"I will ransome them from the power of the grave,
and I will redeem them from the earth.
O death, I will be thy plague;
O grave, I will be thy destruction!" (Hosea 13:14).
"The last enemy that shall shall be destroyed is death!"(1Cor.15:26).
Death is swallowed up in victory!
(From a radio broadcast of Bro.Julius Adewumi)
I want you to consider that just as Christ paid for our sins on the cross, he also paid for the wages of the sin which is sickness and ultimate death.Each believer has to claim the promises of Godby standing upon the word of God over sickness and over death. Ponder on these bible verses: "He hath made him to be sin for us, who knew nosin, that we might be made the righteousness of God in him".(2Cor.5:21). "He condemned sin in the flesh". (Rom.8:3)."Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree,that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: bywhose stripes ye were healed." (1Pet.2:24). But he is notforcing it on men. All must come to him individually. "Foras many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sonsof God, even to them that believe on his name." (Jn.1:12).
Christ has abolished death, even physical death! Sin, sicknessand death have been abolished by Jesus Christ, but he is not forcingit on men. Jesus has the power and is willing to use it to keep us and to deliverus. Someone may say "you guys are boldly saying this onlybecause you have not been sick yourselves." Let me give mytestimony. It was 1971 when I made my determination with the Lordand prayed that I will not use any medicine against sickness anymore.I will rely on my prayers. I asked the Lord that He should notlet any sickness which my prayer alone cannot knock off, comeagainst me. The devil has challenged that prayer many times since'71 but the Lord has been faithful. sometime ago, I went on anevangelistic trip and the devil did not like the impact that mypresence made in the area, so he came against me with chickenpoximmediately I returned from the trip. It was also like as if someoneput a blow upon my belly. I first asked the Lord to take the painaway from my belly and he did. I did not visit any doctor. I keptpraying and rebuking the devil. About the third day since theaffliction began (I had missed work for two days), I was on myknees praying and asking the Lord to remove the affliction frommy body. I said "Jesus, take this thing away!" A voicespoke to me, like someone standing behind me in the room, andsaid "I have taken it away, believe it!" I said "Okay,thank you Jesus!" I started thanking him. It was still therethe 4th day, the 5th day, the 8th day. Some were dying, new oneswere forming. A thought said maybe I should go to the hospital.I said, "No, I will not! He said he has taken it away; whyshould I have to go to the hospital anymore?" If he had said"No I cannot take it away", then I will seek help fromthe doctors. You see? God spoke into my hearing that "I havetaken it away, believe it!" And I said "Thank you Jesus!"That is not the time to now go to the hospital. When the Lordwas going to answer back, about the tenth day, I was praying onmy knees, and it was like someone brought a bunch of coals offire from the sky and dropped them on my head; it went like sparksall over my body. That was how it felt and I could see the bigbumps started crumbling. That was the begining of the healing,and all of them died off my skin. He said he had taken it awayand I had to believe it. He just waited to see that I am persistent.(Perseverance!) If I said "thank you Lord, I believe",and I am still thinking "maybe I should go to the doctors,maybe I should go to the doctors ...", then he will justwithdraw himself. That is what I'm saying: the battle has beenwon! The same thing about death. The battle has been won! Butwe have to stand our ground. He is on our side, which makes itmore so that we have won the battle. The devil is the one thathas to backoff.
"And In this mountain shall the Lord of host makeunto all people a feast of fat things, a feast of wines on thelees, of fat things full of marrow, of wine on the lees well refined.And He will destroy in this mountain the face of the coveringcast over all people, and the vail that is spread over allnations. He will swallow up death in victory ...". (Isa.25:6-8 )
There is a covering over all people. The devil has made men tothink it is God who is killing us. They said "God took thechild away". It is not God! God never caused death. It isthe devil that is causing every death and every graveyard. ButChrist has come so that we might have life and have it more abundantly.In Heb.2:9, it says "we see Jesus who was made lower thanthe angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory andhonour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for everyman." In Heb.2:14-15, it says "For as much thenas the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himselflikewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroyhim that had the power of death, that is, the devil; And deliverthem who through fear of death were all their lifetime subjectto bondage." Christ has destoryed him that had the powerof death. A lot of people thought he is just going to. He hasalready done it! That is why the bible said "when he ascendedup on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts tomen."(Ephe.4:8).
