The Following Message Has Been Transcribed For
Clarity, Continuity Of Thought, And Punctuation By
The LEM Transcribing & Editing Team.
We have been almost in continuous ministry here since Thursday afternoon. I think I am a little tired, but I know the Lord has something to bless us with tonight. Glory to God.
I will give a testimony. The Lord is so good to me. From time to time I cry out to Him because of over work. He is very unique in the way He relieves me. When I cried out for over work in this house over a year ago, I got a dishwasher and a microwave.
Neither one of which...it was God's gift unto me, it was His answer to my problem or a partial answer to my problem. Those of you who know me have heard me crying out. I would like to say I am not complaining, but crying out for help on that computer for a long time now. The help from the Lord has come in a very unique way.
He gave me a new program that I found out I was entitled to for free by accident. I wrote away to the company, and I got it for free. When I first looked at it, I was in distress, because it was so radically different from any other software package I have ever worked on.
All I could think about was that it would take me a long time to learn it. Then, it would put me so far behind in my work I would never see the light of day. I just packed it away.
Little by little the Lord showed me this program. It is fantastic; it is worth taking the time to learn something new as I need it. It is so much faster, it is incredible. Little by little I have been moving into it.
I called the company that manufacturers the program. They have a hotline, an 800 number hotline, and it is a free call. I called because the problem that I was having was one that I really knew how to get out of. I do not know...I thought it would just be easier to call.
I do not even know why I called, I know how to get out of it. The counselor that I received completely ignored the problem and said to me, "I could tell you how to set up that document where it will be much easier to revise." Speaking about our tape list, encyclopedic index and all of our reference documents, which I am continuously revising.
I never asked the man for this advice, but I will tell you this, I humbled myself before him.
My carnal mind would have liked me to be angry at him. My carnal mind would have liked for me to have raised up in a wrong spirit to say, "I called this man. I told him what my problem was, and here he is telling me to change my whole document, not solving the immediate problem."
Something in my heart said, "You called this man, he now has authority over you, because he is an expert in this field. You have called him, listen to what he has to say." Much to my amazement, I found out this program can do even something else that is going to make revising the tape list and the encyclopedic index much, much, much easier.
It is taking some time initially converting my documents into this new format, but it will make a world of difference in the updating, in particularly of the encyclopedia index which takes so much time, it is grievous to me; yet, I confess it is an absolute necessity. I have already used the updated issue many times.
We have to have it, there is no question about it. We must have an updated encyclopedic index in this ministry. There is just no question about it, we have to have it. The counselor, without my asking him, just told me what to do to make the updating half the work, twice as fast as it has been otherwise.
God is great, and He helps you in ways that you never would expect.
We get a thought in our mind that the help that we need is what we think we need. I have been counseling you here for a long time; you never know how the Lord will meet your needs. You never ever, ever know.
Do not tell the Lord how to meet you need, tell Him your need. Leave the solution to the problem in the hand of your elder. My elder is the Lord Jesus Christ.
He did a very good turn to me the other day. He really blessed me, and I thank God that Christ in me gave me a check in my spirit, because pride was coming up. I know pride was coming up. Christ in me checked me.
He said, "You called for help, humble yourself." I thank God I had the ability to humble myself, because there was a time that when I wanted to humble myself, I could not humble myself.
The whole condition of fallen man is that sin has dominion over us in many areas. Some people in every area. I am giving God glory tonight, because of His special gift to me of help on that computer. I have been crying out for a long time. The Lord sent two professional computer operators to help me. They are both in rebellion.
While God deals with their rebellion, I do not have any help. I just thank God for this assistance that He is giving me. I am very excited. It is a real blessing. I have to thank God. We are just waiting on Him.
COMMENT: When you have a clear word from the Lord, you are supposed to take a stand against witchcraft. If it is an authority, you are doing it in the right way in Christ, staying in submission, but saying no to the participation of the witchcraft. What if the authority threatens you and penalizes you for it, saying you are going to lose your blessing because of it. What happens then?
PASTOR VITALE: You hold your peace. The apostle Peter says, "It is better to be buffeted, or blamed, or threatened for something that you did not do or for a sin that you did not commit than to be buffeted for committing sin."
COMMENT: How do you know from God, the line when you are in submission and doing the right thing, or if you are asked to do something, if you are cut off from that person because of it. If you are cut off from that person because you stood and that person may have been a person of authority. Say I was on my job and the person....how do you know when it is God that you are losing your job or losing your place to live. How far do you compromise? How do you know when you are standing and saying, "No, I cannot partake of that." They say, "Well, you lost your job or you lost your place to live," or whatever.
PASTOR VITALE: I think issues at work or residences should be issues of righteousness. Whether or not your going to lose you job or your place to live should not enter into any decision of righteousness. You do righteousness, and you trust in God to keep you from falling. Righteousness cannot be compromised under any circumstances.
I really did not understand you, did I answer your question? Is that what you wanted to hear?
COMMENT: How do you identify an issue of righteousness?
PASTOR VITALE: How do you identify an issue of righteousness? It is, an issue of righteousness is an issue of moral right or wrong.
For example, an easy obvious example is if someone is inviting you to engage in a witchcraft activity. You know that the Scripture says that, that is unrighteous, you say, "No." Even if it means you will lose your job, even if it means they will put you in jail, you are not supposed to do it. God expects you to pay the price for righteousness.
An issue of righteousness, well that is not the right way. If it is not an issue of right or wrong, Paul says suffer the loss.
Let me give you an example. If somebody finds a five-dollar bill, and you really believe that it is yours, that it fell out of your pocket, and there is another man standing by that is as convinced as you that it fell out of his pocket. In that instance, Paul says, "suffer the loss." You do not fight over whom the five-dollar bill belongs to.
It is not an issue of righteousness; the good name of the Lord is not at stake. Can you hear the difference?
Issues of righteousness are issues of morality issues, morality issues or conflicts over possessions. You are not supposed to strive over it.
If someone is coming and trying to take your home away, that is not what I am talking about here. Of course, you are not going to turn your home over to somebody. In any event, any issue, any conflict you put it before the Lord. I made it simple by saying a five-dollar bill, but any issue that cannot be resolved immediately.
If someone is trying to take your house away, you have time to pray. That involves a lawsuit which gives you time to pray and seek God. Issues of righteousness are issues that are found in the Scripture. Issues of morality, we have the commandments and the statues of God. Thou shall not sin against thy brother. Thou shall not commit adultery. Thou shall honor thy mother and thy father.
COMMENT: What if you were in a particular church, say you were in a particular congregation. God has you there for a time, but you knew there was a lot going wrong in the church. If you were there, and they were saying you have to participate, everybody is going to participate in something that you know is religious. Like holding hands in a circle as some people say that is witchcraft. You decided not to do that and stand back.
You feel that God was saying He wanted you there, but they rose up and said, "Well, if you are not going to join us, you are going to have to leave the church." Do you compromise that point or do you take the loss and leave? They are able to kick you out, and that is for righteousness sake.
PASTOR VITALE: Yes. That is how this ministry got started. We were just a group of believers having some meetings on Saturday nights. The Lord had instructed me to minister to a few people in the fellowship in the church I was going to on Sunday.
I did break a curse on somebody with their permission. I did ask their permission. I broke it, and they got upset, apparently afterwards, and complained to the pastor. I was told to stay in the church. I could not do that. I told him that I would have to pray about it, because if it was a choice of obeying Jesus and ministering to someone He sent me to or obeying the pastor, I would have to obey Jesus.
The danger in what I just said is that the church of the Lord Jesus Christ is very young and very immature. Probably 99 out of 100 people listening to this tape are lifted up in witchcraft power going around saying; "Sister Sheila said that I have to obey God and not the pastor," but it is not God. It is rebellion.
That is the danger of what I just said. I still have to tell you the truth, that if it is a choice of obeying the Lord and obeying your pastor, you obey the Lord.
You really better make sure you are hearing from God especially if you are in a church that is anointed, where the minister hears from Christ. You better be very careful that you are not hearing from your carnal mind if you want to do something in the church.
We are talking about church activities. We are talking about a believer refusing to hold hands when the pastor says hold hands. If you really believe God has told you not to do it, what you do is, you do not do it.
If your pastor speaks about it, you attempt to communicate with him and tell him that you believe the Lord has told you not to do it, and would he please excuse you from this activity. If he is a man of God, he should excuse you from that activity.
COMMENT: What if he is bound and determined to bring you under his rule?
PASTOR VITALE: Then, he is operating in witchcraft. Even if you do not say to the pastor that God told me not to hold hands. If you can say to this man, "I have a problem with holding hands, please excuse me from this activity, I would really appreciate it." He should excuse you, if he does not excuse you, I would like to hear his reason why.
If he does not excuse you unless he has got some reason, I can imagine there is some kind of problem in his spirit. In fact I experienced something just like that.
