My Mantle

The Mantle

I John 2:27 (NKJV)

But the anointing which you have received from Him abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you will abide in Him.

 

Rifling through the dusty book shelf at home looking for something to read on the plane or beach, I came across a book that I was given in 2005 but had not taken the time to read yet. It is called Mantled with Authority by Barbara Yoder. Holding it in my left hand, I continued to go through other books until I could distinctly feel the Lord directing my attention back to it. The subtitle is “God’s Apostolic Mandate to Women.” I cannot remember who gave this book to me or how it came into my possession. The highlighting and notes indicate that I did not make it very far through it before I was distracted and laid it aside. Laying on the beach yesterday under a palm laden tiki hut, God blew my mind. So powerfully, that I could not finish it, but just had to bask in it for a bit. God’s Word is alive. It is a two-edged sword for those who continually dig in it and apply it to life. It changes everything if we allow it to permeate our head, heart and soul.

 

Today words like mantle, anointing, power and authority encircle my head and engage my mind. I know that the same power that brought Jesus from the grave lives in me. I want to learn how to get it out of me and change the world. I have felt this way my entire life reading this book now seems to be a “for-such-a-time-as-this” moment. I have had many of those moments in almost fifty years of life as the Lord has removed guilt and shame covering me with His Grace, Mercy and Love moving me to a position of spiritual power growing my faith testing its foundation and forging it with fiery trials. I know what is in me. How do I get it out of me?

 

The Anointing of God abides in every spirit-filled believer, not every Christian. It is the power of belief that changes what we know into what is done. The Kingdom of God is not a word to be heard but of power. (I Corinthians 4:20) If all we were to do was preach the Gospel, then why would Jesus feel the need to tell us that we would do more? Impossible should become possible in the Presence of Faithful Believers exuding the Power of God in them to the waiting world.

 

John 14:11-14 (NKJV)

“Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father in Me, or else believe Me for the sake of the works themselves. Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father.  And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My name, I will do it.”

 

Believe me. Faith comes by hearing but does not turn in a miracle until someone believes. I wonder how many impossibles are just waiting to be made possible if one person would believe. We may know Jesus or think we do but this knowledge is worthless without faith. To say that we believe yet refuse to base our life on it is to live a lie. If we truly believe in Jesus Christ and His Power and Authority, we will exercise it in faith and trust in Him. We will do the things that we are anointed to do simply because we believe it.

 

Mark 9:23-24 (NKJV)

Jesus said to him, “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes.” Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!”

 

If you can believe, all things are possible to him (or her) who believes. We live impossible lives because we do not believe. We live in limitation and lack because we do not believe. It clearly states in God’s Word that with God ALL things are possible. (Matthew 19:26) And here we see the problem – we do not believe. The father of this child was not certain that Jesus had anything to offer and so he said “IF” you can do anything for us. We have been anointed by God. His Spirit lives inside of us. Walking in the Power and Authority bestowed to us is a choice. We decide if we believe. We choose to trust. We are the ones who determine the extent of God’s Glory in our life.

 

I Kings 19:19-20 (NKJV)

So he departed from there, and found Elisha the son of Shaphat, who was plowing with twelve yoke of oxen before him, and he was with the twelfth. Then Elijah passed by him and threw his mantle on him. And he left the oxen and ran after Elijah, and said, “Please let me kiss my father and my mother, and then I will follow you.” And he said to him, “Go back again, for what have I done to you?”

 

Elisha is working in the family business. He has a pair of oxen and he is plowing along when the prophet, Elijah comes along and throws his mantle or outer garment over him. This was a symbolic gesture. Now Elisha could have kept plowing or he could have stopped to return the discarded garment, but Elisha understood what it meant. He now had to make a choice. Would he continue in his regular life and comforts of home, or would he become servant to the Man of God. It goes on to tell us in I Kings 19 that he went back slaughtered the oxen, fed the city and then left home to follow the prophet. The Anointing of God will always be a choice. The Lord offers us His Spirit and we decide whether or not we want Him as an active partner in life. He calls but we must answer. Jesus is the Way, Truth and Life. He is the only way to the Father, yet we still have the right to say no.

 

Matthew 11:28-30 (NKJV)

Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.

 

Jesus offers to make the same exchange here in Matthew 11. All you who labor and are heavy laden. His yoke is easy and his burden light. The Power of God is given in anointing and activated when we partner with God. Elisha killed the oxen and broken the burden of hard labor when he offered his life as a living sacrifice to Elijah. We are to do the same.

