[Course 11 Index] [Prophetic-School Index] [Mini-Series Index] [Prev Lesson] [Next Lesson]

-- © GodSpeak International 2000 --
-- Do not republish without written permission from <copyright@godspeak.org> --

Author: Bret Wade bretwade@theprophets.org
TRANSCRIBED BY: Lucy Deliganis
EDITORS:Teresa Seputis, Lucy Deliganis

The Apostolic and It's Relation To The Prophetic

By Bret Wade

Lesson 4
Apostolic Centers

There are many different things that God is saying and doing in this hour. One of the things that God is doing. One of the things that we have to realize is that in order for us to touch the nations, it has to start by us touching those that are around us.

How many of you know that the nations are right around you when you are not even aware of it? I have become increasingly aware that there are people from other nations all around us and we do not even realize they are her or why they are here. Some are here to make a better life for themselves, or to raise their standard of living. Some may be here to receive an education. They are all around us. You never know who it is that you are running into. Or who it is that you may speak to that may have a profound effect on another community of people.

In order for us to touch the nations, we have to be willing to touch those around us. If we are afraid to touch those around us, we will be afraid to touch the nations. You know that I love accents. I love to listen to people from other nations so that I can hear how they speak. I am sure they love to listen to us.

I do not know if I have a genuine southern accent, because I am a transplant. Some southerners would call me a Yankee because I am from Omaha, but I did not live there very long. Huntsville, Alabama became my home. We settled in Huntsville and have been here since l975. I may not act like a genuine southerner, but this is my home. God spoke to back in 1980. I wanted to leave Huntsville. I was not even really walking with the Lord, and just doing my own thing. The Lord spoke to me and said, "I have married you to Huntsville." I thought, "Oh, God!"

But you know sometimes one tries to get away from their divine purpose. Have you ever found yourself wrestling with God about that which you has been called to do? As you begin to step in to your calling, you begin to find that that was what God had planned for you all along.

You know the devil will come in and try to make bondages in areas that you have strengths that are ordained by God. The devil tried to get me to the place that I was so intimated that I could not speak because God had made me to be a communicator. Now as words hit my lips, they multiply!! Now I do not lack for words, but I want my words to count! You see that whatever God gives you an ability to do-- if you will stretch and allow God to develop you in that area, God will bring an anointing that destroys the yoke on someone else's life.

I want to talk to you about an apostolic church or apostolic center. What is that? We are learning that an apostolic center's primary purpose is to send--to send people into another territory or regions that will further the gospel of Jesus Christ. Someone may say, "Why would you want to plant a church in areas where there are already churches?" The answer to this is that there are areas that already have churches that are dead.

What is a church that is dead? It is a church that is not fulfilling God's divine purpose for that area. If God sends a church into an area to destroy racism or some other stronghold, it is with the purpose of building a stronghold for God. How many of you know there are strongholds that are established and they are not necessarily of the devil? This church that I am in is a stronghold for God in this valley, and no matter what Satan has set against it, we have stood. This is a spiritual stronghold that has been established by the kingdom of God.

When God begins to send out, He begins to send out those that will contend with the enemy in the gates. So what we are seeing is that an apostolic center is one that sends the sons and daughters to destroy the enemy in other territories. Those that are in this church right now from other cities and towns, God will begin to do something in your region. As you are faithful in this church, God will cause other men and women to be sent to your area to set up a stronghold that will drive back and close the gates of hell, and will allow the gates of heaven to be opened over that area. God is stronger than anything Satan can try to rise up. God is better than anything Satan has to offer, and God is willing to bring whatever resource that He needs to bring to a region to force Satan back.

So one of the primary functions of an apostolic center is not being introverted. In other words, it does not turn itself inward and only look at itself. Many churches in this hour are those that stand and say, "It is us alone that are going to heaven." No man has that right. They say, "It is only us. If you follow our doctrine, then you can enter the gates of heaven." But no man has the right to say who is the one that can go in and go out.

Religious spirits that operate through religious people do this. Let me define the difference here for those that may not understand what I am saying. When I am talking about a religious spirit, I am talking about a form of godliness that has no power. Christianity has power as long as we allow the Spirit of God to move, but the moment that we begin to cut off the Spirit of God from the people, we begin to do what Jesus rebuked the Pharisees for. That was cutting heaven off men. As that begins to happen, it causes bondages to come on people.

One of the things that God wants to do is to release people that will break and destroy those spirits in the spirit realm, and to release people into a true relationship with the Lord. How many of you have felt confined with you are around people that did not allow you to be what God had called you to be. It is our purpose and intent here to allow you to be what God has called you to be. You do not have to look or sound like us or to worship like us, but you do need to do what is in your heart for the Lord. Amen!!

So an apostolic center and apostolic church is one that has apostle, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers that are there to build up the Body of Christ and to equip the Body of Christ for the work of the ministry. An apostolic center needs to raise up and train the ones it will be sending out, so that they will be fully equipped and experienced in doing the things of God. This means an apostolic center needs to provide opportunities for people to minister and learn to move in their gifts.

I do not want to kill myself doing the work of the ministry. I do not want to kill myself by everyone expecting me to do something. The day when everyone expects me to do something for them and to wear myself out is over. I will not die at 45. I will not die at 55 because of stress or heart attack because I am doing too much. These other ministers and I are called to train and release you to do the work of the ministry.

