Apostolic Order and Leviathan Systematic Delusion

God authorizes through assignments and alignments. Once apostles receive assignment, God will bring others into alignment with their assignment. Authority flows toward assignment: you have the authority of your assignment, and aligning with apostolic assignments positions you to function in that authority. All authority comes from the King and flows toward His assignments. As Head of the Body, He makes all assignments, authorizations, and alignments work together so they accomplish kingdom purposes.

In this way, kingdom consensus combines kingdom coalitions to produce kingdom cooperation and collaboration. Jesus has infinite genius to appropriate systematic spiritual dynamics (dunamis power), the power of Holy Spirit in each of us that operates in these assignments, in a way that completely fulfills both personal destinies and corporate purposes. In other words, the quickest and most efficient pathway to personal destiny fulfillment always lies in our surrender to align ourselves with apostolic assignments given by Jesus. All the assignments come from Jesus; we submit to kingdom leadership because we are submitted to Jesus.

Of course, this is the ideal that is seldom seen and difficult to experience because we have lost so much. Without a good understanding of kingdom protocols, we fail to recognize these systematic spiritual dynamics. And, our distaste with religious institutions and substitutes for this kingdom leadership has made us leery of any leadership dynamics. Our rejection of institutional bureacracies has left us longing for Jesus to allow us all to be free spirits and turned the kingdom into a charismatic Woodstock.

Enter Leviathan. hell’s answer to God’s systematic spiritual dynamics is a systematic spiritual delusion. As we examine the many Scriptures that directly discuss the spiritual dynamics of leviathan, and parallel them with the manifestations of the serpent/dragon who heads the spiritual conspiracy against the Messianic King, we see that Leviathan is a system of spiritual coalitions functioning in a strategic region with an agenda to pervert God’s purpose for that region with confusion, substitution, and delusional pride.

Whatever Jesus is for, hell is against. The agenda of darkness is simply to avoid light. To defeat this darkness we must reveal the Light of His Glory, punching holes at strategic points in the occult veil that Leviathan spreads over a region. Light pours through these punched holes and floods the region: “the knowledge of the Glory of The Lord fills the region as waters cover the sea.” The punched holes become portals or windows through which God outpours Blessing for Curse, Glory for Pride, freedom for captivity, sight for blindness, favor for poverty, and rejection for the time of God’s acceptance!

Sifting the Remnant

Jesus tells Simon Peter that satan has demanded to sift the entire group of disciples but He has prayed for Simon to bring restoration after the sifting is over.

The process of sifting is actually positive in process and end result, but it is does involve some violent shaking to expose the distinctly different elements presently blended together. We use sifting because processing the individual grains of wheat one by one would be impractical. We separate good and bad, so bad is exposed, no longer able to hide in the blend of interrelated motives and conditions of the heart. The bad has to be dealt with – sifting separates it.

So, why would satan demand the right to sift the disciples? Wouldn’t the process of revealing the bad work at odds with his methods? Why would satan wish to bring attention to the bad?

The nature of satan as “the accuser,” his method of destruction, distraction, and discouragement, uses surfaced qualities of the heart or motives of the soul to make a case for the inadequacy of the disciples, a case satan hopes to use to drive them all away from Jesus at the time of His and their greatest vulnerability.

Just before great victory or expansion of kingdom purpose, the dark days of personal sacrifice and spiritual warfare increase as the stresses of “humanity representing heaven” provide both the greatest fulfillment of Father’s purpose and the greatest exposure of human weakness.

“Jesus, Stop This Process!”

We notice immediately that Jesus isn’t saying, “Simon, don’t worry about it because I’ll completely shield you from this sifting.”

No! Jesus is praying for restoration after the shaking separates the good and bad, knowing that a lot of ugly stuff will surface in His apostles, satan will attempt to build a case for them to quit, and the evidence that they are not worthy will be obvious.

No! Jesus knows that sifting is essential to kingdom advance because humanity is both the point of power and the point of weakness in kingdom: God wants humans to establish heaven on earth, but the human element is imperfect.

Note this kingdom leader: you will discover your greatest strengths and glaring weaknesses – both of them – in the seasons of kingdom advance, as heaven and hell will heighten their methods of help or hurt to accomplish purpose or diminish purpose.

We can find no Scriptural promise for “avoiding the sifting,” no declaration of protection from battles, no “not for you little one” gesture of escape from testing for any believer. At no point does God say, “Jesus did it all so you will never face a test.” Nope.

Instead, we are promised testing, trial, temptation, and terror! We are sent into the teeth of the conflict armed with Divine weaponry, to fight, take territory, stand and hold that territory, and push back the usurpation of hell, displacing the gates of hell as living stones built into a kingdom Ecclesia.

The sifting offers satan evidence to build his case against us. However, what he considers his best hope of distraction, substitution, or even rebellion (his highest hope), Jesus understands as the opportunity for deeper submission. The sifting reveals our tendencies, and the “bad” that is exposed will be the best opportunity hell can find to defeat us.

In other words, sifting surfaces our besetting sins. Pride, rejection, shame, rebellion, witchcraft, fear of men, worldliness, antichrist, and the political spirit – where works of flesh meet works of darkness – wheat glowing with golden life separated from chaff dead, harsh, dull, cutting, and abrasive to the very purpose of the living giving seed. Debris that gathers with the harvest must be separated at the time of expansion when harvest becomes the next season of planting and promise.

You will always experience an exposure at the point of your next personal expansion in purpose, and you will either embrace the pride of being called and chosen as a representative (therefore, falling upon your entitlement mentality to avoid dealing with your flawed motives) or you will humble yourself in submission in order to deal with the surfaced weakness that must be removed as you step forward in your purpose.

“Simon, you all have some big problems, and satan demands his moment in court to make a case against you with the evidence he will dredge up in sifting. He is making a case against Me, because you represent Me, to tell Father that I have failed to produce leaders that represent Father.”

And, satan is right! The disciples are full of selfish, prideful fear! They will all run because it is too hard. They will deny because it saves their own skins. They will betray in a different way from Judas, but their betrayal is just as deadly at the heart level.

And the sifting will expose this heart motive! “I’m really in this for me” will surface among the kingdom seed of purpose, the kingdom bread of life, the kingdom harvest of Jesus’ ministry. Chaff will be exposed. Debris will be separated. The adversary will accuse. The disciples will despair: how can this kingdom move forward if we are the ones chosen to represent it?

Sifting Seasons Surface Seeds

Yet, the enemy fails to discern that sifting also separates the pure, royal seed from what has been mixed with it! The celebrated seeds of purpose receive their greatest distinction, clarity, and usefulness in the same process of accusation. The end result is a restoration of the very purpose all that debris was supposed to destroy!

The purpose comes out even more pure! What might have been planted in the next season with the royal seed is removed! The prepared soil of the next planting is not defiled with the chaff and debris!

As is always the case when kingdom leaders submit with humbled hearts, stop defending their flaws and justifying their weaknesses, the end product of the testing is purity.
Let the sifting begin for this generation needs a good shaking! We approach a great turnaround of revival, Awakening, reformation, and transformation! Let the Remnant feel the demands of our accuser to defeat us! Let this great conflict begin! It is what we need more than we realize!
We cannot sow the chaff and debris of previous seasons in this newly prepared soil, plowed with groaning and labor pains, and we cannot represent Him in the next season with the pride, fear, stubbornness, wounding, and hesitation under which we labor at present.

Remnant Leaders

Jesus prayed for one apostle, Simon, to restore. He prayed for a Remnant leader in the remaining eleven. His strategy for the sifting was a Remnant.
Does anything help us understand the present condition of the modern American church any more clearly?!

The Remnant needs the sifting, the purifying, the punch in the gut, the kick in the seat of the pants, the exposure of chaff and debris – and we are getting just that right now!
Some are expressing their pride in response to the sifting, telling the story of their justification for assuming they have no flaws by the “thou protesteth too loudly” in defense of their perfections and qualifications. This is not time to tell everyone how long you’ve been with Jesus!

This is the time to humble yourself to the sifting so your flaws won’t disqualify you in the greater crisis coming.

Some are expressing their fear of man by diminishing others to make themselves look better as exposure reveals their need for submission. The work of criticism and the criticism of those that criticize is at a fevered pitch. Even the “we don’t criticize” crowd criticizes with perspiration at present, as mini-movement all attempt to see the superiority of their previous experiences.

Yet, the sifting is revealing the fatal flaws of every mini-movement.
Some are ready to hide when they are called to be seen. They are running. They make the accuser into a victor, fearing the Father because of their weaknesses when the Father has a judgment decision that will silence the enemy and set them free in ways they have never been free before!

At any rate, sifting is here because of what is coming, and we should humble ourselves before that exposure, submit to that process, and receive the strategy of Remnant leadership for our restoration.

Bless; Curse Not

“Bless those that persecute you. Bless and curse not.” [Romans 12:14]

First, persecution means “chasing after in order to apprehend.” A lot of the “persecution” people clamor about, ain’t persecution. Persecution is a process, not a correction or negative comment. A kingdom leader correcting you isn’t persecution! Your mother-in-law telling you how to take care of her baby you married isn’t persecution. Someone on the job being a jerk isn’t persecution.

Persecution is someone targeting you to apprehend you. “This man is out to get me” is persecution, and that is a process. The word can be used positively to pursue something or someone, but in this context it is negative. Persecute means, “I’m out to get you.”

During the process, you bless the one who is out to get you. You do not curse. You do not overcome evil with more complex, refined, and strategic evil. You overcome evil with good. You bless the one coming after you. Win or lose – and that is all in the definition – you bless.

For the smug and sanctimonious, that can be a moment to play victim. Paul isn’t talking about signing up for victimization. He is NOT saying, “Now, lie down and take it like a rug for people to wipe their feet.” He is saying, “You have the greater position of spiritual authority and power; use it to show the kingdom culture’s greatest benefits.”

Not that a believer cannot curse. They can. Jesus did. His curse reveals the persecution purpose and process: He limits the tree, and the process withers it to nothing once He apprehends it. Jesus did bring curse upon things and revealed the curse that would befall His generation because of their own curse words upon themselves.

The point is that a believer can curse but doesn’t. The believer uses spiritual authority and power to bless the one pursuing to diminish them. While that seems like aiding and abetting your worst enemy, Paul says that reveals the kingdom culture. It reveals your faith, that no one has power over your destiny to empty it of life, that evil people cannot undo what God is doing, that greater is He in you than he operating in and through them. You curse from a strategic position of spiritual authority and power, and that blessing reveals that your God is greater than the cursing Accuser.

If you cannot bless the persecutors, you might consider whether or not you are consecrated enough to God that you are convinced He can produce your purpose through obedience, or that He requires your natural wisdom and strength to do a good job of being God. If you wish to use your spiritual authority and power to curse without no authorization but on your own, perhaps you should consider what level of witchcraft remains in your soul. If you cannot bless because you are a victim of out of control anxiety or anger, perhaps you should surrender fear and wrath to God.

If you cannot bless persecutors, you might wish to consider that your delegated authority and power for kingdom leadership lies dormant. In other words, when persecuted, you simply whine that “I shouldn’t have to go through this! Jesus, take it all away so I can get on with my little American life.” That means, you are a spiritual baby cakes that needs to grow up and act like an adult.

Jesus promised us persecution. Rejoice! Yes, relish the moment when the kingdom will shine through you instead of the pride that says you are too wonderful to deserve persecution, or that you deserve a better life than to face what Jesus faced.

Sometimes believers curse themselves in persecution with this level of entitlement pride: “I cannot be touched by persecution because I am a child of God.”

Jesus clarifies that as dysfunctional: “If they persecute Me, they will you. You are not above your Master.”

So, when you say, “I am above this persecution stuff because I am a child of God, you are saying you are better than Jesus.” Of course, some people have some kind of macho extremist faith statement that says, “Jesus took all the persecution so I can lie around at the pool drinking mint tea, eating bonbons, and enjoying cloudless skies until the Millennium.” Duh. (Go back to what Jesus says, believe that, and stop with the dull-witted deception of hell.)

[Deep breath.]

“Bless and curse not.” Paul says, “Bless,” but adds, “Curse not,” just in case you build a faulty concept of blessing that allows you to bless and curse at the same time. It has been done.

It is the “hedge against diminishing supply” application of blessing that says, “Bless you, you filthy scoundrel,” attempting to appear in blessing while working curse into the framework of you piety. It is insincere at best, and makes kingdom look like circus-show scam at worst.

It is the “he is saying one thing but really doing another” that assumes the political spirit method of out-politicking your apparent opponent. It will curse while appearing to bless because it justifies curse with some kind of inner mechanism of doublemindedness, more commonly known as spiritually “passive aggressive.” It is a form of “killing them with faint praise” or “your quaint little starter home is very nice” (with the thought of “my six-bedroom mansion notwithstanding.)

Believers say “bless” and then “curse” by diminishing others in order to look greater than they really are. I’ve seen this many times with leaders doing the anointing comparison and name dropping the apostle game. They bless you and then say, “I run with Elijah and Moses come in the flesh with the Glory Cloud of Greater Goodness around my head.” They pat you on the head while ignoring what God does through you with fingers in their ears going “la-la-la-la” while touting the greatest of their personal “here’s come the ark” meetings.

They are blessing and cursing. They are hoping to diminish in order to avoid being out classed in their internal deception (pride), desiring to be what they conjure in their minds more than what God says they are. In this way, they diminish, and they may even persecute you by pursuing you to apprehend you: to define you to others by their own words that kill you with faint praise. They are not really blessing because they hope you get smaller, not bigger; they see you as competition or someone to be put in their place.

This has nothing to do with needed and authentic correction. That isn’t a part of blessing and cursing as a response to persecution. Correction, remember, isn’t persecution at all. It is an effort to increase and expand you, a form of blessing that you should value as blessing. Don’t mix the two things.

But, a person operating to bless and curse may be a persecutor themselves, and Paul mentions this in order to clarify what “bless and curse not” really looks like.

Elisha’s Preparation for a Mantle

Elisha reaches down and picks up an available mantle. He is in the right place at the right time. By enduring. By focused commitment to preparation. By following Elijah, he is there to be discipled by Elijah, prepared for the moment he will function.

Many mistake discipling with following. Simply put, you must follow in order to be discipled. Jesus says, “Follow Me and I will make you…” Without the following, no shared spiritual experience is available to prepare you for the available mantle: “You will do what I do, and greater shall you do…”

Back to Origins

When time comes for Elijah to be carried away, he says to Elisha, “I am going. You can stay here.” We will hear this repeated scenario each step of the way back to the place of beginnings where Elijah will be carried away. Elijah will be carried away where he started, in Tishbe.

In order to raise champions, we must take them the same route we took, walk them through the same path we walked, and allow them to experience the same things we experience. The following is required for the discipling is required for the mantle.

To gain the proper identity, we must lose identity. We must become nobody in order to be made into the somebody God has in mind. We are made by grace. [See 1 Coriinthians 15:10]

The process required for losing false identity and gaining God’s design functions with the fathering spirit. We need fathers during this season of personal change to reassure us, hold us in the times when we are uncertain who we are, and keep us walking toward the place of new identity we have no map to discover on our own.

While discipling is more than following, following is required. We must be there to be discipled. For many, the test of discipling is the test of being there, of following. Many short-circuit their ministry in the preparation by failing the simplest test of “being there” because they cannot order their lives to follow.

I see more people short-circuit their preparation than I do short-circuit their calling.

Gilgal

First stop, covenant. Gilgal was the place of rolling away the reproach of Egypt, the establishing of covenant in a generation who had not experienced the marking of covenant circumcision. The mark involves the covenant and is intensely personal. Many do not pass this test of nakedness, the openness and transparency that is required to be covenant-ready. They will not stand the exposure.

They will say a thousand things. They will make a thousand excuses, many of these include a “God told me” phrase that is intended to pull rank and silence the very voices that are required for their preparation. They will tell themselves that leaders are “holding them back,” but they are really just quitters. They won’t stand the knife that cuts the flesh.

Such a personal accountability frightens away some of the strongest and most anointed. Yet, without this accountability for covenant, their gifts and anointing will not be enough to function with the mantle if they receive it. Many wish to inherit without being prepared to possess the provision of inheritance. Once they inherit, they think, “I will be ready to decide what to do with inheritance. Just give it to me already!”

Yet, this is not true! What to do with inheritance must be settled before inheritance is received. That is the reason for following to be discipled.

There is no “you can be whatever you want to be, go for it” in kingdom! The verse, “I can do all things through Christ,”, does not mean “I can do whatever I want through Christ Jesus!” That kind of humanistic narcissism must be broken, cleansed, burned, and buried before we are ready for the mantle.

At Gilgal, Israel stopped being carried by God like children. The manna stopped and they ate of the land of promise. It was their first Passover in promise. Passover, remember, redeems the firstborn, the inheritors.

Bethel

God has favorites. Favorite places and people. Many are called. Few are chosen. The chosen are the prepared. The potential isn’t the purpose. We must be prepared for calling before we are chosen for inheritance.

Bethel means ‘God’s house.’ Jacob slept here and saw the staircase of angels going up and coming down, the interchange of heavenly provision in one of God’s favorite places. Bethel is the establishing of a strong home base.

It is not that we have money, famous name, ready-made leadership dynamics–it is that we are called and then, chosen. The choosing comes when we have been prepared by doing the stuff of the called. No one gets to skip the test of doing. There is no “just give me my inheritance and we’ll work it all out later” with God.

We always believe we are ready before we are ready! That’s why we need spiritual parents.

How many say, “Just get me to the nations and my anointing will be released.” The truth is, if you can’t do it here, you will not suddenly be able to do it there. You say, “But I am called, so it will work out.”

Sorry, but being called isn’t enough. You must be chosen, and the chosen have been prepared. You are called when you don’t even know it; but you cannot be chosen without a full vetting of personal preparation.

You will learn how to handle your inheritance by serving with someone who has experience investing inheritance. You will learn to handle the mantle by following someone who is handling it now. Your demanding desire to get your hands on that mantle is a sign you aren’t ready for it. Your addiction to power means you shouldn’t be given power. Your passion for performance means you are confused in priority.

Jesus had an unlimited capacity for Anointing. Yet, He never said anything or did anything He didn’t receive from Father. He didn’t do whatever to whomever whenever and wherever. He knew that mantles are always strategic and function guided by direct contact with the Father.

Remember, Elijah threw the mantle upon Elisha ten years before Elisha picked it up and functioned with it. You know you have a mantle and your passion to possess it and function keeps you focused during the preparation season.

At Bethel Israel learned tithing. He learned that he must be a giver to the One who needs no one to give Him anything. He learned to personally function in first principles. This given is more than token acknowledgement that God is Source and Resource. It is fundamental to blessing: giving is more blessed than receiving.

Jericho

Here God destroyed the first-fruits. The city was dedicated to God, dedicated for destruction. At Jericho, you learn that God is trying to kill you. You learn that preparation includes total destruction. The Jericho test reminds you that God will destroy some things we would turn into trophies, that would eventually become monuments that would eventually become idols. (Remember the brazen serpent.)

At Jericho we learn that breaking open the alabaster box and pouring out the perfume is appropriate behavior when the natural says this is a waste.

The first belongs to God. Always. God reminds us of several things in the destruction of first things. This lesson must be pressed deeply into the wet cement of our preparation lest we touch what is dedicated to “save it from going to waste.”

I observed a wonderful couple perform this desecration with the greatest pain. The understanding that giving God something is never wasting it comes hard to people who have an overt appreciation for money and power. They lose sight of the fact that we can give something to God. They fail the test of letting go. Tithing means that the first belongs to God and we must always let it go so that we have no control over it, for example.

It is this test that prepares us for the mantle. The mantle will never belong to us. We are responsible for it. We wear it. We function in it, but the mantle is inheritance we will relinquish to someone else who will function with it at a higher level.

At Jericho Joshua encountered the Captain of God’s Army. Face to face. “Are you with us or our enemies?” Joshua asks. The Captain says, “Neither. I am for God’s army.”

God’s army only responds to God’s strategy. We must respond to God’s strategy as well in order to do what God is doing. Joshua receives a revelation of what God is doing so he can bring the whole of God’s people into agreement behavior with God’s strategy. If not, Joshua and the people would be working at odds with God while fighting His enemies.

Jordan

This is the crossover from preparation to promise. Elijah came out of the wilderness of Tishbe. He is returning to his roots and taking the next generation with him. Jordan runs into the Dead End, a sign of what we will do with the rest of our lives. Elijah in the wilderness, running from Jezebel, heard God tell him what to do with the rest of his life: “Anoint Elisha to take your place.”

It started here. It ends here. It begins again here.

People who see Jordan as the crossover to heaven miss the reality of Jordan. Jordan is not a trip to vacation land. Jordan is the beginning of inheritance and investment. Jordan is promise to be won, ministry to be released, leadership to function, kingdom to be established.

Elisha remains with Elijah for the whole journey. At Jordan, Elijah says, “What shall I do for you?” Upon hearing the reply, he says, “If you are with me, you will receive it. But, it isn’t up to me.”

Elisha recognizes what is most valuable in Elijah because he has been with him for a decade. He learns that the name and the fame are passing trivialities compared to the spiritual power. He learn that true inheritance is spiritual inheritance. He learns that there is more required of his ministry than being powerful. He needs the spiritual condition, dynamic, disposition, and dependability of Elijah’s spirit as much as he needs the power.

The next generation must walk where we walk to function in the anointing we carry. They cannot receive a mantle without receiving a model. When we become the model, we receive the message and we can lead a movement.

Assignment and Alignment

Until you know your assignment, you have limitation in understanding alignment. If you base alignment on any other foundation, it is, at best, temporary, or utilitarian – that is, you use or even abuse alignment instead of submitting to alignment.

While we maintain more than one alignment, given the multifaceted complexity of an international ministry with multiple assignments in multiple locations, every alignment is strategic to those assignments.

  1. An alignment is itself an assignment, and the alignment either feeds or frustrates your own assignment. That is, misaligning frustrates what God asks you to be and do. Authentic alignment feeds what God asks you to be and do. Alignment can be confrontational, gut-wrenchingly so, because alignment always moves you toward your assignment to be and do in transformational ways.

Never give up on alignment because surgery must be done! Never give up on alignment because confrontation with your immaturity occurs! Never give up on alignment even when it fails to meet your demands, since alignment doesn’t alignment with you but with your assignment.

  1. An alignment comes from God more than you. Usually it is a joy to align. Sometimes is a chore to align. Sometimes it starts out great and becomes something else because the leaders with whom you align lack integrity, demand warped levels of honor, or generally fail at fathering at some level.

You are not the one in charge of your redemption or your destiny. God is. He assigns because of what He wants for Himself and what He wants for you. Attempting to be the one in control will always make you double minded and codependent of soul.
Even this failure may not be a “run for your life” indicator. I have had some alignments that God used to teach me “what not to do.” I cried out to Him, and He said, “See that? Don’t ever do that. I want you to see and feel how that appears and feels to others. Whatever you do, don’t do that.” Of course, I knew then the alignment wasn’t permanent.
Such alignments also help you honor the healthy ones, but God may not always ask for your opinion about alignment, and God may also use you in alignment, with others, to speak into leaders wounded by previously dishonoring participants.

  1. Every leader should be in alignment with other leaders in ways defined by God, defined by aligning assignments.

One thing you can never tolerate, even when you are used and abused yet remain in place because of God’s timing, is for an alignment to alter your personal commitment to obeying God in personal assignment.
That doesn’t mean that you develop so much pride that you think you deserve perfect leadership and alignment.
What that means is that even in alignment, you must remain faithful to God’s assignment for you and His assignment for your alignment. You will not always be in “happy, happy, joy, joy” with the ones with whom you align. You will observe their weaknesses as well as their strengths. You will observe them doing stupid. It happens!

You will be disappointed because of false entitlement sentiments: “I thought they would make me more famous and open doors for my ministry and leadership.” (Duh.)
You will be disappointed because of false equality distortions: “I think we should all be treated the same and honored at the same level, as if we all have the same authority and anointing.” (Duh.)

