Salvation—Entering the Kingdom of Heaven
This article was taken from Kevin Basconi's book; "The Sword of the Lord & The Rest of the Lord". In the book Kevin describes a powerful trance that he experienced on the Day of Atonement in 2011. In This vision Kevin witnessed the return of Jesus Christ as the saw the sky split open and the Lord invade the earth with millions of angelic beings upon horse back to overtake a dark and evil storm. During this experience Kevin was given five supernatural keys to entering into the rest of the Lord to help God's friends overcome the evil and darkness that is being released upon the earth at this hour.
Entering the Kingdom of Heaven
Not everyone…shall enter the kingdom of heaven.
Not everyone who says to Me, “Lord, Lord,” shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, “Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?” And then I will declare to them, “I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!” (Matthew 7:21-23).
One of the principles that Jesus outlines in Matthew 7 is that some who believe that they know Christ as Savior do not. They do not know Him. They are lost. Some people estimate that as many as 85 percent of people who say they are Christians are not actually saved or born again. If this is true (and I pray it is not) many professing Christianity will miss it. In fact, they may miss heaven and hit hell. They will be like the ones in verses 21-23 above. They will stand before the Lord on Judgment Day and recount the works they did for God.
“Lord, I prophesied. Lord, I had a powerful deliverance ministry and cast out a lot of demons and helped to set the captive free. Lord, I preached the Bible. Lord, I helped feed the poor and provided them with water and shelter. Lord, I attended church and I paid my tithes. Lord, I taught Sunday school.” There are many other things along this line they might say, and yet Matthew 7:23 tells us that Jesus will say to them, “I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!”
On the Day of Atonement the Lord convicted me about this. “The day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night” (2 Peter 3:10; 1 Thessalonians 5:2). Many in the Body of Christ are unprepared. Many of us are like the ten foolish virgins (see Matthew 25:1-3). Yes, many who have done great works for the Kingdom of God will stand before the Lord and Jesus will have no knowledge of them. Why? Because they did not enter into the rest of the Lord. They did not learn to develop an intimate relationship with the person of Jesus. They did not allow the Holy Spirit to help them, to guide them, and to lead them. It is a time to make sure that your election and calling are sure. It is a time to make sure that your faith is founded upon Christ and not upon religion and religious activities. Your church cannot save you from hell. Your denomination cannot save you from hell. Your good deeds and good works cannot get you into heaven.
We need to develop an intimate and personal relationship with God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. Be diligent to confirm that your salvation is established upon the Rock. The salvation of Jesus Christ is the only way into heaven. “There is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6). There is only “one God and only one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus,who gave Himself a ransom for all” (1 Timothy 2:5-6). This Jesus, the Son of the living God, is the only way for you to receive salvation and remission of your sins. If you are not sure that you are born from above or “born again,” perhaps you may wish to pray the prayer of salvation at the end of this message now.
In the vision of the storm, I saw many Christians quaking in fear and trembling. They did not know who Christ was, and they were hopelessly filled with horror and anxiety. Although they had a form of godliness, they did not know God. As a result, they were just as lost as the rest of the world. They were in subjugation to fear and every other demonic oppression and yoke of darkness. They did not know the truth or the Gospel; and as a result, they were not able to use the Word of God as a weapon of warfare in the midst of the darkness of the storm. We need to learn the Word of God and begin to hide it within our hearts and souls.
Fear and Trembling
The Apostle Paul understood that even though many people had made conscious decisions to become Christians, they were still immature in their faith. He referred to these kinds of believers as carnal (see 1 Corinthians 3). This same dynamic is still prevalent among the Lord’s people at this hour. In fact, it is a ploy of the enemy to keep believers in a state of immaturity and carnality and ignorant of the power of God’s Word. Actually, that is what the enemy wants to do; he wants to keep you in ignorance. If you do not know what your inheritance is, you can never step into it and enjoy the benefits of it. That is defeat. Through ignorance you can allow the enemy to kill, steal, and destroy you and yours (see John 10:10). Enforce your boundaries! The enemy wants to keep you in bondage to religion.
