Category: Walking by the Spirit

By This is My Father Glorified

We are all human, and being human makes us susceptible to many shortcomings. One of these short comings is the attitude that we must pay for everything we get. This attitude flies in the face of faith.

We must daily come to terms with the fact that we do not have to pay for heavenly things; they are already paid for. Jesus paid it all and because of this the Word says, “For as many as may be the promises of God, in Him they are yes; wherefore also by Him is our Amen to the glory of God through us,” 2 Corinthians 1:20.

Notice that the above Scripture said “in Him they are yes.” Only in Him are the promises of God yes, just as Jesus said, “Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you, unless you abide in Me,” John 15:4. And, “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it shall be done for you. By this is My Father glorified, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be My disciples,” verses 7, 8. We must abide in Jesus, for if we abide in Him, and He in us, we will only pray for things according to the will of God; for abiding in Him, we will be led by the Holy Spirit.

In earthly terms, all this is totally absurd. But we have been raised up into newness of life in the heavenlies. We are to no longer think in earthly terms; we are to now think in heavenly terms. In earthly terms we must pay for everything we get; in heavenly terms every promise of God was paid for by Jesus, and in Him every promise of God is yes. In Him is our faith. In Him is our life.

Look to Jesus; trust in Him; He is the way and the truth and the life. In Him the promises of God are yes. Abide in Him. “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. By this is My Father glorified, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be My disciples,” John 15:7, 8.

Jon David Banks, God’s most unworthy servant

The Father in Secret

Matthew 6:3,4, “But when you give alms, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing that your alms may be in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will repay you.”

Matthew 6:6, “But you, when you pray, go into your inner room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in secret, and your Father who sees in secret will repay you.”

Matthew 6:17,18, “But you, when you fast, anoint your head, and wash your face so that you may not be seen fasting by men, but by your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will repay you.”

In each of these quotations “your Father who sees in secret” is mentioned. In the second and third quotations “your Father who is in secret” is also mentioned. So our heavenly Father is in secret and He sees in secret. The overwhelming majority of our prayers should be in secret, as well as our giving and our fasting. These are three commandments from Jesus. He said pray in secret, give in secret, and fast in secret. These three commandments are rarely spoken of in churches, but they are essential to an obedient walk with God.

Beyond this, in Matthew 6:7,8 it says, “And when you are praying, do not use meaningless repetition, as the Gentiles do, for they suppose that they will be heard for their many words. Therefore do not be like them; for your Father knows what you need, before you ask Him.”

How many times have you heard someone praying with meaningless repetition? They go on and on, sometimes using inflections and modulations, as if they are giving an oration. Jesus told us not to pray like this, yet many do it anyway. Prayers with meaningless repetition are nothing more than babble.

A true disciple prays with few words because he is communicating with a holy God. His words are chosen carefully and thoughtfully for the same reason. And when he cannot find the right words, he kneels in silence, while the Holy Spirit intercedes for him with groanings too deep for words.

Dear friends, our Father is in secret, and He sees in secret. Let us approach Him in secret.

In the holy name of Jesus, the name through which God showed His great love for us,

Jon David Banks, God’s most unworthy servant

Let him who boasts, boast in the Lord

The word “self” in the New Testament is literally translated “man”. There are two types of man, Adam and Jesus. These are two creations, the old and the new. Adam is the old and Jesus is the new. Jesus in the flesh was actually the last Adam, or man, as it is written, “The first man, Adam, became a living soul.’ The last Adam [Jesus] became a life-giving spirit, 1 Corinthians 15:45. We were crucified with Jesus, the last Adam, the old creation, the old man, and raised up with Jesus, the risen Christ, the new creation, the new man.

We are now to lay aside the old man, [Adam] (Ephesians 4:22), which was stained with sin, and put on the new creation, Jesus, who overcame sin (vs. 24). For this reason Paul said, “Put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh in regard to its lusts,” Romans 13:14. And, “For if we have become united with Him [Jesus] in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall be also in the likeness of His resurrection, knowing this, that our old self (lit. man) was crucified with Him, that our body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin; for he who has died is freed from sin,” Romans 6:5-7

Romans 8:12-14 says, “So then, brethren, we are under obligation, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh—- for if you are living according to the flesh, you must die; but if you are putting to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.” And those who are being led by the Spirit of God are those who have put on the Lord Jesus Christ, the new man, the new creation.

This is clarified further in Colossians 3:9, 10, “Do not lie to one another, since you laid aside the “old” self (lit. man [Adam]) with its evil practices, and have put on the “new” self (lit. man [Jesus]) who is being renewed to a true knowledge according to the image of the One who created him.”

