“The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Me, because the Lord has anointed Me to preach good tidings to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound; to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn, to console those who mourn in Zion, to give them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they may be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified. And they shall rebuild the old ruins, they shall raise up the former desolations, and they shall repair the ruined cities, the desolations of many generations. Strangers shall stand and feed your flocks, and the sons of the foreigner shall be your plowmen and your vinedressers. But you shall be named the priests of the Lord, they shall call you the servants of our God. You shall eat the riches of the Gentiles, and in their glory you shall boast. Instead of your shame you shall have double honor, and instead of confusion they shall rejoice in their portion. Therefore in their land they shall possess double; everlasting joy shall be theirs. (Isaiah 61:1-7)
What a power-packed passage of Scripture and certainly one of my favourites! I was watching TBN a while back (I know, I know…) and heard Bishop Clarence McClendon briefly teaching on this (I know, I know!) but he said something so true!
“We have to know what we are anointed for!”
Well said, Bishop, well said. But I would go one step further–we need to know what the anointing is for! So with that in mind, let’s break down each step of this passage because we know that God does all things decently and in order (I Corinthians 14:40).
1) STEP 1: To Introduce the Gospel of the Kingdom a.k.a the Gospel of Prosperity
“To preach good tidings to the poor…” (v. 1)
I can just hear all the hater, hecklers, and those genuinely confused already! But before you cast stones and label me as a “prosperity preacher” (and I’d much rather be a “prosperity preacher” than a “poverty preacher” anyday!), just hear me out.
Take it back to the Garden. Man was cursed through his sin and, among other things, forfeited the prosperity that he lived in before. And this was the specific curse (punishment) God pronounced on humanity:
“Cursed is the ground for your sake; in toil you shall eat of it all the days of your life. Both thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you, and you shall eat the herb of the field. In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread till you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; for dust you are, and to dust you shall return.” (Genesis 3:17-19 emphasis mine)
“Thorns and thistles” are indicative of the curse that God placed on man because of his sin. “But I know a man named Jesus…!!” He came to earth and broke the curse. God allows nothing without a purpose: the cross, the blood, and the crown of thorns all had a distinct purpose in the redemption of the life and soul of man.
“And they stripped Him and put a scarlet (or purple) robe on Him. When they had twisted a crown of thorns, they put it on His head, and a reed in His right hand. And they bowed the knee before Him and mocked Him, saying, ‘Hail, King of the Jews!’” (Matthew 27:28, 29 emphasis mine)
When these senseless soldiers mocked our Christ with this crown of thorns, they had no idea that they were not only crucifying Him for our soul’s salvation, bruising Him for our iniquities, shedding His blood for the remission of our sins and healing of our bodies, but they were also indicating that the crown of prosperity had been returned to mankind! We were again, enthroned in our positions as the image of God on earth! The curse of poverty and lack was broken!!
Preaching the Gospel to the poor is more than just “good tidings” of spiritual matters. What cares a man of his soul’s condition if his belly isn’t full?? And I have news for you, this Christ anointing isn’t just for meeting needs–it’s for overflowing, exceedingly-abundantly-above-all-that-we-can-ask-or-think kind of blessings!
“The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” (John 10:10)
In the Garden, 7,000 years ago, we allowed the thief to steal our prosperity from us (among other things), but with the coming of the Gospel, all that was changed. And in case you forgot, it is God–not Satan–Who gives us the power to get wealth (Deuteronomy 8:18).
*I CANNOT take credit for this revelation, for full sermon notes on this specific topic preached by Dr. Renny McLean, feel free to hit me up. But as Cindy Jacobs said, “there’s no copyright on revelation!” lol
2) STEP 2: Healing for Our Emotions
“He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted…” (v. 1)
The second thing God comes to heal is our hearts. Who can receive freely if our hearts are broken and our emotions damaged??
“He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” (Psalm 147:3)
God does care about the state of our hearts. As CeCe Winans so eloquently sang, “He’s concerned about YOU.”
David also said,
“You number my wanderings; put my tears into Your bottle; are they not in Your book?” (Psalm 56:8).
I believe that the crown of thorns He wore was not just for our financial prosperity, but also for our emotional prosperity. And we know this because the Word says:
“Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers.” (III John 1:2)
3) STEP 3: Freedom from Strongholds (Captivity)
“To proclaim liberty to the captives…” (v. 1)
As I encountered this passage, I wondered what kind of captivity this proclamation was freeing people from and immediately the word “strongholds” flashed in my mind.
If a physical stronghold is a castle-fortress built for keeping certain people and others out, then a mental stronghold is the same. A stronghold, good or bad, is meant to keep “safe” a certain thought pattern to “hold” you in that place. If the Word of God is your stronghold, then awesome!! You need no proclamation of liberty for you have already received yours. But if the lies of Satan, or even your own thoughts that do not align with God’s Word are your stronghold, then some definite liberty is needed. A couple thoughts on this.
My Bible says, “where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty” (II Corinthians 3:17), so my first question would be, do you have the Spirit of the Lord in your life, and is it your stronghold? Is He the One guiding you into all truth (John 16:13)? Because if He’s not, then we’ll just cast down or out any other spirit–even your own–that’s feeding you lies and replace it with God’s Spirit Who will never lead you astray.
Second, do you have the mind of Christ? The Apostle Paul said we (Christians) have the mind of Christ (I Corinthians 2:16), yet it’s possible to not put it on, or apply it to our everyday life as secularism teaches us is so easy to do.
Third, do you run all your thoughts through the filter of the Word of God? First Lady LaVette Gibson said on an episode of Preachers of LA (do NOT judge me!):
“There’s your private opinion, and then there’s the Word of God. Once you have the Word, you’re on solid ground.”
Say what you want about the show, but she was spot-on with that!! As humans we’re bound to have our own opinions and experiences that supposedly back up those opinions. We develop concepts and entire schools of thought around them, but if they don’t align with the Word of God, then there’ worthless.
“For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, and being ready to punish all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled.” (II Corinthians 10:4-6)
The Apostle Paul understood that we all need liberty from these “strongholds” and taught us how to avoid them in the first place–which also happens to be the cure. Use this process:
Thought is presented to you.
Parallel it to the Word of God. What does it say about your thought??
If the thought aligns with the Word, great! Keep it!
If it doesn’t, plead the blood of Jesus, cast it down, and keep it moving. (If there is a specific Scripture combating this ungodly thought, use it as a declaration/decree against the ungodly thought.)
Do NOT pick it back up!
Make the Word of God your belief system and your mind will truly be free!
Stay tuned for Part II…!