Tag Archives: Rodney Howard-Browne doctrine

God’s Children Lack No Good Thing

“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

Psalm 34:9-10  (NKJ)
9 Oh, fear the LORD, you His saints! There is no want to those who fear Him.
10 The young lions lack and suffer hunger; but those who seek the LORD shall not lack any good thing.

There is no lack and no want to those who fear the Lord and who seek Him.  If you love and respect God and serve Him with all your heart, then you will always have what you need.  The Word of God promises and assures us of that.

Psalm 23:1  (NKJ)
1 The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.

The Word says that we, the Lord’s sheep, will not want.  Not – we might want.  Not – we hope we will not want. But – we will not want!   If Jesus is your shepherd, you will not want.  You will not experience lack.  If this is not your current state, then you need to stand up and claim God’s Word and His promises for your life and decide that you will have what God says you can have – you will not want.

Psalm 37:25  (NKJ)
25 I have been young, and now am old; yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his descendants begging bread.

Are you righteous?  Your heavenly Father will not leave you or let you down and your descendants will never need to beg from others or ask for a handout.

1Thessalonians 4:11-12  (NKJ)
11 that you also aspire to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to work with your own hands, as  we commanded you,
12 that you may walk properly toward those who are outside, and that you may lack nothing.

In order to be in a position where you lack nothing, the Word tells us that we must live a life of integrity.  We must mind our own business –  not mind everyone else’s – and we must work with our own hands.  We should not look to others to get what we want.  We must not wait for a handout or search continually for “get-rich-quick” schemes.  We must work hard, be honest and treat everyone fairly, Christians and non-Christians.

2 Corinthians 8:15  (NKJ)
15 As it is written, “He who gathered much had nothing left over, and he who gathered little had no lack.”

We must not be greedy.  Being greedy is a sure path to lack and want.

Proverbs 28:8  (NKJ)
8 One who increases his possessions by usury and extortion gathers it for him who will pity the poor.

Proverbs 28:27  (NKJ)
27 He who gives to the poor will not lack, but he who hides his eyes will have many curses.

If you want to be free from lack, you must be a giver.  You must give to those who cannot give back to you.  Don’t give just to those who can bless you back.  You must give freely, with no strings attached and no ulterior motives.

As a child of God, you have all of God’s blessings available to you at anytime.  He promises you no want and no lack, and that’s what He does for you.  You must find out what you need to do to be on the receiving end of those blessings.  You must conform yourself to His image and to His Word and you will have the reality of His promises manifested in your life.

Raising up Godly Offspring – God’s Desire for our Families

“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

Malachi 2:14-15  (KJV)

14        Yet ye say, Wherefore? Because the LORD hath been witness between thee and the wife of thy youth, against whom thou hast dealt treacherously: yet is she thy companion, and the wife of thy covenant.

15        And did not he make one? Yet had he the residue of the spirit. And wherefore one? That he might seek a godly seed. Therefore take heed to your spirit, and let none deal treacherously against the wife of his youth.


The Lord brings a man and a woman together as one and a reason for this is so that they can bring forth godly offspring.


1 Samuel 2:12

12        Now the sons of Eli were sons of Belial; they knew not the LORD.


The priest, Eli, had two sons, Hophni and Phinehas. They were rebellious and would not walk in the ways of God. When we don’t deal with rebellious attitudes in our heart, it leads to evil and can causes the downfall of other people, too. Hophni and Phinehas would not respect the offering of God or listen to their father and it cost them not only their own lives, but also it also caused their father’s death.


1 Samuel 2:17

17        Wherefore the sin of the young men was very great before the LORD: for men abhorred the offering of the LORD.


1 Samuel 2:22

22        Now Eli was very old, and heard all that his sons did unto all Israel; and how they lay with the women that assembled at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.


Hophni and Phinehas despised the offerings of the Lord and were fornicating with many women. Their sin opened the door to the enemy and caused the presence and glory of God to depart from Israel and the Ark of the Covenant to be stolen by the Philistines.


1 Samuel 4:17-18

17        And the messenger answered and said, Israel is fled before the Philistines, and there hath been also a great slaughter among the people, and thy two sons also, Hophni and Phinehas, are dead, and the ark of God is taken.