“If anyone wishes to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me,” Luke 9:23. We deny self (the old man) by laying it aside, and taking up our cross daily, wherein we were crucified with Christ and raised from a life of sin to a new man, or new creation, into a life of holiness in the Holy Spirit of God, and we follow Jesus wherever He leads.

In closing, we rise above the old man [Adam] by faith in the new man [Jesus] for, in His sacrifice, Jesus made a way to overcome the inherent sinfulness of the old man. He did this by becoming to us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption, that, just as it is written, “Let him who boasts, boast in the Lord,” 1 Corinthians 1:30, 31.

Jon David Banks, God’s most unworthy servant

Approaching the Lord

Some people approach Jesus as if He is sitting in judgment of them. They cannot be at ease with Him in prayer because they feel so guilty. Well, let me tell you something — He is in the guilt killing business. He will never lay guilt on anyone who approaches Him in prayer, though He may know they’re guilty, He won’t even hint of it. All that comes from Jesus is love and concern for them. If they are Christians, He is their intercessor; if they are sinners, He is their Savior.

My friends, I have been very fortunate to have seen Jesus a few times and I just want to say it is nothing but wonderful to be near Him. Once I knelt before Him at an altar and another time I stood beside Him when my spirit was caught up with Him. Both times I felt no guilt, no fear, only loving comfort. The other times I’ve seen Him were like seeing the desire of my heart. I was drawn to Him each time.

I just want everyone to know that when you approach Jesus or the Father don’t be afraid or timid. And don’t approach them like a mad warrior, instead approach them with a humble and grateful heart, knowing they were both kind enough to make a way through the sacrifice of Jesus, in order that you can go straight to God, for the veil of the temple was torn apart. We can now bow directly in front of His throne and make our requests known. What a glorious Savior we have, to have made this possible for us.

When you go to the Father and Jesus, do so with faith, hope, love and thanksgiving. Do this and you will find the will of God.

Jon David Banks, God’s most unworthy servant 

Christianity

After Paul wrote about the varieties of the gifts of the Spirit and of the varieties of ministries, he wrote in 1 Corinthians 12:31 that we should earnestly desire the greater gifts. He then wrote, ‘And I will show you a more excellent way.’ That more excellent way was faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love. So we are not to SEEK gifts of the Spirit; we are to DESIRE them. And our desiring them should be filled with godly love for others. There are two reasons one would want the greater gifts and one is that he might use them to help people because of his love for them. This is how Jesus used His gifts, through love for their beneficiaries. The other reason one would want the greater gifts is because of selfishly wanting the power.

In the world today there are several people who heal and work miracles without the love of Jesus within them. For instance, there is a man who tells of lying beside the grave of Kathryn Kulman in an effort to receive some of her power. He uses the name of Jesus, but he is not a Christian. A true Christian would strive to get closer to Jesus and receive His love for all.

The entire Bible testifies of Jesus. Let us approach it as such, rather than approaching it as a book that gives us power to heal and work miracles, etc. We are not to chase or seek specific gifts; we are to desire them, and leave the distribution of them to the Holy Spirit. We are first to seek our Father and His only begotten Son with all our heart, and, in so doing, we will find Jesus who is our friend, and God who is love. Then, and only then, will we be in a position to be trusted with things of importance.

Christianity is not a new state of mind we can jump into and begin choosing what gifts we want and what promises we want. Christianity is a kingdom ruled by God wherein we are to humble ourselves and do His will, not ours. Christians are new creatures who were raised up with Jesus into the heavenlies, and there they walk in and by the Holy Spirit who leads and guides them in the will of God. And the will of God is that we surrender to His Son and to Him, in order that we might be filled with their love for everyone.

I love each of my friends, and, God is my witness, I love each of my enemies as well.

In Jesus’ name,

Jon David Banks, God’s most unworthy servant

What a Savior

Consider this:  Jesus spent three years teaching people about the kingdom of God that was coming. While teaching, He also healed a great many people and even raised some from the dead. After three years of showing people the ways of God and loving them like they had never been loved before, he was taken into custody and was cruelly beaten, and subsequently crucified in an extremely painful way. He died a horrible death, and He did it out of love for the Father and for mankind.

After doing all these things He ascended to heaven and took His seat at the right hand of God. Because He had completed the mission God sent Him to earth to do, He was given all authority in heaven and on earth. Can you imagine that, all authority in the entire creation? Having received that authority and taking His seat beside God, a triumphant King, He looks to the earth and begins to intercede for each child of God. And He continues to do this to this day. What a Savior, what a King, what a friend to God’s children!

