I appreciate Ben Peters writing about this and much more, as he reveals in this word:
Now read on to receive a powerful revelation from Ben Peters, including the important 5 Spiritual 'Nutrients' for Your Digestion. (To Subscribe to the Elijah List subscribe here.)
God has been speaking to me about His plans to prepare His Church for the spiritual battles and victories that they have only begun to experience. While Christians in the Middle East, Asia and many countries in Africa have experienced very intense warfare and opposition from hostile religions and governments, the Western Church has had a relatively soft existence and has not been seriously training for war until more recently.
God is saying that He is going to be taking us to a much deeper understanding of the military power in both the fruit of the Spirit and the gifts of the Spirit. He also wants us to understand the secret authority He gives us in the sacraments of baptism and communion.
Both power and authority at a whole new level are already available, but our enemy has distracted us to keep us from discovering and experiencing the superior power that we have over him. He has, as it were, clogged the arteries of the flow of God's power, so whatever spiritual nutrition comes to us comes in depleted amounts because of blockages and hindrances. We then, in turn, have little to pass on to others since we didn't seem to get enough for our own needs.
Unclogging the "Arteries"
Just as the arteries of your body can be clogged from an unhealthy diet, so the arteries of the Body of Jesus Christ can be clogged by spiritual health issues. The good news from Heaven is that the Great Physician has diagnosed the problem and is unclogging the spiritual arteries of His own Body. They said, "Physician, heal Yourself..." (Luke 4:23), and that is exactly what He is doing. He is healing His own Body on Earth.
We, as His Body, must agree and submit to any operation that He feels is necessary for us to properly function as healthy members of His Body. Everything He is doing is for our good, even if it doesn't feel so great, and it will enable us to fight effectively and secure glorious victories against the enemy. In the process, we will discover how awesome and amazing He is. We will draw so much nearer to Him in intimate fellowship and experience glimpses of the glory of Heaven.
Our bodies are totally dependent on a continuous flow of oxygen and other nutrients to every cell, supplied by the blood stream, flowing from cell to cell and organ to organ. If this blood flow is restricted by blockages, our cells will suffer malnutrition and they will not function well. If blockages get severe, life-threatening heart attacks or strokes may occur.
The Body of Christ is also dependent on the flow of the Holy Spirit, who supplies us with all the spiritual nutrition the Body of Christ could ever need to keep it strong and healthy. But if we grieve or quench the work of the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 4:30, 1 Thessalonians 5:19), He cannot freely flow from member to member or church to church. Sadly, we've seen a lot of grieving and quenching in our lifetime. This has created serious blockages in the flow of the Holy Spirit through the arteries of the Body of Jesus Christ.
What the arteries need to keep them clean is a healthy supply of fiber. While we tend to prefer sweet and starchy pastries, our arteries are crying out for fiber to keep them cleaned out and free flowing. Fiber is abundant in the food that God created for us to eat. However, we have often preferred processed and refined foods. The result is heart disease, the number one killer in western nations.
5 Spiritual "Nutrients" for Your Digestion
I believe spiritual fiber and other important spiritual nutrients are digested when we read and reread the whole Bible and follow God's principles and priorities for the Christian life. Let me identify a few of these:
1. God created us and not visa versa. He has the master plan. He doesn't exist to meet our needs, although He does that. We exist to meet His desires for intimacy and fellowship.
2. We are at war! His Kingdom of light is at war with the kingdom of darkness. We must be sober and vigilant and never let down our guard. Our desires should not be just to have a nice, comfortable existence and then go to Heaven. Our desires should be to seek first the expansion of His Kingdom, which if we do, He promises to provide our every need (Matthew 6:33).
3. The Body of Christ is one Body, not many little bodies (1 Corinthians 12:12, Ephesians 4:4). We must pray earnestly for unity so that the world will believe that Jesus was sent by the Father in Heaven (John 17:21-23).
4. Baptism represents a promise and a willingness to live and to die for the Master we have chosen to follow, serve and be taught by. "And they overcame him by the Blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death" (Revelation 12:11). This is how we overcome. As His disciples, we commit ourselves to our Master out of deep appreciation for His work, and for the benefit of being known as one of His disciples.
5. Communion is the sharing of the Body and Blood of Christ. "For we, though many, are one bread and one Body, for we all partake of that one bread" (1 Corinthians 10:17). We need to more fully understand the power available to us through communion. Many have taught on communion, but most have missed a most significant aspect. I believe God spoke to me that HE is going to open the eyes of His Church to this incredible blessing in order to empower His Body to experience great spiritual victories in these turbulent times.
What Is the Important Truth Regarding Communion?