He now wants us to go ahead without fear and enforce the wordof God. The will of God has got to be enforced on this planetby the believers. Remember the will of God is already writtendown in the scriptures.
"For he must reign till he has put all enemies under hisfeet.
The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death."(1Cor.15:25-26).
Christ must continue to reign in the heavens until all enemiesare put under his feet. But we are the subjects that have notcome up yet. We have to be brought in. Death is an enemy. Sin,sickness are enemies. When it says all enemies should be put underhis feet (including death), remember, Jesus Christ has alreadyconquered death and all, because we know he rose from the deadand he is reigning supreme in the spirit now as the head of allprincipalities and powers. (Col.2:10). But apostle Paul's letterportrayed that "he must reign till all enemies are put underhis feet". That was also written in Psalm 110:1 that "theLord said unto my Lord, sit down at my right hand till I makethine enemies thy footstool." The revelation of this statementis that "WE", the church, are the body of Christ. Weare the ones represented in that statement. Christ is the headof the church, and we are the body, down through to the feet,which are the end-of-the-age believers. Remember the symbol interpretedas kingdoms of the world in the vision of Nebuchadrezzar,, inthe book of Daniel chapter 2. Christ has already conquered; butwe, as his body, are yet to have all the enemies, especially sicknessand death, (physical death), put under our feet. This is the age(at the feet) in which God will do it! At the "feet"of Christ shall all enemies be subdued! Christ will continue toreign until that is done. Then we, human being, can reign withhim. We are not reigning at all now; we are suffering on earthas long as sicknesses still attack believers and death separateloved ones.
"I will ransome them from the power of the grave, andI will redeem them from the earth. O death, I will be thy plague;O grave, I will be thy destruction!" (Hosea 13:14).
In short, God is saying in this verse that He will destroy death,declaring before hand the abolition of death which we are preachingto you, which Christ has brought. Someone may say "but thatis in the future!" Yes, in the future! That is why the biblesaid "the last enemy that shall be destroyed is death."But when is that future? Christ has revealed it! In 2Tim.1:10,it is implied that "Christ has abolished death, and hathbrought life and immortality to light, through the gospel."The gospel is saying that this Jesus, the Christ, the Messiah,has brought immortality to mankind, to as many as will believeit. When is that future? The book of hebrews (Heb.6:4-5) saidwe are they that are partaking of the power of the world to come.Divine healing is power of the world to come; so also is immortality.Christ has revealed both to mankind that he has paid for it all.We only need to believe with him and claim them; and start toenjoy the powers of the world to come.
If you cannot believe this, check yourself! All enemies must beput under His feet. When Christ has completed to put death underthe feet of his true church, His purpose will be fulfilled. Thosewho do not belong to his body may really not believe this, norbe part of this, "for He shall reign till he has put allenemies under his feet" (the church's feet), and"the last enemy that shall be destroyed is death." Butwe have to follow him, and keep his saying so that we can be partof those that will partake of the power of the world to come.He said "if a man keep my saying, he shall never see death."(Jn.8:51).
In Ezekiel 33:11, it says "As I live saith the Lord, I willhave no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wickedforsake his way and live." God said he has no pleasure inthe death of the wicked, how much more in the death of the saints.In fact, Psalm 116:15 said "precious in the sight of theLord is the death of his saints". You see? the will of theLord is already written down in the scriptures. Whether for thewicked or for the saints, God has no pleasure in their death.It is so precious for any saints of God to die. That is the wholeidea why Christ has come to abolish death. He has come to deliverus, who through fear of death were subject to bondage as writtenin Heb.2:14-15.
