WHY ZION IS SO IMPORTANT

WHY ZION IS SO IMPORTANT

Beautiful in elevation, the joy of the whole earth, is Mount Zion on the sides of the north, the city of the great King (Psalm 48:2).

When David set his sights on Jerusalem, he was tapping into a spiritual stream of prophetic significance that was centuries old. Jerusalem had been on God’s mind for a long time. It’s a city whose profound spiritual history reached back a thousand years before David to the time of Abraham.

The first mention of Jerusalem in the Bible occurs in Genesis 14, at a time when Lot had been carried captive by invading forces. In a stunning military victory, Abraham delivered Lot from his captors and brought him safely home. Upon his return, Melchizedek went out to meet Abraham and bless him. Melchizedek was the king of Jerusalem (Salem) and also the priest of God Most High (see Genesis 14:14-24). Since Zion was Jerusalem’s safest neighborhood and thus its most ancient neighborhood—the “old city” if you will—it is reasonable to conclude that Melchizedek’s throne was in Zion proper (even though it wasn’t called Zion at the time). We could say, therefore, that Melchizedek came out of Zion in order to bless Abraham.

There was a second time when Abraham quietly brushed with Zion—when Abraham led his son, Isaac, to Mount Moriah, bound him, and placed him on a makeshift altar (see Genesis 22). Abraham intended to obey God’s voice and sacrifice his only son. A voice from heaven stopped him, and instead God provided a ram for the burnt offering. This all happened on Moriah.

Moriah is a hill within the city limits of contemporary Jerusalem. Moriah was the place where Solomon built his temple, and today it is the site of the Mosque of Omar (the Dome of the Rock). So when Abraham was on Moriah, he would have been within eyeshot of Zion and Melchizedek’s governmental seat. There is no biblical hint that he popped in on Melchizedek at that time, but the proximity would have made it very easy to do.

Melchizedek was the first priest of God to appear in Scripture, and it was no coincidence that his throne was in Zion (called Salem at the time). Jesus Christ was later declared to be a Priest in the order of Melchizedek (Psalm 110:4). As such, Jesus is the rightful heir to the throne of Zion.

The Bible draws a great line of prophetic purpose between Melchizedek and Jesus Christ (see Hebrews 5-7). David stepped into the matrix of that divine purpose when he chose, under Holy Spirit direction, to conquer Zion.

And like Melchizedek before him, David was called of God to function in both a kingly and priestly capacity. This is why we see David putting on a linen ephod—which was a garment for priests to wear—at the procession of the ark to Zion (1 Chronicles 15:27). As a king, David was claiming also to be a priest. We know, however, that David was not pretending to be a Levitical priest since he was not of the tribe of Levi. Of what priesthood was he, then? There is only one remaining possibility. Clearly, David saw himself serving the Lord as a priest in the order of Melchizedek—a priesthood that is both priestly and kingly. David had no right to serve as a priest in the Aaronic order, but as a priest in the order of Melchizedek he was given divine permission to place the ark in open view, sit before it, and minister to the Lord.

While serving in this priestly capacity, David was shown that Messiah would serve before God in the same priesthood. This is why David wrote, “The LORD has sworn and will not relent, ‘You are a priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek’” (Psalm 110:4). David’s zeal for Zion was rooted in his understanding that one day Messiah would rule in Jerusalem as a Priest/King, just like Melchizedek did centuries before.

Jerusalem is a city like none other! It holds the distinction of being the only place on earth God chose as His eternal home (see Psalm 132:13-14). This is why history revolves around this city and God’s agenda for it. There are said to be 685 cities in the earth with a population larger than Jerusalem, and yet Jerusalem makes international headlines consistently more than most of them. What is the deal with Jerusalem, anyway? Why is it the most important city on earth? What makes it so different from other cities?

The answer is that God’s eyes and interests are riveted upon Jerusalem and, consequently, so are Satan’s. No location on earth matches Jerusalem for intensity of heavenly attention and spiritual warfare.

Zion and Jerusalem

The name Zion was used initially in Scripture for the small citadel inside Jerusalem where David placed his throne. Over time, however, the Holy Spirit began to broaden the concept of Zion in Scripture until it sometimes referred to all of Jerusalem (e.g., Psalm 76:2), or even the entire nation of Israel (e.g., Isaiah 3:16). When Zion is mentioned in the Bible, therefore, the precise meaning of the term can vary a bit depending on the context.