What is this important truth regarding communion? I have expanded on this teaching in two of my books, "Holy How?" and "God's Favorite Number." The nutshell version is as follows:
Jesus meant it when He said, "This is My Body, which is broken (divided up) for you." He was talking about His work which He accomplished in His earthly body through His dependence on the gifts and fruit of the Holy Spirit.
I once asked a group, "Why did Jesus need a body, and why do we need bodies?" A long-haired worship leader answered, "So we can do stuff." Jesus had a body so He could do stuff. He still has a Body on this earth – His Church – and He still wants to do stuff through His Body.
Paul continued his communion teaching in 1 Corinthians (chapters 10, 11 and 12) where he taught on the gifts of the Spirit and the Body of Christ. When Jesus said, "This is My Body," and shared the loaf with them, He was giving them His ministry divided up among them, as described in chapter 12. The gifts empower each member of the Body to function in support of the rest of the Body.
Jesus divided up His spiritual authority and gifts among His disciples and was telling them that they could do what He did (John 14:12), because they were to become His Body. The devil would kill His physical body, but He preempted and outfoxed the evil one by giving His body away before He died. His gifts were transferred to his disciples by the same Holy Spirit who had empowered Him at His own baptism.
He prophetically declared by His actions that, as the Son of Man, He was committed to being a disciple of His Father in Heaven. He would do and say what He would see and hear from His Father. He would go wherever He was sent and be willing to die for His Father.
I believe the cup, the New Covenant through His Blood, represents the Holy Spirit, who flows through the Body of Christ and empowers each member with these gifts, just as the blood empowers the cells and organs of our bodies. Confirming Scriptures can be found in Jeremiah 31:31-33 and Ezekiel 36:26-27. The New Covenant is God's Holy Spirit living in our spirits. Jesus said the New Covenant was in His Blood. Thus, the cup represents the Holy Spirit and the bread represents the gifts that He empowers.
God reminded me of one more thing regarding communion. Paul recorded the words of Jesus in 1 Corinthians 11:24, "...Do this in remembrance of Me." When we remember someone who has passed away, we don't focus totally on the way they died. Rather, we focus on the way they lived and what they accomplished with their lives. I believe Jesus wanted his disciples to remember what He had done with His life as well as His death. He had loved the children, taught the humble, healed the sick, cast out demons, cleansed the lepers and raised the dead before He finally laid down His life for our salvation. Then He gave them the authority and power to do the same.
A Word from the Lord
This is what I believe God spoke to my spirit:
"I am going to visit My people and empower them to win many battles in the days ahead. I am going to help them understand and appropriate what I gave them when I gave them communion. They will not just remember My pain and suffering, but they will remember the fact that I have empowered them to defeat their enemy and to do what I had done on the earth in My season of ministry.
"I am blessing My Church, those who truly love Me, with a much greater level of power and authority on their spiritual gifts, as well as the fruit of the Holy Spirit. This will give them a great advantage over their earthly foes, who are empowered by My enemy.
"I will show them that there is nothing to fear when they appropriate what I give them, when they celebrate communion together. The level of disunity and dysfunction that exists in My Body today cannot be overcome outside of a supernatural visitation. Therefore, I am preparing to shake Heaven and Earth to enlighten and empower My people.
"Do not be dismayed by the attacks of the enemy. Receive My empowerment and go forth with a new awareness of what I did for you on the Cross. Remember Psalm 103:1-6 ('Forget not all His benefits') and Isaiah 53. My death was not just for your salvation, but for everything you need on the earth. Take courage, receive strength and don't forget your benefits as My disciples."
Let's allow God to remove any blockages caused by fear, anxiety, pride, selfish ambition, addictions, etc., and receive the blessings provided for us in the communion ceremony. Let's consume a balanced spiritual diet with lots of healthy nutritional fiber. Let's pursue unity and love for the whole Body of Christ. If we do what we can do, God will surely do what He can do and fulfill His promises to His Body, His Bride, His Holy Temple.
Blessings and love to all!
Ben R. Peters
Kingdom Sending Center
Ben and Brenda PetersÂ have said "YES" to the call of God to challenge, equip, and send dedicated lovers of Jesus into the harvest fields of the earth, including the seven mountains of society. Together they have ministered to tens of thousands of individuals in several countries of the world. After establishing and serving churches and Christian schools for almost thirty years, they began a traveling ministry under the name Open Heart Ministries.Â More recently, they also founded an Illinois-based ministry called Kingdom Sending Center. Ben has published over 23 books. Ben and Brenda now live near Sacramento, California, close to most of their children and grandchildren.
To receive more words like this in YOUR inbox, subscribe FREE to the Elijah List at this link elijahlist.com/subscribe.