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6/9/20 - ARE YOU DEAD or ALIVE?

Ezekiel 37:1-10 “The hand of the Lord was on me, and He brought me out by the Spirit of the Lord and set me in the middle of a valley; it was full of bones. He led me back and forth among them, and I saw a great many bones on the floor of the valley, bones that were very dry. He asked me, “Son of man, can these bones live?” I said, “Sovereign Lord, you alone know.” Then he said to me, “Prophesy to these bones and say to them, ‘Dry bones, hear the word of the Lord! This is what the Sovereign Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life. I will attach tendons to you and make flesh come upon you and cover you with skin; I will put breath in you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am the Lord.’ ” So I prophesied as I was commanded. And as I was prophesying, there was a noise, a rattling sound, and the bones came together, bone to bone. I looked, and tendons and flesh appeared on them and skin covered them, but there was no breath in them. Then he said to me, “Prophesy to the breath; prophesy, son of man, and say to it, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Come, breath, from the four winds and breathe into these slain, that they may live.’ ” So I prophesied as he commanded me, and breath entered them; they came to life and stood up on their feet—a vast army.”

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I found a note that I had written in the column of my Bible. “Whatever is not growing, even though it gives the appearance of being alive, is dead.” I have no idea why it caught my attention. But as I went and sat at my kitchen table, I heard the Holy Spirit say very clearly these words. “Are you dead or alive?” Then He said before I could even meditate on it, Ezekiel 37! I started laughing because I was able to connect the dots. Some of you may be asking yourselves, “How does she come up with these things?” Believe me when I tell you, it’s not me. I don’t think like this normally. This is how these messages are birthed, and only when I’m reading Scriptures. So I must stay in the Word daily. I promise you this. June 7, 2020. That if I do not hear from Him, you’ll never hear from me. I will never write my feelings. Feelings have no supernatural power to heal, deliver or set free. But the anointing does. Now to the message.

The dry bones of Ezekiel’s conversation with God, represented the deadened state of Israel at that time. But God was about to resurrect His chosen people. God is a covenant keeping God. His promise to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob will always be paramount to Him. No matter how far Israel strayed in their disobedience, when they repented He restored. Fast forward to today where God declares that in Christ Jesus there is no distinction between Jew and Gentile. Through His sacrifice He’s made us ONE people. We have been grafted in. See Romans 11. No we have not replaced Israel rather we have been joined to them through our acceptance of Jesus’ finished work. Galatians 3:28 (read)

To my first point. Even though something may appear alive, if there’s no growth or activity then that person or project can be classified as dead. Not in the sense that it cannot be resurrected in the future, but it has lost its relevance or ability to be productive at present. The Church today is like the valley of dry bones. We give the appearance of being alive, but we’re not producing. Now this may not apply to all, but whenever you have to search to find a Church that’s actually living the Acts of the Apostles model, it makes one wonder what’s going on with the Body of Christ at large. The Holy Spirit would’ve never have posed the question if it had no merit. I wouldn’t be writing if it wasn’t a current issue.

I recently had a monologue with a neighbor in my community (I can’t call it a dialogue) because not only did she ask the questions , she had all the answers, and wasn’t open to hear anything I had to say. She had already decided what my responses should be, and if it didn’t align with what she wanted to hear-oh well. This individual professes to be a Christian, but if you were eavesdropping, she sounded and acted like she never met the Master. Appearing alive but dead. Do you recall the conversation God had with the first family? He told them If they ate from the forbidden tree, they would die. Satan showed up and told Eve she wouldn’t die. She believed him ate the fruit and died immediately. Wait a minute you say, she didn’t actually die! Yes, she did! Spiritually. When Adam showed up, she gave the appearance of being alive, but she had already died. He was fooled by the appearance of death masquerading as life, ate, and died with his wife. There are some Christians who give the appearance of being alive but have been spiritually dead for years. Propped up by church membership. I knew someone like that -50 years in the same church building, was in every auxiliary, but had never opened the Bible. God is my witness that I’m not lying. I asked her if she’s ever read what’s written in the Word, she said no. She’s deceased now. But unfortunately she’s not alone.

