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					                                           The City, The River=
                                         Pastor Thom Southwood


       You can come into the house of the Lord and you can get teaching, or you can get good
songs, or you can get fellowship, social time, or we can set all of those things aside and we can get
some more of God.
That’s what I come here for every Sunday. Well, two weeks ago, I was talking with my good friend
David Macarthy and he was talking to me about Jerusalem. If you were here last week you know that
I spoke on Jerusalem, city of God. I want to review that just a little bit this morning so that you’ll know
where I’m going this morning. David was talking, I think it was Psalm 46 that you brought up and it
talks about, I was glad when you said, “Lord let’s go up to the house of the Lord let’s go up to
Jerusalem, to the city of God, to the house of the Lord.” and we discussed that for some time. Then
Doug Reynolds out of no where gave me this huge, we have got to get it cleaned up yet, but it’s
probably this by about this Israeli flag it’s gorgeous. He got it at a garage sale, phones me from a
garage sale and goes, “Do you want a big Israeli flag?” I said, “You bet ya!” So were going to get her
cleaned up a bit and hang her in the new place last week I just picked up the phone and I happened
to phone David and we were talking and David , what was that scripture that the Lord was giving you
Dave? Now David pointed out to me that most cities that are built up have a water way that goes
through it. If you think about it, try and think of a city you know that doesn’t have a river or a water
way, or is on the ocean any where that you can think of. And it just doesn’t exist. There my be some
but I can’t think of any of the top of my head but David pointed out that there is one and that is
Jerusalem. It is a city that does not have a water way. Now in the Old Testament I believe that King
David was attempting to get an aqueduct thing happening to get some water diverted but Jerusalem
in the natural does not have a river running through it and yet this scripture says that there is a river
which makes glad the city of God. That is where I want to go this morning, last week we talked about
the city of God what it is, the new Jerusalem and I showed you, which was to my surprise too, I
showed you from Revelation I think it is in Revelation 21 that in the new Jerusalem, you know that we
are all taught that we are the temple of the Holy Ghost that we’re being built into a spiritual temple
and we sort of get our minds set that that God’s going to build this house and he is going to inhabit
this house, so to speak. But you get into Revelation 21 and it says in the new Jerusalem in the new
city of God it says that there is no temple it says because Christ and God the father have become the
temple in the midst of that city. Went on to talk to you about the bride of Christ is, again that’s in
Revelations I can’t remember exactly where it is it’s in probably Revelation 20 some where in and
around there, and the bride of Christ, which is the church, is referred to as the city of God coming
down out of the heavens, adorned, dressed as a bride and I have heard some people say well that
proves that the church is not the bride of Christ but Paul said very clearly that, “I have espoused to
one husband that husband is Jesus Christ.” And when the spirit and the bride say, “Come.” it’s not
stones and bricks and all those types of things that are crying out, although Julie pointed out to me
that they can cry out, if we don’t do our job they will cry out, right? They will cry out but that Christ is
not coming back for a physical city He is coming back for a bride without spot, without wrinkle, He is
coming back for a people that He can join with, that He can have holy union with that the mystery of
God, which is exampled in husband a wife relationship in physical union that is an example, Paul said
that is a prophetic example of what’s going to happen Christ and the church coming together. That is
the place where they come together where the city surrounds God the father and God the son. But in
the natural Jerusalem does not have a water way and yet this scripture says that there is a river
which makes glad the city of God. So obviously this city of God that we are talking about is not the
aqueduct that David built, although I’m sure they would have been pleased with that, but this river that
is being built which is a spiritual river which has to do again with you and I. What I want to look at this
morning is that river, just for purposes of reference this morning Bruno we will just title this one, this
tape The City, The River those two things. Let’s pray, everybody bow your heads and let’s just pray.
Lord we thank you that there is a river of blessings flowing from you. Lord we want to be part of the
river that flows through and to and into and out of the city of God. We ask this morning that your river
would flow in this place we thank you for you’re prophetic flow in this place this morning we thank you
for you’re words of encouragement we thank you for the scriptures that were read Lord we thank you
that through those scriptures we learn how to consecrate ourselves to you. I ask Lord that you would
deepen our understanding of our relationship with you today by these words being spoken here and
you would make us hearers of the word and not doers in Jesus name I pray Amen. So if we are going
to look at the river I think the first place the best place to start is let’s go right back to the Old
Testament let’s go right back to Genesis let’s go right back to the first river that gets mentioned in the
Bible and have a look there because and when I went back there and started to dig into it man did I
find a whole bunch of stuff. David’s smiling cause he has probably been there already and looked at
it. I think we have a guest speaker as we go on. Genesis 2:8 says, “Now the Lord God had planted a
garden in the east in Eden and there He put the man He had formed and the Lord God made all
kinds of trees grow out of the ground trees that were pleasing to the eye and good for food. In the
middle of the garden there was the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil a river
watering the garden flowed [listen to this] from Eden and from there it divided.” How many people are
aware that Eden was not just a garden it was a region, Eden was a region that flowed and this river
flowed from Eden and into the garden. There was the garden of Eden where He had planted man but
Eden was a region. “A river watering the garden flowed from Eden and from there it divided it. It had
four head streams[and these head streams are what I want to look at this morning] the name of the
first is Bishoned it winds through the entire land of Haval where there is gold. The Gold of that land is
good it’s arowmatic resen and onex are also there. The name of the second river is Gehone and it
winds through the entire land of Cush. The name of the third river is Tigress and it runs along the east
side of Asure and the fourth river is Eurphradies. The Lord God took the man and put him in the
garden of Eden to work it and take care of it and the Lord God commanded the man there,[You are
free to eat from any tree of the garden but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good
and evil].” So the first river that is ever mentioned is a river that fed and brought life to brought liquid
sustenance to the garden of Eden and then separated out into these four head streams was, it had
four distinct flavors to it these four heads streams as I’ve looked into this and one of the things that
has happened to me for the last I’d say eight years since the river stared to flow in ninety four since
Gods out pouring was we’d been introduced to a number of different ministries and I want to show
you this morning how God is bringing these ministries together as streams to flow as one river to
bring what He has for His people. Now how many people here know what the word river means? It’s
interesting, we have been talking about river churches, river meetings, the river is here, the river is
flowing, let the river flow roll river roll, roll’en on the river, whatever for the last eight years how many
people know what the word river means. Do you know what the word river means? The figurative
meaning, and this is extremely powerful the figurative meaning it’s the Hebrew word nahar and the
figurative meaning for this word is of all things, and as I get into this you’re going to think that I’m
making some of this up but it’s true, I checked it out it is in the concorence it is in the bible, the
figurative meaning is; prosperity. That is why cities are built by rivers cause life comes from that.
Prosperity flows down the river flows through the city flows to the city. It also means, river means, to
flow together, to shimmer, to sparkle, to radiate all of those things but manly it means to flow together
but manly the figurative meaning of it is prosperity. I want to look at this first head stream that was left
actually before I do that just let me give you some more insight into the prosperity thing Genesis 41:1
talks about you don’t have to turn there but it talks about the seven fat cows coming up out of the river
this is Pharaoh’s dream that he told to Joseph and there is the seven fat years and the seven lean
years and they came up out of the place of prosperity they came up out of the river the river Nile was
the prosperity for the people of Egypt because it did two things they fished it they fed from it but it also
did the big high rise every time it flooded it’s banks it left silt all over the low lands and that’s what
they farmed on and they had rich farm land because of that and it brought prosperity for them. It’s
also interesting to note in Job 40:23, how many people know or have heard of in prophetic circles or
intercessory circles you hear the term Leviathan they have heard of the spirit leviathan now leviathan
is referred to in the Old Testament as sort of a crocadilleoish huge unpenitraible beast that lurks in
the river but we have come to understand that it is also simply another word for the enemy or for
Satan an a lot of people have learned an awful lot about which we call spiritual warfare in the last
many years. It says in Job 40:23 that leviathan can swallow up the river he opens wide his mouth and
attempts to swallow up the river now it’s talking about just one river there he is talking about the
Jordan so just one river or one stream by its self he can attempt to open up his mouth and swallow
that up he is no afraid of that, so just in relation to prosperity. One of the main things leviathan comes
against in any community where that spirit seems to be happening you’re going to see a real coming
against of prosperity, people you’re going to see a lot of poverty you’re going to see a lot of lack a lot
of frustration a lot of depression and stress and pressure financial from those things. We are called to
break that off. So this first stream is the stream Kushon and this word it’s amazing this word means to
increase it means to spread out to the left and that right it literally means to grow fat and when you
say grow fat in Old Testament Hebrew terms what your talking about is their talking about Abraham
growing fat their talking about wealth, their talking about wealth Abraham grew fat. It’s interesting to
note that the Kushon flowed through the land of Havalah. And what was there? Gold. It says the gold
there was aromatic and it was …….