I find the following definition helpful. Zion is Jerusalem, particularly in regard to her Davidic inheritance. By “her Davidic inheritance,” I mean the promise of God to establish the Son of David upon the throne of Zion forever (Psalm 89:3-4, 29, 35-37; 132:11-18).

God had this to say about Zion: “For Zion’s sake I will not hold My peace, and for Jerusalem’s sake I will not rest, until her righteousness goes forth as brightness, and her salvation as a lamp that burns” (Isaiah 62:1). No wonder Jerusalem is in the news almost every day! God Himself is resolved to labor without rest until Jerusalem’s righteousness and salvation shines brightly in the earth.

Jerusalem’s salvation is not even remotely seen right now. Men look at her today and see reproach, strife, stubbornness, and religious wars. What will it take to transform Jerusalem from its current condition to a city that shines brightly before the whole earth? Only one thing can effect that kind of transformation—the physical return of Jesus Christ. Only when Jesus establishes His throne in Zion will Jerusalem become a praise in all the earth (see Isaiah 62:7).

Zion: Political and Worship Capital

God chose the most impenetrable fortress in the entire land of Canaan as the geographical seat of Christ’s throne and authority. Zion’s reputation as unconquerable reflected the enduring nature of Christ’s Kingdom. “His kingdom is the one which shall not be destroyed, and His dominion shall endure to the end” (Daniel 6:26).

David established his throne in Zion as a prophetic declaration that eventually his Son, the Messiah, would reign in that exact place. In David’s time, Zion’s primary identity was the governmental seat for David’s throne. Using an American term, Zion was David’s “White House.”

Once he established his political capital in Zion, David then used his authority to establish Zion as a seat for 24/7 worship to the Lord (1 Chronicles 25). David understood the pattern of worship in the heavenlies (Psalm 119:96). He observed that wherever God’s throne is established there is incessant worship arising before Him. To fulfill that divine pattern, David inaugurated 24/7 worship and prayer in the stronghold of Zion. That 24/7 house of prayer represented the worship and praise that will arise incessantly to Jesus when He returns to earth and places His throne in Zion. Davidic-style worship will continue in Zion forever.

Zion, therefore, represents two things. Zion is:

•The seat of governmental authority, and

•The seat of incessant worship.

When David conquered Zion, it was so that he might establish both realities in Zion in their proper order.

We are watching an unprecedented phenomenon taking place in the earth right now. 24/7 houses of prayer are arising throughout the earth. As incessant worship is established before the Lord of God, it provides an atmosphere where the governmental authority of Christ in the earth can be exercised. And the inverse is also true: Whenever the kingdom of God is established with authority in a region, it makes a way for 24/7 houses of prayer to be raised up in that region.

David’s First Order of Business

David was promised by Samuel that he would be king of Israel, but it did not happen all at once. First he went through approximately ten years of refining in the wilderness. The latter part of that season was spent in exile in the land of the Philistines. Once his preparation was complete, he was given the kingdom of Israel in two stages.

In the first stage, David was crowned king only of the tribe of Judah. Being of the tribe of Judah himself, his relatives were first to crown him. He reigned over Judah for seven years from the capital city of Hebron, while Ishbosheth, Saul’s son, reigned over the other eleven tribes. During this time Jerusalem lay within the boundaries of the tribe of Benjamin and was, therefore, outside David’s jurisdiction.

Seven years later Ishbosheth died. Then the eleven tribes of Israel gathered together and asked David to reign over all twelve tribes of Israel. For the next thirty-three years, David was king over the entire nation.

Once David was crowned king of the twelve tribes, Jerusalem came under his jurisdiction. David had been waiting for this moment and immediately sprang to action regarding Zion.

As you read the biblical passages below, notice how one event followed the other. First came David’s coronation as king.

Then all the tribes of Israel came to David at Hebron and spoke, saying, “Indeed we are your bone and your flesh. Also, in time past, when Saul was king over us, you were the one who led Israel out and brought them in; and the LORD said to you, ‘You shall shepherd My people Israel, and be ruler over Israel.’” Therefore all the elders of Israel came to the king at Hebron, and King David made a covenant with them at Hebron before the LORD. And they anointed David king over Israel. David was thirty years old when he began to reign, and he reigned forty years. In Hebron he reigned over Judah seven years and six months, and in Jerusalem he reigned thirty-three years over all Israel and Judah (2 Samuel 5:1-5).