18        And it came to pass, when he made mention of the ark of God, that he fell from off the seat backward by the side of the gate, and his neck brake, and he died: for he was an old man, and heavy. And he had judged Israel forty years.


When Eli had heard of the outcome and how that the Ark of God was stolen, it was too much for him and he fell over backward off his seat. Because he was an old and heavy man, he broke his neck and died. This was not the way that God had intended for his end to be. He would not deal with his sons and it cost him everything including all of their lives.


1 Samuel 4:19-22

19        And his daughter in law, Phinehas’ wife, was with child, near to be delivered: and when she heard the tidings that the ark of God was taken, and that her father in law and her husband were dead, she bowed herself and travailed; for her pains came upon her.

20        And about the time of her death the women that stood by her said unto her, Fear not; for thou hast born a son. But she answered not, neither did she regard it.

21        And she named the child Ichabod, saying, The glory is departed from Israel: because the ark of God was taken, and because of her father in law and her husband.

22        And she said, The glory is departed from Israel: for the ark of God is taken.


This is a sad story of a whole family negatively affected, because they would not take heed to God and His Word and His ways. Any rebellion in our lives must be stamped out and our attitudes must be dealt with and brought in line with the Word of God. Without exception, this applies to the minister as well as the congregation member.


This rebellion and ungodliness in the family of the priest was one of the reasons why God had to raise up Samuel. God used Samuel to give a message to Eli about his family to say that God would judge him because he would not deal with his sons.


1 Samuel 3:11-14

11        And the LORD said to Samuel, Behold, I will do a thing in Israel, at which both the ears of every one that heareth it shall tingle.

12        In that day I will perform against Eli all things which I have spoken concerning his house: when I begin, I will also make an end.

13        For I have told him that I will judge his house for ever for the iniquity which he knoweth; because his sons made themselves vile, and he restrained them not.

14        And therefore I have sworn unto the house of Eli, that the iniquity of Eli’s house shall not be purged with sacrifice nor offering for ever.


To have a family that loves God and His Word should be our desire and our goal. We should teach our children to love and respect God and His Word so that we raise up godly seed that respect and revere Him all the days of their lives.


“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.  Acts 10:38 KJV

This is a very important Bible verse. It tells us that the oppression of sin, sickness, disease and torment originate with the devil. He is the author and the perpetuator of all that is bad in the earth and in our lives – not God! This verse says that God was WITH Jesus. He ANOINTED Jesus with the HOLY GHOST and with POWER so that He could do GOOD and heal ALL who were oppressed by the devil. God is the author of all that is good. Healing and deliverance are GOOD! Healing and deliverance bring glory to God!

Jesus was the Son of God, born into the world in human form. He was sent to the earth for a specific purpose – to cut an everlasting, unbreakable covenant between God and man. He was the mediator between God and man – the bridge that allowed man to stand once more in the presence of Almighty God without sin and without fear of judgement. Jesus, as a man, grew up like other men. He spent thirty years studying the Word of God and submitting His life to that Word. He never once performed any miracles before the day that John baptized Him in water and God baptized Him in the Holy Ghost.

After He was baptized in the Holy Ghost, He began to preach the Word of God and to perform signs, wonders and miracles. He did not do these things because He was the Son of God. He did them firstly because He was meeting people’s needs and demonstrating the love of God to them and showing them what was available to them if they would keep covenant with God. He came to undo the destruction that the devil had wrought on the earth after the fall of man. Secondly, He was demonstrating to us the power and authority that WE can walk in when WE are baptized in the Holy Ghost.

And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. “He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned. “And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; “they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.” So then, after the Lord had spoken to them, He was received up into heaven, and sat down at the right hand of God. And they went out and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word through the accompanying signs. Amen.  Mark 16:15-20 NKJ

We are baptized in the Holy Ghost for a purpose – so that we can do the same thing that Jesus did – bring glory to God by delivering all those who are oppressed by the devil, sickness and sin! We are to preach the Gospel, baptizing all those, who receive God’s word, in water and the Holy Ghost. We are to cast out demons, speak with new tongues, operate in the gifts of the Spirit, lay hands on the sick and they will recover. Even accidents involving snakebites and any other poison will not be able to destroy our lives if we believe. (We should not tempt God by deliberately allowing ourselves to be poisoned or we will most likely find ourselves in heaven before our time!)