Hosea 4:6 outlines this type of spiritual bankruptcy: “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.” The enemy of your soul wants you to be kept in ignorance and darkness in order that he may steal, kill, and destroy you. We must be diligent to search out and uncover the inheritance that Christ purchased for each of us. We must comprehend with our entire spirit, soul, and body the magnitude and finality of the triumph of Christ accomplished for each of us in our individual circumstances. Ignorance is not bliss; it is the playground of demons who seek to rob you from your rightful place in God’s Kingdom.
You must fully understand the magnitude of what Jesus purchased for you when He died upon the Cross of Calvary. We need to comprehend the power that was released to each of us when the Father raised Jesus Christ from the dead. Otherwise the enemy can keep you from achieving God’s perfect plan and purpose in your life. The enemy will have the ability to oppress you and subject you to his kingdom of darkness. The god of this age will have succeeded in blinding your mind to the glorious light and revelations of Christ (2 Corinthians 4:4). The truth is that Jesus died to make you an overcomer and to give the authority to rule and reign in this life now (see Revelation 5:9-10).
Philippians 2:12-13 encourages us: “Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure.” The God of the universe desires to work within you! That is amazing to think about isn’t it? The God of the universe seeks to empower you through His Holy Spirit (see Ephesians 3:14-21). But the devil seeks to keep you in bondage to a religious spirit and idol worship.
Every believer must seek to work out their own salvation at this hour. This is yet another way that we can be diligent to enter into the rest of the Lord. The question that is being asked at this hour is this: Who are you going to serve? You can serve the Lord, or you can serve the kingdom of darkness and all the fleeting pleasures that seem to be available to you in that darkness. We need to make sure that our relationship with the Lord is strong and true.
God versus Mammon
Jesus gave some very pertinent advice along these lines. Look at what He told us in Matthew 6:24-25: “No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon. Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?”
In the passage above the Lord illustrates the pull that the kingdom of darkness has upon humans. The word mammon is of Chaldean origin. Mammon is actually wealth or wealth personified. In other words, mammon is an idol in some people’s hearts. In our society we have surely made an idol out of riches and the glamour of wealth. We worship mammon, and the worship of mammon or wealth is a form of idol worship in America and beyond. This worship of mammon is loosed in the church too. Our priorities are turned all around and perverted for the most part. The god of this age is working overtime to blind our eyes, and he has succeeded in keeping many of us in abject ignorance. Ignorance is not bliss; it is a demonic yoke of darkness.
Again, we see the devil’s strategy outlined in 2 Corinthians 4:3-4:“If the gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them.” Don’t be deceived by the devil’s strategy.
Praise God! The Lord has given us precious and wonderful promises in His Word. God has given us His strategies for victory. John underlines this in 1 John 5:4: “For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.” The Gospel has the power to help us overcome the world, but we need to get it firmly implanted within our spirits, souls, and bodies.
We need to earnestly seek to renew our minds. We need to get our mindsets changed, rehabilitated, and transformed according to Romans 12:2: “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” Renewing our mindsets can also help us to enter into the rest of the Lord.
Money is not evil in itself; it is the love of wealth and mammon that can lead to wickedness and sin (see 1 Timothy 6:10). So, how should we use the monies that the Lord is giving into our hands to steward? We need to use them in a holy and righteous way. We need to seek to hear the Lord, we need to listen to the precious Holy Spirit, and we need to seek His perfect will and plan for our monies and wealth. We should seek the direction that is found in the scriptures and invest our monies in the Kingdom of God and in His purposes. We need to learn to be led by the Spirit of the Lord in this area of our lives and ministries. Tithing is great, but we also need to learn how to freely give alms. It is a wonderful experience to enter the rest of the Lord with your finances. Giving God your money is liberating!
We have a tendency to forget the poor and the widow and use the money that the Lord gives us to promote our own agendas. Instead of doing the things the Lord would have us to do, we build larger edifices and develop larger programs. We allow mammon to control our lives and ministries, and this is a form of idol worship in the church. We tend to build ministry machines that are fueled by more and more mammon. This kind of religious growth robs us of our ability to trust in the Lord and the freedom to enter into the rest of the Lord.
In Matthew 6:24-25 the Lord addresses mammon, saying, “You cannot serve God and mammon. Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?”
