by Cody Archer, , Revive Israel
There are many accounts of sexual sin in the Bible, and we can learn much from both the stories of success and those of failure. In my eyes, Joseph's victory over sexual temptation was one of the most inspiring.
By the time seventeen year old Joseph was sold to Potiphar in Genesis 39, he was probably dealing with intense trauma, rejection, anger, bitterness and despair as a result of what his own brothers had done to him. Being a Hebrew slave in a foreign land with no discernable way of returning home must have been incredibly lonely and relationally isolating. When looking at the long list of challenges he was faced with, it would be easy to understand if Joseph had given in to the daily sexual advances of Potiphar's wife.
I know every man is wired differently, but unless Potiphar's wife was the ugliest and most unpleasant woman on earth, this would have been an enormous temptation for any man. So what were the keys that kept Joseph from giving in to sexual temptation?
1. Know God is with you (Genesis 39:2-3)
Joseph was aware that God was with him and was the source of his supernatural success. For us as New Covenant believers in Yeshua, God is not only with us, but He lives in us through the Holy Spirit. Being aware and connected to the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit is crucial for victory. We have access to unlimited power and courage for resisting and overcoming sin when we know God is always with us and for us!
2. Know what has been entrusted to you (Genesis 39:8-9)
"How can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?" (Genesis 39:9)
As citizens in the kingdom of God, we are ambassadors of King Yeshua and are given the massive responsibility to represent Him and His will in the earth. Adultery, pornography and all forms of secret sexual sin will lead to destruction in our lives and the lives of those closest to us, and will impact our ability to steward all that is entrusted to us.
3. Refuse (Genesis 39:8,10)
Joseph simply refused to give in. He would not heed the daily requests of Potiphar's wife or even spend time around her. He determined to take the narrow, difficult path and was unmovable in his decision. What if we were the same? What if from now on we refused to entertain adulterous thoughts, refused to give time to lust filled fantasy, refused urges to look at pornography, and refused to engage in any form of sexual gratification outside of marriage?
4. Flee (Genesis 39:11-12)
At just the right time, when no one was home, Potiphar's wife turned up the heat with physical touch. But again, like every other time, Joseph was ready with his pre-determined response: "No, No and No!"
His Nike running shoes were tied tightly, and he bolted immediately when she reached for him. Too often we wrongly conclude that when no one is around we can fight off sexual temptation on our own.
Fleeing can look like physically leaving a location, turning off your computer, making a phone call to ask for prayer ... I call this pro-active purity. If you don't enjoy confessing your sin to others, train yourself to flee before the sin happens!
God spoke through a prophet years ago saying, "To a people without mixture, I will give My Spirit without measure!" I believe Joseph's pursuit of purity is a prophetic example calling our generation to remove sexual compromise at all cost and become the pure spotless bride for whom Yeshua will come.
This article was previously published on January 12th 2017 here on the Revive Israel website and on January 20th 2017 here on Kehila News Israel
by Dan Juster, , Restoration From Zion
In the 1980s, Asher and I studied the subject of healing with great intensity. We studied the most prominent teachers on what the Bible says about healing. We ourselves saw some really amazing, outstanding healings; but also some very disappointing sicknesses that eventually ended in death.
Our close friend Dr. Michael Brown is perhaps one of the greatest experts on the subject of Biblical healing. He received his PhD from New York University for his thesis on healing in the Hebrew Bible. This was made into an important book entitled Israel's Divine Healer.
Here are three very common views on healing:
1. "While our ordinary immune system from God brings healing and is a gift from God, supernatural miraculous healing and creative miracles of restoration are very rare. We can and should always pray for such miracles, but in general, diseases and terminal illnesses will follow their normal course among both believers and non-believers. This is the human situation after the fall."
This is the primary view of non-charismatics, including many Israeli Messianic Jewish leaders.
2. "We are to pray for healing. If we pray for healing as a regular practice and submit to opportunities for praying for healing, we will see much more supernatural healing. However, we need to trust God and know that ultimately healing is a matter of God's sovereignty. The best thing we can do to believe for healing is to walk in fellowship with God, avoid sin, and live in trusting relationship while availing ourselves of healing prayer."
This is the "Vineyard view" that was taught by John Wimber.
3. "Healing is always God’s will. If we will give ourselves to God in the right way, meditate on Scriptures about healing, and confess them as God's certain promises, we should always be healed. God's promise of healing is absolute. So if a person does not receive supernatural healing, the failure to receive is the person's failure to build his faith to receive it. Faith for healing is something that a person is responsible to acquire."
This is the view of the Word of Faith movement teachers: the late Kenneth Hagin, Kenneth Copeland, Andrew Womack and many others. For these brothers, if the promise is not absolute and obtainable then it undercuts the building of faith to receive the healing.
Our view does not fully fit into any of these three categories. What we believe is similar to Dr. Brown teaching in his book and can be summarized as follows. Healing is the general will of God for His obedient people, but one cannot make this a universal law and conclude that it is God's absolute will to heal in every single case.
We can know that it is God's general will to heal on the basis of the following:
1. The promises to Israel for physical health if they would live an obedient life. This includes deliverance from "the sicknesses of Egypt", and the blessing of living a long life.
2. The inclusion of sicknesses as being healed through the atonement of Yeshua, as in Isaiah 53:4-5, "He bore our sicknesses ... by His stripes we are healed."
3. The healing ministry of Yeshua is a manifestation of the will of God for people.
4. The conclusive statement of Peter on the atonement, that "He Himself bore our sins on the tree, by his stripes you have been healed", is not only spiritual but physical healing.
5. In times of revival and heightened spiritual fervor and awareness, healing is much more frequent. Note for example Pensacola, the early Vineyard movement and Bethel Church.
6. However, though healing is God's general will, we see in the death of Elisha and the sickness of some in the New Covenant Scriptures, that healing is not an absolute promise for every case at all times.
7. The kind of faith that moves mountains is a "God kind of faith" that only God can ultimately grant. He indeed usually grants us the faith we need for what we are called to do and this usually includes faith for healing.
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