All this came to me last night, and, when it did, I broke down in tears. He didn’t just give Himself as a sacrifice for our sins, He went to heaven and started interceding for us. Oh, what wonderful Savior who not only died for us, but lives forever more to intercede for all who believe in Him that we might one day spend eternity with Him! The love He has for us is beyond comprehension! May we show our respect for Him by obeying Him and loving everyone as He does.

God bless all who love Jesus.

Jon David Banks, God’s most unworthy servant

The Body of Christ

We are the body of Christ

Dear friends, we are the body of Christ; Jesus is the head and we are the body. As His body, His thoughts should be our thoughts. His ways should be our ways. The head controls the body. In order for the body to work well, it must be in tune with the head, therefore we must be completely submissive to the head. We must let the head control our thoughts, our actions, and our steps. To be what we are called to be, we must always walk in total submission to our head, which is Jesus. He is our Savior, our Lord, and our friend. We will never go wrong allowing Him to lead us. Praise and glory and honor to Him, our beloved Savior.

Jon David Banks, His most unworthy servant 

We are the Body

We, as Christians, should give being in the body of Christ much consideration. Our being His body on earth brings a great responsibility. Because we are His body, we need to be careful of the things we do. We must always be mindful that we are part of a holy body and, therefore, conduct ourselves accordingly. We are Christ on earth. 

I am so thrilled walking by the Spirit I can’t begin to explain. I said in a recent comment on one of my posts that I believed the Holy Spirit had given me a big dose of comfort. Well, it’s better than that. I now have so much faith in God that I’m not worried about my back breaking. If it does, He will still be with me. He has not let me know whether or not to get an operation, so I just wait before Him. He may want me in a wheel chair. I doubt it, but it’s a possibility. Either way, He is my Rock and His wings are my shelter; He will never leave me. To Him be glory before time and now and forever.

Our God is so wonderful and so loving and so forgiving. We are so fortunate.

I am so thrilled

I am so thrilled walking by the Spirit I can’t begin to explain. I said in a recent comment on one of my posts that I believed the Holy Spirit had given me a big dose of comfort. Well, it’s better than that. I now have so much faith in God that I’m not worried about my back breaking. If it does, He will still be with me. He has not let me know whether or not to get an operation, so I just wait before Him. He may want me in a wheel chair. I doubt it, but it’s a possibility. Either way, He is my Rock and His wings are my shelter; He will never leave me. To Him be glory before time and now and forever.

Our God is so wonderful and so loving and so forgiving. We are so fortunate.

Jon David Banks, God’s most unworthy servant

Grateful Eyes

Wherever you go, wherever you look, the works of God’s hands are displayed in spectacular grandeur, revealing Himself to all who will listen. Be still and just listen; hear the wind from which the Holy Spirit came; hear the trees singing praises to God, and, at times, clapping their hands. Listen to the birds as they send their songs to heaven in honor of the living God who made them. Take a moment to study the green grass of spring and summer as it reminds us of our Savior who fell into the earth and died, only to rise again and bring forth fruit in the form of those who believe in His name. Look at the flowers in their beauty surpassed only by the Son of God, sleeping at night and opening their petals to receive the kiss of the sun every morning. Sometimes, if you quietly listen, they will speak to you, and speak of the mercies of God (I have actually experienced this). All of creation knows God (Romans 8:19-22) and waits to be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God. The creation also knows us. 

My friends, our God is everywhere. He is in the wind, He is in the seeds of the grass and all other subjects that spring forth from the earth. He is in the beauty of each flower and in the rhymes of each song sung by the birds and the trees. He is in the laughter of children, and in their tears as well. He is in the unity of husbands and wives, blessing and keeping together those who love Him.  He is everywhere, everywhere. May we all treat the creation with kindness, knowing that our Father is in it. 

May God bless and encourage each person who reads this. May He allow you to hear what the creation says, and see its beauty with grateful eyes.

Jon David Banks, God’s most unworthy servant

Submit to the Will of God

Well, the doctor said there’s a problem in my spine, something about narrowing in an area of my spine, and disc, or discs, messed up. The only way to fix it is an operation. Apparently I’m at the beginning of several things going wrong. I can’t remember the names of those things. Because I’m at the beginning of them I can wait and see if symptoms get worse. If they do I will need an operation. If the symptoms reach a certain point and I wait too long there’s a chance an operation won’t do any good. The main things that could go wrong if I do nothing now are more pain and loss of balance.  