I was raised up in a church where there was great freedom in the spirit to worship God, to pray for the sick, and cast out demons. There was more liberty in that church than any other church besides here, to tell you the truth. There may be other fellowships out there, but I have not seen them.
Most fellowships are in a lot of bondage, and they are in a carnal rule and commandment. They are not ruled by the spirit, but this church was largely ruled by the spirit. No one ever told anyone to stand up, to sit down, or wave their hands or praise God or sing. You could do anything that you wanted during the praise service, of course.
You had to be quiet while the pastor is preaching. That goes without saying. You cannot be doing something disruptive. If there was something that you did not want to participate in, nobody was telling you what to do.
There was such an anointing on this church that when the praise service started, over the whole church every man was on their feet praising God, singing, dancing, jumping up and down the isles, walking in the isles. There was great liberty there.
Then something terrible happened, there was a tragedy in that church. The anointing left the church. What happened when the anointing leaves the church?
PASTOR VITALE: Just tell me, and I will repeat it. Another spirit arises. Religious spirit, anti-Christ arises in its place. There is no vacuum in the spirit. There is no vacuum in this world. If you have a tub full of water, and you put a ladle into the water, and you take out a ladle, a cup, or a bucket full of water, there is not a hole in the water, it fills in.
There is no vacuum. There is no empty space left. Neither is there any empty space left in the realm of the spirit.
When the spirit of God withdraws, there is no vacuum. We find another sprit. We find a counterfeit spirit, an anti-Christ spirit. The pastor realized that the spirit was gone, and when the spirit was gone the people stopped jumping, and the people stopped singing. The spontaneity that was in the church disappeared.
That made the pastor very nervous for whatever reason. He decided to try to control the praise, why? Because the praise was absent.
There came into the church an organist, a male organ player who was from a very different background. He was from a very strict Pentecostal religious background, and he sought to control the congregation as the organist. He would tell the congregation to stand up, sit down, and wave their hands.
I was not raised in the church. I went briefly to an Assemblies of God church. There was liberty at that time. Then I came into this other church where there was tremendous liberty. I was not raised up in a religious spirit.
My spirit was grieved that my spirit was being commanded by a carnal mind of a man as to how, when, and where to praise God. I could not function in it. I could not function in it, and I could not respond to it.
The way things turned out was that I would come into the service, I would hear the music, and I would stand up and praise God, but because the spirit...there was a residue, the spirit was in me, but the anointing that was over the congregation had left.
Because of the measure of Christ in me, I would rise up and start to praise from the beginning. No one else did, I was the only one standing in the whole congregation. The other people, for whatever reason, needed a carnal commandment.
When the outpouring of that powerful anointing was present they were controlled or prompted, if you will, by the outpouring of the Holy Ghost. When that tremendous outpouring left, only the people than had an internalized Christ were prompted by the spirit of God.
There may have been one or two others, but by and large...to my recollection, I was the only one standing.
The balance of the congregation was just sitting. The organist commanded everybody to stand. When he commanded everybody to stand, my spirit went "urghhh." I lost all my joy, and I could not function as he sat behind his organ and said, "Now praise God, say hallelujah."
I could not function with it. I sat down, so when the whole church was standing, I was the only one sitting. When I was standing the whole church was sitting. I stood out like a sore thumb.
On top of that, I was always in the front row right in front of this organists' face. He became enraged at me, and the other members of the congregation became enraged with me.
It became a vendetta against me; an evil was spoken about me, that I had a wicked spirit, and that I was in rebellion. Who knows what else they were saying about me, but I knew that there was no price that I would pay to be controlled like that. I would not pay the price to be controlled like that to stay in that church.
It was not even a question of an issue. I could not even function under that kind of control. I could not praise on command. I found that following the command of a man made the Christ, the spirit of Christ in me, go down, that it is only when people or elders in the church give me liberty to express myself that Christ in me can flourish.
Of course, you have general rules in the church. You know what time the service starts. You know when it stops. You know you are not supposed to talk when the pastor is preaching. You know you cannot talk during the testimony section.
For someone to say to me, "Sit down, stand up, say hallelujah, raise your hands, raise your right hand, raise your left hand," brethren, I do not know about you, but I cannot function in it, because as soon as I am obeying a man, I am no longer obeying Christ.
That was my whole motive for my behavior but to carnally minded people, my behavior appeared to be rebellious. I guess it was rebellion against the wickedness in the church, but it was not.... I did not sit down and say, "I am going to rebel." I just could not function in it.
A group of the inner circle, the inner circle group really had a fine time feasting on my bones and my flesh. The music ministry was very important to the pastor. This particular fellowship always had a problem getting hold of and maintaining music ministry. The pastor was....let us call a spade a spade, he was selling out to the organist.
He was willing to pay too high a price to keep this organist in his church. He did not have faith in God to provide music. As some of you know when we first started out here, for a long time we had no music. If God gives it to you, He gives it to you and if He does not, He does not. Now we have two musicians.
This pastor was very concerned with the music ministry. In my opinion he sold out, and who did he sell out? Who was the sacrificial lamb to keep the organist? ME! I was a very anointed member of the congregation.
I was very visible; I never missed a service except for a funeral or some severe crisis. I was always on the prayer line, I was always active. I was a witness of strength to many people in the congregation. People, I did not find out till years later what an encouragement I had been to them.
I was very visible in the church. My faith was strong, and he sacrificed me to keep an organist. How did he do that? We had a ministry, an outreach of the church to another city. I was part of that ministry. The pastor called a meeting of all these people that traveled once a week into New York City into this ministry. We were in his home, and he rebuked me without naming my name.
He talked about people who did not cooperate with the musicians. It was a very long time ago, and I do not remember what he said.
There was no doubt in anybody's mind who was in that room that he was speaking about me. He said, "Of course, if you want to speak to me about these things in a respectful tone, I will be glad to discuss them with you." That was all I had to hear, but I would have spoken to him anyway.
Everyone was having coffee and cake. I approached him, he refused to go into a private area with me thinking I would be embarrassed to discuss it with him in public.
He stood tight in the midst of all the people having coffee and cake. He did not know me all that well, he should have known me that well, but he did not. I am very bold in Christ, I am very bold in issues of righteousness. I told him that if he wanted me to resign from the city ministry, I would resign, that if I was a source of embarrassment to him when the church went out on an outreach, I would resign, but that there was no way that anyone would tell me when to raise my left hand and when to raise my right hand, when to say hallelujah, when to be quiet.
I could not function in it. I would resign from the ministry, and I would leave the church, whatever he wanted me to do. He did not want me to leave the church, nor did he want me to resign from the ministry to the other city. I was a valuable member of the congregation.
Do you know a congregation is what its people are? The more anointed believers, the more anointed the whole ministry, no matter how anointed the pastor is. If you have two hundred people that are bumps on a log, you have a bump on a log ministry. The anointing has to be flowing throughout the congregation. It is not a one-man show.
He did not want me to leave. That is the last thing in the world he wanted. He wanted to show his organist he would have a few knocks with me, and he would worm his way out of it. This way, he would pacify his organist.
He did not take into account the move of the Holy Ghost. He did not take into account the fact that I had a spirit of righteousness on me, and I was an anointed member of that congregation placed there by the Lord Jesus Christ, Himself.
I was a member of the true body of Christ in that church. That means this foolish behavior, I am not saying the man was foolish, this behavior was foolish. This foolish behavior of that pastor took on the Lord Jesus Christ, Himself. He still wounded my flesh.
I never disrespected him, I never raised my voice to him, but I stood in a spirit of righteousness. I told him I would resign if he wanted me to. Of course, he said, "No." I hope that answers your question.
You serve God in righteousness, but even in that service you respect your elders. You do not raise your voice to them. You do not get into fights with them. You do not strive with them. You do not struggle with them.
You tell them, "I am very sorry, I am very sorry if I have offended you, but this is an issue of righteousness. I cannot do it; my spirit will not let me do it. Please excuse me."
COMMENT: You stand back?
PASTOR VITALE: You stand back and see the salvation of the Lord. Let us see what God is going to do. Do not lock God out of this conflict. Let us not lock Jesus out, He is real important.
PASTOR VITALE: I have done it. I have done it all That is why I am up here. There is very little I have not done that you are experiencing now. There is very little that I have not done for where you are now. Do you know what I am saying?
PASTOR VITALE: Yes. I have come up through the ranks like everybody. Our experience is the same with minor variations. Our experience of growing up in churches is all the same.
COMMENT: Have you been up against religious spirits?
PASTOR VITALE: I have been up against a lot. Nothing is exactly the same, but I have been up against a lot.
I was in a church once, during the time in my life the Lord was sending me to a series of churches. It was just before I came into ministry. It was a part of my training. This church was hopping, this was a hopping church, anointed, the music was anointed. They would have at least five or ten prophecies from different people on Sunday morning.