You will be disappointed because of false expectation delusions: “I thought this would all be wine and roses (not whine and poses), but now I am being expected to grow, change, treated like I have something to learn…” (Duh.)
That is, alignment isn’t hiring a spiritual career consultant.
Alignment is submission of your assignment to a greater assignment in terms of scope, construction, influence, and sacrifice to God.
Alignment costs more than isolation but isolation is just plain dysfunctional.

Get the Glamor Out of Ministry!

Glamour, from as early as 1720 [Scottish], “magic, enchantment” a form of sorcery that projects spiritual influence upon the mind and perceptions, “to cast the glamor.” In English we find grammar in medieval applications to “any sort of scholarship, especially occult learning.” This from c. 1500 in English but common in Medieval Latin to describe spiritual influence in the study of mystery or hidden knowledge or knowledge of hidden things. Particularly in the writings of Sir Walter Scott (1771-1832). Later, the sense of “magical beauty, alluring charm,” first recorded 1840. As that quality of alluring influence and attractiveness that came to be especially associated with Hollywood, high-fashion, celebrity, etc., by 1939.

(See also Jamieson’s 1825 supplement to his “Etymological Dictionary of the Scottish Language” has glamour-gift “the power of enchantment; metaph. applied to female fascination.” Jamieson’s original edition (1808) looked to Old Norse for the source of the word. Zoëga’s Old Icelandic dictionary has glám-sýni “illusion,” probably from the same root as gleam.)

Thus matured into an art form by modern media to create escapism as a way of characterizing reality in exaggerations for the purpose of entertainment but also with the aim to redefine reality through the attractiveness of this alternate worldview, thus giving meaning to reality from other sources.

Entering into christianism in the latter half of the 1900’s when the use of tools similar to Hollywood called some into a sense of showmanship, especially those with miracle working power in the kingdom who fell into the use of legitimate kingdom authority and power for alluring influence beyond the definition and design of their callings and assignments, building a false attractiveness to ministry and ministry personality upon the foundations of legitimate kingdom leadership.

Glamorizing Kingdom Leadership

This trap is in reach of all kingdom leaders, but the temptation tested those most who become well-known, especially in some novel way. They succumb to the altered state of fascination with their fame, building air castles of pride and delusion, some to the extreme, many to the point of distraction, still many others simply adding into the legitimate ministry of personal calling a personality distinction unworthy of a servant’s heart and role.

In short, there is nothing glamorous about ministry. Nothing. Start here. Proceed forward. Ministry must be real people in real time or we diminish the role of Holy Spirit in the ministry by creating an allusion about those who operate in His power.

We are repeating some tragic mistakes in our efforts to accumulate believers, build downlines, and construction ministry support foundations. We are glamourizing worship, prayer, preaching, and spiritual disciplines, especially with the young, to build perceptions that attract them to false entitlement, equality, and expectations.

I heard one leader say to a worship leader in a foreign country: “Come to our base in America, and we’ll make you the next _______.” Recruitment at this level of hype is wrong! That is building on glamourized fantasy, influencing people to participate in your downline with the work of imagination void of revelation, with little thought at all to the only real issue for kingdom: the will of the Father.

If God wants someone some place with some ministry, He assigns them. He doesn’t lure them to that place of ascended fascination with fame, the stage spotlight of “this is as good as it gets” and you can get it too. Such a sell job demeans Holy Spirit as our Leader, and insults Jesus as King of His kingdom.

To what extent do we use this worldly effort to encourage delusions in people? Do we allow it to remain in place with a shrug as if presenting the subtle hint or more obvious oversold impression that what they see on the stage is what they can have too if only they join in the mini-movement? Do we use the very successes that bring glory to God in exaggerated ways that add allure and glamor to the equation, allowing hundreds, even thousands, of people to assume that all they need do is get to where the show is and they too can enjoy that carefree good life of personal fulfillment, giving no thought to the actual calling of God upon people’s lives?

If we allow that impression to remain, without correction, even when we do not design our sets and ministry shows to create it, we do err exceedingly in that we assist the enemy’s number one method of destiny destruction: the “anything but that” method. We feed the lie that “if only” I could be where my kingdom idol is, I will become a kingdom rock star too. We celebrate with ambitious high-fives when more people sign up for our accumulations as if everyone using our lingo and subcultural dialect, enter our chambers of subcultural activities with well-developed subcultural behaviors is success in the kingdom. We cannot measure success in the same way Disney measures park attendance and company profits. We can accumulate without fulfilling assignment.

Glamorizing ministry leadership involves the practice of grooming superstars from the thousands that don’t do it, to leave the impression that everyone can be just like the superstar if they only immerse themselves more deeply in the subculture or ape the personality traits and spiritual disciplines of the superstar. We lie in this way as well as hell itself whether we intend to or not. It is simply not true; and if it were true, it would be contrary to kingdom principles and protocols.

Jesus Sans Glamor

No matter how many painting you’ve seen of Jesus as a child or grown man, He didn’t have a halo around His head. That can either refer to overshadowing Glory on His life or to the illusion of unreal mystical glamor. Often it is the latter as people attributed to Him what is absent from His life and ministry.

We may misread the meaning of Jesus with respect to lifestyle and ministry. We may misread His finished work and eternal provision dramatically. We may run into a line of thinking that basically says, “Jesus suffered so I won’t. Jesus was poor so I can be rich. Jesus avoided fame because He wanted me to be famous. Jesus lived simply so I can wear the best newest fashions. Jesus was rejected so I can be relevant.” See how we move from exaggeration to exaggeration, without saying a word, by presenting the idea that ‘those who join with us reach these levels of personal potential?’

Potential never enters the picture of kingdom purpose.

Jesus gave no thought to personal potential, and He established that principle and protocol in His kingdom. Doing great things means so little to Him that He ignores it, focused completely upon doing the will of the Father who is in Heaven. Do you realize that is the very opposite of glamorized ministry leadership?

The only kingdom answer to the “who I want to be when I grow up” question is: “doing the will of My Father who is in heaven.” Potential is the devil’s tool for the “anything but that” method. Purpose is God’s design and definition for destiny.

Jesus shunned glamor. One of the initial temptations was geared directly to a glamor shot of Messiah: “Jump from the pinnacle of the Temple so angels will catch You up! It will be a great show!” (From then on, all Messianic followers would be lining to wait in the hot sun for their turn at the “Pinnacle Jump at Kingdom World.”) Jesus didn’t do glamor. Jesus fulfilled purpose. He knew that glamor always distracts from the reality of spirit by appending it with other spiritual influences.

Consider the phrase, “angel of light” in this way. The adversary casts a glimmer or gleam of shimmering. We could offer this as another way of defining “glamor.”

Glamorizing the Apostolic

We exaggerate in our sales pitches even when exaggeration is the greatest enemy of Truth. In order to sell the point we make in a controversial discussion, we oversell. We set ourselves up for dismissal by glamorizing the apostolic because the idea that there are apostles and prophets is controversial. We begin to present the apostolic as the cure-all, highest peak of glory, mountain top for all really spiritual people, and long line for autographs after the game. We design shoes with the apostle’s name on it as if wearing them will make people as authoritative or anointed. When we exaggerate the point, we miss the point.

I suppose we don’t think telling the truth will “help the cause,” but Truth is always the only road to travel!

Apostles suffer more. Apostles are most likely rejected of the kingdom leadership dynamics. Apostles become the targets of opposition. Apostles give more. Apostle belong less to themselves and those they love most than other leaders.

Apostle wash feet. (Not write the purchase orders for the pans and towels others use to wash feet.) Add some other experiences to the reality: shipwrecked, snake bit, stoned to death, hungry, run out of town, in prisoned, beaten several times, knifed in the back by those you trusted most on a regular basis when they didn’t get from you what they demanded, etc. The butt of jokes, the topic of sneering dismissal on doctrinal grounds, the most misunderstood (who can understand who hasn’t walk the path?).

To add the “Wouldn’t You Like to Be An Apostle, Too?” jingle to the advertising campaign requires the apostle to stand on the stage and tout the glories of financial gain, jetting about the globe in first class, eating chocolate covered strawberries and drinking the finest bottled spring waters, living on a special diet of super foods designed by christian television’s best nutritional gurus. Then, “Join my downline and you will enjoy the same kingdom benefit package, and if you are a really good boy or girl, Jesus might let you be an apostle too someday.” Now, let’s all sing our jingle, “Be Apostle; Be Apostle, Wouldn’t You Like to Be Apostle, too?” Lower voice: “Be apostle…be apostle…be apostle.” OK, big high five for Jesus!

We could spend a few paragraphs describing the golden crowns and funny hats, elongated bishopric rods and flowing gowns as some stare into the mirror on the wall….

Glamorizing Aids the Adversary

Apostles are hardworking construction engineers. Accumulating materials for building isn’t construction. Warehousing this accumulating of building materials so they can be spit polished and gold plated so they are more worthy of the Lord’s work isn’t construction either. After several years of apostolic glamor, we have bigger barns but empty fields. We have glamorized the office without building the building chief architects are asked to construct.

In order to be apostolic, we have to get the subcontractors building something on the foundations. One would think we would have some superstructure in place by now that would show the actual job description in the real world. (We do have some, but the point stand that we have much less than we should.)

Here’s how the adversary partners with glamorized ministry: once the bricks arrive, accumulated by glamorized leadership techniques, they all wish to be builders instead of bricks. Somebody has to be a living stone! We can’t build with accumulated materials if the accumulation produced false entitlement, equality, and expectations.

When the bricks show up on site with false entitlement, they arrive with demands that answer to the exaggerated sales job that got them there. When the bricks show up on site with false equality, they start measuring themselves by themselves and begin to see other bricks as competition for their places in the building. When the bricks show up on site with false expectations, they demand to be the headstone or have a star embedded in them and become the very entrance of the house.

Glamorizing kingdom ministry produces a people who all want to be in charge of the building instead of realizing the revelation of their places in the walls. They will hang around for a while waiting for their moment of spotlight performance so they can finally show their stuff on stage, but if that doesn’t produce fame and fortune, they will be on the next heavy truck out of town to another construction site where their potentials will finally be appreciated. After glamorizing ministry, people come to the conclusion that it is the highest place, the place of which their amazingness can be realized.

As if Jesus never said the exact opposite with His lifestyle and ministry, principles and protocols, and kingdom culture behavior. Jesus never oversold. Jesus never exaggerated. Jesus shunned glamor. Jesus asks, “Will you also go away?” but He never said, “Well, I meant that figuratively; you all know that you will be in the high life with Me.” (Wink.)

Shatter the Glamor Mirror!

There are some shoes worth more than other shoes. Then, there are some shoes that are a thousand bucks for no other reason than the maker produces only a few of them so glamorized people know someone else isn’t going to show up at the party with the same pair. You aren’t buying comfort, quality, or longevity of use. You are buying glamor at a glamorous price. Are you really getting a better diamond if “he went to Jared’s?” Or, is the sell job about glamorizing the source more than the result?

The gleam has been cast upon you! Shatter it off your soul! Stop looking in the spiritual mirror to measure your success with the glamorized histories of previous heroes. They are dead! They should tell you that it will cost you dearly. They should tell you how lonely fame really is. They should tell you why only grace kept them from the same end as Marilyn Monroe and Michael Jackson. They should tell you why an authentic apostle is more beautiful when the lights are turned off, they look too old for glamor shots, when they write their best book while exiled on a rocky island scarred by the boiling oil and pained by prison posture.

Read the real story and you will see that the testing trials of the super stars would stop the heart of most people unprepared for the reality of that level of ministry. The glamorized ones end up in the ditches. The glamorized ones end up with bigger mirrors, trying to keep the show going when the allusions no longer interest the crowds.

When you glamorize ministry, you must increase the glam to maintain it. You gotta drop more balloons from the ceiling, raise more dead people next year, fill a bigger stadium, contract a bigger band or more famous performers. Your anointing has to be throw more bodies to the walls. Glamor is a dead end. Get it off your soul!

When you get to the place where you can preach without your wardrobe, you are starting to shed the dead skin cells of glamor. When you preach your heart out only to understand the conference crowd is glad you are finished so the big boys can finally get to the pulpit, the ones they bought the tickets to see and hear, you are about to encounter your true understanding of ministry. When you realize that God wanted you to do something with no thought whatsoever about your personal fame, you will know that you have more of the mind of Christ. When you realize that God called you to be broken bread and poured out wine for an eternal purpose, you will stop trying to redesign yourself in a way that gets you more Facebook friends,so to speak.

Glamorized Ministry

Glamour, from as early as 1720 [Scottish], “magic, enchantment” a form of sorcery that projects spiritual influence upon the mind and perceptions, “to cast the glamor.” In English we find grammar in medieval applications to “any sort of scholarship, especially occult learning.” This from c. 1500 in English but common in Medieval Latin to describe spiritual influence in the study of mystery or hidden knowledge or knowledge of hidden things. Particularly in the writings of Sir Walter Scott (1771-1832). Later, the sense of “magical beauty, alluring charm,” first recorded 1840. As that quality of alluring influence and attractiveness that came to be especially associated with Hollywood, high-fashion, celebrity, etc., by 1939.

(See also Jamieson’s 1825 supplement to his “Etymological Dictionary of the Scottish Language” has glamour-gift “the power of enchantment; metaph. applied to female fascination.” Jamieson’s original edition (1808) looked to Old Norse for the source of the word. Zoëga’s Old Icelandic dictionary has glám-sýni “illusion,” probably from the same root as gleam.)

Thus matured into an art form by modern media to create escapism as a way of characterizing reality in exaggerations for the purpose of entertainment but also with the aim to redefine reality through the attractiveness of this alternate worldview, thus giving meaning to reality from other sources.

Entering into christianism in the latter half of the 1900’s when the use of tools similar to Hollywood called some into a sense of showmanship, especially those with miracle working power in the kingdom who fell into the use of legitimate kingdom authority and power for alluring influence beyond the definition and design of their callings and assignments, building a false attractiveness to ministry and ministry personality upon the foundations of legitimate kingdom leadership.

Glamorizing Kingdom Leadership

This trap is in reach of all kingdom leaders, but the temptation tested those most who become well-known, especially in some novel way. They succumb to the altered state of fascination with their fame, building air castles of pride and delusion, some to the extreme, many to the point of distraction, still many others simply adding into the legitimate ministry of personal calling a personality distinction unworthy of a servant’s heart and role.

In short, there is nothing glamorous about ministry. Nothing. Start here. Proceed forward. Ministry must be real people in real time or we diminish the role of Holy Spirit in the ministry by creating an allusion about those who operate in His power.

We are repeating some tragic mistakes in our efforts to accumulate believers, build downlines, and construction ministry support foundations. We are glamourizing worship, prayer, preaching, and spiritual disciplines, especially with the young, to build perceptions that attract them to false entitlement, equality, and expectations.

I heard one leader say to a worship leader in a foreign country: “Come to our base in America, and we’ll make you the next _______.” Recruitment at this level of hype is wrong! That is building on glamourized fantasy, influencing people to participate in your downline with the work of imagination void of revelation, with little thought at all to the only real issue for kingdom: the will of the Father.

If God wants someone some place with some ministry, He assigns them. He doesn’t lure them to that place of ascended fascination with fame, the stage spotlight of “this is as good as it gets” and you can get it too. Such a sell job demeans Holy Spirit as our Leader, and insults Jesus as King of His kingdom.

To what extent do we use this worldly effort to encourage delusions in people? Do we allow it to remain in place with a shrug as if presenting the subtle hint or more obvious oversold impression that what they see on the stage is what they can have too if only they join in the mini-movement? Do we use the very successes that bring glory to God in exaggerated ways that add allure and glamor to the equation, allowing hundreds, even thousands, of people to assume that all they need do is get to where the show is and they too can enjoy that carefree good life of personal fulfillment, giving no thought to the actual calling of God upon people’s lives?

If we allow that impression to remain, without correction, even when we do not design our sets and ministry shows to create it, we do err exceedingly in that we assist the enemy’s number one method of destiny destruction: the “anything but that” method. We feed the lie that “if only” I could be where my kingdom idol is, I will become a kingdom rock star too. We celebrate with ambitious high-fives when more people sign up for our accumulations as if everyone using our lingo and subcultural dialect, enter our chambers of subcultural activities with well-developed subcultural behaviors is success in the kingdom. We cannot measure success in the same way Disney measures park attendance and company profits. We can accumulate without fulfilling assignment.

Glamorizing ministry leadership involves the practice of grooming superstars from the thousands that don’t do it, to leave the impression that everyone can be just like the superstar if they only immerse themselves more deeply in the subculture or ape the personality traits and spiritual disciplines of the superstar. We lie in this way as well as hell itself whether we intend to or not. It is simply not true; and if it were true, it would be contrary to kingdom principles and protocols.

Jesus Sans Glamor

No matter how many painting you’ve seen of Jesus as a child or grown man, He didn’t have a halo around His head. That can either refer to overshadowing Glory on His life or to the illusion of unreal mystical glamor. Often it is the latter as people attributed to Him what is absent from His life and ministry.

We may misread the meaning of Jesus with respect to lifestyle and ministry. We may misread His finished work and eternal provision dramatically. We may run into a line of thinking that basically says, “Jesus suffered so I won’t. Jesus was poor so I can be rich. Jesus avoided fame because He wanted me to be famous. Jesus lived simply so I can wear the best newest fashions. Jesus was rejected so I can be relevant.” See how we move from exaggeration to exaggeration, without saying a word, by presenting the idea that ‘those who join with us reach these levels of personal potential?’

Potential never enters the picture of kingdom purpose.

Jesus gave no thought to personal potential, and He established that principle and protocol in His kingdom. Doing great things means so little to Him that He ignores it, focused completely upon doing the will of the Father who is in Heaven. Do you realize that is the very opposite of glamorized ministry leadership?

The only kingdom answer to the “who I want to be when I grow up” question is: “doing the will of My Father who is in heaven.” Potential is the devil’s tool for the “anything but that” method. Purpose is God’s design and definition for destiny.

Jesus shunned glamor. One of the initial temptations was geared directly to a glamor shot of Messiah: “Jump from the pinnacle of the Temple so angels will catch You up! It will be a great show!” (From then on, all Messianic followers would be lining to wait in the hot sun for their turn at the “Pinnacle Jump at Kingdom World.”) Jesus didn’t do glamor. Jesus fulfilled purpose. He knew that glamor always distracts from the reality of spirit by appending it with other spiritual influences.

Consider the phrase, “angel of light” in this way. The adversary casts a glimmer or gleam of shimmering. We could offer this as another way of defining “glamor.”

Glamorizing the Apostolic

We exaggerate in our sales pitches even when exaggeration is the greatest enemy of Truth. In order to sell the point we make in a controversial discussion, we oversell. We set ourselves up for dismissal by glamorizing the apostolic because the idea that there are apostles and prophets is controversial. We begin to present the apostolic as the cure-all, highest peak of glory, mountain top for all really spiritual people, and long line for autographs after the game. We design shoes with the apostle’s name on it as if wearing them will make people as authoritative or anointed. When we exaggerate the point, we miss the point.

I suppose we don’t think telling the truth will “help the cause,” but Truth is always the only road to travel!

Apostles suffer more. Apostles are most likely rejected of the kingdom leadership dynamics. Apostles become the targets of opposition. Apostles give more. Apostle belong less to themselves and those they love most than other leaders.

Apostle wash feet. (Not write the purchase orders for the pans and towels others use to wash feet.) Add some other experiences to the reality: shipwrecked, snake bit, stoned to death, hungry, run out of town, in prisoned, beaten several times, knifed in the back by those you trusted most on a regular basis when they didn’t get from you what they demanded, etc. The butt of jokes, the topic of sneering dismissal on doctrinal grounds, the most misunderstood (who can understand who hasn’t walk the path?).

To add the “Wouldn’t You Like to Be An Apostle, Too?” jingle to the advertising campaign requires the apostle to stand on the stage and tout the glories of financial gain, jetting about the globe in first class, eating chocolate covered strawberries and drinking the finest bottled spring waters, living on a special diet of super foods designed by christian television’s best nutritional gurus. Then, “Join my downline and you will enjoy the same kingdom benefit package, and if you are a really good boy or girl, Jesus might let you be an apostle too someday.” Now, let’s all sing our jingle, “Be Apostle; Be Apostle, Wouldn’t You Like to Be Apostle, too?” Lower voice: “Be apostle…be apostle…be apostle.” OK, big high five for Jesus!

We could spend a few paragraphs describing the golden crowns and funny hats, elongated bishopric rods and flowing gowns as some stare into the mirror on the wall….

Glamorizing Aids the Adversary

Apostles are hardworking construction engineers. Accumulating materials for building isn’t construction. Warehousing this accumulating of building materials so they can be spit polished and gold plated so they are more worthy of the Lord’s work isn’t construction either. After several years of apostolic glamor, we have bigger barns but empty fields. We have glamorized the office without building the building chief architects are asked to construct.

In order to be apostolic, we have to get the subcontractors building something on the foundations. One would think we would have some superstructure in place by now that would show the actual job description in the real world. (We do have some, but the point stand that we have much less than we should.)

Here’s how the adversary partners with glamorized ministry: once the bricks arrive, accumulated by glamorized leadership techniques, they all wish to be builders instead of bricks. Somebody has to be a living stone! We can’t build with accumulated materials if the accumulation produced false entitlement, equality, and expectations.

When the bricks show up on site with false entitlement, they arrive with demands that answer to the exaggerated sales job that got them there. When the bricks show up on site with false equality, they start measuring themselves by themselves and begin to see other bricks as competition for their places in the building. When the bricks show up on site with false expectations, they demand to be the headstone or have a star embedded in them and become the very entrance of the house.

Glamorizing kingdom ministry produces a people who all want to be in charge of the building instead of realizing the revelation of their places in the walls. They will hang around for a while waiting for their moment of spotlight performance so they can finally show their stuff on stage, but if that doesn’t produce fame and fortune, they will be on the next heavy truck out of town to another construction site where their potentials will finally be appreciated. After glamorizing ministry, people come to the conclusion that it is the highest place, the place of which their amazingness can be realized.

As if Jesus never said the exact opposite with His lifestyle and ministry, principles and protocols, and kingdom culture behavior. Jesus never oversold. Jesus never exaggerated. Jesus shunned glamor. Jesus asks, “Will you also go away?” but He never said, “Well, I meant that figuratively; you all know that you will be in the high life with Me.” (Wink.)

Shatter the Glamor Mirror!

There are some shoes worth more than other shoes. Then, there are some shoes that are a thousand bucks for no other reason than the maker produces only a few of them so glamorized people know someone else isn’t going to show up at the party with the same pair. You aren’t buying comfort, quality, or longevity of use. You are buying glamor at a glamorous price. Are you really getting a better diamond if “he went to Jared’s?” Or, is the sell job about glamorizing the source more than the result?

The gleam has been cast upon you! Shatter it off your soul! Stop looking in the spiritual mirror to measure your success with the glamorized histories of previous heroes. They are dead! They should tell you that it will cost you dearly. They should tell you how lonely fame really is. They should tell you why only grace kept them from the same end as Marilyn Monroe and Michael Jackson. They should tell you why an authentic apostle is more beautiful when the lights are turned off, they look too old for glamor shots, when they write their best book while exiled on a rocky island scarred by the boiling oil and pained by prison posture.

Read the real story and you will see that the testing trials of the super stars would stop the heart of most people unprepared for the reality of that level of ministry. The glamorized ones end up in the ditches. The glamorized ones end up with bigger mirrors, trying to keep the show going when the allusions no longer interest the crowds.

When you glamorize ministry, you must increase the glam to maintain it. You gotta drop more balloons from the ceiling, raise more dead people next year, fill a bigger stadium, contract a bigger band or more famous performers. Your anointing has to be throw more bodies to the walls. Glamor is a dead end. Get it off your soul!

When you get to the place where you can preach without your wardrobe, you are starting to shed the dead skin cells of glamor. When you preach your heart out only to understand the conference crowd is glad you are finished so the big boys can finally get to the pulpit, the ones they bought the tickets to see and hear, you are about to encounter your true understanding of ministry. When you realize that God wanted you to do something with no thought whatsoever about your personal fame, you will know that you have more of the mind of Christ. When you realize that God called you to be broken bread and poured out wine for an eternal purpose, you will stop trying to redesign yourself in a way that gets you more Facebook friends,so to speak.