 

“It shall come to pass in that day that his burden will be taken away from your shoulder, and his yoke from your neck, and the yoke will be destroyed because of the anointing oil.” (Isaiah 10:27) The Anointing of God on our life will break every yoke of human bondage. When we decide to submit our life as a sacrifice and service to the Lord, power is released that has nothing to do with who we are but Who lives in us. Our daily life, burdens, hassles, problems, stress and more limits us when we attach ourselves to it rather than to Christ first. The Bible tells us to not be unequally yoked with nonbelievers. Well, when our job becomes more important than our pursuit of God and His Power or distracts us with stress and worry – it limits God’s Powerful Release that could change our work environment because we are yoked to our employer and not our Provider. See it is important to evaluate the connections in our life to be sure that our first and foremost connection is to Jesus Christ by faith alone. Galatians 5:1 warns about becoming yoked to our religion. Just let that one sink in, strife, division and dishonor in the church and rivalry in the Body of Christ is our alignment with religion and not born of our relationship with Christ. We lose our freedom the moment we are yoked to religion for it is driven by the Law and not by God’s Grace and Love.

 

Mark 16:17-18 (NKJV)

And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”

 

These signs will follow those who believe. With each chemotherapy infusion our son underwent, I would whisper this verse as they hung the bag of poison on the pole. Why did I wait until life became extreme to claim this verse for our life? It was a matter of life or death that drove me to greater faith in God. He was our only hope so therefore Jesus became the anchor of my soul. I remember right after I received the Holy Spirit a group of believers were discussing the signs, wonders and miracles that they had witnessed firsthand. I smiled and nodded yet secretly I scoffed at their recollections. God could these things really happen. Is it possible? Well, be careful what you pray for because I have witnessed just about everything discussed that night personally.

 

We desire God’s Power in our life. We would like to walk in His Authority reclaiming dominion of the earth but what is stopping us? We do not believe. We do not believe that God has given us this kind of potential so we hang on to this life. We accept the natural afraid to reach for the supernatural. We will remain ordinary because we do not believe we are called to an extraordinary life. Lord, help our unbelief today.

 

2 Kings 2:8-14 (NKJV)

Now Elijah took his mantle, rolled it up, and struck the water; and it was divided this way and that, so that the two of them crossed over on dry ground. And so it was, when they had crossed over, that Elijah said to Elisha, “Ask! What may I do for you, before I am taken away from you?”

Elisha said, “Please let a double portion of your spirit be upon me.” So he said, “You have asked a hard thing. Nevertheless, if you see me when I am taken from you, it shall be so for you; but if not, it shall not be so. Then it happened, as they continued on and talked, that suddenly a chariot of fire appeared with horses of fire, and separated the two of them; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven. And Elisha saw it, and he cried out, “My father, my father, the chariot of Israel and its horsemen!” So he saw him no more. And he took hold of his own clothes and tore them into two pieces. He also took up the mantle of Elijah that had fallen from him, and went back and stood by the bank of the Jordan. Then he took the mantle of Elijah that had fallen from him, and struck the water, and said, “Where is the Lord God of Elijah?” And when he also had struck the water, it was divided this way and that; and Elisha crossed over.

 

Jesus told us personally that because He was going to Heaven and releasing His Spirit that we would be empowered to do even greater things on the earth. (John 14:11-14) When was the last time you witnessed miracle? Elisha asked for a double portion of his anointing. Elijah said, “You have asked a hard thing.” Why? Because it would take more faith. Elijah demonstrated great faith in his lifetime. In order for Elisha to take up his mantle with a double anointing would require even more faith than before. Elijah told him that if he saw him being taken away with the Lord, he would receive it. Elisha’s eyes of faith were opened and he saw the spirit realm come whisk the prophet away.

 

Jesus has given us a mantle of authority and power when He wrapped us in a robe of righteousness. We have been given the opportunity to bring Heaven to earth and see miracles, signs and wonders regularly in our life. How do we make this a reality?

 

James 5:13-18 (NKJV)

Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing psalms. Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain; and it did not rain on the land for three years and six months. And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth produced its fruit.

 

I am anointed by God. His Spirit lives in me. I am wrapped in a robe of His Righteousness that allows me to walk in a mantle of His Authority and Power every day of my life. I must allow His Anointing to break the yoke that I have with the world and take on the burden of Christ which is easy and light. I must not be yoked in purpose with nonbelievers but live facet of my life in submission to Jesus Christ. I go where He goes, say what He says and does what He does in every day of my natural life. I must kill the oxen and burn the yoke of bondage that sin produces in my life and follow Jesus. I cannot become bound to religion but remain limitless in my love for Jesus solidifying our relationship day by day with faith and trust in Him alone. I want more than anything for God’s Call on my life to be answered and His Purpose fulfilled. It is up to me. The Power is there. The Authority Present. Will I take up the mantle today? Well, that is up to me.

 

Mark 11:22-24 (NKJV)

So Jesus answered and said to them, “Have faith in God. For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says. Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.

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