It was God, it was all in order, and it was exciting, but this Sunday I walked in, and there was something wrong in the music ministry. I do not know what was wrong, the anointing was not right. I was waiting, praying and praying. The second that anointing started to fall, the assistant pastor jumped to his feet.
Let me back up, the assistant pastor was the pastor's son.
Brethren, when you are a pastor in the church...maybe God appointed this man's son, I do not know. My personal opinion is that He did not, but only God knows that. You do not appoint your children, your wife, nor your niece and nephews.
God raises up the ministry in the church. God appoints the pastor. God appoints the assistant pastor. God appoints the musicians. God appoints the one who prophesies. God appoints.... this is God's body.
The pastor's son was the head of the music ministry. Apparently, he perceived there was something wrong with the music ministry that morning. Strangely enough, if he would have waited a little longer, the anointing would have fell.
Simultaneously as the anointing fell, apparently he did not perceive it falling, he was not quick enough, at that exact moment, his carnal mind jumped up and started rebuking the congregation.
He rebuked them so severely, and he started to tell them that he had full authority over them. That he could insist that they do anything that he wants. That he can insist they be in church six nights a week if he wanted to, and they would have to do it.
I looked at him, I got up and I walked out of the congregation. I paced up and down the hall in the back until he sat down. I was not going to listen to it. I do not think his father appreciated me walking out of the meeting. All I can say to you is a manifestation such as that, of the carnal mind, grieves my spirit so that I am in turmoil.
I feel that is justification to walk out, that is how I feel. If I am wrong, God will have to show it to me. When my spirit is grieved to that point, I feel that is justification to leave, unless the Lord tells me to stand.
This is supposed to be body ministry. If someone ever walks out of one of my meetings, I would like to know why. If some one walks out of one of my meetings and they tell me....I ask them, and they tell me it was not the spirit of God, their spirit was grieved, I want to tell you I would be on my face before God.
I will tell anyone of you.... you are free to, no matter what happened, you know that all I ask is that you do not disrupt the meeting. You are free to come and go here. Of course, if you ever see a wrong spirit on me, before you get up and desert me, I hope you will pray and at least ask God to set me straight.
There was no such feeling in me in that congregation. He was just ripping the people to pieces. I have done it; I was very bold in my disciple days. I have had a lot of run-ins with authority. I have had a lot of practice with respectful protest of authority. There is a way to do it. Respectful protest. You can protest without it being rebellion.
If the man will not listen to you, maybe you should not even be in that church, unless God has you there as a testimony unto Him. He should listen to what you have to say, but if the man listens, and he tells you there is nothing he could do about it right now, but he is willing to pray about it, you really just have to drop it.
You not being in a position of authority, you do not have all knowledge. You do not know what he is up against. You do not know what he knows. You do not know what is going on. You pray your prayer, "Father, correct the one who is wrong." Then you let it go. You cannot be rebuking, unless it is Christ in you that has raised you up to the office of prophet for that encounter.
You cannot be rebuking elders. If you think it is Christ in you that has raised you up as a prophet, you better be very sure that it is true. Because if it is not, if it is your carnal mind that has raised you up, you are going to hear from the Lord. If you are not sure, do not do it.
COMMENT: If you know that you are standing for righteousness, and you are saying, "I cannot partake in that religious act or that religious thing," the person is telling you that you have to go, that this is what it is about, you are going to have to go." Are you going to come out of that and have.... how do you know if God does not want you there and suffer the persecution?
How can you tell? When you stand for righteousness, and they say you are going to have to go into the religious thing, you just go, is that it? Then do you go into a new, harder trial?
PASTOR VITALE: If you are in someone's church, and they tell you that you cannot come back, they have the authority to do that, so you go. If they tell you, you have to leave, you have to leave. You do not compromise unrighteousness to ask weather or not if you go to a harder trial.
I think where you are coming from, I understand where you are coming from. The answer is, "No," but let me just clarify it for the tape.
If God gives you a trial, the trial is severe or for whatever reason you want to get out of it. You run from a place that the Lord has placed you, because you are not happy, then the chances are excellent that you will go into a more difficult trial, but if you stand for righteousness, you get put out, then you did not fail.
Then Jesus has to...I do not see any reason for Him putting you into a more difficult trial. You prevailed despite the persecution. Do you see the difference?
COMMENT: Is He going to once you take the victory there, is He going to raise you up if you took the victory in that trial?
PASTOR VITALE: I do not know what you mean by raising you up. A walk in the Lord is a series of trials. All of us are going on, you cannot hold Jesus to the minute. Everything is over a period of time with the Lord.
It is not even good to be thinking like that. You just take it a step at a time. You stand for righteousness, you do the best that you can, place your fate in His hands and you trust in Jesus. You ask too many questions. That is not good, it shuts down the mind. It is a form of control. Trying to look at every detail is a form of control. It is not healthy.
Let me give you another testimony. I was going to...now this was after I started this fellowship, the Lord had shut this fellowship down for a few months. I am not really sure why. It might have been a test of my faith, because I was preaching, and I still preach that the day the anointing leaves, I will shut down the ministry and go sit under an anointed minister. Who wants a dead ministry?
The Lord shut me down for a couple of months. I could not believe it, but He shut me down. I said, "All right, Lord, I will shut down." He sent me to a local fellowship. It was no more than six months, it may not have even been that long.
The Lord witnessed to this man that I was anointed of God, that I had a lot to offer his congregation and him, in Christ. He told me this.
I went up one day for prayer, the Lord told me to go up on the line. He prophesied knowledge about me that the man could have not possibly known. It almost came out like a resume.
The Lord had some very good things to say about me, who I was in Christ, that there was healing in my hands, deliverance, miracle working power, things like that.
After the prophesy was over, the pastor said, "I have been praying and asking the Lord who you are, He just told me all about you. We are delighted to have you in this church. I cannot wait to see what God is going to do through you."
These words came out of the pastor's mouth. When God sends someone into the church, very frequently that ministry through that person is not what you expect it to be. If the person is really God sent, there is always turmoil and confusion.
Shortly after that it was communion Sunday. I do not participate in the communion of crackers and grape juice. I participate with the communion with the spirit and flesh of Christ. As always, I perceive the issue of communion an issue of righteousness. I will not partake of these crackers and grape juice. I do not care what anybody in the church, wherever I go maybe says to me.
If I am asked to leave, I will put on my coat and go.
I do not partake in this communion. It does not bother me if you do it. If you want to do it, that is okay. I do not have a problem with it if I am sitting next to you, and you are doing it. Does not bother me if I am the only one in the church not doing it. You leave me alone, I will leave you alone.
They past the elements around, and I past them by. I really did not think anything about it. I think it was every other Sunday they have communion. It happened twice, and all of a sudden I am in church and the pastor is preaching about communion, about the not partaking in the communion.
I do not remember exactly how it came forth. I am sitting there listening. I am saying, "My goodness, is he talking about me?"
This happened a couple of times, two or three times. I said, "Lord, I really think he is talking about me." This is a small congregation, and I was the only one that was not taking the communion. I prayed about it, and I felt the Lord was saying I had to go speak to him about it.
I went to see him after a service. I said...now this is what I said, listen. "I want to apologize to you. I am genuinely sorry if I have caused you any distress, or if I have caused any confusion or turmoil among your congregation, or if I have done anything to bring anything negative into your life or the lives of any of your people, but I personally cannot partake of this cracker and grape juice communion. This is why." I told him why.
I have to give the man credit, he listened to me. Of course, he listened to me, but he lied to me. He said, "Oh no, I was not preaching against you." He was preaching against me. The average person in the church, they just cannot deal with confrontation.
Confrontation is one of the major things we are teaching in this ministry. Godly confrontation. Godly communication in Christ. The large majority of the church is totally...they would get an "F" on their grade in it. They are bankrupt, they cannot do it. That is the pastors as well as the people, with some exceptions. Of course, with some exception.
The man looked at me, and he lied right to my face. Told me it was not true, but guess what? He stopped doing communion. I sold him, he received the teaching. He received the revelation, and he stopped doing the communion, but guess what?
The woman whose ministry it was to break the crackers, to break the matzo up into little pieces and to pour the grape juice into the little cups, she was very upset. The Lord told me it was because she lost her ministry. The next Sunday, I went into church. I did not know in the natural what was going on, but the woman that had this ministry was hysterical. She was up at the front of the church, the pastor was praying for her; she was frantic, crying and all upset. It went on for a couple of meetings until I found out it was over this communion issue.
Because of my stand for righteousness, the pastor received a true word. He never had communion again as long as I was in the church. The woman got over it, and life went on. You stand for righteousness, but you never fail to respect the authority.
