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Rainbow Divider

Chapter 4

The Purpose of the Keys

Although we have already considered the purpose of the keys of the kingdom further elaboration is necessary. Generally speaking, keys serve two purposes. They are used to lock and unlock various things including doors, gates, safes, cages, vaults, etc.

Keys of the kingdom likewise lock and unlock things pertaining to the realm of the spirit. It is only by and through the keys of the kingdom that spiritual prisons can be opened. The kingdom itself must be opened with these keys.

Jesus said, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised. To preach the acceptable year of the Lord. Luke 4:18-19.

It will be noted from the above quotation that deliverance and liberty are accomplished by the anointing. It is the use of the word by the anointing of God’s Spirit that enables us to use the keys of the kingdom. Use of the keys of the kingdom is simply the Holy Spirit using the word in various aspects of manifestation such as healing, deliverance and salvation. It is when the church uses these keys that it is invincible. Jesus said that the gates of hell would not prevail against it. Matt. 16:18.

NEED OF DELIVERANCE

For some time now I have felt a great need for cleansing and deliverance of God’s people. Like never before I have been made aware of the carnality and spiritual bondage that exists. Many cannot worship the Lord in the freedom of the Spirit. Many have psychological hang-ups that keep them from hearing the word of God with an open heart. Evil spirits have far too much influence on some. Inertia or just plain indifference hold many in their grip.

Others need to be delivered from worldly and unnecessary activities that keep them from church attendance, prayer and service in general. Too many would rather play than pray. They are more concerned about entertainment than they are the kingdom of God.

Many have closer ties of fellowship with unbelievers and the world than they do with the church and God’s people. As a result of this many marry unbelievers and reap a harvest of trouble and sorrow. If the minister preaches the truth according to the word of God he is called a narrow-minded bigot.

Where such conditions prevail evil spirits operate without fear because there is no discernment or anointing to cast them out. Satan and his evil host do not fear a church that does not have the keys of the kingdom.

SIGN AND WONDERS

Although signs and wonders are not necessarily in evidence every time the keys of the kingdom are in use signs will certainly follow those who use the keys of the kingdom.

In Mark 16:15-18 Jesus said, “... Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

“He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

“And these signs shall follow them that believe: In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;

“They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.”

Please notice that there is not a single hint given that signs and wonders were to cease after the church was established. To the contrary, signs were to follow them that believe. As long as men continue to preach his word in believing faith the promised signs will follow.

The difference in the early church and the apostate church is simply faith. Even Jesus was limited in what he could do because of unbelief when he went back to Nazareth. Matt. 13:54-58.

Although many of the early disciples were ignorant and unlearned men they continued to heal the sick, cast out devils and on occasion raise the dead. They expected as much as they went forth preaching the word of God.

CONFIRMATION

Confirmation of the word was the rule rather than the exception. This was God’s way of saying, “These are my servants, I have sent them to you with my word.”

The great difference between the primitive church and the modern church is in the one they represent. The primitive church represented God. They were anointed and sent by the Holy Ghost. The modern church represents man in the form of some church or manmade denomination.

The primitive church had God’s inspired message relevant to the time and the need of the people. The modern apostate church has a message that projects its particular doctrine and traditions. And, I might add, sometimes those are doctrines of devils inspired by seducing spirits. I Tim. 4:1.

This principle of the word being confirmed by signs following was characteristic of the Lord Jesus, the twelve disciples, the apostle Paul and the early church in general. Speaking of Paul and Barnabas, Acts 14:3 says, “Long time therefore abode they speaking boldly in the Lord, which gave testimony unto the word of his grace, and granted signs and wonders to be done by their hands.”

Confirming the word with signs following or giving testimony unto the word of his grace is exactly the same thing. It is God bearing witness by the Holy Ghost that it is his word. Acts 5:29-33. Jesus said, “... the works which the Father hath given me to finish, the same works that I do, bear witness of me, that the Father hath sent me.” John 5:36.

FATHER GLORIFIED

Confirmation of the word is to be expected when we move in the Spirit and preach his message. It is certainly no imposition to expect this when we have his word. Signs and wonders through use of the keys of the kingdom brings glory to the Father through the Son. John 14:11-13, Acts 3:12-13, Mark 2:10-12.

The keys of the kingdom were given to the church, the body of Christ. Independent operatives who say, “have gift will travel” have no part in the use of the keys of the kingdom. The keys were given to deliver the elect from the kingdom of darkness and bring them together in one body under the headship of Christ.

Individual ministries who use the keys of the kingdom are actually an extension or arm of the body. Such ministries carry Christ’s burden for the church and recognize it as Christ’s body in the earth. They know that whatever gift or ability they have was given for the unity of perfection of Christ’s body. Eph. 4:1-13.

The local church is the body of Christ in a given or particular place. Paul said to the church at Corinth, “Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.” I Cor. 12:27.

They were not a part of the church or body of Christ. They were the church at Corinth. As a sovereign body under the headship of Christ each local church should be in possession of and using the keys of the kingdom.

There is no greater power or authority on earth than the church. Jesus said in Matt. 18:18, “Verily I say unto you. Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”

Paul instructed the church at Corinth to turn one man over to Satan for the destruction of the flesh that the spirit might be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus. I Cor. 5:4-5. This man which was guilty of fornication with his father’s wife was actually being sheltered and protected as a part of the church. However, it was and is the duty of the church to act in judgment against such flagrant immorality.

According to Paul’s teaching the saints shall judge the world and even angels. We are actually forbidden to turn to the judicial system of the world in the settlement of problems pertaining to the church and God’s people.

The local church does not have to be a perfect church or have perfect revelation to use the keys of the kingdom. In spite of all the wrong things that existed in the Corinthian church it was the body of Christ and came behind in no gift. I Cor. 1:7 & 12:27.

I believe the Lord is saying to his remnant church in this hour, “Only believe and you will see the glory of God.” John 11:40.

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