Paying the Price

rodney howard browne

Over a period of time, you start to find your niche.

You start to find your purpose, you start to find the plan,

you start to find the direction, you start to learn which

way God is taking you. It is not something that happens

overnight. The Bible says, “Many be called, but few

chosen” (Matthew 20:16). I could even term it this way,

“Many are called and some are frozen.”

 

God has called people and anointed people, but a

lot of them will never fulfill the call of God on their life

because they are not prepared to pay the price. They are

not prepared to do what God has called them to do. Or

they are not prepared to be faithful in the little. If you are

not going to be faithful in the little, God cannot make you

a ruler over much.

 

I believe God will use the whole Body of Christ in

this last day and I believe there are people in churches

right now who have been sitting there for ten, fifteen,

twenty years, receiving the Word, who in these last days

visitation from the Lord and God will send them in a

matter of two or three months. They will sell all their

possessions and go on to a foreign field and serve the

Lord Jesus Christ. I believe that with all my heart. So

never say, “God couldn’t use me.”

 

Everyone is called to stand in the ministry of

reconciliation, one on one, to tell others, to proclaim.

Everyone should be a preacher – a proclaimer – of the

blessing of the Lord Jesus Christ. You can start in your

work place. If you are faithful with that, God might just

increase it and get you into some other places.

 

Don’t Go Without a Message

 

When I lived in South Africa, I was teaching at a

Bible school that had about four hundred students. I had

to teach them twice a day, five days a week, on different

subjects. I would say to them, “How many of you are

going to preach?” Everyone raised their hand. I said,

“How many of you have a message,” and no one

responded. “How many would like a place to preach?”

Everyone raise their hand. Then I said to them, “Get a

message from God first, and then get a place to preach.”

What is good in having places to preach if you

don’t have a message when you get there? Do you know

how many ministers are that way? They look for places to

preach and when they get there they haven’t got a

message to give. God will give you a message. God will

give you a word and when you are faithful to deliver that,

He might give you some more.

 

Such As I Have

 

As the Apostle Peter said, “Silver and gold have I

none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus

Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk” (Acts 3:6). We must

give what we have on the inside of us. It flows forth out

of us, bringing life wherever we go. People look at my

ministry today after thirteen years and say, “It is so

wonderful how things are going and God is blessing.” But

they don’t know we have been to hell and back to get

here.

 

We must have the determination to obey God and

to keep doing what God has called us to do. We cannot

worry about what other people say, or the rejection that

will come our way. We cannot be hindered by people

who will talk evil about us, who will make up stories

about us, who will slander us.

 

You make the decision in your heart to walk in

love and to obey God and do what God has called you to

do. Ultimately, when it comes down to the bottom line,

it’s you and God. No one else is going to make it happen

for you. If you are waiting for some hand out, you can

forget about it.

 

Start doing whatever your hand finds to do. There

is a progression into the things of God, into the anointing.

These things don’t come overnight. God is not going to

take a ministry, like some of the great men of God have

had, and suddenly give it to you in one day. It takes time.

What It Means to be Born Again

rodney howard browne

Understanding the New Birth Experience by Rodney Howard Browne

 

For God so loved the world, that he gave

his only begotten Son, that whosoever

believeth in him should not perish, but

have everlasting life.

John 3:16

 

Building Your Life on a Firm Foundation

 

I believe that there needs to be a greater

understanding of the basic truths of the Bible in the Church

today. When foundational truths are burned in our spirit,

there’s no devil in hell, no false doctrine, no deceiver that

can come and sway us away from the purpose, the plan,

and the will of God for our lives.

 

One of the reasons why people backslide and grow

cold in their Christian experience is because the basic truths

have never been branded inside them. Everywhere we go,

we find people coming to recommit their lives to God.

Belonging to a church does not make you a child of

God just as working in an automobile factory does not

make you an automobile. I don’t care who the person is. I

don’t care how long they’ve been in the church. I don’t

care if they were the founding members of that church.

 

Just because they belong to a church

 does not make them a Christian.

 

In the United States, people are under a

misconception. They think that America is a Christian

nation. And they think because they’re not a Jew or a

Muslim, they’re a Christian.

 

I’ve got news for them. Unless you are born again

of the Spirit of God, you’re not a Christian. And the

problem about that is you’re going to split hell wide open.

That’s a bold statement, but it must be said. We must

challenge others concerning the new birth.

 

The Lord said to me once, Don’t take for granted

that a person is born again even if they wear a bid badge

saying, “Smile, if you love Jesus,” and have a big bumper

sticker on their car and carry a Bible big enough to choke a

donkey and they walk around quoting scripture. Don’t ever

take for granted that they’re born again.

 

I asked the Lord, “Why are there hundreds of

people coming to the altar at our services? The churches

are filled with thousands of people, but some are the

biggest kooks in the business.” The Lord said to me, Many

of them are not even born again. They’ve never had a new

birth experience. They’ve never come to the foot of the

cross. They’ve stood in the line and said, “Jesus, I confess

You as my Lord and Savior.” But, they’ve never had a

change of heart.

 

The new birth is not external. Salvation is not mental.

Salvation is of the heart, and when a man comes with

the heart and accepts Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior,

he’s born again. He’s changed. He becomes a new creature

in Christ Jesus. That’s the exciting thing about the new birth.

 

The scripture 2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “Therefore if

any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are

passed away; behold, all things become new.” Not he

thinks he is, not maybe he is, but he is a new creature. That

literally means a new species of being that has never

existed before. When you’re born again, old things are

passed away.

 

Don’t tell me you’re born again and you still live

like you did before you were born again. I will not believe

you. I don’t care if you go to the First Church of Whatever.

 

I don’t care if your father’s the deacon. I don’t care if

you’re the head elder. I don’t care if you’re on so many

boards that you’re bored. When you are born again, you

are changed. You become new.

 

People who think they can be born again and live

just the way they always did are fooling themselves. Their

hearts are not right with God, but they have camouflaged it

so well they don’t realize it. They have never come to the

place of repentance.

 

In fact, there are some people today who think God

Himself a deal because He got them. They think God owed

them salvation.

 

God didn’t owe us anything. The whole crux of

Christianity is God reached down to a lost and dying world.

He came down to restore man back to what Adam lost in

the Garden of Eden. God came through Jesus Christ to

restore mankind back to their rightful place. But God

didn’t have to do it.

 

He could have let us all go to hell. But because of

His love extended toward us while we were yet sinners, the

Bible says Christ died for us (Romans 5:8). He knew who

we were.

 

Many are coming to church and merely praying a

mental prayer. But saying the right words does not cause

the new birth to take place. Something must happen inside.

There must be a time where you know you crossed the line.

 

The Bible says we know we have crossed from

death unto life because we love the brethren (First John

3:14). We know. Not we think so, not we hope so, not

maybe so. We know that we passed from death unto life

because we love the brethren. There’s a dividing live we

cross over.

 

You were once lost and now you are found. You

were once blind and now you see. You were once in

darkness and now you’re in the light. He took us and

translated us out of the kingdom of darkness and brought us

into the kingdom of His dear Son (Colossians 1:13). You

were once in the family of the wicked one; now you’re in

the family of God. There’s a whole transition. It’s like

leaving one country and going to another.

 

It’s important to recognize this because thousands

merely mentally assent and say, “Yes, I accept Jesus Chris

as my Lord and Savior.” But they go out the door and

continue to live the life of a sinner. It grieves the Spirit of

God.

 

This is the reason why so many backslide today.

They have never had a true new birth experience. We’ve

made it so easy to become born again. Come and join the

club.

 

Today being born again is a fashionable thing. Are

you born again? “I’m born again but I tell you what, I’m

going to sue that guy for everything he’s got. I’m born

again, but I’m going to kill that guy.” The Bible says if

you can’t even love your brother whom you can see, how

can you love God who you cannot see (First John 4:20)?

 

Today in many churches with five to ten thousand

members, there could be as many as 40 percent who are not

born again. They may have come for five or ten years to

those churches, but there has been no change in their lives.

They continue the same old life. They continue to speak

the same language. They work the same crooked deals.

They commit the same sins.

 

I’m not talking about people who have a moment of

weakness or get tripped up by the devil. I’m talking about

people who habitually sin. The Bible says whoever is born

of God doesn’t sin, meaning that they don’t practice it as a

way of life (First John 3:9). When you practice sin as a

way of life, how can you be born again?

 

If you sin and you know you’ve done wrong,

immediately you can feel it in your heart. I look at some

people and say, “If they’re born again, how do they sleep at

night?” I couldn’t sleep at night if I were doing the things

they are doing.

 

It’s frightening to think that there could be as many

as 40 percent, and in some churches as high as 80 percent,

who are not born again. They dress up in a suit on Sunday,

carry a Bible big enough to choke a donkey, go to church,

sing hymns and put in an offering, yet they’re not born

again. Jesus said, “Ye must be born again” (John 3:7).