Yes, our lives are truly more than eating, drinking, and caring for our other natural needs. Don’t work for money; rather allow money to work for you. “Begin to earn a giving instead of earning a living,” as my friend Pastor James Durham says. Life is a spiritual journey and the Lord will make sure that our spirit is safe and secure within His Kingdom. Yet, the message of the world is totally opposite: “Horde food, save money, save for a rainy day, get the latest fashion.” The world tells us to pamper our soul and flesh and tells us: “Forget about your spirit, it is not real.” That is a lie of the god of this age, and it is foolishness to believe it.
Jesus said that we should be more concerned with our spirit. Look at how eloquently Jesus sums this up:
Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature? So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not worry, saying, “What shall we eat?” or “What shall we drink?” or “What shall we wear?” For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble (Matthew 6:26-34).
In this passage of scripture, Jesus is describing entering into the rest of the Lord in terms of our finances. He is saying that we need to rest in the Lord and trust God to meet our basic needs for food, clothing, and shelter.
We should truly seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness. This is another key that can help us to enter into the rest of the Lord. In other words, we need to make sure that our salvation is firm and sure. It’s important that we confirm the “surety” and assurance of our spirit. Our heavenly Father will supply all of our soulish and carnal needs. The Father already knows every single thing that you need before we ask (Matthew 6:8).
In the vision of the storm, I saw these “Gentiles” or unbelievers. They were terrified and overcome by yokes of darkness because they were in danger of losing their stuff. The stuff had become mammon to them, it had become their idol. It had become the thing that they worshiped, and as such it had replaced God. This was also true for many Christians in the visions too. The approaching storm will blow away our idols of mammon and force us to deal with the reality of the Kingdom of God face to Face. The Lord was allowing the storm to bring people back to Him. The dark storm is the mercy of God. The approaching dark storms will surely blow away our mammon and idols. So, where is that going to leave us as individuals?
As I mentioned earlier, as these challenging times unfold upon the earth, we will need to develop our individual ability to hear the voice of God. As we learn to rest in the Lord, He will speak to us and give us direction. Some people never mature in this area of their walk with God. They remain immature; or as the Apostle Paul said, they remain “babes in Christ” (1 Corinthians 3:1). They allow the spiritual leaders in their lives to guide them and to hear God on their behalf. This is dangerous practice. Our lack of ability to hear God becomes a very serious liability when we become lazy and develop an unhealthy dependence on prophecy and prophetic ministry. When this happens, we allow the man (the prophet) to replace the Messiah. We can allow prophecy to replace our own need to study and learn God’s Word and to wait and listen to God for ourselves. We become like the people in Isaiah 6:9-10 that Jesus spoke about:
Go, and tell this people: “Keep on hearing, but do not understand; Keep on seeing, but do not perceive.” Make the heart of this people dull, And their ears heavy, And shut their eyes; Lest they see with their eyes, And hear with their ears, And understand with their heart, And return and be healed.
It is imperative that we learn to hear the voice of the Lord at this hour. When we develop our ability to hear God and rest in His marvelous presence, then we will be healed. As this approaching darkness and evil storm manifests, it will become even more dangerous to be spiritually deaf and blind. I want to look at this unhealthy dynamic in the next chapter.
Prayer of Salvation
Perhaps you would like to be born again and receive Jesus as your Lord and Savior now. Just pray this prayer out loud:
Father God, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Savior or Messiah. I believe that Jesus is the only begotten Son of God and that He died upon the Cross to make payment for my sins. I believe that Jesus was buried in an unused grave, but that after three days He rose again to conquer death and sin. Lord, because I was born a human being, I was born a sinner. Lord, I ask you to forgive my sins now in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth. God, cover my sins with the atoning blood of Jesus and forgive me now. Amen.
This article was taken from Kevin Basconi's book; "The Sword of the Lord & The Rest of the Lord".
To order " The Sword of the Lord & The Rest of the Lord " in book form click HERE.
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This article was written by Kevin Basconi, for King of Glory Ministries International, PO Box 903, Moravian Falls, NC 28654. www.kingofgloryministries.org -336-818-1210.
This article is an aspect of the new iMAEC.
The International Ministry Apostolic Equipping Center
The Moravian Falls School of Higher Learning
Preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom to the ends of the earth
from the very heart of Moravian Falls, North Carolina.
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