I want you to notice, now, the next verse in the Bible. What was David’s very first act as king of Israel?  Look at it.

And the king and his men went to Jerusalem against the Jebusites, the inhabitants of the land, who spoke to David, saying, “You shall not come in here; but the blind and the lame will repel you,” thinking, “David cannot come in here.” Nevertheless David took the stronghold of Zion (that is, the City of David) (2 Samuel 5:6-7).

First came the coronation over the twelve tribes; then came the conquest of Zion.

David’s very first order of business as king of the entire land was to target the stronghold of Zion. Clearly, Zion was in his crosshairs all along, but he could not engage the stronghold as long as it lay outside his political jurisdiction. Once he had the authority to do something about it, he did not pause for the slightest moment but headed straight for Zion.

 

THE HIDDEN BLESSING OF AN UNFULFILLED PROMISE

The Hidden Blessing of an Unfulfilled Promise

One of the most valuable things you can have in this life is a promise from God. “By which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature” (2 Pet. 1:4). The reason promises from God are “exceedingly great and precious” is because they are guarantees that, before our story is finished, God is going to visit us with His power and glory.

When God has not yet answered, we get discouraged all too easily with the fact that we haven’t yet experienced our breakthrough. What we fail to fully appreciate is the amazing treasure that we actually possess—a promise from God.

The first thing I want to say to everyone who has a promise from God is this: Do everything in your power to keep your fingers wrapped around that promise! It’s just too precious to lose.

When holding to promise for a long time, we’re often tempted to lose heart and relinquish our hope. The reason it’s so imperative to hold fervently to promise is this: Jettisoned promises can be lost forever. Not every promise is unconditional. Some promises must be carried tenaciously if we are to see their fulfillment. We see this truth in these verses:

Do not become sluggish, but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises (Heb. 6:12).

And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart (Gal. 6:9).

Therefore do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward. For you have need of endurance, so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise (Heb. 10:35-36).

Hold onto promise like a wide receiver holding onto a football. As he sets his eyes on the goal line, he says within himself, “No matter what happens, I must not let go this football!” That’s how intently we must resolve to hold fast our confidence.

I can hardly imagine anything more tragic than to receive a promise from God but then to fumble it because it wasn’t fulfilled in our timing. To once have a promise, but to be now without it, is like subsisting in a wasteland of heartsick hopelessness.

My soul refuses to live in the badlands of abandoned promises. I am resolved to do whatever I must to keep His promise close to my heart. Fasting, prayer, and word immersion are gifts from God to empower us to maintain our grip on His promise.

When you have a promise firmly in your possession, an uncommon boldness and confidence overtakes your soul. The unfulfilled promise means that it must be fulfilled in your lifetime. That confidence puts boldness in your soul about the present.

Let me explain what I mean with some biblical examples.

Abraham had a promise that God would make him into a great nation (Gen. 12:2), even though his wife was barren. At a time when Abraham still had no son, Lot was taken captive by invaders. In response, Abraham mobilized the entirety of his resources—318 men—against the federation of foreign armies (Gen. 14:14). The odds were stacked miserably against Abraham, but promise had placed a boldness in his spirit, and he stepped forward audaciously to engage the enemy. Guess who won? The man who carried a promise. A legion of foreign armies can’t kill a man with an unfulfilled promise.

Caleb had been promised a mountain in Canaan (Josh. 14:9,12). Not only did that promise empower him to endure the 40-year trek through the wilderness, it also preserved his body so that at age 85 he had the strength and energy of a 40-year-old (Josh. 14:11). God preserved his strength so he could take and inhabit the promise given him 45 years earlier.

David had been promised the throne when he was anointed as king by Samuel (1 Sa. 16:13). That promise put brash boldness into David’s spirit, so much so that he went up against Goliath, a seasoned champion of the Philistine army (1 Sa. 17:48). After all, how can a man of faith who carries a powerful promise and is led by the Holy Spirit be taken out prematurely by an uncircumcised Philistine?