Let's remember the ministry of the Lord Jesus. In Jn.5:28-29,Christ said "the hour cometh in the which all thatare in the grave shall hear his voice, and shall come forth ...".Let me ask you one question. Can we Christians lay claim on thefact that Christ has made us sons of God? Is that not what salvationis all about? Salvation implies that we have been adopted intothe household of God. We become sons of God. Jn.1:12 said "Asmany as received him, to them gave he power to become the sonsof God." Now that we are sons of God, it said we are "joint-heirs"with Christ, according to Romans 8:15-17. If we are joint-heirswith Christ, doesn't that mean we are entitled to "some"of the powers that Jesus Christ has? Oh yes! Now let's see whatJesus Christ said that he has, as a Son of God: the power, theright. In Jn.5:20-21,26, it says "For as the fatherraiseth up the dead and quickeneth them, even so the son quickenethwhom he will". "For as the father hath life in himself,so has he given to the son to have life in himself ...".This tells us that Jesus Christ, as a Son of God, when he wason earth, has the immortal power to quicken the dead and bringthem back to life. He said the Father has this power in Himself,and has given to the son to have this power in himself also. Nowif we can claim that same right as sons of God, because we arenow adopted as sons, "as many as received him, to themgave he power to become the sons of God", it means wealso, individual sons of God, should come to the "level"of this sonship, whereby we can also have life in ourselves andquicken anybody we will, to bring them back to life. That is thefull redemption which he promised for mankind, when the seed ofAdam can control this planet, visible and invisible. This is fullredemption! When we come to the stature of the fulness ofChrist, such power will be in-dwelling us.
Someone may say "we are far from that yet". Yes, weare far from that, but "faith cometh by hearing and hearingby the word of God."
I am preaching the word of God to you, friend, so that when youknow that this is the power which Jesus, as the Son of God, manifestedupon earth, He has shown to us what we can become if we grow upto be like him. Ofcourse the Lord Jesus is God manifested in theflesh (1Tim.3:16). Christ is telling us that as the son of God,he has this power to quicken anybody he wills, to raise up anybodyfrom the dead; He also is saying to us that when we come to thefulness of the stature of Christ, we will have this power also.Jn.1:12 says "As many as received him, to them gave he powerto become sons of God." The power is in us when wehave the Holy Ghost. But it said " ..to become sons of God."So we are to become what Jesus Christ manifested on earth. Wehave to work with the Holy Ghost by submitting to him and becomewhat Jesus Christ manifested on earth. (1Cor.12:7).
Note that I have not said "become sons of God", becausesomeone may ask: "are you saying we are not sons of God yet,since we are born again?" I said we should become "whatJesus Christ manifested on earth": SONSHIP POWER INDEED!
For example, I have little children. They are so little I cannotput them in my car and say "here is the key, go ride thecar." They can't drive the car; they are too little; butthey are my children. I want my son to become a son indeed whocan take my car and go wherever he wants. I want them to growup. When they are little babies, sure, they are my children. Theyhave the right, but cannot use it because they do not know howto use it. Similarly, when we are born again, we are sons of God,but we have to grow up and come to the stature of the Son of God,the level of Christ. That is why it says in Ephesians 4:11-13that "till we all come in the unity of the faith andof the knowledge of the son of God, unto a perfect man; unto themeasure of the stature of the fulness of Christ."We have to walk with Jesus; we have to understand that the powermanifested in Christ which he said is in himself to quicken thedead, this power is for the sonship. It's for anyone that arriveto that level of the stature of the Son of God. To this end, Hehas given everyone who is a christian the power to become theson of God. We have to use it and grow up to the stature or levelof sonship. (Rev.12:5).
I do not think everyone of us will reach this stature before wedepart from this planet. That is the sad part of it. However,the first-fruits must arrive. (Rev.14:1-5). But the word of Godhas been given out. That is the will of God. As we said, "THEWILL OF GOD HAS BEEN WRITTEN DOWN IN THE SCRIPTURES."