If he had said to me, "You have to leave the church," I would have said, "Okay." I would have said, "I am sorry that you feel that way, I will leave. I cannot compromise on this issue."
With a sweet spirit, not with an argumentative spirit, or a rebellious spirit, or an arrogant spirit. All of these negative spirits that I just mentioned come up when one is frightened. They come up when one is afraid that the other party will swallow them up.
As I was telling you earlier in the evening, the answer to the person who has this problem, a fear of control, the answer to it is that you practice communication in confrontation even if it means you are overtaken, because even if you are overtaken it is just for that one incident.
By suffering the loss, by letting the other person win the argument, the Lord is going to build into you an ability to communicate on a high spiritual level. I am telling you, I was not always this way. Everything that I talk to you about has been given to me by Christ.
It is glorious when you learn to do this. It is not an intellectual learning. It is a spiritual learning.
You have to stay calm when you feel threatened but, then again, you stop feeling threatened. I did not feel threatened at all, because I knew who I was in Christ. I know my stand on the communion. I know that if he asked me to leave, I would go. I had no conflict, but to get to that place, you have to have a few battles.
Some of them you might lose, but in order to get to the place where you can have a Godly communication in such a manner that the Lord Jesus Christ can manifest through you, to teach someone else if He so desires, to get to that place, you have to be willing to lose a few battles.
You have to be willing to let the person laced with witchcraft overcome you.
When you try to communicate on a Godly level, and you are not very practiced in that yet, that person filled with witchcraft overtakes you, and you have to be willing to suffer the loss. You may suffer the loss a few times, but from each loss you suffer, the Lord will teach you. You will find Christ rising up in you and learning how to overcome in the Godly way.
You are very limited as to your ability to learn how to deal with authority, or to deal with witchcraft, or to deal with aggression in Christ. You are very limited as to you ability to learn how to deal with it in Christ as long as you insist on defending yourself.
Self-defense gets in the way of Christ's defense. If you are the Lord's, and you have a self-defense mechanism that you do not even have control over, it just rises up in you. I have experienced that. It just rises up in you.
It is something that goes back to when you were a carnal person. Self-defense mechanism, it saved your life when you were a carnal person.
If you cannot stop running in this track that you learned for survival when you were a carnal person, and you are the Lord's, He is going to come and bomb you out of that track.
The way He is going to bomb you out of that track is to let so much witchcraft and control come against you, that you are overcome. When you are laying on the floor huffing and puffing and wheezing saying, "Lord, that witchcraft has utterly defeated me." He will say, "Hallelujah, now watch me, I have been waiting for you to be defeated for twenty years. Now watch me deliver you. This is how it is."
Hear what I am saying?
The bottom line is this, if we could genuinely repent of all sins, if we can genuinely make all the changes necessary to become righteous, we would not need a Savior. The problem is the whole human race is messed up. We cannot do these things; we cannot do them.
The people that I see in the world that can do these things, that can communicate in this calm, Godly manner, they are usually people that have grown up in a family where the parents and even members of the extended household have these skills.
That is an inherited blessing. I believe it is something that is in your genetic make up. It is a blessing that goes to generation to generation. Just as a curse does. On top of that, it is learned behavior. As you see your parents deal with problems, as you see your parents deal with problems between each other, as you see your parents deal with problems from parent to child, from aunt to uncle, father to uncle.
If you are raised up in a family where the communication is excellent, where the forgiveness is present, where there are healthy problem-solving techniques, and the family is functioning, you will grow up without any effort utilizing those skills in your life. I tell you the truth.
This ability is a blessing of God that is inherited. If you did not inherit it, if you came out of a dysfunctional family, it is your inheritance in Christ. The only problem is, before you can partake of this inheritance which is a life-saving skill, before you can partake of it, the Lord has to wipe out the inheritance that you were born with which can be a life-destroying skill.
Sometimes, it takes a long time for Him to wipe out the writing on your soul that says, "destructive communication" and replace it with a new written one that says, "communication in Christ."
It takes time, and it takes painful experiences to break a curse, to reverse someone's life in any particular area. It is like taking a broken leg which was set wrong and breaking it open to set it right, but it is your inheritance in Christ.
If you would like to look at the positive side to it, it is available to you in Christ if you are willing to pay the price. Whereas, people who do not have an intense relationship with Christ do not even have an option. That is the truth.
If you are not born with the blessing, you can go through your whole life with destructive relationships. If you are willing to pay the price in Christ, you can have it. Outside the fact that we are expecting to stand up in full stature and live forever, if you are willing to pay the price in Christ, you can have a portion of your lifetime corrected.
Even more that that, the curse will be broken on your children. If you do not have any children, the breaking of the curse will touch the other members of your family. You will be a Savior to your family.
If you are the one who pays the price to have this family line curse broken, that is the bottom line. Social behavior is a learned thing. It is very important. We have diplomats that go to other countries that have meeting with diplomats in the most highly tense circumstances. They just do not lose their cool. This is a blessing of God to have that ability in you. It is an inherited blessing.
COMMENT: To scrutinize every thought and word, is that not what you have been telling us that we have to being to do? Is that not a contradiction?
PASTOR VITALE: That is a good question, I pray that the Lord helps me to answer you.
Yes, we are supposed to bring every thought into captivity. We are supposed to be thinking about everything. What you are talking about with XXXX , the only way that I can explain it to you is that it was not in this spirit of bringing every though into captivity. It was in a spirit that was trying to control the circumstances.
The only thing I can tell you right now is that it is not a contradiction. It is an issue of which spirit we are talking about. I am sorry that I cannot be clearer to you except to tell you that it is not a contradiction. It was another spirit, it was not a spirit of self introspection that is going to develop Christ in us. It was a spirit of control. She was trying to control her circumstances. When we try to control our own circumstances, we lock the Lord out; it is, therefore, not to be done.
COMMENT: Could you tell me how to begin to stop trying to control your circumstances and overcome fear?
PASTOR VITALE: That is an ambitious project. All that I can recommend to you is that you ask the Lord to help you and acknowledge whether you can see it yourself or whether you have been told by someone you respect. You are going to go on it. You acknowledge to the Lord if you have that problem, you want help.
At the very least, if you cannot see it yourself that if you have it, you may have it, because you have been told that. You would like help. The people who you are in relationship with point out to you at a particular time, you take note. Then take a different tactic right there on the spot. Reverse it right there on the spot. Stop doing it.
If what you are trying to accomplish can be accomplished in a spirit of Christ, and the person is willing to point it out to you, make the change right there with the counselor sharing it with you by an act of your will. If you keep on doing that, it is an overcoming. If you keep overcoming, eventually it becomes your nature. The deliverance that is necessary comes forth.
There maybe demons involved, but there may not be demons involved. What we are talking about is behavior modification. Did you ever hear of that term? Behavior modification is a reality, that by an act of your will. In our case, we have Christ. We can make a determination to change behavior that we believe is ungodly. We do not have to do it for the rest of our life.
I had a lot of ungodly behavior that I changed by the grace of God. There were demons present, there were demons cast out, but there was a lot of overcoming involved where I said, "I will not do that anymore." Then the Lord showed me a better way. I said, "I would do it this way." Now, I cannot even remember many of the things. I just know that today I am a radically different person than I was ten years ago. I am a changed man.
COMMENT: Earlier today you were explaining some behavior that was Pharisaical that I was doing it, but your nature inside had not been changed yet. What is the difference between this Pharisaical change of behavior and behavior modification?
PASTOR VITALE: It depends on your motive for being a Pharisee. If your motive for acting out behavior that appears to be socially acceptable is pride, that you want to be accepted, respected by men, then that effort is not going towards a permanent change.
If your motive for actively exerting your will power to make changes is what you have been doing, the second not the first, then that is behavior modification. Which will eventually affect the root.
COMMENT: You said this morning that it is Pharisaical, that what I was doing was Pharisaic, this behavior modification...
PASTOR VITALE: Let me explain it to you further. You were making all of the effort...first, you had a revelation that what you were doing before was wrong, you were willing to change. You were not one who knew it was wrong, but you just wanted to change because you wanted the praise of men. Your motive was that you acknowledged it was wrong, you wanted to change. You did all that you could do. You did what a Pharisee would do, but your motive was different from the Pharisees. Can you hear that?
COMMENT: If my motive was right, that sounds like behavior modification. Why are you still calling it Pharisaical?
PASTOR VITALE: There is not any difference, it was the way I used the term. When I used that term, what I was saying to you was that you had exerted every effort that you had, but you had not succeeded in changing your nature.
Behavior modification must work with a spiritual power to change your nature. There must be a spiritual power backing you up to change your nature. You do not understand what I am saying?
COMMENT: I understand what you are saying but the spiritual power, where was it?
