At Your word
By Ivan Ho
Written 11 July 2016
When He had stopped speaking, He said to Simon, “Launch out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.” But Simon answered and said to Him, “Master, we have toiled all night and caught nothing; nevertheless at Your word I will let down the net.” And when they had done this, they caught a great number of fish, and their net was breaking. So they signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink. When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, “Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord!”
Luke 5:4-8 NKJV
Peter and his colleagues were professional fishermen who went out daily to catch fish for a living. However, their business had not always been a success. There were times when they would catch a lot of fish but there were also times when they would catch nothing at all. When Jesus arrived at the scene, it was one of those days when they had been working hard all night but there was nothing to show for their hard work. It wasn’t for the lack of effort that they did not catch anything, what was lacking was the word of God! When Jesus came with His word, it opened the door for a new realm of possibility that Peter James and John had never experienced before.
There are certain principles about the spoken word of God, or the rhema word, that we need to know. The rhema word that proceeds from the mouth of God (proceeding word) has the power to change our circumstances not only in the area of business but also in all areas of our life.
1. The proceeding word is the word for the hour.
There is the written word which is the Bible and there is also the spoken word, or the rhema word of God. The written word contains all that God has spoken that has been faithfully written down. The spoken word, or the proceeding word, is the now word that God speaks to you and I on a daily basis. God can speak to us directly through the written word, or He can speak to us by other means, such as in dreams, or thoughts He deposits in our heart, or through other people and so forth. The proceeding word is the timely word that we need for the hour. The proceeding word often comes at the time when we need it most.
2. The proceeding word is specific.
The proceeding word is not just a general knowledge of God such as “God is everywhere present” or God is love”. We need to know that God is love but we also need to know how God shows His love to an individual by Him speaking on a daily basis. We need to know that God is everywhere present but we also need to know that God’s word is present and available where we are at. The proceeding word is specific to our particular circumstances spoken at the time when we need it most. Peter, James and John were about to pack up and go home when Jesus arrived and told them to launch out into the deep to cast out the net.
3. The proceeding word brings God’s guidance.
God knows what is best for us and He speaks according to what He knows. He knows where the fish are, where the business deals are, the person we need to partner with and so on. Without the word of God we can be toiling night and day, looking here there and everywhere but end up with no result. But when God speaks, it brings clarity to our circumstances, guiding us to where God has prepared for us. It lights up our path and shows us the way.
4. The proceeding word must be obeyed.
We need to obey the written word but we must also obey the spoken word of God. Peter said to Jesus: “We have been toiling all night long and caught nothing, nevertheless at Your word we will cast down the net”. Peter could have dismissed Jesus and said: “Forget it! We have been working all night and day and got nothing. We are not going to waste more resources and energy!” and missed out on the biggest catch of their life. Sometimes, when the Holy Spirit impresses upon our heart to go to certain place or speak to someone or do something specifically, we must not allow our past experiences to dictate our decisions but obey the word of God nevertheless. All the past disappointments must not interfere with how we respond to the word of God.
To be continued…