We ought to enforce it and grow into it. Jn.5:21 says "Asthe father raiseth up the dead and quickeneth them, even so theson quickeneth whom he will." We also, as sons of God, shouldbe able to raise anybody back to life. This is what he has revealedto us as part of the full redemption.
"As the Father raiseth up the dead and quickeneth them,
even so the son quickeneth whom he will."
"For as the Father has life in himself even so
has he given to the son to have life in himself."(Jn.5:21,26).
When we come to the stature of Christ, we also will have lifein ourselves as joint-heirs with Christ. In Luke 7 from verse11, we read the story of the dead boy raised by Jesus in the citycalled Nain. "Now when he came nigh to the gate ofthe city, behold there was a dead man carried out, the only sonof his mother: and she was a widow ... when the Lord saw her,he had compassion on her and said unto her, weep not. And he cameand touched the bier: And they that bare him stood still. Andhe said, young man, I say unto thee, arise. And he that was deadsat up, and began to speak. And he delivered him to his mother."
From this story, why did Christ raise this boy back to life? Wasit because of compassion for the mother? As a matter of fact,Christ came also to demonstrate and manifest to us the statureof a son of God. Consider this story: This boy was dead and everybodywas weeping . He was the only child of his mother, who also wasa widow. That ought to bring compassion to anyman that see orhear of the circumstance. As a son of God, if you have the powerto do something about this, then you will do something. But mankindhas not been able to do anything about such circumstances. Doctorsare dumbfounded; everyman, no matter how powerful or how weak,how rich, or how poor; they couldn't do anything about it whendeath strikes. But here comes the CHAMPION for mankind: JesusChrist; and he could do something about it. Why? Because thatis the stature we all ought to be in the first place. He cameto manifest to us that when we become sons of God, we will beable to do something about such circumstances. That is the fullredemption which he has brought. We are not enjoying it yet, butthat is the immortality which Christ has revealed in the bible.(2Tim.1:10). "Christ has abolished death and has broughtlife and immortality to light through the gospel."
Now we know that it is available to anyman, whosoever will, jumpinto the boat, and you can live without death, forever. Christis coming soon. When he comes, there will be no more death. Butwe have to believe it right now. We that are alive by the timehe comes, there will be no more death for us from that time forward.He is going to transform our body into a glorified body for eternity.That takes power! Considering all the evils which are in the worldright now from animals, bacteria, viruses, visible and invisibleperils by living things and by nature itself; it takes power toturn those things around. Christ said he is going to turn thosethings around.
In Rev. 21:4, it says "And God shall wipe away all tearsfrom their eyes ...". Some people say that is in the "byeand bye". Yes! But remember, apostle Paul said in Hebrews6:4-5 that we are people that are beginning to enjoy the powerof the world to come. How will we be able to do that ? By faith!Walking with God by faith! In Heb.11:5-6 the bible talks aboutthe faith of Enoch. He walked with God and God translated himthat he should not see death. In Jn.8:51 Jesus said "verily,verily, I say unto you; if a man keep my saying he shall neversee death."