There are people today who say that only the disciples and apostles did signs and wonders and that it has all passed away now. They do that to explain the lack of power in their lives and the fact that they themselves are not baptized in the Holy Ghost or speaking in tongues! They say that they have the Holy Ghost, but I think maybe that they have as much of the Holy Ghost as some people who have a cup of water poured on them when they are “water baptized.” You can’t have a just a little sprinkle – you need to get dunked – YOU NEED TO BE SOAKED AND SATURATED IN HOLY GHOST POWER! The Holy Ghost is a free gift. Why would you refuse a free gift. “No thank you. I already have enough.” We can NEVER have enough of God. We need all we can get!

Some people even credit the devil with healing people. But the last time I checked, God is still our healer and the Bible still says that that God is the SAME yesterday, today and forever! Jesus told His disciples to preach the Gospel AND perform miracles. According to Acts 6:7, as more and more people were added to the church, the number of disciples increased greatly. God did not put a limitation on who could be a disciple, neither was it just for a certain time period. Every one of us who commits to God and submits to His word is a disciple. If signs and wonders followed the original disciples as they preached the word then if we are disciples today, signs and wonders should follow us as we preach the word.

Jesus spoke personally to His disciples and to the people who lived at that time in Israel. Through His word, He is still speaking to us today. If His word about love and forgiveness and repentance, etc. applies to people then and now, then His word pertaining to signs, wonders and miracles applies to people then and now. Jesus gave us our instructions and He has not come back yet to reverse them or change them. Until He says differently, we should be doing the last thing that He told us to do. Preaching the Gospel and performing miracles, healing delivering and setting people free by the power of the Holy Ghost!


“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

But about the resurrection of the dead-have you not read what God said to you, `I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob’? He is not the God of the dead but of the living.  Matthew 22:31-32 NIV

God is the God of the living – not the dead. But whom is He talking about? Who are the living and who are the dead? There are those whose bodies are dead, yet their spirits live on eternally. There are those whose bodies are alive and yet on the inside they are dead.

The widow who is really in need and left all alone puts her hope in God and continues night and day to pray and to ask God for help. But the widow who lives for pleasure is dead even while she lives.  1 Timothy 5:5-6 NIV

If we are dead to God and alive to sin, then we are dead even while we live. If we put selfish, worldly lusts and desires above and before God, then we are dead on the inside – even though our bodies are alive on this earth. Death is a state of being where a person is cut off from God. However, if we are dead to sin and alive unto Him, then we live – both now and eternally.

And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He who has the Sonhas life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.  1 John 5:11-12 NIV

If we have the Son, we have life. We will live eternally – alive unto God – even after our bodies fail us and pass away. The Bible tells us that God will give us a new body one day – a glorified body – free from sin and death. We will eventually return to live in God’s presence on the earth – in the New Jerusalem! However, if we do not have the Son and our body dies – our spirits will continue to exist, but death will reign in us and will hold us captive in hell. At that point we will experience physical, spiritual and eternal death – we are cut off from God for eternity.

Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?”  John 11:25-26 NIV

If we believe in Jesus, we will live even though our body dies. If we believe in Jesus we will never truly experience death. We will just pass from one life into another. The flame of our existence will never be extinguished.

Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the desert, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyonewho believes in him may have eternal life. “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.  John 3:14-18 NIV

Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on him.”  John 3:36 NIV

Until you believe in Jesus and accept Him as Lord and Savior, you live in a state of condemnation before God. You are alienated from the presence of God. If you die physically in that state – the Bible says that you go straight to hell. Some people think that God would not send people to hell because He is a God of love. Yes, He is a God of love – that is why He sent Jesus to die in our place. After that, it is our choice to make. We must choose Jesus if we want to live in peace and love and joy eternally. We must choose Jesus if we want to live at all.

“I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life. I tell you the truth, a time is coming and has now come when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God and those who hear will live. For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son to have life in himself.  John 5:24-26 NIV

Jesus did many other miraculous signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.  John 20:30-31 NIV

But if Christ is in you, your body is dead because of sin, yet your spirit is alive because ofrighteousness.  Romans 8:10 NIV


“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

Blessed are all who fear the LORD, who walk in his ways. You will eat the fruit of your labor; blessings and prosperity will be yours. Your wife will be like a fruitful vine within your house; your sons will be like olive shoots around your table. Thus is the man blessed who fears the LORD.  May the LORD bless you from Zion all the days of your life; may you see the prosperity of Jerusalem, and may you live to see your children’s children.