Peter had been promised by Jesus that he would live to an old age (Jn. 21:18). When he was imprisoned by Herod (Acts 12:3), he wasn’t old yet. That’s why, even though he was slated for execution on the following day, he lay fast asleep between his two guards. Why stay up and fret when you’re living under the shelter of an unfulfilled promise? The promise that he would reach an old age gave Peter the confidence to get a solid night’s sleep before his seemingly inescapable death. And of course we know the story—Peter was released from prison by an angel (Acts 12:11). Why? It was impossible for him to die before he was an old man.

If you have a promise from God, allow that promise to put this same kind of boldness in your soul. Okay, so you haven’t received your breakthrough yet. Okay, so all you have is a promise. But do you know what you’ve got?

NO PLAN B

NO PLAN B - BOB SORGE

One of the greatest secrets to intimacy with God is to come to Him as your only source of help and hope.  “Lord, in this situation I have no Plan B—no other options to default to if You don’t come through. You are the only one who can help me!” He loves it when you look to Him alone for deliverance. And the inverse is also true: His jealousy is kindled when we entertain other saviors.

The Lord scoffed at the idolatry of the children of Israel by pointing to the vain hope that a block of wood offered:

He cuts down cedars for himself, and takes the cypress and the oak; he secures it for himself among the trees of the forest. He plants a pine, and the rain nourishes it. Then it shall be for a man to burn, for he will take some of it and warm himself; yes, he kindles it and bakes bread; indeed he makes a god and worships it; he makes it a carved image, and falls down to it. He burns half of it in the fire; with this half he eats meat; he roasts a roast, and is satisfied. He even warms himself and says, “Ah! I am warm, I have seen the fire.” And the rest of it he makes into a god, his carved image. He falls down before it and worships it, prays to it and says, “Deliver me, for you are my god!” They do not know nor understand; for He has shut their eyes, so that they cannot see, and their hearts, so that they cannot understand. And no one considers in his heart, nor is there knowledge nor understanding to say, “I have burned half of it in the fire, yes, I have also baked bread on its coals; I have roasted meat and eaten it; and shall I make the rest of it an abomination? Shall I fall down before a block of wood?” He feeds on ashes; a deceived heart has turned him aside; and he cannot deliver his soul, nor say, “Is there not a lie in my right hand?” (Isaiah 44:14-20).

As I was meditating in this passage, the Lord gave me a definition of a false god. This definition helps me because even though in our westernized culture there are very few people who actually worship figures of wood or stone, we too have our own false gods. In the passage, the Lord describes the idolaters as saying to their block of wood, “Deliver me, for you are my god!” So a god is defined as this: anything to which we ascribe the power to deliver us.

Westerners have their own set of false gods—sources to which they turn for deliverance when in times of crisis or need (let the reader understand):

•Money

•Health insurance

•Medical treatment/prescriptions

•Social Security

•Retirement plans and IRA’s

•Credit cards/consolidation loans

•Drugs/alcohol

•Pleasure/entertainment/recreation/sports

•Sex

•Friends (to deliver us from loneliness)

•Counselors

•Lawsuits

•Filing bankruptcy

•etc.

These other saviors campaign for our allegiance. Everywhere we turn, the gods of our culture are promoting their powers. Television commercials promote the many alternatives for relief: “Try me! Let me heal your pain. I am your answer. Look no further. Come to me, and I will deliver you.”

Something dynamic happens in your spirit when you look at some of those sources of deliverance and say, “No! God, You alone are my Deliverer!” Not only is your own spirit tenderized through such singular affection, but the response of the Father in the way He moves upon your heart is quite without parallel.

God-worshipers are those who come to God first in their time of need. They seek God’s face and wait on Him to receive directives for the course to take.  The secret place becomes the threshold where we wait upon God, seeking His powerful intervention, and crying out to Him for wisdom and revelation.

Occasionally, the Spirit will say to you, “In this instance, I want you to wait on Me only and stand in faith until I intervene sovereignly in your situation.” When God gives you this word, then fasten your seatbelt!  You are in for the ride of your life. You are stepping into the God zone. Here we find the stuff of miracles. This is the dimension where God rises up in His wrath and vengeance and wreaks havoc upon your enemies. Your role is to gaze upon Him, love Him, and grow in patience and faith; His role is to loose resurrection power in His time and way. Not every crisis you face falls into this category, but when it does…get excited! You’re taking the high road of the greatest saints of history, the pathway where God reveals the power of His arm, the splendor of His majestic beauty, and the awesomeness of His eternal purposes.