PASTOR VITALE: It is coming. We do all that we can do, when we cannot do anymore, the Lord Jesus Christ jumps in and does the rest. That is the place that you are now. You have made an admirable effort to change ungodly behavior and ungodly thinking in your life. You have had a lot of success.
COMMENT: Why are there curses?
PASTOR VITALE: They are not curses. The blessings are the judgement of God. The Lord Jesus Christ had to finish the job. You cannot go through the rest of your life like this, with your behavior changed for a few months at a time. Then all of a sudden, your corrupt nature rises up and breaks through the bands that you have put on it. You cannot spend the rest of your life like that.
Because you have really made an honest effort, I believe that the Lord Jesus Christ has to jump in and change what you cannot change, convert that root that is going to put down this wickedness once and for all, that there will not be anymore out bursts, but that it will truly become you.
What I said to you this morning was Pharisaical behavior. I did not mean it in a bad way. If you took it that way, I am sorry. I did not mean it in that way. What I was trying to say to you was that what you were doing was by your own will, changing your behavior but you did not have the power to change the root. It was Pharisaical in that it was an act of your will.
Because your motive for doing it was Godly, here comes the Lord Jesus Christ with the spiritual power to carry you in the areas that you have no strength.
I did not mean to insult you by saying it was Pharisaical. If you thought that, I am glad I had the opportunity to correct that. The Pharisee who is changing his behavior, who knows his heart is desperately wicked, who is changing his behavior with no repentance whatsoever, no desire to truly change, whose only desire is that everyone should see him saying great loud prayers in the synagogue and knowing that he fasts, that everybody should think that he is wonderful. That is his only motive, he has no desire to truly change.
He will not go beyond that surface change. It appears to be the same. The man who is a Pharisee, in his heart he is changing or modifying his behavior to get the praises of men. It looks the same as the man who is really repentant or at least has a measure of repentance and is working to change his behavior, praying to God that the Lord Jesus Christ deliver him from the penalties that are on his life, because of the wickedness in his soul.
Both men appear to be doing the same thing, modifying their behavior, but two completely different motives, and the Lord Jesus Christ backs up the one set of motives and does not back up the other set of motives. Can you hear that?
COMMENT: How do you get close and love somebody that is afraid of control and wants to control you all the time?
PASTOR VITALE: I am not sure who are you talking about? The person who is afraid of control? Or how could a well-adjusted person love someone who is afraid of control?
COMMENT: Somebody who is afraid of getting close to me, and he decides to control me so that I will not get near him.
PASTOR VITALE: It is real hard to love somebody like that. You can only love somebody like that with the agape love of the Lord Jesus Christ. It is hard to phileo love if they do not let you get near them or to love somebody who beats you over the head every time you try to get close to them. It is humanly impossible; it would take the love of God to love someone who is beating on you every time you are being kind to them.
COMMENT: What is your definition of agape love and phileo love?
PASTOR VITALE: Phileo love is that which we see between human beings. It is the finest, or the highest love that can occur in humanity, either between a man and his wife, or between a mother and a child, or any friends or relatives.
COMMENT: That is phileo love?
PASTOR VITALE: Phileo love, the translation is "brotherly love," where you have high esteem for that person, where you desire good unto them. There is some measure of sacrifice involved, because selfishness can never produce any high form of love, any form of love at all.
Phileo love, when abused enough, dies. Phileo love... if you love somebody, and you minister to them, they hurt you long enough and hard enough, phileo love dies.
The agape love of the Lord Jesus Christ looks very different than phileo love. Phileo love would be demonstrated by external affection, hugging, kissing, fellowshipping, and good times together. These are some of the characteristics of phileo love.
The agape love of the Lord Jesus Christ does not look like that. The agape love of the Lord Jesus Christ is action; the agape love loves when the other person hates you. The agape love is a sacrificial love that is willing to be abused if Christ is in it, and it is for the other persons good. Agape love, very frequently, gives and gets absolutely nothing back. Phileo love must have some exchange or it dies.
The person loving with phileo love must be getting some love back or it will cease to exist. The agape love of the Lord Jesus Christ goes forth when absolutely nothing whatsoever is returned. The signs of them are radically different. The agape love of the Lord Jesus Christ will rebuke you when you are wrong, yet will expose your sin. It will put the relationship on the line.
The agape love of the Lord Jesus Christ will tell you the truth even if it means that the other person who is not mature enough to be in agape love will end the relationship. The agape love will tell you the truth about yourself, about your activity, about your motives, about your life. The agape love of the Lord Jesus Christ is a love that will deliver you from trouble, from sin and bondage. It is a love that has power in it.
The closest thing to it among men who do not have Christ is mother love. Agape love is a sacrificial love. Most mothers, no matter how hateful their children might be, just never stop praying, just never stop giving, but the love between a man and a woman could exist sometimes, but marriages fall apart, because marriage is a contract. Both people come into that marriage expecting to have some of their needs met.
If one of those people find themselves having no needs met, the chances are excellent that marriage will fall apart. In a relationship that the Lord Jesus Christ puts together, it is possible to have one person who has none of their needs being met, but they just keep on giving because it is Christ in them. That is the difference, radical difference.
COMMENT: Is it unconditional love?
PASTOR VITALE: It is unconditional love, but it is more than unconditional love. It is unconditional love, but agape love carries with it power, the power to change. There are elements of it in men. The true agape love has the power to raise one from the dead. No matter how sacrificial the love we find in humanity, we cannot raise the person from the dead.
There is a measure of sacrificial love in fallen man that can change people's lives. We cannot call it agape love, because it stops short of being able to raise them form the dead. Love can influence your life, can turn you life around, definitely.
A form of sacrificial love, the highest form of phileo love, this is a very fine line in fallen men. Even when they sacrifice, there is an element of selfishness in it, because man cannot be anything else. If you are sacrificing for your child, if your child hates you and despises you, you are loving and doing everything you can to save him from himself, and it looks like you are totally selfless. The bottom line is that, that is your son who came out from between your legs. Are you going to do it for a total stranger that just fell down in front of you in the street?
Are you going to support him with your finances? Are you going to support him with your counsel? Are you going to support him with your love? Are you going to take him into your home? This total stranger that fell at your feet in the street? Not many. There are many who would do it for a child, for their dead sister's child, for a loved one, but for someone that you do not like, for a total stranger that falls down in front of you in the street, that is repulsive to you. Are you going to sacrifice for him?
The agape love of the Lord Jesus Christ sacrifices for the unlovable, that no one has no investment in whatsoever. They are not your blood, they are not your family. You never saw them before in your life, and they are filthy. The average human being, the average Christian turns around and walks away. Understandably. Without the power of the Lord Jesus Christ, you have no power to help them anyway. You are not going to let them wreck your life.
COMMENT: The normal human being does not have this agape love? That has to be acquired, is that right? By conceiving Christ? Then Christ growing, so it is a matter of time before that agape love takes place, right?
PASTOR VITALE: That agape love comes in degrees. From the moment that Christ begins to be formed in you, you may or may not have a measure of it. Agape love can be present in an imperfect man, but it will not be as complete as it was in the Lord Jesus Christ who died for us. He permitted Himself to be crucified so that all of mankind, all of the filth, all of the lepers of mankind, could be saved.
How many men do you know that would be willing to give up their existence? Not many. Look at the church today, brethren, the majority of them will not even give up an extra evening to go to church. An extra night, humanity, the church is all into itself. The believers come first, his wife, or the husband, or the children come next. His extended family comes next. Then maybe the celebrities in the church come next.
Who is inviting the widow and the orphan in the church to dinner? Who is doing it? I remember when I was raised up in that church, I was raising a daughter by myself. All the holidays came, I was never once invited for a holiday to somebody's house, but the whole church was fellowshipping. This family was inviting that family and that family was inviting that family. No, I was a widow. No one invited me or my daughter, not one person in five years had me over for a holiday dinner. There was someone, but she was a personal friend of mine.
Not one person came to me and said, "We go to the same church, I see that you are raising that child alone, come and have dinner with us on holiday. Do you have any place to go?" Not one person. On the contrary, when the church evangelized and there was no transportation to the church, you had to get your own transportation. I could not go, because everyone was going with their friends, their married friends, and no one had room for someone who did not have a husband to drive. That is outrageous in the Lord's church.
When you have a car and you are driving in the first one, what you should be thinking about is the person that could not get there without you. Not someone else who has their own car, who is driving with you to save the gas money. The church is carnal and they are out of order.
I know there were a couple of widows in the church at the time whose hearts where broken. They had all kinds of trouble getting a ride to church. On the evangelistic outreaches, nobody wanted to take them. One of these women I am still in touch with, she is still backslidden. Her heart was broken a million times over, nobody wanted them. They were fighting like cats and dogs to get to church. Most of the church talked about them and did not like them, did not want to give them rides. These were women on welfare.