As it is right now, if I fall or get in a car accident my back would most likely break and I will be in a wheel chair for the rest of my life. It seems to me that having an operation now would be the best thing to do, but I’m going to seek God’s will and hopefully find out what He wants me to do. He told me to bear this trial to the end and I don’t know what constitutes the end.

I appreciate your prayers and concern for me. I appreciate them very much. May God bless each of you richly, and may His will be done.

Jon David Banks, God’s most unworthy servant

My Back

I have what might turn out to be good news — I’m seeing a neuro-surgeon two days from now (Wednesday). Whether it’s good or not depends on what he says. I certainly don’t want surgery. But God’s will be done. This is only the beginning because my lower back is as bad, if not worse, than my upper back. Wednesday concerns my upper back. I have the results from two MRI’s, one for the upper and one for the lower back. 

I want you all to know that I love you. Christ’s love for you burns and flows within me. I want only the best for each of you. His will is best. I’ve been hard on some, especially by pointing out false doctrines many believe. Although my words may sound harsh, they aren’t intended that way. I can’t stand the devil’s servants leading God’s children astray. They use Scriptures and twist them to appeal to the fleshy desires of those who walk by the flesh. 

These people preach that Christians should lift themselves up to God’s level and claim His promises, decree what they want, stand on the Word (as opposed to simply believing the Word). Some even teach that Christians can speak things into being. The people who preach these things are no better than carnival barkers, trying to entice others to buy their wares. They are anti-christ. 

Please don’t insult the Lord by listening to preachers like this. He is faithful; He can be believed without doubt; He is kind and merciful to those who believe in Him and in His holy Son Jesus. He will never leave us in the dark. He is compassionate and loving. He knows every thought in our head, even before we think it. His understanding is beyond comprehension. His love is before time and now and forever, as is He Himself. He is God; we are dirt; may we conduct ourselves accordingly.

Jon David Banks, God’s most unworthy servant 

Love One Another

“Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins,” 1 Peter 4:8. Proverbs goes a step further,“ Hatred stirs up strife, but love covers ALL transgressions,” Proverbs 10:12.

Many Christians today seem to place a lot of importance on who they are in Jesus and what was promised them, while subtly ignoring Jesus’ call to love one another, just as He has loved us. That’s quite a bit of love that we received from Jesus. It went so far as to Him laying His life down for us. How does our love for the brethren measure up to Jesus’ love for us? If a brother sins and asks our forgiveness, doe we forgive? If he does it again, do we forgive again? If he does it seventy times, do we forgive each time? If we love him, we do.

Paul said, “Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love; give preference to one another in honor,” Romans 12:9, 10. 

Dear friends, if a brother sins and is brought to repentance, that brother is devastated, and needs help from his brethren to substantiate the fact that the Lord has forgiven him. That is the only way to receive a prodigal son, by accepting him with open arms in the name of Jesus, and celebration for his honesty and the Lord’s mercy.

I spent a few years in bars before I became a Christian and I can honestly say I was more welcome and accepted in them, than I’ve ever been in church. I didn’t know what judgment was until I got into church. I’m not finding fault; I’m stating fact. I’m not inferring that all Christians are judgmental; I’m saying that many are. And those who are judgmental are a detriment to the aroma of mercy that circulates through the church. The old saying goes, ‘You are as weak as your weakest link’ and those who sit in judgment of their fellow men hinder the truth of mercy and grace. 

We must, again I say ‘must’, allow the Holy Spirit to leads us in the ways of God. We have no right to form our own opinions, or doctrines. We must always yield to the Holy Spirit, as He speaks of what He hears, and discloses the truth to us. 

We are never going to reach maturity until we learn to love one another as Jesus loves us. Many are looking for an awakening, but I’m afraid an awakening would likely blind some of them. Years ago Jesus told me my ministry has to do with the restoration, Acts 3:21. The time is near. Don’t be left behind.

Jon David Banks, God’s most unworthy servant

God is Faithful

It matters not what sin you sin or how many times you’ve sinned; the only thing that matters is what you do about it. If you continue in it without remorse or repentance, you will die in it. If you confess it and repent, you will be forgiven and saved to the uttermost. The Lord is abundant in mercy and loves an honest heart. If we’re honest with Him, and rely on His mercy He has shone through Jesus Christ, He will be faithful to forgive us. He is always faithful to forgive us. 

We are His own people that He is training up in the way we should go. There are many briars and thorns along the way that we must be careful of, but, if we are injured by one of them, Jesus Christ the Righteous sits beside the Father and intercedes for us, that we might overcome the injury and continue along the way.