It is toward this glorious dimension that David pointed:

My soul, wait silently for God alone, for my expectation is from Him. He only is my rock and my salvation; He is my defense; I shall not be moved. In God is my salvation and my glory; the rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God. Trust in Him at all times, you people; pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us. Selah (Psalm 62:5-8).

 As I write this chapter, I am personally in great need of divine intervention in regard to a physical infirmity. I have been tempted to consider some other avenues of relief, such as those listed above. But instead, I have said to the Lord, “You only are my Helper. If You don’t save me, I am not saved. If You don’t heal me, I am not healed. If You don’t deliver me, I am not delivered. I have no other recourse, no Plan B, no alternative plan. I am not entertaining other options. It’s You and You alone. I worship You. You are my God!”

This is the “single eye” to which Jesus pointed.  Jesus said, “‘If therefore your eye is good, your whole body will be full of light’” (Matthew 6:22). The old King James Version says, “If therefore thine eye be single.” Whether translated “good” or “single,” the original Greek word means to be void of duplicity, to have singularity of focus.  When your eye is focused on God alone as your Savior and Deliverer, you open to the fullness of light He destines to fill your entire being.

This singular focus is what David prayed for: “Teach me Your way, O LORD; I will walk in Your truth; unite my heart to fear Your name” (Psalm 86:11). By praying, “Unite my heart,” David was saying, “Lord, give me an undivided heart, a single focus that sees only You as the sovereign power to be feared and worshiped.”

In my experience, I have found that the Lord will test us to see if we truly own this reality.  He will allow a great storm to descend upon our lives for a strategic purpose. Our natural reflex will be to find a source of immediate relief. We tend to explore all our options.

Is it possible, though, that this storm has come to guide you into a higher dimension of kingdom living? Oh, I hope you can learn the secret: When the storm hits, run into the secret place, establish your spirit, and say to Him with unwavering resolve, “You alone are my expectation.” Our God loves to prove Himself strong on behalf of those who have no other gods before Him.

THE SECRET OF HUMILITY

SECRET OF HUMILITY

Our violent pursuit of God must be wedded to a gentle and humble spirit. Humility is the foundation of all prayer. Humility says, “Lord, I am empty without Your fullness; I am broken without Your wholeness; I am helpless without Your strength; I am clueless without your wisdom. Apart from You I am nothing. I need You!  I need You so desperately that I am pouring myself out to You here in the secret place.”

Prayerlessness is the first sign of prideful independence. We begin to trim back on our secret time with God when we’re feeling great about ourselves, energetic and optimistic about our future, and confident about the path we’re taking. It’s the first sign that we’re getting full of ourselves.

This morning, even before I knew I would be writing this chapter today, I was enjoying the words of Agur, who wrote, “Surely I am more stupid than any man, and do not have the understanding of a man. I neither learned wisdom nor have knowledge of the Holy One” (Proverbs 30:2-3). The wisdom of Agur was in having a proper self-assessment of his own stupidity. Would to God that we all owned that same awareness! It would drive us back to our knees, back to the source of all wisdom, back to “the only wise God.” If He alone is wise, where does that place us?

Once you see His greatness and your bankruptcy, there comes great joy in humbling yourself before the Lord. With what delight the elders cast their crowns at the foot of the throne! They take what represents the aggregate compilation of all their achievements and throw it all down at the feet of Him from whom it all proceeded in the first place. He gave it to us that we might give it all back to Him. None of this was our idea, it all started with Him and it all ends with Him. He is everything, and as we are joined to Him the poverty of our personal identity is lost in the fullness of His eternal greatness.

David wrote, “O God, my heart is steadfast; I will sing and give praise, even with my glory” (Psalm 108:1). We know He is referring in this verse to his secret place because his term “my heart is steadfast” was always used of his personal commitment to being alone with his God. He abandoned his heart to God, so he said, “with my glory.” What was David’s glory? It was the sum total of his attainments. David had the glory of a king—wealth, honor, prestige, dignity, splendor, and power. He also had the glory of being a psalmist and a prophet. He took the total of all God had given him and made him, and presented it to God in song and praise.  The greater his prestige, the greater the joy he had in surrendering that to the majesty of God.  What a privilege to lay all our life attainments at His feet in profound awareness of His all-surpassing greatness! The greater I am, the more joy I have in taking that greatness and bowing it before Him. “And the kings of the earth bring their glory and honor into it” (Revelation 21:24).

He dignifies us that we might have something to lay before Him in humility and devotion. God dignifies us—with sonship, glory, acceptance, royalty, purpose, significance, wealth, honor, salvation, wisdom, revelation, understanding, status, character, holiness, victories—so that we might enjoy the highest privilege of casting it all at His feet. What a holy privilege is ours, to come into the throneroom of His presence and empty ourselves of all dignity by prostrating ourselves before Him, worshiping Him with our entire being.

The servant of God who owns his nothingness finds no greater joy than searching out ever-increasing ways to humble himself in the presence of the Almighty One. “‘And I will be even more undignified than this, and will be humble in my own sight’” (2 Samuel 6:22). Throw yourself at His feet today; He is worthy of the highest praise!

This is an excerpt from Bob Sorge’s bestselling book, Secrets of the Secret Place.  Click here for more information on Bob’s books and other resources.

THE SECRET OF THE SHUT DOOR

The Secret of the Shut Door

“But you, when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly” (Matthew 6:6).

Jesus Himself spoke these blessed words. All Scripture is God-breathed, but followers of Jesus always find special delight in giving particular attention the words Jesus Himself gave us. When Jesus taught on prayer, He gave primary emphasis to the secret place. In fact, the first thing He taught concerning prayer was the primacy of the secret place. In the verses following, He would teach us how to pray, but first He teaches where to pray.

Matthew 6:6 contains a powerful secret regarding the where of prayer, but before I share it let me ask a question. Do you struggle frequently with feeling disconnected from God? Do you strain to feel God’s presence when you pray? Does He seem distant to you? Do you long to know that He is with you, right now, drawing near to you?

If your answer to any of those questions is, “Yes,” then I have some wonderful news for you. There is a guaranteed way to get into God’s presence. There is a sure-fire 100% guaranteed way to have instant intimacy with the Father, and Jesus Himself gave us the key. Jesus gave us this secret in the above verse when He said, “Your Father who is in the secret place.” Jesus is saying, “Your Father is already in the secret place. He has gone ahead of you; He is waiting for you. The moment you get to the secret place, you are in the immediate presence of your Father.”

Jesus affirmed this truth twice in the same chapter. He says it the second time in Matthew 6:18, “‘So that you do not appear to men to be fasting, but to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly.’” Jesus says it twice for emphasis, so we know this word is absolutely certain. Our Father is in the secret place!

Furthermore, Jesus gives us the key to finding this secret place. If you’re wondering what you must do to place yourself in the secret place, Jesus made it clear. To get there, all you have to do is shut your door!

When you enter your room, and shut your door, you are in the presence of your Father. Instantaneously! It matters not how you feel. Regardless of your soul’s climate at that moment, you know with absolute confidence you have stepped into the chamber of your Father in heaven. The secret place is your portal to the throne, the place where you taste of heaven itself. Receive this word and you have gained one of the greatest secrets to intimacy with God. Because when you know you are in the immediate presence of your Father, your spirit and soul will often respond to that knowledge with heartfelt connectedness. The knowledge of this truth will set your spirit free to soar.

When you build your life on the blessed intimacy of a secret place relationship with God, you are building on the rock. You’re getting your foundations in order. That’s not simply my opinion, that’s the explicit teaching of our Lord Jesus Christ. The principles Jesus gave in Chapters 5-7 of Matthew’s Gospel were all given at one time, in one great sermon. Jesus said that in this sermon He was laying forth the foundation stones of a disciple’s life. Here’s how He expressed it:

“Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock. But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell. And great was its fall” (Matthew 7:24-27).

Jesus’ message is unmistakable. He is saying, “If you will hear and do what I have taught you in this Sermon on the Mount, you will build foundations into your life that will survive the harshest storms of life.” And believe me, friend, storms will most certainly come! There are some storms that have yet to hit your life. The question is, will you have the foundation in place to survive the storms?

One of the most essential elements of that foundation is to have an intact secret life with God. Those who hear this word and do it will not only enjoy intimacy with the Father on a daily basis, but they will also be equipped to sustain the greatest storms—whether they originate from hell’s fury or the world’s distractions or the floodgates of heaven’s blessings.

Don’t forget the secret: shut your door.

This is an excerpt from Bob Sorge’s bestselling book, Secrets of the Secret Place.  Click here for more information on Bob’s books and other resources.