Regeneration & Transformation by John Whipple
On September 10 our Friday Bible study began with a remarkable teaching and testimony from John Whipple.
He spoke about how the Holy Spirit transforms us.
John McArthur Study Bible speaks of fruits of repentance that spoke to John Whipple’s heart. He is in the process of being healed from Parkinson’s disease and God is guiding him in ways that are helping him begin the healing process.
John told us that he realized there was no such thing as coincidence, luck or chance. What God gives you is meant for you, and there is something you can learn from everything that affects your life. There is something that you need to learn.
He has had a series of hardships and challenges, and through them came to the realization that he needed God. God got John’s attention and gave him what John calls his marching orders. This is a remarkable list of things that blessed me, and I hope it blesses you. This is what the Holy Spirit told John through his inner witness. These are specific things God told John to focus on, and many of them are wonderful for us all to consider in our lives. As Pastor Don commented during this testimony, many of them are “bombshells.”
Convictions to accomplish the mission. How does one know if their heart has been touched by the Holy Spirit? The following “truths” will at once and over time be revealed to the believer.
1. That everything you have learned since childhood with respect to the Bible and teaching of Jesus Christ are absolutely and unequivocally true.
2. That the power of prayer is unequalled in its ability to heal mind, body, and soul!
3. That you will at once be relieved of all your earthly fears. You will recognize that these fears are in fact the blinders the devil uses to prevent persons of faith from discerning God’s desire for their life.
4. That you will understand, once fears are removed, you will immediately be empowered to do God’s will and will look to do all things to God’s glory.
5. That your thirst for knowledge in the Word will be intensified. You will hunger and thirst for God’s grace through Scripture.
6. You will seek out every opportunity to do God’s will. This will be exemplified through your random, unabated acts of kindness toward fellow man.
7. You will carry the sword of righteousness but will not lift it in judgment against your brother, instead the words of compassion, mercy, forgiveness, and love will be etched on its sheath.
8. You will be hopelessly locked in the present because you know this is the only place you can do God’s will. You will take one day at a time and will not worry about the future.
9. You will be able to look into the hearts of your fellowman and feel his pain. God will give you the words to speak and the actions to take to ease the man’s burden.
10. You will understand immediately that all the gifts you’ve been given and the hardships you will endure are simply a test of your faith, and if you are able to return but one lamb who is lost, back to the Father, surely your days will be blessed.
Praise God, Amen.
John brought the painting of Jesus standing at the door and knocking, and said that in his journey this painting had special meaning for him as he studied it in depth.
He said that life is filled with brambles. That you open the door yourself for the hinges are positioned so that the person in the house has to open the door to Jesus. When you follow Christ down the path you will be walking through sticks, thorns, and rough areas. In the painting John sees those as falling from grace.
John said he had to give up stuff, boating, fishing, and work. These were areas where he felt that his life was out of order. With boating he spent so much time on his boat and fishing was an obsession, he wanted to catch tons of fish, and there was pride in his work that he felt was out of order in his life.
John told us that when passion turns to obsession it needs to be given up.
John had to call people to ask for forgiveness. He had a change in his character – 180 degrees different.
When he came to Christ and began to study the Word of God, John told us that he felt like he was a dry sponge dropped into a bucket of water.
He said that when his brain slowed down his heart opened.
Parkinson’s made John available to hear from God. He said that this necessary loss was needed for his spiritual growth. It provided an appetite for love, mercy, forgiveness of others, and forgiveness of himself. Compassion and sympathetic listening increased. His loss made him realize the necessity of charity, of giving to others, not just about receiving. He realized that he needed a change in his value system. That at one time he was rash, going out on a limb for fruit. He needed to get out of his comfort zone, a place where John realized he was alone, isolated, had a morally bankrupt value system. He needed to deal with his health, family, income.
In the process of building up new behaviors there were set backs. John realized he needed to know what to say and who to say it to.
John told us that he received empowerment through the authority of the Word.
The Holy Spirit empowers us and the Bible gives us authority. We need power and authority working in harmony.
God is bringing healing to John Whipple. I am grateful that he shared some of what the Holy Spirit has told him to do. I realize that each person’s path to healing is different, but there are some remarkable truths that John shared that are applicable to my life, and I pray they bless yours. Whenever I hear a testimony from someone I always find something to take away from it. We really are able to fight the evil one through the word of our testimony. For the testimonies of others build our faith.
I pray your day is blessed.
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