Claiming the promises of God

As some of you know I was separated to Jesus when I was a very young Christian and was taught by Him. I was told to read no books other than the Bible. To confirm this to me, a man who had no idea about what was going on with me, or in me, received a vision in which he was shown that God had placed a golden thread of healing in me and that I was to seek not the counsel of men, but to listen only to God, for He was the golden needle who pulled the golden thread. Since then I have read only the Bible (no other books whatsoever) and have only sought counsel from the Lord.

I think I should note here that no one should take it upon himself to not seek the counsel of others. For as the word of God says,

Proverbs 12:15, The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, But a wise man is he who listens to counsel.

Proverbs 27:9, Oil and perfume make the heart glad, So a man’s counsel is sweet to his friend.

I have been explicitly told to listen only to the Lord, not only by the Spirit, but also by the man who had the vision concerning my call. This is not the norm; it is not for everyone. My situation is unique and ordained by God. It has nothing to do with who I am; it is a choice God made of His own will.

I understand that those who are taught by men are bound to have a little man-made theology. That is only natural. And, since the church has been in a state of sleep for centuries, the impact that the teachings of men have had on the knowledge of Christianity is bound to be tremendous. 

To this day I remember how foreign things seemed when Jesus separated me to Himself and began teaching me the truths of God. The things He began showing me were so contrary to what men were preaching. At the time the Full Gospel people were teaching that we should claim the promises of God. I was amazed at the ignorance and foolishness of people who rushed headlong into this heresy.

Why would anyone who wanted to please God claim a promise He made? The definition of claim is to demand something you think you have a legal right to, that is, lay a claim on something you think belongs to you. We’ve been set free from the law. Why would we now want to use the law to get what we want? Isn’t that hypocritical? 

We no longer live by the law. We now live by faith in the grace and truth in Jesus through whom we were crucified to the law. The promises of God are yes in Jesus, and only in Jesus, not in, or through, the law. Why would we who have been set free from the law bind ourselves to the law again just to receive the promises of God that come not from the law, but through grace and truth in Jesus? 

Do you see the absurdity of the “name it and claim it” doctrine? Those who claim the promises of God profess to have faith in Jesus and at the same time, use the law to bolster the littleness of their faith, just in case it doesn’t work. They appeal to God on a legal basis as well as a faith basis, just in case. This is referred to as double-mindedness in James 1:7,8. And people like that will receive nothing from the Lord.

It is the same with the “declaring and decreeing” doctrine. This too is wrong. Did you know it comes from Job 22:28 which says, “You will also decree a thing, and it will be established for you.” This is what Eliphaz the Temanite said to Job, and in Job 42:7 it says, ‘And it came about after the Lord had spoken these words to Job, that the Lord said to Eliphaz the Temanite, “My wrath is kindled against you and against your two friends, because you have not spoken of Me what is right as My servant Job has.”’ So the “declare and decree” doctrine is built on words that were folly to God. And Eliphaz who said them was told to offer up burnt offerings, and have Job pray for him and his two friends, verse 8, so that God wouldn’t have to deal with them according to their own folly, because the three of them had spoken what was not right. 

Some may think claiming promises and declaring and decreeing things are small things, and that God knows we don’t mean them in a bad way. My friends, if you claim a promise of God, you are doing something that is NOT in the Bible. If you declare and/or decree something, you are doing something God ACTUALLY SAID is wrong. In doing so, you could also be influencing young Christians. Had Jesus not been separating me to Himself at the time, I may have fallen prey to the name it and claim it doctrine.

Consider this, how can we, human beings with sin dwelling within us, be so brazen to lift ourselves up to God’s position? How can we lift ourselves up to be equal with Jesus, as do those who claim to have been given all authority, both in heaven and on earth? I have heard many claim that Jesus has given it to them. I cannot begin to comprehend the audacity and the haughtiness it must take to say such a thing.

My friends, I had an encounter with the living Son of the living God, and was born again. I was changed in an instant. I knelt before Him and was overwhelmed with His compassion and His love for me. But not just that, I was also overwhelmed with the glory of His divine Presence. He truly is the only begotten Son of God. He is glorious, glorious, glorious.  He and His Father alone are worthy of praise. 

I once felt the weight of His hands on my shoulders and heard Him speak the words, “I ordain you to preach My gospel.” I opened my eyes and He had started up the staircase I was sitting on. I reached out and touched His robe and saw it move. He looked back and smiled at me and then continued up the staircase and disappeared.

I don’t believe those who claim to have His authority know Him, for if they did, they would be too respectful to claim His authority. I believe there’s a good chance that those who do claim to have the authority of Christ will be the ones to whom He says, “Depart from Me, you workers of lawlessness, I never knew you.” For they embrace authority, rather than submitting to authority. And they embrace authority rather than submit to it because they are lawless, which is sin.

Those of you who claim to be self-taught are just that, self-taught. You have learned from man, not God. Woe to you who have taught the little ones of God your self-taught doctrines. May God be merciful to you and give you an opportunity for repentance.

In the most holy name of our beloved Savior,

Jon David Banks, God’s most unworthy servant

Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved.