SPEECH FROM THE YOUR KINGDOM COME, CANBERRA 080808 BANQUET
As a father of the nation, I want to bless the natural sons and daughters of Abraham – the Jews and Arabs and the spiritual sons and daughters of Abraham who have given their hearts to the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and His son Jesus Christ (Gal 3:29). It is as if the sons and daughters of Ishmael have felt the pain of rejection from the father’s heart and I want to extend the father’s heart of love, acceptance and welcome to you.
At the Sons of Abraham conference hosted in Sydney in July 2005 by Ps Jack and Ann Yeo, Barbara and I led a time of reconciliation between Jewish and Arab believers. At the Bethany Gate All Pacific Prayer Assembly in Cairns in May 2006, Barbara and I asked Ps Nabil Attalah from Kuwait to speak on Jewish-Arab reconciliation and Barbara and I led a time of healing with Jewish and Arab believers from Australia.
At the Ps 24:7 Open Heaven conference we hosted in Melbourne July 2007, we asked Ps Tom Hess from Israel to share on Jewish-Arab reconciliation, an area he has done much work on. I shared how Isaac and Ishmael came together to bury their father Abraham after his death and that brought some unity between them. I believe they had not seen each other all those years since Abraham had sent Ishmael away. We need to bury the things that divide us, no matter how hurt we are by them. And I ask everyone here tonight – bury whatever has divided you. Leave it at the foot of the Cross. We need to bury the hatchet, bury our differences.
At a number of conferences over the years, I have been led, as an Aboriginal pastor, to give a welcome to Australia to people who have moved here to live from other nations and it has been a healing for many who have felt unwelcome or even rejected. So I want to do that now. As an indigenous father of this nation, I welcome you who have come to our shores to join your destinies with our destiny and your lives, your hopes and dreams with ours as a nation.
Barbara had a word from the Lord for this 080808 Your kingdom Come conference that it would be a clarion call to the nation of Australia to unite. As you know, we founded the Centre for International Reconciliation and Peace 12 years ago. But we are all called to a ministry of reconciliation and the message of reconciliation (2 Cor 5:17-20). It is not peripheral to the Lord’s heart but central to it. He tells us if our brother has anything against us, then we can’t lay our gift at His altar, but we must go away and make it right first. We may have nothing against them but even if they have something against us, we need to be reconciled (Mat 5:23-24).
Eph 2:15-16 says “…Christ’s purpose was to create in Himself one new man out of the two (Jew and Gentile) thus making peace and in this one body reconciling both of them to God through the Cross, by which He put to death their hostility.” Through the blood of Christ, we are no longer “excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world”. One new man – isn’t that awesome!
But not only is there no Jew or Greek, in other words no racial or ethnic differences in the kingdom of God for we are all one, there are no class differences or gender differences. Gal 3:26-29 makes this clear. V 28 says “There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” This can be a shock to someone who is used to fighting a race war or a class war or a war of the sexes. This is not to say that we condone injustice. This is not to say we should not stand in the gap (Ezek 22:30) and repent for the sins of our race or our class or our gender or our religious affiliation for that matter. We should repent. We should take spiritual responsibility for healing and reconciliation and unity.
But it is to say that there is one body of Christ or one body of Messiah and we do not want it to be divided. Jesus or Yeshua is our head and we need all the parts of His body to be united so that we do not grieve Him and so we are effective and not working against each other. 1 Cor 12:20-21 says “As it is, there are many parts but one body. The eye cannot say to the hand, ‘I don’t need you!’ And the head cannot say to the feet ‘I don’t need you!’” We need each other.
Nor should there be a division between the old and the young or between the generations. The enemy has tried to split parents from their children and children from their parents. It is as if the young generation today has been cut off from their supports and their moorings and the world is an increasingly more complicated one to navigate.
Through the prophet Malachi, the Lord has given us a very important call to restore the hearts of the fathers to the children and the children to the fathers or there will be a curse on the land. Malachi 4:5-6 says “See I will send you the prophet Elijah before that great and dreadful day of the Lord comes. He will turn the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers; or else I will come and strike the land with a curse.” We need to rise up in the spirit of Elijah for this restored relationship, this healing of relationships in families and between generations.
To be witnesses and ministers of the Lord, we need to have our family situations in right order. If there is anyone here tonight that needs to make it right with the older or younger generation, you have an opportunity to do it tonight briefly as we meet in the centre of the Cross. We have 4 axes here tonight with men over 40 and one side and men under 40 on the other side. Similarly we have women over 40 on one side and women under 40 on the other side and we will meet in the centre at the Cross when the signal is given. Each person needs to find another person of a different age, gender or culture to connect with and speak words of honouring and blessing to them. (prophetic act of blessing)
Lord, we honour and bless the fathers and mothers and we bless the children, the different generations here tonight. We honour and bless the people of different races and cultures here tonight. We bless men and women, boys and girls here tonight. Lord, we bless people of different denominations here tonight. We bestow a father’s and a mother’s blessing.
We call forth the Elijah’s and Elishas tonight. We call forth an anointing for mentoring, for passing on the baton. And we use these clapsticks to pass the baton on*. We ask the older generation to prophetically pass the baton on to the next generation and bless them.
We call forth an anointing for unity, for reconciliation, for oneness, for forgiveness, for healing, for grace, mercy and compassion. We call forth the fathers heart tonight. Lord this is what it is all about – your heart, the Father’s heart.
*The clapsticks, an Aboriginal musical instrument, shaped like a baton, were presented to a young man and woman, leaders who represented the next generation.