(week 01/09)
Olubi Johnson

Firstly, we want to wish all our readers a Christ-filled, healthy, prosperous and destiny fulfilling New Year.

The year 2009 will be a year of birthing new things from the Spirit into our souls: minds, wills and emotions; furthermore, it will be a year of new and higher rates of spiritual growth as has not been experienced hitherto.

These new births and growths will come through deep travailing prayer in the Spirit:

By praying in the spirit with tongues and deep travail (Gal. 4.19, Rom. 8.26, see our book ‘A Practical Guide to prayer’ for more details) with an attitude of love and humility:

1 Corinthians 13:1 ESV If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.

Psalms 42:7 ESV Deep calls to deep at the roar of your waterfalls; all your breakers and your waves have gone over me.

John 7:38-39 MKJV He who believes on Me, as the Scripture has said, “Out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.”  (39) (But He spoke this about the Spirit, which they who believed on Him should receive; for the Holy Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified).

In particular, we will give birth to new knowledge and wisdom that will bring stability to our lives personally and also to those under our sphere of influence:

Isaiah 33:6 ESV …and he will be the stability of your times, abundance of salvation, wisdom, and knowledge; the fear of the LORD is Zion’s treasure.

Also the ‘ark’: revelation and practice of perfecting the love of God will be exalted above all hills and mountains like Noah’s Ark was exalted and rested on Mt. Ararat:

Isaiah 2:2-3 ESV It shall come to pass in the latter days that the mountain of the house of the LORD shall be established as the highest of the mountains, and shall be lifted up above the hills; and all the nations shall flow to it, (3) and many peoples shall come, and say: “Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob, that he may teach us his ways and that we may walk in his paths.” For out of Zion shall go the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.

Genesis 7:17-20 ESV The flood continued forty days on the earth. The waters increased and bore up the ark, and it rose high above the earth. (18) The waters prevailed and increased greatly on the earth, and the ark floated on the face of the waters. (19) And the waters prevailed so mightily on the earth that all the high mountains under the whole heaven were covered. (20) The waters prevailed above the mountains, covering them fifteen cubits deep.

Genesis 8:4 ESV ..and in the seventh month, on the seventeenth day of the month, the ark came to rest on the mountains of Ararat.

This resting of the ark will birth the leadership of the reign of David‚ a perfect leadership in the church and end the reign of Saul‚ releasing upon the church the spirit without measure that will cause both physically and spiritually, the blind to see, the deaf to hear, the lame to walk and the dumb to sing:

Ezekiel 34:12, 22-24 MKJV As a shepherd seeks out his flock in the day that he is among his scattered sheep, so I will seek out My sheep and will deliver them out of all places where they have been scattered in the cloudy and dark day. (22) therefore I will save My flock, and they shall no more be a prey. And I will judge between lamb and lamb. (23) And I will set up one Shepherd over them, and He shall feed them, My servant David. He shall feed them, and He shall be their Shepherd. (24) And I Jehovah will be their God, and My servant David a ruler among them. I Jehovah have spoken.

Isaiah 35:1-7 ESV The wilderness and the dry land shall be glad; the desert shall rejoice and blossom like the crocus; (2) it shall blossom abundantly and rejoice with joy and singing. The glory of Lebanon shall be given to it, the majesty of Carmel and Sharon. They shall see the glory of the LORD, the majesty of our God. (3) Strengthen the weak hands, and make firm the feeble knees. (4)Say to those who have an anxious heart, “Be strong; fear not! Behold, your God will come with vengeance, with the recompense of God. He will come and save you. (5) Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf unstopped; (6) then shall the lame man leap like a deer, and the tongue of the mute sing for joy. For waters break forth in the wilderness, and streams in the desert; (7) the burning sand shall become a pool, and the thirsty ground springs of water; in the haunt of jackals, where they lie down, the grass shall become reeds and rushes.

These new births and  growths in our souls and bodies will as it were make us anew in the image of God, like God remade the heavens and the earth: new heavens‚ (symbolically representing the soul: mind, will and emotions) and new earth (symbolically representing the physical body), causing us to become sons (not just children) of God that will inherit all things:

2 Corinthians 4:10-11 MKJV (10) always bearing about the dying of the Lord Jesus in the body, so that the life of Jesus also might be revealed in our body. (11) For we who live are always being delivered to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus might also be revealed in our body. 2 Corinthians 5:4 MKJV For we who are in this tabernacle groan, being burdened; inasmuch as we do not wish to be unclothed, but to be clothed, so that the mortal might be swallowed up by the life.

2 Corinthians 5:17 LITV (17) So that if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new!

In this experience, in the manifold wisdom of God, there will be a symbolic, prophetic fulfilment (there will be literal fulfilment of this after the millennial reign of Christ) of:

Revelation 21:1-7 MKJV And I saw a new heaven and a new earth. For the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. And the sea no longer is. (2) And I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down from God out of Heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her Husband. (3) And I heard a great voice out of Heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they will be His people, and God Himself will be with them and be their God. (4) And God will wipe away all tears from their eyes. And there will be no more death, nor mourning, nor crying out, nor will there be any more pain; for the first things passed away. (5) And He sitting on the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And He said to me, Write, for these words are true and faithful. (6) And He said to me, It is done. I am the Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End. To him who thirsts I will give of the fountain of the Water of Life freely. (7) He who overcomes will inherit all things, and I will be his God, and he will be My son.

Experiencing this to a degree in this dispensation will cause us totaste’ of the powers of the age to come (Heb. 6.5).

The diligent practice of deep travailing prayer in the Spirit will ‘break up our fallow ground’ and constantly ‘water’ our souls with the life of God so causing great spiritual growth and fruitfulness like the garden Eden was constantly irrigated from the earth:

Genesis 2:6-9 ESV and a mist was going up from the land and was watering the whole face of the ground  (7) then the LORD God formed the man of dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living creature. (8)And the LORD God planted a garden in Eden, in the east, and there he put the man whom he had formed. (9) And out of the ground the LORD God made to spring up every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food. The tree of life was in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

It is instructive to note that the Lord Jesus Himself constantly watered His soul in this way when He was on the earth by deep travailing prayer as a daily habit:

Hebrews 5:7 MKJV For Jesus, in the days of His flesh, when He had offered up prayers and supplications with strong cryings and tears to Him who was able to save Him from death, and was heard in that He feared,

Hebrews 5:7 GNB In his life on earth Jesus made his prayers and requests with loud cries and tears to God, who could save him from death. Because he was humble and devoted, God heard him.

As we follow His example of deep travailing prayer with an attitude of humility, 2009 will be for us a year of new births and growth!