 

And the worst thing is to think that because you

grew up in a Christian family and your father was a

preacher and you’ve gone to church all of your life, you’re

automatically born again. There are some young people

who grew up in the church but they’ve never had a new

birth experience.

 

I was born again at the age of 5. I went to the altar

and made a commitment, but I had several experiences

between the time I was 5 and the time I was 18 years old.

At that time, I had an encounter with God so that I knew

without a shadow of a doubt I was born again.

 

I remember one night having a dream. I don’t talk

about this much, but it is (refreshed) in my memory every

now and then. I was about 13 years of age and I remember

I had a dream in which I saw Jesus.

 

We used to have little tracts with a picture of

millions of people going over a cliff and falling into the

flames of hell. There was a road going up on the side and

the cross. This left an impression on me. I’d always

picture myself going up that road.

 

The Bible says, “Broad is the way, that leadeth to

destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:

Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which

leadeth unto life” (Matthew 7:13, 14). There are 260

million people in the United States and they estimate –

these are figures put out by religious orga nizations – that 60

million are born again. That means that 200 million people

in the United States do not know Jesus Christ as Lord and

Savior. This country – the United States of America – is

one of the greatest overlooked mission fields on the face of

God’s green earth.

 

I remember as a child looking at that tract. In my

dream, I was standing right there and I saw the millions of

people going over into the flames. I remember crying – I

don’t know how long it was. It seemed like two and half

hours. But I woke up and my pillow was soaking wet.

 

Jesus was standing right there. I can’t remember

what He looked like, but I knew it was Jesus because I was

talking with Him. I said, “O Jesus, what can we do? There

are millions of people going to a lost eternity,” I heard Him

say, “You must tell them. You must tell them. You must

tell them.”

 

I woke up and the next day when I went outside,

everything was new. It was an experience I’ll never forget.

I began to witness then even more to the kids at my school.

I began to tell them about the Lord Jesus and about His

coming.

 

It was from this experience that I knew it wasn’t

just something that my father had, or my mother had, or my

uncle had. I knew it was something I had. The new birth

was real to me. Jesus was real to me and I wanted Him to

become real to other people. When God gives you that,

something will arise on the inside of you that will cause

you to share the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.

 

There’s something that will cause you to leave

everything you have – to forsake houses and lands, to leave

a job, and turn your back on everything else when you

know about the truth of the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.

That something, that truth burned deep into your heart, will

cause you to go through blizzards, earthquakes, famines,

and wars to obey the call of God. You’ll not quit until you

see what God has called you to do.

 

If things don’t go right in the ministry of some

people, they quit. They say, “I’m quitting. I’m leaving the

ministry.”

 

I’m so glad when Jesus hung on the cross He didn’t

say, “I’m quitting.” I’m so glad in the Garden of

 

Gethsemane He didn’t say, “That’s it, Father. Enough is

enough.” The Bible says He could have called 10,000

angels to rescue Him away, but I’m so glad He didn’t. He

looked down through the eons of time and He saw you and

me. He said, “I will pay the price. I will buy them back. I

will shed My blood for their redemption.”

 

The scripture 2 Corinthians 5:21 says, “He hath

made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might

be made the righteousness of God in him.” Jesus became

sin for you and me because we were sinners. He became

sin for you and me because we were sinners. He became

sin that you and I could be born again into the family of

God.

 

Someone asked me, “Brother Rodney, what must I

do to come to God? Must I change my life first and then

come to Him?” No! You come as you are. God wants you

as you are. God specializes in taking us “as is.”

 

Have you ever seen cars advertised “as is”? God

said, “Give me that sinner there, ‘as is,’ and watch what I

will do.” He’ll take a prostitute, a drug addict, a

homosexual, a down-and-out criminal who is full of sin and

He will transform that person in a moment, in the twinkling

of an eye. He will change them and He will put their feet

on higher ground. He will wash them in the blood of Jesus.

He will cleanse them and they’ll be like a brand new little

baby that has just been born.

 

That’s what the new birth is. God wants to restore

back to the Church the joy of their salvation. Some

Christians have forgotten why they were saved. They’ve

forgotten that they were saved. If you looked at some

Christians, you couldn’t even tell they were born again.

“Well I’m saved, Brother Rodney.” Saved from what?

God wants to restore you. I pray that you get a fresh

revelation of the new birth.

