Alan Denney

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Don’t Just Do Something—Stand There!

A number of years ago, I attended a conference and the theme of the conference was ministering to unbelievers. Workshops were taught by experts in street ministry, ministry to different cultures, religions—-you get the idea. One of the keynote speakers was a man who had spent his life studying Islam and ministering the Gospel to Muslims.

This man’s experience in witnessing to others was astounding. He not only knew the Bible — he also knew the Koran and how they do not align theologically. I was fortunate enough to be able to sit across from him at lunch and ask him questions. When he spoke, it was with such authority and wisdom, I could just tell within my spirit that he was speaking truth. I was so glued to this conversation that I didn’t want it to end nor did I want anyone to interrupt! It was such an incredible experience—sitting in the presence of such a wise man.

The Bible very clearly tells us that when we as Christians come together that Jesus is in our midst.  

Matthew 18:19 - 20 says, “Again I say to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by My Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.”

Why is this so difficult for us to grasp? Because we don’t see Him? Because we don’t feel Him? Let me ask you this. Since when has our experience with Jesus been based upon what we see and feel?

Sometimes we glibly and blindly walk through situations, not even noticing what is going on around us. Doesn’t that sound like the religious leaders of Jesus’ time on earth? There were undoubtedly many who were in the presence of Jesus who did not recognize that HE was among THEM!

You see, we are uncomfortable when we aren’t DOING something. We feel like we have to be involved in conjuring up a tingly feeling or experience. In other words, if God isn’t manifesting Himself to us, we have to do something to make it happen. And here is the problem. We feel that we must do something.

Psalm 46 says, “The Lord of hosts is with us; The God of Jacob is our refuge.
Come, behold the works of the Lord, Who has made desolations in the earth.
He makes wars cease to the end of the earth; He breaks the bow and cuts the spear in two; He burns the chariot in the fire. Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth! The Lord of hosts is The God of Jacob is our refuge.”
I want to challenge you this week. Before we gather together to worship on Sunday, pray that God would help you (myself included) to be calm and simply to listen. Let’s listen for Him to speak to us through the sermon, through the songs we sing, through the words of others.

There is no doubt that when He speaks, we would listen. But if we are not listening, we won’t hear Him.

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What A Beautiful Name It Is!

We are learning a new song at Mountain View. What A Beautiful Name, written Ben Fielding and Brooke Ligertwood, has ministered to me more than any other song has recently.

Sometimes, as I sing lyrics, I sense that the words definitely reflect what God is wanting from me. Such is the case with this song. The bridge, the part of the song that connects the verse to the chorus, says, “You have no rival,You have no equal, Now and forever, God You reign. Yours is the kingdom, Yours is the glory, Yours is the Name above all names.”

The world, influenced by the enemy, does not honor and esteem the Name of Jesus. His Name has become a word for cursing or disgust. Think about this — the ONLY name that brings hope, the Only Name that brings healing, the ONLY Name that brings deliverance — has become a word used for just the opposite!

I recently watched the film, I’m Not Ashamed, the film biography of Rachel Scott. Rachel was a high school student at Columbine High School at the time of the massacre there in 1998. IN the closing moments of the film, if you are familiar with the story, Rachel is on the lawn of the school at lunchtime when the two shooters approach her. Aware of her stance and relationship with Jesus, one of the shooters asks her if she believes in God. She says, “yes.” The shooter then says, “Then go meet Him,” as he fires the shot that takes her life.

We must stand up for the Name of Jesus even to the point that it may cost us our life.

Some important passages that bring clarity to His Name are;

Luke 2:21 says “His name was called Jesus, the name given by the angel before He was conceived in the womb.”

John 20:31 says “but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name.”

Acts 2:38 says “Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

Acts 3:6 says “Then Peter said, “Silver and gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk.”

Acts 19:17 says “This became known both to all Jews and Greeks dwelling in Ephesus; and fear fell on them all, and the name of the Lord Jesus was magnified.

Philipians 2 says “Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

If the Word of God esteems the Name of Jesus as powerful, full of anointing deserving of honor and glory, how can we NOT?

It is more precious than gold and more expensive than all of the money in all the world. The Name of Jesus is the most powerful Name on our planet.

What a beautiful Name it is!

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