Peace be upon Israel.  Psalms 128:1-6 NIV

The man who respects, honors and reverences the Lord and walks in his ways is blessed, his wife is blessed and his children are blessed. He and his wife are blessed with many children and they also live long enough to see their children blessed with children.

He maketh the barren woman to keep house, and to be a joyful mother of children. Praise ye the LORD.  Psalms 113:9 KJV

God is the One who blesses us with children. If we want children, we can stand on His promises that say that He will bless us with children. Not only does He promise to bless us with children and make us mothers, but He will make us joyful mothers as well. Bearing children and raising them is a joyful experience if it is in the Lord.

Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward. As arrows are in the hand of a mighty man; so are children of the youth. Happy is the man that hath his quiver full of them: they shall not be ashamed, but they shall speak with the enemies in the gate.  Psalms 127:3-5 KJV

God gives children to us. They are a blessing, a reward and an inheritance (birthright) from the Lord. We should always value and treasure them as God-given. Ultimately, they belong to God – He gives them to us for a season and He expects us to fear Him and to raise them to fear Him. He expects us to raise them and to teach them so honor and serve Him. He expects us to love them, to teach them that He loves them and to teach them to love Him. We are to teach them, train them and prepare them for a godly life and then to launch them out as arrows from a bow.

If you want your arrow to fly straight and hit the target, you must take time to prepare it perfectly. You cannot rush it. The arrow must be perfectly straight, with no cracks or splinters. The point must be sharp and the feathers must be perfectly placed and attached. When it is ready to fly, the bow must be pulled back all the way. The arrow must not be released before its time or it will fall short of the mark. We must carefully nurture and train our children and release them only when the time is right. Feeding them, clothing them and housing them are not enough. We must teach them about God, about life and how to live godly lives.

When they are fully taught – we must not hang onto them, but release them to fly into the future that God has planned for them. If we do not teach them properly and if we send them out before their time or unprepared, they will not go very far or do very much good with their lives. How can you help others when you can’t help yourself? If we do teach them properly and if we send them out prepared, they will go far and they will be a blessing to many wherever they go. Their lives will count for God and they will make a difference in eternity.

They will not be put to shame when they contend with their enemies in the gate.  Psalm 127:5 NIV

A righteous man, by raising godly children, strengthens not only his family, but also his family’s position in society. There is unity in a godly family and therefore there is strength. The enemy that tries to contend with them is confounded and defeated.

“And whoever welcomes a little child like this in my name welcomes me. But if anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a large millstone hung around his neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea.  Matthew 18:5-6 NIV

God holds us responsible for the spiritual welfare of our children and we should not take that responsibility lightly. Father God blesses us with our children and we are responsible to raise them in such a way that we can present them back to Him with joy.


“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them.  Ephesians 5:11 NKJV

The power of sin is in its secrecy. As long as you keep your sin hidden in the dark, you continue to “fellowship” with these unfruitful works of darkness and you will never be free. The only way to be free of sin is to expose it to the light.

Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions. 2 Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin. 3 For I know my transgressions, and my sin is always before me.  Psalms 51:1-3 NIV

David was a man after God’s own heart. One of his strengths was that even though he sinned and made mistakes, like all of us do do, he was quick to acknowledge that sin was sin and that he had sinned. He exposed it before the Lord, asked for and received forgiveness. When you sin a sin and then try to convince yourself and everybody else that it isn’t really a sin, you are effectively living a lie. As long as you refuse to acknowledge that sin is sin, you will be bound by it. You must acknowledge that your sin is a sin and then that YOU have sinned. Until then, sin will control and dominate your life. You must say, “This is a sin. I committed this sin. Lord, please forgive me.” Then God is able to forgive you, wash you clean and remove that sin as far as the east is from the west. Then that sin will no longer dominate and control you. You will no longer be subject or bound to it. When sin comes to tempt you, you say, “NO – I know who you are. You are sin. I will not submit myself to you.”

1 Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children 2 and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. 3 But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people. 4 Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving. 5 For of this you can be sure: No immoral, impure or greedy person-such a man is an idolater-has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.  Ephesians 5:1-5 NIV

If you are a child of God, you should be an imitator of your Father and live a life of love, not of impurity, immorality and greed.