An experience I had many years ago had taught me to believe whatChrist said that he has abolished death. It was one nightin 1976; my soul was captured by some spirits. In fact I willsay I was dead upon my bed early that morning. I found myselfbeing taken away by some spirits. It was after I was born again.They were taking me on a road that was inclined downwards, likedownhill to hell. The Lord warned me a day before. The Lord wantedme to do some fasting and I was careless. I was expected to takea long fast (40 days) and I stopped once on the 7th day. Beinggrieved by the Spirit I started again and on the 7th day, thetemptation to stop was strong the second time. The Lord knew Iwould yield to the temptation, so he showed himself to me in avision that morning. The vision showed that I was expected toclean the floor, but instead I was playing around, so the fatherspanked me in that vision. I did not think too much of the vision,and I broke the fast again that evening. Therefore the Lord allowedmy soul to be taken away by the Hell spirits in the night on mybed. I know it was after 3.30 a.m. because I had just woke upto pray and went back to bed. I was temporarily dead on my bedand I found myself, like a young boy, being taken away by thosehell spirits. They were three rough boys about my size exceptfor their weird looking eyes. I was so weak and couldn't resistthem. They were dragging me downhill and we arrived at a hugegate. They wanted to drag me through that gate when a voice spoketo me: "Don't go in there!" That voice gave mesome strength, and I pulled myself away from their grip, and Iwas then catapulted into another prison yard. It was later thatI realized, concerning the gate, that in Job 38:17 the Lord askedJob "Have the gates of death been opened unto you? Orhave you seen the doors of the shadow of death?" I landedin that prison yard and was tied to stake amidst many other people,also tied to stakes, who were being flogged by one man with along and cruel whiplash. I was whipped twice by this guy and therewere so much noises of cries and groans in the air, heightenedby heavy drumming, with sounds of the whiplash striking thoseat stake. The only thing I had memory of while there was thatI am a son of God. In my weak and helpless state, I lifted upmy eyes and cried to the Lord: "Deliver me O Lord!"Immediately the Lord grabbed me out of there. When I opened myeyes and found myself back on my bed in my room, "I WAS GLADTO BE BACK." That is how people are taken in death. Rememberthe earlier vision in the previous writing about the dead manwhich I saw his soul tied to stake. That is why I tell some ofthose tough guys who behave as though they are ready to go tohell, not fearing God nor scared of hell. I usually tell them"you don't know what hell really is! You don't know whatyou are talking about! They will whip hell out of you first, beforeyou will know whether you'll go to the fire". From that day,I decided I'll do what the Lord wants me to do.
It was no joke. Only God can deliver anybody from there. His voicealone called Lazarus out of the grave. Wherever he was! Whetherin hell or Paradise, when Jesus called him, "here he comes!"Every chain that was holding him down would break loose. The forcefrom God, like magnet, would pull him back into his body. It isthat power which Christ said as a son, he has in himself, to quickenwhom he wills. You may say "suppose the body is rotten inthe grave for years (or burnt to ashes in cremation), it makesno difference to the Lord. The bible said "the bones shalllive again!" (If anyone does not believe God created manfrom dust, how will he believe God can turn the dust back to ahuman body in ressurection? Do you now see the falsehood of scientificevolution? i.e if you hold to evolution, you cannot believe theressurection.)
And this power is what Christ said is for the sons of God to havelife in themselves and to quicken whom they will, as revealedin John chapter 5 verse 21,26. This is the stature of the Sonof God. Christ has abolished death! If you believe it, resistthe devils that try to cause death with the scriptures such asin psalms 118:17 which says: "I shall not die, but live,and declare the works of the Lord"; and verse 18 says "theLord has chastened me sore: but he has not given me over untodeath." Call the Lord's attention to your situation as youresist death spirits with such scriptures as psalm 30:9 or psalm115:17 which says "the dead praise not the Lord, neitherany that go down into silence." Confess the promisesof God against death and the victory Christ purchased for us onthe cross with scriptures such as 2Tim.1:10 or Heb.2:14b whichsays "Christ has destroyed him that had the power of death,that is the devil." Yea, Christ came and tasted death inour place, and because he did not like it at all, he abolisheddeath! Put the devil to shame by the scriptures and make him knowthat our Jesus now has the "keys of hell and of death",as it was declared in Revelation 1:17-18 where the Lord said:"Fear not, I am the first and the last. I am he thatliveth and was dead, and behold I am alive for ever more, Amen;and have the keys of hell and of death."
Yea, the devil is defeated!
Bro. Julius Adewumi,
Gospel Distribution Ministry, Box 30387, Phoenix, AZ 85046-0387,USA.
GOSPEL DISTRIBUTION MINISTRY