 The devil will try to sabotage you. He will attempt to talk you out of the mercy of God by reminding you of how bad you’ve been, and how you don’t deserve mercy. If that doesn’t work, he’ll try to convince you that you can’t stay pure for any length of time, therefore you are wasting your time to try. Pay no attention to him. He is a liar, and has been from the beginning. Regardless of anything he says, God’s mercy is new every morning. Don’t claim it. Don’t stand on it. Believe it with all your heart and you will find it so.

Jon David Banks, God’s most unworthy servant

Baptism

Yesterday we were given a double rainbow. It was so beautiful. This, of course, is the sign of a covenant God made between Himself and Noah and every living creature with him for all successive generations, and with the earth also, that He would never flood the entire earth again, Genesis 9:12, 13.

When the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually, He was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He grieved in His heart, Genesis 6:5, 6. He then decided to blot man from the face of the earth. Noah found favor in His eyes because he was righteous, so God spared him and his family. He then sent the flood to destroy the wicked men on earth.

This corresponds to baptism. The wicked of the earth were drowned in the water of baptism, and all that remained was the righteous man, Noah, and his family. So it is with the Christian, the old creature is baptized into Jesus’ death and raised a brand new creature into newness of life. 

The rainbow is not only a sign that God will not flood the earth again, it is also a reflection of His glory, as is the church today. “As the appearance of the rainbow in the clouds on a rainy day, so was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the Lord. And when I saw it, I fell on my face and heard a voice speaking,” Ezekiel 1:28. 

What a mighty God we serve, so powerful, yet so loving and kind and full of mercy?

Jon David Banks, God’s most unworthy servant

Answered Prayer

Eight days ago I wrote of the severe trial I’m going through. Most, not all, of my pain is in my back. My back is severely messed up, or so the doctors say. Among other things, I also have a pinched nerve that produces severe pain just to the side of my left shoulder blade. It was causing the worst of the pain. I told you that I have not asked the Lord to heal me because He said it was a trial I must endure. 

Well, a few days before I wrote that letter I knelt at my couch and asked the Lord to please dull the pain a little. I pled with Him because it was almost unbearable. Two days after I wrote the letter my wife approached me and said, “Get ready, we’re going to Amarillo.” I asked why and it turned out that she had made an appointment for me with an acupuncturist. She knew I wouldn’t call one myself because I was afraid of the needles. When she told me to get ready my appointment was about two hours away, so I just bit my tongue and got ready.

The acupuncturist used some cups as well as needles. Since then my pain from the pinched nerve has been, and remains, dulled quite a bit. It has made a huge difference. I’m so thankful my wife took it upon herself to set this up, and I’m so thankful to God for my wife, and for His answering my prayer. I still have a little pain, but it is so much better. I’m very grateful.

This was my first time seeing an acupuncturist. The needles I was so afraid of didn’t hurt a bit. To God be glory for it all.  

Jon David Banks, God’s most unworthy servant

Who is against us?

Hear the word of the Lord, you who tremble at His word: “Your brothers who hate you, who exclude you for My name’s sake, have said, ‘Let the Lord be glorified, that we may see your joy.’ But they will be put to shame. A voice of uproar from the city, a voice from the temple, the voice of the Lord who is rendering recompense to His enemies.   

“Before she travailed, she brought forth; before her pain came, she gave birth to a boy. Who has heard such a thing? Who has seen such things? Can a land be born in one day? Can a nation be brought forth all at once? As soon as Zion travailed, she brought forth her sons. Shall I bring to the point of birth, and not give deliverance?” says the Lord. “Or shall I who gives delivery shut the womb? says your God. “Be joyful with Jerusalem and rejoice for her, all you who love her; be exceedingly glad with her, all you who mourn over her, that you may nurse and be satisfied with her comforting breasts, that you may suck and be delighted with her bountiful bosom.”

For thus says the Lord, “Behold, I extend peace to her like a river, and the glory of the nations like an overflowing stream; and you shall be nursed, you shall be carried on the hip and fondled on the knees. As one whom his mother comforts, so I will comfort you; and you shall be comforted in Jerusalem,” Isaiah 66:5-13.

We are citizens of the heavenly Jerusalem, the Jerusalem above that is free; and she is our mother. And we, like Issac, are children of promise. Therefore, as children chosen by the most high God, we will most assuredly be comforted. 

If God is for us, who is against us? He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things? Who will bring a charge against God’s elect? God is the one who justifies; who is the one who condemns? Christ Jesus is He who died, yes, rather who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who also intercedes for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ” Shall tribulation, or destress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? Just as it is written, “For thy sake we are being put to death all day long; we were considered as sheep to be slaughtered.” 

But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us, for I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Jon David Banks, God’s most unworthy servant

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