. You are not the right messenger when you are angry or in a negative emotional state. Defer giving the prophetic word until you get to a state of calm and clarity.

 

You must also not prophesy when you are aware you are using prophecy as a platform to achieve something you personally want. For example, maybe you are prophesying to a person that he must move to a different city because you know this person wants to court a girl you like. You are using a so-called prophetic word to serve your personal interests, even if there is some level of authenticity to the prophetic word. Allow another prophet to deliver this message, after he confirms it is from God. Your biases might cloud your mind and you might be unable to deliver the prophetic word according to the Lord’s purpose. Prophecy is not a format for us to give our opinion, nor under any circumstance should it be used as a cover to direct or to counsel a person.

 

The prophet must be accountable for the prophetic word. If the prophet has taken the backseat when it comes to his faith and spiritual journey, and he has become lukewarm with the Lord, he must not give a prophetic word. If he was previously a member of the prophetic ministry, he still must defer giving the word. Instead, he must work on his faith journey first and be on the right track with the Lord. Giving a prophetic word is a privilege and a duty. It is unlike salvation that is freely given to us. It is something you must grow into and protect. If the integrity of your spiritual walk has been compromised, it is best to restore the integrity of your faith first, before you prophesy to other people.

 

 

Experience the Power of Prophecy as a gift to open your mind to receive the Mind of Christ.

Listen to the Interview with Rev. James Henry Harris, PhD.

Connecting with the Voice of God

What is unique about Christianity, among the different religions or faith systems in the world, is the fact that there is a personal relationship with the Creator, beginning here and now, and lasting throughout eternity. In the other religions, there is usually a rewards system in place. People perform and try to live a good life so that they can have rewards. It is only with Christianity wherein people are able to live a good life because of the relationship God initiated with them.

 

Jesus also declared, “And this is eternal life, that they know you, the only true God” (Jn. 17: 3). Many in the church community miss the great blessing of fellowship with our Lord because we have lost the ability to recognize the voice of God. We forget that God did not leave us alone to fend for ourselves, and that God truly desires to have a real relationship with us. In John 10:27, Jesus promised that his sheep will hear his voice, and too many believers are starved for that intimate relationship that alone can satisfy the desires of their hearts.

 

Humans have a God-shape void in their hearts that only God can fill. They try to fill these things with so many other things. They try to fill this void through relationships, by trying to attain fame, by trying to be successful, by trying to accumulate wealth, and through so many things. However, all these things all fall short.

People end up feeling unsatisfied and empty. Most of the time, those sheep are unable to identify the voice of my Shepherd. We also hunger for deeper spiritual intimacy with God. We just need to be aware of how we listen to the Holy Spirit’s voice. Act on holy thoughts and devote some time to focused hearing and learning to hear His voice. It is the Lord who calls you to invest time in Him.

 

Your weekly dose of prophetic wisdom and anointing awaits you. Join our LIVE Conference Call!

 

1) Call 515-604-9266

2) Go to startmeeting.com, and use the login: BishopJordan

 

 

What are you currently doing to connect with the Lord?

Listen to the Interview with Rev. James Henry Harris, PhD.

How Should You Respond?

What can you do during the season of testing? Does it give you the license to sulk, to be depressed, or to curse God? How you respond to this season is important. No matter what you’ve done, what people have done to you, or what the enemy has done against you, God is in control, He is good, and He is able to work all things for the good of His purposes (Rom. 8:28).

 

What must a believer do in the face of disappointment, disaster, and despair? Believe in the power of the cross. The Holy Spirit comes to dwell in your spirit. Do not quench or silence His voice. He confirms your relationship with God. He comforts you, and He leads you into all truth (Rom. 8:16, Jn. 14:16–17 and 16:13).

Dear friends, don’t be surprised by the terrible

things happening to you. The trouble you are

having has come to test you. So don’t feel as

if something strange were happening to you.

Instead, be joyful that you are taking part in

Christ’s sufferings. Then you will have even more

joy when Christ returns in glory. (1 Peter 4:12–13).

 

Experience the Power of Prophecy  as a gift to open your mind to receive the Mind of Christ.

Listen to the Interview with Rev. James Henry Harris, PhD.

What is God Doing? Part 2

 

Calling you to intimacy with Him

 

Sometimes God uses these testing times to remind us of what we are supposed to be doing with our lives. Are we going off track? Are we focusing on something or someone different? Have idols been established in our lives? We may be distracted by ministry that we lose track of our relationship with God. Perhaps, barrenness or dryness can draw us near to Him. It is in God’s heart to reveal His love to us in a fresh way when we find ourselves in a spiritual desert.

 

Awaiting the right timing

 

God can also teach you patience and faith during this time. You might feel like you are barely surviving. However, God is moving to change the landscape of your faith. He is positioning circumstances, people, and emotions for what is to come. God is the Director of our lives, and He will make sure you have a plot that is better than what you can imagine for yourself.

David went on the run from Saul in the wilderness. He was destined to become a king, but it was not an easy transition. He even became an outlaw first. He stayed in the wilderness while God worked things out on his behalf. Saul died and eventually the people called for David to be their new king. If David insisted on his own way, there would have been a war, and it would have been a very different outcome. Yet, he chose to obey God and he chose not to touch God’s anointed one.

 

Strengthening your faith

Abraham is the “Father of Faith.” God promised he would be the Father of All Nations. It was 25 years before Isaac was born to fulfill God’s promise. Most of the time, when God promises something, He doesn’t give a timeline. Interestingly, God waited until it was physically impossible for the couple to have a baby to make the promise, and even waited decades after before fulfilling

  1. He built Abraham’s faith throughout those years.

 

Abraham did not become weak in his faith. He

accepted the fact that he was past the time when

he could have children. At that time Abraham was

about 100 years old. He also realized that Sarah

was too old to have children. But Abraham kept

believing in God’s promise. He became strong in

his faith. He gave glory to God. (Romans 4:19-20)

 

Your weekly dose of prophetic wisdom and anointing awaits you. Join our LIVE Conference Call!

 

1) Call 515-604-9266

2) Go to startmeeting.com, and use the login: BishopJordan

 

What do you think is God’s purpose for your current season of testing?