The bottom line was, God help us, for whatever reason they were coming to church by church van. The pastor was allowing a man in the church to use the church van to pick them up. One day without notice, the pastor just cut the service, did not even have the decency to give the women an explanation. He told them the driver did not want to drive anymore. The driver said, "Who, what? Not me, the pastor told me not to take the van anymore." Outrageous.
If you do not want to pick them up anymore, if you do not want to give the church van, then tell them. Do not blame it on the driver and have the driver blame it on you. In God's church?! God help us.
COMMENT: I have never wanted to be in an inner circle. I despise the fact that people would exclude us, I never labeled it pride. I know it to be pride. I was very disturbed by the rejection of others. I kind of like the smorgasbord of opinions and ideas. Is that something that I have to overcome in a spiritual walk?
PASTOR VITALE: I do not think so. I think it is very healthy to not desire to be in the inner circle. I was never in the inner circle either. I never was. I do not think it is something that we strive for in Christ, to be in an inner circle.
There is an inner circle in the spirit of God. For a natural man to strive to be in an inner circle is pride and ungodly, but if Christ puts an anointing on you, if Christ gives you an office that puts you in an inner circle, if it is His spirit, then to reject it is reverse pride. Can you hear that? If Christ calls you to the inner circle, then you must come, because everybody does not have the same anointing, and everybody does not have the same maturity in Christ.
There really is an Eldership in Christ. The measure of maturity in Christ in you, you find yourself in an inner circle, the Lord calls you to meetings with people to solve problems. Christ is calling you to be a spiritual elder, then you have to go.
It is the same principle throughout the Scripture and throughout life. It is the same principal. The same identical activity, when it is called by the carnal mind, is sin and undesirable. When it is called by Christ, it is righteous and very desirable. That is why you cannot look at people's behavior, but you must try the spirit and discern the motives of their heart. Is their motive Christ or is their motive the carnal mind? It is essential, because their behavior looks the same.
We see a man with a gun shooting a man on the street to steal his money. Then we see the government executing a murderer, and the carnal mind of man says it is the same thing.
God says, "No, it is not the same thing." We have liberals in the country saying it is the same thing, that two wrongs do not make a right. God does not perceive that as two wrongs. God perceives an execution of a convicted murderer as a righteous act, which is in the power of the state.
We see that many people with carnal minds do not think clearly, they are without understanding, their mind is covered with darkness. Both acts are murder, one is righteous and one is unrighteous. You cannot look at the behavior. You can look at the behavior, but you have to look past the behavior into the motive. God tries the intents of mans heart, because if it is Christ telling you to do it, it cannot be unrighteous.
I know this is dangerous ground, but the fact is we all have to pray and pray until we enter into a relationship with Christ where we have reason to believe it is Him. You pray every step of the way. "Father is it is not you, deliver me. Father if it is not you, correct me. Father if it is not you, help me."
You start to walk. If you make a couple of mistakes, and you think something is God, and it turns out that it is not, you pick yourself up, you brush yourself off, you start all over again, and you have to walk. You have to move in the spirit, knowing that you are sure to make some mistakes here and there.
You have to be able to take the correction when God shows it to you, from whoever He shows it to you from. If you read my book, I was corrected by a woman on a line to get an airplane ticket. I was highly offended, I was like, "Who does that woman think she is, butting in." It was God. You cannot walk this walk with pride. Pride will hinder you and destroy you from walking this path. Glory to God.
What we are speaking about is the walk of the Son. The Son follows after the spirit of God. We must practice discerning His spirit. It is not that easy. It maybe was at the beginning. I think I was talking to somebody about it. I think it was XXXX. I do not know, I was speaking to someone recently.
I have had very little trouble discerning the spirit of God over the years but, apparently, I have gone into a new realm. I am having more trouble discerning the spirit of God than I have had in fifteen years with the Lord.
I noticed that He is speaking to me less clearly. He wants me to take more responsibility for the decisions I make, everything I have learned in Christ, everything I have learned from my natural experience. He wants me to start functioning as a whole well-rounded Son of God. I am having all kinds of trouble. I believe I am still going forward, do not misunderstand me, but I am having a struggle that I do not even remember having hearing from God.
COMMENT: Would you say it is another stage of development?
PASTOR VITALE: That is what it looks like right now. I will let you know next year. Right now, that is how it looks to me. I have entered into the next stage of development, and I am struggling with it. I am struggling hearing from God.
COMMENT: God gives you...when you are a baby, He gives you instruction right out of the book. Then you go to another level to maybe hear the voice. Then impressions, then you go to a place where you do not hear anything and you say, "Lord where is the answer? I cannot hear you, I am in a spot." I just have to go on what I have learned on the background that I have. I guess I just have to go on faith.
This realm that you have gone on to is, I guess, a challenge to you on how to deal with it. How to be able to know what God's thoughts are, to put them in action. I know I am going through the stage now where I do not hear from God. As you say, I might say,"Maybe it is my carnal mind when I say these things, but you are trying them and testing them.
PASTOR VITALE: You have to seek Him out.
COMMENT: This way I have never done that before. I have always been quiet, did not say anything, when I said anything I said it carnally. As I am getting more into this doctrine? To me, it is a new way of thinking, it is fantastic, it is great. Maybe I will get to the place sometimes where I will be able to discern it.
PASTOR VITALE: I think in a lot of areas, He is not telling us what to do, because He wants us to make the decision based on righteousness. He wants to see what we will decide. If it is a wrong decision, we will reap what we sow, and hopefully learn from that mistake. I find He is telling me less and less what to do.
COMMENT: I was always afraid of making a mistake. I would not make the decision.
PASTOR VITALE: That is not good. You have to walk, you have to do, you have to face up to the mistakes that you make. You have to make the change. That is the description of a valiant person. Everyone in Christ is valiant. You have to do.
COMMENT: It was a fear. I guess a fear of failure that really hindered me not to make the decisions.
PASTOR VITALE: Praise the Lord. Passivity is an evil in the earth. Passivity is a great evil, you must do something.
COMMENT: Passivity is a sin? I never thought passivity was sin.
PASTOR VITALE: Yes, passivity is sin. Everything that is not of faith is sin. It is evil to just do nothing. Fear is sin. Fear is associated with carnality. What you even do in moments of crisis, is help. I will do what I do, if I have the time to pray it through. I will spend time praying it through. If it is a crisis to the best of my ability I, at least, get out, "Jesus," then I go and do whatever I have to do, believing that He will be with me, that I gave my first allegiance to Him, He knows it is a crisis. He knows you do not have time to pray it through, He knows.
COMMENT: When we are in full stature with that whole garment woven, that whole thing, will we have the agape love at that time? That will be?
PASTOR VITALE: Yes, Jesus had the spirit with that measure, and the spirit of God is the agape love of the Lord Jesus Christ. He is the lover of our soul.
COMMENT: It will take time?
PASTOR VITALE: It takes time. Depending on where you are when the Lord first starts working with you, you may have more or less to overcome. If you have been in the church for many years, you may have some religious spirits, you may have a lot of false doctrine.
If you are a little on in years when the Lord starts working with you in this area, you have everything that you learned. All the bad things that you have learned in your whole life you have to unlearn. If you are a younger person, you may not have that great an accumulation of bad habits, but you have your immaturity.
If you are older you have you bad habits, but you have your maturity, the wisdom that comes with years. Jesus knows what He is doing. Where ever He is starting with you, He is meeting at that place. That is why we are all called to meet each other's needs. That is why it is important to discern the anointing. Someone can be in a position of authority for a long time and if they have some kind of a set back, they fall down in Christ, that person has to know that they fell down in Christ.
If that has happened to you, look for the authorities that God has put over you no matter how temporarily. It is possible we go up and down. Two people can have a relationship, for a long time one person can be the elder and the other the younger. If the elder goes into crisis, that relationship can reverse for a season.
We must discern it when it reverses, and you must discern it when it reverses back. We are constantly flowing in and out, in accordance with the prompting of their internalized spirit of Christ. You are not going to function in the new age if you cannot discern the spirit of Christ. Do not panic, just do not stop praying.
Pray without ceasing, take the correction, put your pride down and fight with everything. You have to submit to that which God has placed over you in the hope that He shall appear in you in that hour in the fullness of His mind, that all the wisdom, knowledge, and preservation in it shall appear in you.
Some really exciting things are about to come upon the earth, some really exciting things, and they are going to be spiritual things. They are not likely to be carnally discerned, because we are entering into the New Age, which is a spiritual age. The excitement that it is already happening is in the spirit. Someone in the church said to me, "Did you see that fire falling in the service last Sunday?" He said it to me because I was one of the spiritual people in the church, but I was not spiritual in that way.
I could not see the fire, but not long after that the fire was falling all over the service. I saw it, that made me a member of the inner circle of people who could see the fire. We all had something in common. We were talking about it and chattering about the exciting spiritual events that occurred that Sunday in church.