6 Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God’s wrath comes on those who are disobedient. 7 Therefore do not be partners with them. 8 For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light 9(for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) 10 and find out what pleases the Lord. 11 Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them. 12 For it is shameful even to mention what the disobedient do in secret. 13 But everything exposed by the light becomes visible, 14 for it is light that makes everything visible. This is why it is said: “Wake up, O sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.”  Ephesians 5:6-14 NIV

If the blood of Jesus has saved you, you were once in darkness, but now you are in the light. Live as a child of light and find out what pleases the Lord. Goodness, righteousness and truth please Him. You can expose your own sin and be forgiven or you can try to hide it and be exposed anyway, without forgiveness. Wake up and smell the coffee! Jesus died to free you from the power of sin. Let the light of Christ shine on you and set you free.

15 Be very careful, then, how you live-not as unwise but as wise, 16 making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. 17 Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. 18 Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit. 19 Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord, 20 always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.  Ephesians 5:15-20 NIV

Be wise and not foolish. Understand what the will of the Lord is and make the most of every opportunity. Every day, choose to serve and obey Him and not yield to your fleshly desires or the temptations of the devil. Be filled with the Spirit – sing to the Lord and give Him thanks for everything. If you do this you will be fruitful and productive and the blessing of God will be on your life.


“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

Beloved, let us love one another, for love is (springs) from God; and he who loves [his fellowmen] is begotten (born) of God and is coming [progressively] to know and understand God [to perceive and recognize and get a better and clearer knowledge of Him]. 8 He who does not love has not become acquainted with God [does not and never did know Him], for God is love. 

1 John 4:7-8 AMP

God is love and only those who really know God have His agape love flowing out of them.

In this the love of God was made manifest (displayed) where we are concerned: in that God sent His Son, the only begotten or unique [Son], into the world so that we might live through Him. 10 In this is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation (the atoning sacrifice) for our sins.  1 John 4:9-10 AMP

God clearly demonstrated His deep love toward us when He sent His only begotten Son to die so that we might live.

Beloved, if God loved us so [very much], we also ought to love one another. 12 No man has at any time [yet] seen God. But if we love one another, God abides (lives and remains) in us and His love (that love which is essentially His) is brought to completion (to its full maturity, runs its full course, is perfected) in us!  1 John 4:11-12 AMP

If God loves us so much, then we ought to also love each other. Even though we cannot see God, we can walk in His love and His love can become fully developed and mature within us.

By this we come to know (perceive, recognize, and understand) that we abide (live and remain) in Him and He in us: because He has given (imparted) to us of His [Holy] Spirit. 14 And [besides] we ourselves have seen (have deliberately and steadfastly contemplated) and bear witness that the Father has sent the Son [as the] Savior of the world. 15 Anyone who confesses (acknowledges, owns) that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides (lives, makes His home) in him and he [abides, lives, makes his home] in God.

1 John 4:13-15 AMP

God makes His home in you and you make your home in Him when you accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior.

And we know (understand, recognize, are conscious of, by observation and by experience) and believe (adhere to and put faith in and rely on) the love God cherishes for us. God is love, and he who dwells and continues in love dwells and continues in God, and God dwells and continues in him.  1 John 4:16AMP

We know that God loves us because He says so in His Word and because we have experienced His love. If we want to continue to live in Him and He in us, we must continue to walk in love.

In this [union and communion with Him] love is brought to completion and attains perfection with us, that we may have confidence for the day of judgment [with assurance and boldness to face Him], because as He is, so are we in this world. 18 There is no fear in love [dread does not exist], but full-grown (complete, perfect) love turns fear out of doors and expels every trace of terror! For fear brings with it the thought of punishment, and [so] he who is afraid has not reached the full maturity of love [is not yet grown into love’s complete perfection].  1 John 4:17-18 AMP

As we continue to walk with God and as we continue to allow Him to work in our hearts, then love is brought into completion in us, because as He is, so are we in this world. We can then come boldly into His presence, with no fear of punishment, because we are confident of the love that God has for us.

We love Him, because He first loved us.  1 John 4:19 AMP

We love him because we know how much He loves us. He reached out to love us first, before we knew Him or anything about Him at all.

