Summary: In the Old Testament, the Tabernacle and all the furniture and utensils used for worship in the Tabernacle, had to be anointed before they could be used. They didn’t anoint with just any old oil - they had special oil for this anointing, made from a recip
“A Recipe for the Anointing”
As Pentecostals we often talk about "the anointing". We pray for the anointing of God on our lives, our ministries, our activities - everything. We recognize that we need the power and presence of the Holy Spirit or our efforts are worse than useless.
WORSE than useless because if we are attempting to minister in our own strength alone…
- it is tantamount to saying we don’t need God (that’s humanism);
- we’re saying our own ideas and ways are worthy in themselves (that’s idolatry);
- we’re doing things our way rather than God’s way (that’s rebellion - which the Bible says is as the sin of witchcraft.)
I don’t know if you’ve ever thought of working in your own strength in terms as strong as those before, but it will do us good. Our own ingenuity and strength are not our helpers, they are our undoing most of the time. Because we so easily abandon our reliance on God for methods and plans that put us “in control”.
We must depend on God. Zechariah 4:6 – “It’s not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit says the Lord.” We must minister in the power of God - under this "anointing" of the Holy Spirit. But let me ask you, what is "the anointing". We talk about it all the time. We desire it. We pray for it. But what is it exactly?
The most simple understanding of the anointing is to think of it as a "setting apart". When God anoints something He sets it apart - it’s "holy" - separated for His use.
When a new king was anointed in Israel the prophet would take a horn full of oil and pour it over his head, and it would run right down his clothes. They would do the same thing when there was a new High Priest. The symbolism was that this person was "set apart" - to be God’s man; God’s instrument.
When we say someone "preached under a real anointing", or "that was an anointed song", or "an anointed moment" - it means it was set apart. God had His hand on the preacher or the song or the place and was moving. The anointing isn’t a "force" (like electricity), and it’s not just an emotion (although the anointing may produce emotion) - it’s really nothing other than the presence of God in favour.
In the Old Testament the Tabernacle, and all the furniture and utensils used for worship in the Tabernacle, had to be anointed before they could be used. They didn’t anoint with just any old oil - they had special oil for this anointing, made from a recipe that God gave them ... We read about it in:
READ: Exodus 30:22-30
You see God prescribed the ingredients that were to be used, and how it was to be made. And in fact it was a capital offence in Israel to make this oil and use it for any other purpose - punishable by death!
The recipe for this oil gives a picture of what we need in our lives to know God’s anointing. So look with me for a few minutes at the special ingredients mentioned here in Exodus 30.
The first ingredient was …
1. Liquid Myrrh.
Myrrh was used to prepare bodies for burial. To get its beautiful sweetness you had to crush it.
Myrrh speaks of death. There is no anointing without death. If we want to know God’s anointing we have to die to ourselves. Die to the old person that we once were. Die to our own agenda - our own desires and dreams, not born of God. If we’re going to depend on God we have to die to our own abilities and resources. DEATH!
And if we don’t come to this place of dying to ourselves on our own, then God may have to bring "crushing" circumstances into our lives to bring us to the place where we will die to ourselves.
Don’t despise those crushings God allows into your life. Sometimes we’re really quick to say it’s the devil’s work - it may just be the Lord dealing with us because He wants to bring us to a place of anointing so we can be used by Him.
But the other thing to learn is this - it’s far better for you to come to a place of brokenness by yourself, seeking the Lord in prayer. Then He can anoint you, and it’s far less painful than God having to allow those crushing experiences into our lives.
You know, that’s what this 21 days of fasting is all about. When we fast we are denying the “outermost man” – our physical appetites, and the appetites of our “outer man” – our soul. We won’t be governed by our emotion or intellectual thoughts. These things are a gift from God, but we will bring them into subjection, under the rule, of our “inner man” – our spirit – that central part of us where the breath of God resides – where we commune with God. We are saying, “My appetites don’t control me – my desire for God takes the leading hand.”