 

REMEMBERING THE GOODNESS

rodney howard browne

Foundation Scriptures: Deuteronomy 26 verse 1 – 16

When you have come into the land which the Lord your God gives you as an inheritance and possess it and live in it, 2 You shall take some of the first of all the produce of the soil which you harvest from the land the Lord your God gives you and put it in a basket, and go to the place [the sanctuary] which the Lord your God has chosen as the abiding place for His Name [and His Presence]. 3 And you shall go to the priest who is in office in those days, and say to him, I give thanks this day to the Lord your God that I have come to the land which the Lord swore to our fathers to give us. 4 And the priest shall take the basket from your hand and set it down before the altar of the Lord your God. 5 And you shall say before the Lord your God, A wandering and lost Aramean ready to perish was my father [Jacob], and he went down into Egypt and sojourned there, few in number, and he became there a nation, great, mighty, and numerous. 6 And the Egyptians treated us very badly and afflicted us and laid upon us hard bondage. 7 And when we cried to the Lord, the God of our fathers, the Lord heard our voice and looked on our affliction and our labor and our [cruel] oppression; 8 And the Lord brought us forth out of Egypt with a mighty hand and with an outstretched arm, and with great (awesome) power and with signs and with wonders; 9 And He brought us into this place and gave us this land, a land flowing with milk and honey. 10 And now, behold, I bring the firstfruits of the ground which You, O Lord, have given me. And you shall set it down before the Lord your God and worship before the Lord your God; 11 And you and the Levite and the stranger and the sojourner among you shall rejoice in all the good which the Lord your God has given you and your household. 12 When you have finished paying all the tithe of your produce the third year, which is the year of tithing, and have given it to the Levite, the stranger and the sojourner, the fatherless, and to the widow, that they may eat within your towns and be filled, 13 Then you shall say before the Lord your God, I have brought the hallowed things (the tithe) out of my house and moreover have given them to the Levite, to the stranger and the sojourner, to the fatherless, and to the widow, according to all Your commandments which You have commanded me; I have not transgressed any of Your commandments, neither have I forgotten them. 14 I have not eaten of the tithe in my mourning [making the tithe unclean], nor have I handled any of it when I was unclean, nor given any of it to the dead. I have hearkened to the voice of the Lord my God; I have done according to all that You have commanded me. 15 Look down from Your holy habitation, from heaven, and bless Your people Israel and the land which You have given us as You swore to our fathers, a land flowing with milk and honey. 16 This day the Lord your God has commanded you to do these statutes and ordinances. Therefore you shall keep and do them with all your [mind and] heart and with all your being.  Deuteronomy 26:1-16 AMP

1.  The children of Israel were given strict instructions on what they were to do with the first fruits and tithes.

  • They were to go to the place the Lord had chosen to place His Name and Presence
  • They were to confess and to acknowledge where they had come from, how God delivered them, and how He had brought them through into victory and blessing
  • They were to talk about the land the Lord had given them and to be thankful, to worship the Lord, and to rejoice
  • They were also to declare that their tithe was not eaten or handled in mourning, but with joy  
  • They were to remind the Lord (and themselves) of the covenant that He swore to their fathers

Pastor Adonica’s Thoughts:
The thing that jumps out at me in this passage is how much our attitude counts before God when we bring Him offerings, first fruits, and tithes. God would not accept any offerings that had any death or mourning attached to them. As Cain learned, it’s not what you bring, but what God accepts, that counts! God made the Israelites bring the offering in a specific way. He made them do and say specific things. Not because He loves empty rituals, but because He was training them to live a lifestyle that was focused on the goodness of God. If we forget what God has done, if we don’t expect Him to do anything for us in the future, then we have no reason to serve Him today, never mind bring Him an offering. Everything they were to do and say was to give them many reasons to keep serving and worshipping the Lord God and not to go off track to worship and serve any other foreign gods. Everything they were to do and say was a reminder to them, so they would remember what God had done, so that they would be grateful for what God had done and so that they would to continue to believe that He would fulfill His future promises! All this was for their blessing and benefit as it is for ours today.

Pastor Rodney’s Thoughts:
The Lord laid out a clear plan for His people in this passage. The tithe and the first fruits were a reminder to them of His deliverance – to them and all their generations. It was a way for them never to forget where they had come from. As you bring the Lord your tithes, your offerings and your first fruits, remember where He has brought you from and where you could have been and then rejoice!

Prayer and Confession:
Father, thank You that You have delivered me from sin, hell, sickness, disease, poverty, lack, judgment, torment, and eternal death. Today I honor You with my substance and I rejoice in Your goodness!