If anyone says, I love God, and hates (detests, abominates) his brother [in Christ], he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, Whom he has not seen. 21 And this command (charge, order, injunction) we have from Him: that he who loves God shall love his brother [believer] also.  1 John 4:20-21 AMP

God commands us to love our brothers and sisters. The most compelling proof that we love God is that we love our brothers and sisters as well. If we say we love God and yet we do not love our neighbor, then we are lying – we do not really love God at all.


“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

Therefore then, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses [who have borne testimony to the Truth], let us strip off and throw aside every encumbrance (unnecessary weight) and that sin which so readily (deftly and cleverly) clings to and entangles us, and let us run with patient endurance and steady and active persistence the appointed course of the race that is set before us, 2 Looking away [from all that will distract] to Jesus, Who is the Leader and the Source of our faith [giving the first incentive for our belief] and is also its Finisher [bringing it to maturity and perfection]. He, for the joy [of obtaining the prize] that was set before Him, endured the cross, despising and ignoring the shame, and is now seated at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 Just think of Him Who endured from sinners such grievous opposition and bitter hostility against Himself [reckon up and consider it all in comparison with your trials], so that you may not grow weary or exhausted, losing heart and relaxing and fainting in your minds. 4 You have not yet struggled and fought agonizingly against sin, nor have you yet resisted and withstood to the point of pouring out your [own] blood.  Hebrews 12:1-4 AMP

In today’s world, we have so many wonderful conveniences – clean water, an abundance of fresh foods, mechanized transportation, electricity, refrigeration, computers, state of the art medical care, electronic communication and many other things that make our life very much easier than that of our ancestors. The danger is that we can, and have, become soft, lazy, dependant, and spoiled. We are in danger of becoming selfish, self-centered and unwilling to make even small necessary sacrifices. We want to have our cake and we want to eat it too. We refuse to endure anything that doesn’t feel good – even if it is good for us. We insist on our own rights and our own way – even at the expense of others.

Jesus, in contrast, made the ultimate sacrifice without reservation. He withstood enormous pressure to not follow through with the suffering that lay before Him – the rejection, the verbal abuse, the physical abuse, the incredibly painful death and on top of that, the weight of the world’s sin and His own Father laying the judgment and sentence of a sinner upon Him, Who was sinless and undeserving. He went forward to face His destiny, no matter what He had to endure, for thejoy that was set before Him. We are His joy – He endured it all for the joy of seeing you and me transformed by the power of God – delivered from darkness and translated into the light – gloriously adopted into the family of God.

And have you [completely] forgotten the divine word of appeal and encouragement in which you are reasoned with and addressed as sons? My son, do not think lightly or scorn to submit to the correction and discipline of the Lord, nor lose courage and give up and faint when you are reproved or corrected by Him; 6 For the Lord corrects and disciplines everyone whom He loves, and He punishes, even scourges, every son whom He accepts and welcomes to His heart and cherishes. 7 You must submit to and endure [correction] for discipline; God is dealing with you as with sons. For what son is there whom his father does not [thus] train and correct and discipline? 8 Now if you are exempt from correction and left without discipline in which all [of God’s children] share, then you are illegitimate offspring and not true sons [at all]. Hebrews 12:5-8 AMP

Children need a lot of love and a lot of discipline. Parents, who love their children, will do their best to prepare them to function in the world as mentally, physically, sociologically, and physiologically healthy adults. A parent who does not love and discipline their child has abdicated their divine responsibility. Discipline is not only necessary, but it is essential to healthy growth and development. A parent, who loves their children will take the time and make the effort to train their child. Training includes teaching them the right things to do and correcting them when they do the wrong thing. A child without love and discipline is like an illegitimate child – no one has claimed them and no one cares enough about him/her to help them to grow up to become a healthy adult.

The Lord corrects and disciplines everyone whom He loves and He punishes every son whom He accepts and welcomes to His heart and cherishes. The way that God teaches us is through His Word. The way He disciplines us is by His Spirit. The way He “spanks” us is through His Word and by His Spirit. When you mess up and you feel how grieved the Holy Spirit is, you would almost rather have a real spanking. When you love God, you want to do the right thing to please Him, because you love Him and He loves you, not just because you fear the consequences of disobedience.

