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Mark 1:14-15 "Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into

Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, And saying, The time

is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe

the gospel." (KJV)

I have come this morning to bring you news that has eternal implications.

A news that should have been expected and has long been looming on the

spiritual horizon of this nation and beyond.

JOHN IS IN PRISON

THE TIME IS FULFILLED

THE KINGDOM OF GOD IS AT HAND

You may be wondering this morning what I mean by the statement "John is in

prison"

The same spirit that sought to silence John the Baptist as he went about

preaching in Jerusalem, Judea and all about the region of Jordan- has too

been loosed on this nation.

And just like in the days of John the Baptist- this spirit has been loosed

everywhere from the church house to the white house- it is a spirit that

seeks to:

1. Silence the truth

2. Impede the Power

3. Harden the heart

4. Blind the Eyes

5. Satisfy the Flesh

>>Silence the truth by offering a pastel pink substitute for a blood-red

gospel- we have so sought to reach the masses and fill the seats of

man-made ministries, that we have diluted the life changing truth into a

heart hardening, seeker-friendly, mealy mouthed rhetoric- void of any

conviction, commitment or compassion

>>Impede the power by creating a prayerless church- the Body of Christ had

substituted the intimacy of the prayer closet for the pageantry of the

prayer service.

We have rented airplanes to fly over cities with anointing oil and left

the tear soaked fox holes of the quiet place. We have look at prayer as a

"means to an end" rather than the end! We have claimed to pull down

strongholds, while all the while we have fortified the enemies encampment

with our faithless prayers and lack of brokeness before God. What was once

THE source of revelation- has merely become a token, obligatory censor of

man-made cliches and self indulgent petitioning.

>>Harden the heart by preaching a self-centered, self-gratifying gospel-

the church has inoculated themselves against the word that changes lives,

by changing the word to fit their own lives. We preach financial

prosperity to the spiritual destitute. We preach authority to the

spiritually rebellious and we preach victory to the spiritually dead.

>>Blind the eyes by disguising the stench of death with an aerosol of

"all is well, all is good and all is of God"- the church has filled the

air with a wanna-be aroma and have said to themselves "We are doing the

work of God" all the while thousands upon thousands are plunging headlong

into hell- The church has ceased to invest in souls and has instead

invested in flashy campaigning and slick salesmanship. The rotting

fragrance of what was once a vibrant, violent, victorious church has been

buried under the gravestone of church programs and scheduled revivals-

When Revival truly comesĖ† it won't be because the church has penciled in

three days in early June!

>>Satisfy the flesh by preaching grace without growth, manifestations

without maturity and salvation without self-denial. The Roman Road to

salvation has been bulldozed in favor of a superhighway full of twists and

turns and plenty of exits, just in case you don't like the particular road

that your traveling.

JOHN IS IN PRISON!

Matt 3:1-12 "In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the

wilderness of Judaea,[2] And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven

is at hand (have you ever heard that preached?) [3] For this is he that

was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in

the wilderness,(Saints we are not too unlike the Children of Israel when

they found themselves looking across the wilderness and into the promised

land-the church though hasn't been crying in the wilderness- the church

today has had a dry-eyed view of their promised land) Prepare ye the way

of the Lord, make his paths straight. [4] And the same John had his

raiment of camel's hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins; and his

meat was locusts and wild honey.(this speaks of humility and consecration)

[5] Then went out to him Jerusalem, and all Judaea, and all the region

round about Jordan, [6] And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing

their sins. [7] But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come

to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned

you to flee from the wrath to come? [8] Bring forth therefore fruits meet

for repentance: [9] And think not to say within yourselves, We have

Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these

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