I’ve been stressing in these messages that it’s not enough to attend church, or do church stuff. All that matters to God is a genuine personal authentic relationship with Jesus Christ. If the Church is lacking spiritual authority, it may look alive all dressed up, but it’s still dead in the eyes of God. If we walk in the buildings on Sunday mornings messed up, and walk out an hour later a worse mess, we were in a valley of dry bones. God is looking for an Ezekiel, who even though the tasks seem impossible, is willing to say “Lord you know.” God is looking for an Ezekiel, to take up the challenge and prophesy to the dry bones. The Church needs to be made alive again. Regain its authority through right relationship with Jesus Christ. The “dead” in Ezekiel was not referring to the world, but God’s chosen people, which today applies to the Church of Jesus Christ. Like Samson, the Church has lost its strength through compromise. We’ve sold our souls to be relevant. So now when we hear our name(Christian) we get up, shake ourselves as at other times, only to discover we have no power. Judges 16:20 gives a description of the state of the current Churches in America.

“He awoke from his sleep and thought, “I’ll go out as before and shake myself free.” But he did not know that the Lord had left him.”

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We have been entrusted with so much. Given so much. Yet to look at us, you wouldn’t know it. We’re unrecognizable, and not in a good way. We can’t pray a fly off a sandwich. God has given us His Word and Spirit, but unbelief and complacency has replaced faith. A study of God’s Word has been replaced with extra curricular activities. Praying has been replaced with complaining and begging. We’ve become complacent while being stripped of any authority we may have had, now we depend on the government to protect our religious freedoms. There was a time when we’d run to our prayer closets for the answers , knowing that our victory is from Him alone. We have relegated to man what belongs to God. God’s pulpit was not raised up to preach against each other! His pulpits were raised up to preach Jesus Christ, and Him alone! What has happened to us? Thank God All is not lost, there’s hope! Marilyn Hickey loves to say “put your hand on your heart” is it still beating? There’s hope.

God always has a plan, even in the valley of dry bones. Let’s continue reading Ezekiel 37 and verses 11-14: “Then He said to me: “Son of man, these bones are the people of Israel. They say, ‘Our bones are dried up and our hope is gone; we are cut off.’ Therefore prophesy and say to them: ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: My people, I am going to open your graves and bring you up from them; I will bring you back to the land of Israel. Then you, my people, will know that I am the Lord, when I open your graves and bring you up from them. I will put my Spirit in you and you will live, and I will settle you in your own land. Then you will know that I the Lord have spoken, and I have done it, declares the Lord.’ 

God is going to revive His Church again in these last days. He always has a remnant who’s willing to fall on their faces and repent and seek Him. Wherever He finds those hearts, He will move mightily. He has not sacrificed His Son for nought. He will raise up an Ezekiel in these last days to call the Church to repentance. That’s the cry that has been missing during these strange times. We ask a lot from God without genuine surrender and repentance. We want to command God and bring Him down to our terms. When we humble ourselves, we’ll hear Him calling us from the grave! There’s a term being banded about lately “the woke generation “ it’s supposed to mean awareness. Well when is the Church going to be “Woke?” Why aren’t we aware that we’re being systematically stripped of our relevance? Some of us have become too comfortable watching “church” on a screen and Pastors have become comfortable preaching to empty pews. We’d better “Woke” up!

So I prophesied as I was commanded. And as I was prophesying, there was a noise, a rattling sound, and the bones came together, bone to bone. I looked, and tendons and flesh appeared on them and skin covered them, but there was no breath. Ezekiel 37:7

They looked like the Church, gave the appearance of being alive, but no breath, no life, no power. But God is not finished with His Church. When we’re faithless, Praise God! He remains faithful! 2 Timothy 2:13

Then He said to me, “Prophesy to the breath; prophesy, son of man, and say to it, (the corpses) This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Come breath, from the four winds and breathe into these slain that they may live. So I prophesied as He commanded me, and breath entered them; they came to life and stood up on their feet—a vast army. Ezekiel 37:9-10.

The Church will live again! LAZARUS!!! Put your name there.....COME FORTH! In the Name of Jesus! We will fulfill our purpose in the earth. I will build My Church! declares Jesus. And the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. So Church, are you dead or alive? Prophesy! And live! Call forth the dreams, call forth the visions, call forth the unsaved, call forth our Nation from the grave. We will live and not die to declare the mighty works of our God. Hallelujah!! Hallelujah!! Glory to God!!!

In the Name of the One who declares I AM the resurrection and the life. Jesus the Christ, I declare that I’m alive! Jesus I arouse myself shake off the grave clothes of lethargy and complacency to embrace the breath of life Jesus. I declare that I have passed from death to life, to be the vibrant Church for which you died. Thank you for restoration. In the power of Your Spirit I live to do the greater works that you said I would in Jesus Name.

Written by permission of the Holy Spirit

W. Tennant


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