We need to submit to the discipline of the Lord, even though it might be unpleasant and uncomfortable at the moment, as we focus on the joy that is set before us – the joy of godliness, the joy of being free from the control of the devil, free from the bondage of sin, and free from the limitations of the flesh!


“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

Hebrews 12:2 says that Jesus endured the cross, despised and ignored the shame for the joy that was set before Him and He is now seated at the right hand of the throne of God. He did not allow His own feelings, needs, and desires to get in the way of His destiny and His reward. Hebrews 5:8-9 says that although He was the Son of God, He learned obedience through what He suffered and this completed experience made Him perfectly equipped to became the Author and Source of eternal salvation to all those who hear and obey Him. Why do we think that it will be any different for any one of us? If Jesus was perfected through what He endured, then so will we be refined and perfected through what we endure.

God is not the author of sin, sickness, disease, lack or any other bad thing and they are not God’s perfect will for us – God’s perfect will for man was the peace and joy of the Garden of Eden. However, because we live on the earth, we are periodically exposed to these unpleasant things. We have the opportunity to be swallowed up and taken out by them or we can press in to God and His Word and can grow stronger. Even if the devil doesn’t manage to destroy some people by sickness or disease, he tries to destroy them slowly by causing them to become bitter and resentful toward God. God isn’t even their problem, but it suits them to blame Him and get mad at Him.

God has provided everything for us that we need and He gave us His Handbook, the Bible, so that we can find out the keys to get it all. If we lack any good thing – it is not God’s fault – it is because we either don’t know the Word or because we don’t act on the Word. We need to discipline ourselves to become obedient to the Spirit of God if we want to be blessed and if we want to prosper in every area of our life. A student who is not respectful to authority is a student who will not be able to learn what they need to learn. Proverbs 17:10 says that a reproof enters deeper into a man of understanding than a hundred lashes into a self-confident fool.

Hebrews 12:6-8 says that the Lord corrects and disciplines everyone He loves and He punishes the sons (and daughters) He accepts, welcomes to His heart and cherishes. You must submit to and endure God’s correction for discipline, because He is dealing with you as a father with his children. All true fathers train and correct and discipline all their true children. Only illegitimate children have no father to train them.

Those whom I dearly and tenderly] love, I tell their faults and convict and convince and reprove and chasten [I discipline and instruct them]. So be enthusiastic and in earnest and burning with zeal and repent [changing your mind and attitude].   Revelation 3:19 AMP

Moreover, we have had earthly fathers who disciplined us and we yielded [to them] and respected [them for training us]. Shall we not much more cheerfully submit to the Father of spirits and so [truly] live? 10 For [our earthly fathers] disciplined us for only a short period of time and chastised us as seemed proper and good to them; but He disciplines us for our certain good, that we may become sharers in His own holiness.  Hebrews 12:9-10 AMP

If earthly fathers train their children, correct them and even spank them when necessary – all for their good in the end – then shouldn’t we submit to our Heavenly Father’s correction and discipline? Shouldn’t we submit to the Word and to the Holy Spirit? Shouldn’t we put our flesh under and not let our flesh rule and control us? Shouldn’t we purge the sin from our lives and no longer allow it to manipulate us?

For the time being no discipline brings joy, but seems grievous and painful; but afterwards it yields a peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it [a harvest of fruit which consists in righteousness–in conformity to God’s will in purpose, thought, and action, resulting in right living and right standing with God].  Hebrews 12:11 AMP

Discipline is painful and unpleasant. However, the end result of a harvest of the peaceable fruit of righteousness is a priceless treasure. This fruit of peace is available only to those who have paid the price and have submitted their will to the will of God. Nothing can buy right standing with God – you have to submit to Him if you want His approval.

So then, brace up and reinvigorate and set right your slackened and weakened and drooping hands and strengthen your feeble and palsied and tottering knees, 13 And cut through and make firm and plain and smooth, straight paths for your feet [yes, make them safe and upright and happy paths that go in the right direction], so that the lame and halting [limbs] may not be put out of joint, but rather may be cured.  Hebrews 12:12-13 AMP

You are in charge of your life and your choices. You must choose to stand up for Jesus, lay your life down on the altar, and run the race to win. Allow God to do His work in your heart and in your life until He is satisfied that you are ready and prepared for all that He has for you. There is a great and wonderful prize set before you – the wonderful joy of a life that is fulfilled and complete and at peace with God.


“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.