COMMENT: What kind of fire?
PASTOR VITALE: I cannot explain it to you, except that I saw in the spirit. Do you know what it means to see in the spirit? Do you? I saw in the spirit.
PASTOR VITALE: There is vision in the spirit. All that I can tell you was that there was spiritual fire falling all over the congregation. Therefore, a separation immediately occurred between the people who could see it and the people who could not.
It is ungodly to have exclusive groups, but when exclusive groups are called out because of the spirit of Christ, that is the way it is. I believe they are open to everybody, to everybody. If you want it and you do not have it, you just pray.
COMMENT: Are you saying the fire? Are you acknowledging that God is moving you, you can sense it?
PASTOR VITALE: No, it was something I have only experienced once or twice. There was actually fire falling on the congregation. It is different than the move of the spirit, I cannot tell you anymore than that. I am sorry. It is different. What it is, is variations of the move of God's spirit, and one of these variations is that fire fell that day. I cannot tell you anymore than that.
COMMENT: Fire meaning judgment or judgments?
PASTOR VITALE: No, it was a spiritual fire. It was all over the congregation. It was like thunder and lightening in the spirit. I could hear the crackling.
COMMENT: Actual fire?
PASTOR VITALE: Spiritual fire.
COMMENT: I had experiences where I felt electricity in the air. I do not know what you are talking about with the fire.
PASTOR VITALE: I only experienced it once. There are many experiences in the realm of God's spirit waiting for us to experience them. We have to mature into a place where they are. Experiences in Christ abide in the realm of he spirit. They have always been there. We fell down underneath it.
As we ascend up into it, we will experience all these things. Even in Christ, even if you are not experiencing it now, there is room for everybody. Everybody is growing at their own pace, but this move of God is a spiritual move of God. It will have to be spiritually discerned. The training you are getting here is really essential.
Do not take this in any negative way, it is a great blessing that God has brought you here for the training. The fact that He has brought you here for the training means that He wants you to have it. He is giving it to you.
By giving you the training, He is giving it to you. As you submit to the training you must have faith that He will build it in you. He will build it in you, He has need of you. There is much, much work to do. There are people moaning, groaning and crying for the ministry of Christ. He wants you to have this more than you want it. There is much, much work to be done. The whole creation has to be saved.
Those that are not reconciled have to be reconciled. Those that are not sanctified have to be sanctified. We are all redeemed, the whole creation is redeemed. There is much work to do.
COMMENT: The imputed Christ in the beginning was killed, because He was not brought forth from seed. If somebody has the Christ in them that is not fully grown, but has come forth from seed, but is an immature Christ. Is that...you have talked about abortion, is it possible that....I was under the impression that the Christ that was imparted can never go away. Yet, you have talked about the Christ dying in the person. Do you understand my question?
PASTOR VITALE: This is a hard word, but it is my understanding at this time that until we are fully born again, Christ can abort in us at any time during the growth period. However, be encouraged by the message this morning, that if Christ is being formed in you and He does abort, for Him to abort it must involve sin in the individual. It must involve sin.
We studied Elijah this morning. We found out the first thing that Elijah did wrong was that he listened to Satan's thoughts.
PASTOR VITALE: He did, Elijah did, but the Lord Jesus Christ came and reformed Christ in him. The first thing Elijah did was listen to Satan's thoughts. He was afraid of Jezebel when she promised to kill him within twenty-four hours. The second thing that Elijah did was he rebelled against the Lord Jesus Christ.
Whatever the Lord Jesus Christ instructed to Elijah, he did not do. He did what his carnal mind told him. He ran, and the eventual out growth of this experience with Elijah was Christ aborted in him, but when he cried out to God, the Father sent the Lord Jesus Christ and reformed Christ Jesus in him.
The bottom line is why would you abort? What is the motive for abortion? Have you aborted because you were overcome? Did you fight as hard as you could, but you were overcome and Christ went down and aborted? In that circumstance, almost without any doubt, because I cannot speak for the Lord in this instance, but with great confidence I tell you if you have aborted, because you went down in the battle, all you have to do is cry out to the Lord Jesus Christ. He is right there building Christ Jesus in you again.
However, if you have aborted because of willful sin, because of the unrepented sin, willful disobedience to God, blaspheme towards the Lord, utter and out right rejection of the Lord's authority over your life, if you have not overcome, but you have backslidden, then there is still always the opportunity that the Lord can reform the Christ Jesus in you again. Whether or not the Lord will do it is up to Him. Sometimes, people that this happens to can wait twenty or thirty years for Christ Jesus to be reformed in them.
COMMENT: How can you tell if you aborted Christ?
PASTOR VITALE: You become a very carnal person. I have seen it with several people. It is frightening. People who moved, who prophesied, who understood this doctrine, who had a glorious anointing on them, sat in this meeting telling me they could not understand what I was talking about.
COMMENT: Do you think I aborted?
PASTOR VITALE: No, you just took a tumble, you took a tumble.
COMMENT: It is scary.
PASTOR VITALE: You rebelled, but I do not believe you aborted. You are still here.
COMMENT: I am still here, but I feel like I am just hanging on, like I am going down into judgment. That is how I feel.
PASTOR VITALE: It is okay to go down into judgment. You are going to come up higher than you were before you went down. I do not believe, no.
COMMENT: This morning I was having the Elijah Experience, when you were saying that it was happening, when you said my carnal mind was on top, but that is not the same as abortion?
PASTOR VITALE: Not to me. My definition of spiritual abortion is that Christ dies, and you go back into the world. I do not see any sign of you going back into the world, XXXX. You are clinging to the Lord with all you have got. You are right here in the meeting tonight. The two people that I know that aborted went from a high spiritual realm, one of them is totally in the world, totally in the world. The other person, I have not seen in a while. They moved out of the area.
If they are still in the church, and I do not know. They are no where near where they were. They took a radical fall in their spiritual position.
COMMENT: Is it possible for someone with the spirit of Christ, the Christ has begun to be formed in them, for Him to stay alive, and they do not have any support, they are all alive, is that possible? With the carnal minds all around, just have the Holy Ghost, and nobody has got the spirit of Christ with them.
PASTOR VITALE: Yes, it is possible to stay alive, if you are in the will of God. Once you take the tumble, you have taken a tumble XXXX, it is okay to take five steps forward and two steps back. You took a tumble, but you are still way ahead.
The bottom line now is that you do everything you can to stay within God's will, and He will lead you out. He will lead you out, He will repair you, and He will lead you back. If I were you, what I would be concentrating on would be praying for God to help me to keep this rebellion down, to hear His voice and to stay in His will. If it was me, I would be crying out everyday for whatever I need.
Any trial He puts me into, not to get myself out, but wait on God for deliverance, He will restore you. It is a healing process, it will take a while. I do not know how long it is going to take. I honestly do not know, but He will bring you back. You are very much here. It is a corrective judgment that was necessary.
He forced your sin to the surface, your sin manifested, and you have come under some judgment. The Lord is working to rip out the root of the sin. It is not wasted, it is something that was necessary.
You have every reason to be encouraged. I know it is not pleasant being where you are, but you have every reason to be encouraged, that in due season as you lend yourself into submission to Him, He will restore you. You will be restored greater than where you were when you came down. There is not a doubt in my mind, there is a high call on your life.
COMMENT: What is the difference then when the imputed Christ is overcome and dies and the imparted Christ is overcome and dies? Because I thought the difference between the two of them was the imparted one is the one that stays and the imputed one, it is possible to just wipe it out. What is the difference between the two deaths of them?
PASTOR VITALE: That is true, but it is not true. Let me put it to you this way. God just gave me a Scripture to read, that when the Son is still a child being trained up, you cannot tell the difference between the Son and the servant. The Son looks like a servant when he is being trained up. The imparted Christ has the potential to mature into a place where He can never be destroyed. Until he actually matures into that place, He can be destroyed. Can you hear that? Want me to say that again?
The imparted Christ has the potential, the imparted Christ which begins with a seed, has the potential to mature into a place from which he can never be destroyed. That maturing is a journey from seed to mature man. Anywhere along that journey before He ascends to that place of strength and maturity, He can be destroyed along the line.
The basic difference between the imputed and the imparted Christ is that the imputed Christ is given without experience and cannot bring life to the soul. Preservation to the body is given as a mature Christ. It does not grow from seed, and it does not mature. The measure of maturity that the imparted Christ is giving that is which it stay... did I say imparted? I meant imputed.
The measure of the imputed Christ is giving, it abides in that, and it never matures into a place where it preserves your soul and your body, or gives life to your soul and preserves your body. It just does the function that it was giving to you for.
