THE SEED THAT SUCCEEDS, PT.1

By Stephen Powell

Praying before service recently I found myself being caught up into the realm of the spirit and seeing in a vision the church which I was about to physically travel to to minister and preach in. Looking in this church, I saw that I was at the part of the service (which would later unfold that night) where the offering was being taken up. The usher was standing there at the front, holding the basket which they used to collect the donations. Suddenly, an angel came down out of heaven and stood in front of the usher. The angel took the basket from the man and proceeded to enter back into heaven.

 

Next, I saw the angel standing before the throne of God offering the offering to the Lord on behalf of the people who had given that night. A fire then proceeded from the throne and devoured the basket full of money, until all that was left were three gold coins with three names written on them. Then the angel picked up the gold coins and walked them into a large treasure room in heaven to deposit them into the individual’s accounts whose names were written on the gold coins. Then I heard the voice of the Lord speak to me and say, “The seed that succeeds is the seed I receive”.

 

MALACHI’S REVELATION ON HOW OFFERINGS ARE RECEIVED BY GOD

 

In this prophetic experience there were some very powerful truths communicated visually that we must consider when offering things to God. And mind you, these principles apply to any offering given to God whether it be money, time, service, or acts of kindness. Whatever it is that you are offering up to the Lord as an offering must be offered in faith and purity of heart and motive, otherwise it is not received in heaven.

 

(Mal.3:2-4)

2 “But who can endure the day of His coming? And who can stand when He appears? For He is like a refiner’s fire and like a launderer’s soap.

3 He will sit as a refiner and a purifier of silver; He will purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver,

4 That they may offer to the Lord an offering in righteousness.”

 

Everyone always goes straight to (Mal.3:8) when talking about offerings where the prophet said, “Will a man rob God?”. But I’ve never heard anyone connect the offering of (Mal.3:2-4) to the tithes and offerings of (Mal.3:8-12). They are indeed linked in understanding the offerings that God wants, and how those offerings are received by God.

 

God is like a refining fire. He sits upon his throne in awesome glory and power, and to be received into his presence is to be received into the atmosphere of refining fire. As is the nature of refining fire, all things are naked and openly revealed for what they really are in the midst of that fire (Heb.4:13). Fire reveals the strength or lack thereof with things. Fire exposes and reveals the true nature of things. Fire brings forth the truth. As offerings are offered to the Lord, the true nature of those offerings are revealed by fire.

 

In this story here in Malachi’s prophetic book, you have a group of priests that are offering to the Lord the offerings of the people, but in order for the offerings to be presented in “righteousness” (vs.3) they had to first go through refining fire. What does this mean? This means that God tested and tried the offerings to determine the true value of them. What determines the value of an offering to God? Whether or not they are being offered in purity of heart and obedience and obedience of faith. Not everything endures the raw presence of the Lord, as Malachi so beautifully articulated, “Who can endure the day of His coming?”. Of course, we know that biblically this is speaking of The Day of the Lord, the imminent return of Christ, but we still see how God receives offerings, even how He receives a bride, a priesthood of believers, unto himself. The offerings must be tried by fire.

 

The fact that the offerings of the priests themselves precedes the subject of financial offerings in this chapter is of great consequence when considering these truths. Notice how it is the offering of the priests themselves, as the priests themselves are purified and tried in the fire, which opens up this discourse on offerings being holy unto the Lord. The Lord is said to be sitting as a refiner and purifier of silver, purging the sons of Levi, purging them as gold and silver, that they may offer to the Lord an offering in righteousness (vs.3-4). Notice how the “Offeror” must be tried by fire and purified in order for the “offering” to be pure and acceptable to God. The offering of “things” is simply an extension, a manifestation, of the heart of the one who offers it.

 

(Mal.3:4-5)

4 “”Then the offering of Judah and Jerusalem will be pleasant to the Lord, as in the days of old, as in the former years.

5 And I will come near you for judgment; I will be a swift witness against sorcerers, against adulterers, and perjurers, against those who exploit wage earners and widows and orphans, and against those who turn away an alien- Because they do not fear me.” says the Lord of Hosts.”

 

Notice how judgment here is a good thing. It releases justice and divine restoration on so many levels. We really need to break the stronghold that exists in the church which makes the children of God abhor God’s righteous judgment. God’s righteous judgment is one of the most beautiful liberating things that can come upon the earth, and we need to welcome it. It releases the blessings mentioned here in this passage!

 

The sons of Levi are purged, they allow themselves to be refined and be cleaned up by the launderer's soap, and look what is released out of it! God receives their offering and calls it pleasant in his sight! Wow, incredible! He says, “Then the offering of Judah and Jerusalem will be pleasant to the Lord, as in the days of old, as in the former years” (vs.4). Then it became pleasant, acceptable, and received after the ones offering the offerings were purified and refined. What was refined and purified? Their hearts! God looks upon the heart saints (1 Sam.16:7). The offering offered by the pure heart, with pure motives, with pure faith… this is the offering God receives.

 

After the offering was received, God then declared the release of his divine judgment and justice on behalf of the people. What if the priests of the Lord operating in the church today started purging themselves, submitting themselves to God’s refining fires of holiness? Could we see the release of divine justice and judgment from heaven in response, as a harvest for the righteous sowing into the heavens, which takes care of the witchcraft, takes care of corruption and falsehood? I think we could. Heaven responds to offerings offered in purity and faith, and these are the results saints! As you sow into the heavens, heaven is ready to pour out it’s value system in the earth!

 

Notice how the word says that God will judge the sorcerers and adulterers, then he immediately follows it up with a decree to judge the purjerors and those who exploit wage earners, widows, orphans, and immigrants. There’s something to be understood here saints. Witchcraft and financial sin is tied together. Not only are those things tied together, but the solution to dealing with those problems is directly tied to the offerings of God’s people, even financial offerings offered in righteousness!

 

In my country for instance, when the widow, the orphan, and the immigrant are sinned against, we want to turn to our laws to make everything better. But there are spiritual laws that must always be addressed first if the symptoms of corruption and exploitation are to be truly addressed. In my country, when the wage earner is exploited we form unions and seek to protect the rights of the workers. But then over time those unions end up joining together in ungodly alliances with politicians and lobbyists, and more unrighteousness and ungodliness comes upon the country than the original unrighteousness which prompted the union to form in the first place. This is the fruit of things like communism and socialism. Trying to deal with root sin and fallen world issues by creating a new system with you as god, fixing everything by your own brilliance. Then the results are always the same: worst oppression than when you started on your crusade. Why is this? Because Jesus and heaven is still the solution to this world’s problems. You cannot get around it. If you are going to change things for the better in the earth you must go through the courts of heaven; you must appeal to the highest throne, and one of the ways you do that is through sowing into the heavens, bringing offering before the Lord and participating in the priestly ministry.

 

I’m not saying that we should not have laws that protect people, and laws that help govern the marketplace so people play the free market game fair. But I am saying that ultimately nothing will change if the underlying spiritual problems are not addressed. The issue will simply evolve and change form and become more of a problem unless the root of the spiritual issue is addressed. This is the power of offerings offered to God in righteousness and purity. You can hit root problems in the earth by activating the courts of heaven in your life and in your country!

 

Tomorrow we’ll continue with this revelation, getting more into how the economy of heaven works and how God views offerings differently than people!

 

In His Service,

Stephen Powell

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