For Christ (the Messiah) sent me out not to baptize but [to evangelize by] preaching the glad tidings (the Gospel), and that not with verbal eloquence, lest the cross of Christ should be deprived of force and emptied of its power and rendered vain (fruitless, void of value, and of no effect). 18 For the story and message of the cross is sheer absurdity and folly to those who are perishing and on their way to perdition, but to us who are being saved it is the [manifestation of] the power of God.  1 Corinthians 1:17-18 AMP

The message of the Gospel is so simple, so powerful, and so anointed that it does not need to be preached with fancy words in order to be effectively communicated to people. People whose hearts are not open to the Gospel story think that it is absurd nonsense, but those who have opened their hearts to the Gospel and received it, through faith, have seen and experienced the manifestation of the power of God.

For it is written, I will baffle and render useless and destroy the learning of the learned and the philosophy of the philosophers and the cleverness of the clever and the discernment of the discerning; I will frustrate and nullify [them] and bring [them] to nothing. 20 Where is the wise man (the philosopher)? Where is the scribe (the scholar)? Where is the investigator (the logician, the debater) of this present time and age? Has not God shown up the nonsense and the folly of this world’s wisdom? 21 For when the world with all its earthly wisdom failed to perceive and recognize and know God by means of its own philosophy, God in His wisdom was pleased through the foolishness of preaching [salvation, procured by Christ and to be had through Him], to save those who believed (who clung to and trusted in and relied on Him).  1 Corinthians 1:19-21 AMP

God cannot be found in the multitude of man’s philosophy. Philosophy is a product of the human brain – the carnal mind. They see the Gospel as mere foolishness. The more they try to understand God, the less they do understand Him. The carnal mind is an enemy of God. Romans 8:6-7 AMP says, “Now the mind of the flesh [which is sense and reason without the Holy Spirit] is death [death that comprises all the miseries arising from sin, both here and hereafter]. But the mind of the [Holy] Spirit is life and [soul] peace [both now and forever]. [That is] because the mind of the flesh [with its carnal thoughts and purposes] is hostile to God, for it does not submit itself to God’s Law; indeed it cannot.” Unless you approach the Gospel with an open mind and a heart of faith, you will never receive it or understand it. Philosophy wants to figure it out and understand it before it believes it, but faith simply receives and accepts it as it is, and therefore understands it.

For while Jews [demandingly] ask for signs and miracles and Greeks pursue philosophy and wisdom, 23 We preach Christ (the Messiah) crucified, [preaching which] to the Jews is a scandal and an offensive stumbling block [that springs a snare or trap], and to the Gentiles it is absurd and utterly unphilosophical nonsense. 24 But to those who are called, whether Jew or Greek (Gentile), Christ [is] the Power of God and the Wisdom of God. 25[This is] because the foolish thing [that has its source in] God is wiser than men, and the weak thing [that springs] from God is stronger than men.

1 Corinthians 1:22-25 AMP

Unbelief will blind your eyes to the truth. The Jews had already decided how the Messiah would come and what He would do. Because of their preconceived ideas and religious conceit, their eyes were blinded to the truth. The Jews closed their minds and would not accept Jesus for Who He was – they did not consider or recognize the fruit of His ministry before or after His death – and they refused to believe that He was Who He said He was. Even though He performed miracles in front of their very eyes, they were not satisfied. Instead of believing in Him for the miracles they had seen, they asked for more miracles. As the saying goes, “There are none so blind, as those who will not see.”  The truth cannot be found by those who do not want to know or acknowledge the truth.

The Gospel is diametrically opposed to human wisdom, which has its source in carnality and worldliness. Human wisdom is contaminated by sin, demonic ideas and the lusts of the flesh. The Gentiles value human philosophy, education and intellectual pursuits, which do not accommodate the truth of the Gospel. They stumble over the simplicity of the Gospel. They are so much “in their head” that they cannot receive the truth that is right in front of their face. They have set ideas and cannot receive anything that goes against their view of life. They do not leave room for anything different from what they already perceive as truth. Because they can’t make sense of it, they do not appreciate its value.

God never does things in a certain way just because we expect Him to and He is not limited to our idea of Him. It is we who must open up our hearts and accept and believe His word just as it is. It is we who must receive Him for Who He says He is, by faith, in order to experience the power of His word in our lives.