We are here to reach out to those around us and to effect this community -- starting with where we are. Those of you that are from other cities, you are to reach out to your community and effect them. It does not matter who they are and what level of society they are in. What matters is that an apostolic and prophetic church that is planted in a city goes after the community. It goes after rich, poor, and middle class. Not just one class because that is where the money is. A church that does not have poor people in it is a church that is not reaching that class of people.

We need to realize that God has called us all--not just part of us. Not just those that are eloquent speakers. Not just those that look like preachers. God has called you to preach the gospel by demonstration and by the word of God. God confirms His Word with signs following. He does not confirm the opinions of man. As long as we are not preaching our opinion and we preach the word of God, we will see the demonstration of the Spirit of God in power.

One of the things that we must realize is that an apostolic church is a church where the apostles had visions and dreams. They would see people in their dreams and say, "Come over to Macedonia and help us." In other place it said, "We are the helpers of your joy." Paul said it this way, "My proof of ministry is you." One thing that we ought to know is that it takes all of us. I cannot be successful without you. You cannot be successful without me. We cannot throw one another away. Maybe you did not treat me right one day, or take the time for me that I thought you should haven taken. Hello? Or you did not pet me when I felt as if I needed to be petted. Or you did not hop when I wanted you to hop. I am just talking about attitude that people have.

We have to realize that there needs to be a flow back and forth. The Body of Christ does not function with just one person. We have to be willing to receive people, and do things differently that we have done before. In order to receive people, you have to begin to look with different eyes. How do you receive people? You have to begin to look at your situation from new eyes.

This is one of the principles I was taught when I was in management with U-Haul company. One of the things they taught me was that you are to walk in the door and manage by walking around. In other words, you are to walk in and act like you are the customer and look the customer's eyes and see if you would buy the product that you are selling. Would you purchase the service that is being sold there? Would you want what is being sold there by the appearance you see?

The next time that you walk in the front door of this church I want those of you that are members to walk in the front door as if this is the first time that you have ever been here. Say this to yourself, "Is this a place of worship that I would want to see." Just look at it from a different vantage point. If you cannot look at it from a different vantage point, then you are short-sighted.

All of us can become short-sighted in the way that we view things if we do not look at a different angle. If you walk in and see the carpet dirty, praise God! If you see a need, meet it! You know if you had company come to your house, how long would you stay home to clean it? I know some of us would not. I know when my grandmother flies in from California, my mother spends two weeks cleaning her house. (smile) Think about it. What would you straighten up or change in your home if someone was visiting you for the first time?

There is an old adage that says, "You do not have a second chance for a first impression." Begin to look around and think about what it is that you need to contribute to the work of the church. Are there toys in the foyer? Pick them up. Is there dirt on the floor? Clean it up. Are there doors open that do not need to be open? Close them. If there are no greeters, stand and greet!

When I go to Wal-Mart, there is usually a smiling individual to greet me. We need to learn from some of the things that surround us. You see we do not need to be introverted, saying "It is just us, or all we have is this old building!" What would you do if you were waiting on God for a new car. Do you think God would still want you to wax that old jalopy that you have? Do you think God would want you to change the oil in it and be faithful with little so that you can be faithful with much? It is no different in the house of the Lord. If we are believing God for a new building, let us take care of the one we have.

If you see something that is dirty, clean it up. If you see someone that needs help, help them. We need to be hospitable to those around us and as we do this the love of Christ will draw them to us. You cannot just walk up into someone's face, prophesy to them and then leave them alone. Hello? We need to be hospitable in every area and also each other. We are a many member Body. I draw off the people in this church. I draw from the strength of the people here, and I thank God for people that are willing to co-labor and come together and be strengths to one another.

Thank God for the ministry of intercession in my church. Thank God for those that are faithful to that. But let me also say this. Some of us are becoming tired. We need assistance. We need you to pray for us as well. Some of us are prayer walking this city. We need assistance. We need some help. We need someone to come walk beside us and maybe take our place one day so that we can mow our grass or clean our house. I am just getting down where we live. Is that all right?

Did you know that if a group of twenty of us gets together and if we are all expected to do the exact same thing, that we will eventually wear out? For example, if we had twenty people coming in here doing an apostle's job, there would be a lack everywhere else. It really is wasted effort if everyone does the same thing unless you begin not to divide, but multiply. Multiply your efforts. You cannot be everywhere at one time. Thank God! Hallelujah! We cannot do everything by ourselves. We need to make room for those who God is gifting.

I have begun to take our Internet web site, looking at areas that are taking my time. Not that I do not enjoy it, but sometimes you have to take that which you are laboring with and begin to give it to someone else. I began to say that I am looking for those people that I can delegate to. We gave our prayer requests over to another person, and that has taken a tremendous load off. We did not realize how much we spent on that until we did not have to do it anymore.

But do you know something? That is an apostolic work. We have people sending in prayer requests from all over the world. We had a word not too long ago that said there would be requests for intercession that would come in from all over the world. Do you know that that is a word that is already being fulfilled? It was not fulfilled in the way that I had expected. I had thought that the phone would ring off the hook, but that has not been what happened. God has brought us to the place that He is allowing us to use technology that will touch all over the world.

-- © GodSpeak International 2000 --
-- Do not republish without written permission from <copyright@godspeak.org> --

[Course 11 Index] [Prophetic-School Index] [Mini-Series Index ] [Prev Lesson] [Next Lesson]