If you are a prophet, and the imputed Christ is formed in you to bring forth a faultless prophecy like Daniel or Ezekiel or Isaiah, the prophecy is given, and the imputed Christ is withdrawn. God's purpose is completed. It is not something that is given to you to bring life. The imputed anointing is not given to you to raise you from the dead.
The imputed anointing is given to you so that God's will should be done through you. The imparted Christ is given to raise you from he dead. That is the major difference.
PASTOR VITALE: We can have both, or I guess there is an overcoming. We can have both, or you can say we have an immature imparted anointing which is to say you cannot tell the difference between the son and the servant. When the son is immature, the imparted anointing can look just like the imputed anointing.
When the believer is immature, you cannot really tell whether it is an imputed anointing or an imparted anointing until the time of maturity comes. Can your hear that? Praise God.
A common problem a son has is that they will be sitting in a congregation under a man with an imputed anointing. A son with an immature imparted anointing, a son that has the potential to go into full stature and live forever, but he may be sitting under a man who has an imputed anointing which cannot give him eternal life.
Because the son with the immature imparted anointing is young, he not only does not appear to be equal to the man in the pulpit with the imputed anointing, but it is very common that the man in the pulpit with the imputed anointing cannot even recognize the imparted anointing upon the disciple. He does not treat him accordingly.
I have never known a man with an imputed anointing that has recognized an immature imparted anointing. Why? Because men with an imputed anointing are carnal, and they will think along these lines, "Well, if you are sitting in the congregation, then you cannot have a royal anointing. If you had a royal anointing, surely you would have a congregation. Surely, you would have all kinds of equipment and money." Because they are carnal.
The imputed anointing is given without repentance. It is a gift and a calling of God that is given without repentance. It does not include the wisdom that is in the mind of Christ, but we discern them, those of us that have Christ. No matter where we are sitting, if we are in a congregation and nobody can recognize the anointing on us, if we are sitting in the midst of a group of great dignitaries of this world, they cannot recognize us, we still know who they are. We know that they are carnal men. We know this man has no anointing. We know that this man has an imputed anointing. We know that this man has an imparted anointing.
We who have Christ can discern all men, Paul said, but the ones that have an imputed anointing, because that is not Christ, that is the Holy Ghost, our natural man cannot discern the son with the imparted anointing. They cannot figure us out. They never saw anything like this before. They do not know what to make of us. They misjudge us, they think evil of our good deeds. They think evil of our good, because they never saw it before.
They do not know what it is, but when you have the true imparted anointing, no matter how harmless you look, you know who every man is. You know who he is, you know who his father is, you know who he is. Could you imagine the world looking at me preaching from here. The informal way that I dress, the informal way that I hold the meetings. Worldly men with an imputed anointing would laugh at me, but I know who my God is. I know who is in me. I discern all men, but they cannot discern me.
Was it Jesus that said, "Be careful how you treat people because you may entertain angels unaware." Was it Jesus who said that? You better be careful because the imparted anointing is spiritually discerned. You better be careful you are not blaspheming God's anointed, because of the way they look or the way they sound. You may be entertaining an angel unaware, you maybe bringing heavy cursing upon you. You cannot go by what you see with your eyes. It is a spiritual covenant.
Right now we are in transition. The situation is going to become more severe. You cannot go with your natural senses. The Scripture says in the book of Proverbs that he who repays good with evil, shall have evil abiding upon his house. If you cannot discern the good works of Christ, if you think that the good works of Christ are evil, and you respond with evil then you are returning evil for the good of Christ. Evil will cleave unto you. You have to hear it. Anybody else?
COMMENT: That angel, does it always mean the spirit of God?
PASTOR VITALE: There are evil angels, and there are good angels.
COMMENT: What about rebirth, does that mean rebirth as well?
PASTOR VITALE: I am sorry XXXX, I do not understand your question.
COMMENT: Entertaining someone like the demonic kingdom is coming up higher, just as the kingdom of Christ is coming up. Could you be entertaining an evil one?
PASTOR VITALE: You can be entertaining an evil angel unaware, but the Scripture that I quoted, Jesus was saying, "Be careful how you treat people, because it could be an angel." If you mistreat an angel you could be bringing great evil upon your house. If you mistreat an evil angel, I do not see how it could bring evil upon your house. You most certainly can be entertaining evil angels. You never know who you are talking to. You have to get the eyes of your understanding open. We are living in a dangerous world today.
COMMENT: Is it the spirit of man?
PASTOR VITALE: Spirit of man, a spirit, my understanding is that the angel is Christ in the man. It is the spiritual man. Christ in you is your angel. The Scripture talks about Peter's angel. It is the Christ man in you that is your angel.
PASTOR VITALE: I believe that. There is a spiritual man in you that you are not in continuous contact with. He is inside of you, but the Lord is in the process of developing you spiritually to the point where you are in a continuous communion with him, but you do not have it now.
It is His desire to commune with you, but right now He is separate from you. The end of His work in your life is that you will be joined in marriage, you will be one spirit. Right now, He is inside of you. A Lot of what He does, you are not aware of, because you are still blinded.
You have an angel, it is possible for this angel, for Christ in you, to exit from your body and appear to someone else to do a good work. When that happens, he will look just like you. In a situation like that a person could see you and say, "XXXX, I saw you last night, I saw you helping that man that fell down on the street." You would say, "What are you talking about? I was home all night."
Unbeknownst to you, the Lord dispatched your angel on a mission of mercy, and He looked just like you. You did not even know it. That is where you are in your measure of spiritual development now. As we mature, you will know everything that your spiritual man is doing. You will be doing it and experiencing it with Him.
COMMENT: In witchcraft they have out of body experiences. I once told you about my son's father-in-law who is a warlock, and he spoke to him. He told him he was in his house, described the house he had never been in, described the rooms and everything in it. He said he was there that night. Would you say that they sent that spirit, but this warlock, this man, was aware that he was there.
PASTOR VITALE: I thought you said it was the warlock that was in your sons house? Yes, He astral projected into your sons house.
COMMENT: He was conscious of that. You said the Lord can use us, and we would not be conscious of it. Why is that?
PASTOR VITALE: It is also possible to astral project without understanding. I have heard lots of testimonies that they think they are having a dream and they look down, there is their body lying on the bed. They have astral projected without understanding.
As a matter of fact, I have heard from a couple of people that they have some really bad nights, that they are lying in bed, and they feel their soul separating from their body. They are real scared because they do not want to separate from their body. They do not want to astral project, but their soul is leaving. Sometimes it happens without your agreement, in the occult also.
COMMENT: They are conscious of it?
PASTOR VITALE: They are conscious of it. I would imagine they are conscious of it, and sometimes they are not conscious of it. I think the same thing happens in both camps. The more mature you are in a spirit of Satan, the more control you have over the spiritual functions of Satan's spirit. Just as a young child, the more mature that child is, the more control he has over his bowels. The more control he has over his bladder functions. The more control he has over his legs and his arms. His eye-to-hand coordination. His ability to dress himself.
It is the same thing in the spirit. That is what Jesus said when He said, "You have to be a little child, you have to start learning everything from the bottom on up." The more spiritually mature you are, the more control you will have over your spiritual functions. The more mature you are, the more control you will have when you leave your body, where you go and how you function.
Whether it is in the occult or whether it is in Christ, the more mature you are, the more control and the more awareness you have over these experiences. It is very exciting. I cannot wait to enter into the deeper realms of the spirit. Praise God.
I know I am very deep in discernment. I feel other people's feelings, and I have a large ability to recognize that they are not my feelings, that they are someone else's feelings. Therefore, I can pray intelligently because I am feeling what they feel. I know how to pray most of the time. I know who it is a lot of the time. I know who it is and I can pray intelligently.
I am looking forward to traveling in the spirit and having all kinds of exciting experiences in Christ. I am really looking forward to it. I have been waiting a long time. My desire is to be able to astral project into Nigeria to visit our friends there.
PASTOR VITALE: I feel it can happen before full stature, if the Lord permits.
COMMENT: What about XXX XXXX and everybody?
PASTOR VITALE: With XXX XXXXX, I am convinced with XXXX XXXX, it was a gift. I believe that we can travel in the spirit as a result of our spiritual maturity before we reach full stature. Can you tell the difference?
With XXX XXXX it was a gift. His ability to travel in the spirit had absolutely nothing to do with his spiritual maturity.
COMMENT: I have never heard of him. Who is XXXX XXX?
PASTOR VITALE: XXXX XXXX is a famous, well he is dead, he is a famous evangelist. There are several books written about him. He had a fantastic ministry, God used him mightily, and one of the things he did was travel in the spirit. I am convinced that it was a gift. He did not have the ability to travel in the spirit because of his mature spiritual state of being. I do believe that those of us who are maturing in Christ will be able to travel in the spirit before we reach full stature if the Lord permits. Not as a gift, but as a condition of our maturing spiritual condition. Glory to God.