SIDE TWO
You can imagine a river flowing through that land if there was that kind of gold there it would be
picking it up and moving it along and moving it down and one of the things that God has brought to
his people in the last eight years and we have had a real taste of this over the last week is the
ministry or the idea that God does not want his people to be poor the church some how has got this
deistic idea into their heads that if you are blessed you are some how sinning that material things are
some how evil and that is not a Christian doctrine and in fact it is something that ministers a spirit of
poverty to the church and keeps churches in tiny little spots with tiny little congregations never able to
afford to reach out and really do the things that God has called them to do it keeps us individually
doing that. The Bible says that Gods plan is to give us exceedingly abundantly more above what we
could hope or ask for and it is to give us this over flow so that in all times in all occasions, what? So
that we can be generous. Now I know that in the eighty’s this particular truth was extremely distorted
and it was misuse to the point where people have just run away from it. You mention that word
prosperity and people will just run in the other direction but the fact is that if somebody gets up and
misuses something that God has given us it does not mean that were never ever suppose to pick that
up again. It means that our character is suppose to be different than that what I like about what Klive
Pick brings to us is that he teaches a corporate prosperity he teaches that as we prosper the heavens
above us are opened the Malichi 4:6 promise that if we will tithe if we will bring in the whole tithe that
God will open the heaven and under those open heavens we will see healing and deliverance and
salvation and all of those things come about and this first stream I think God has you know you mite
say well what had the laughter have to do or the shaking or what did any of these have to do with
prosperity but you know what in order to feel like you’re even worthy because a lot of people don’t
prosper because they don’t feel like they’re worthy to prosper they feel like Joe Blow over there
disserves it or this person over there disserves it but I don’t really disserve that and what God has
done is He has come in and He has changed our hearts about ourselves not a self based gospel
where we are looking at ourselves and going , “Hey I’m so grand.” And all of this cause He’s got an
idea He’s got a purpose He’s got this thing that He wants to flow together that’s called the river in all
of this. What He’s done is He’s touched people’s hearts and set them free to the point where God
says, “You know what I want you to prosper.” And you just in humility say, “Yes ok I’ll do that in the
name of the Lord Jesus Christ.” Cause what I want to be is a conduit that provides for the poor that
provides for ministries to get done that provides for children to be educated in Christ. Those types of
things. And so as He’s touched us with that He’s brought about also this prosperity teaching which is
a much more balanced thing it’s not about giving to get it’s not about the bless me club it’s about
receiving from the Lord and activating and acting on principals that He’s set out that will allow us as
the people of God to prosper. The same way the children of Abraham, the physical children of
Abraham prospered. God wants Christians to be known through out the world, “You know what those
Christians they’re always prospering, especially in North America.” Maybe this message isn’t as
important to some of the other countries in the world but you know what I know that South America is
really standing up and taking notice in these small villages where prosperity is beginning to come like
mad because people have shut down the bars they’ve shut down the prisons and they’ve got
churches in there place. So this first stream shon running through havallel where the gold is and we
shouldn’t be surprise that in the last few years how many people have ever been in a meeting where
gold dust has kinda shown up either on peoples clothes or on hands and things like that, we just
simply shouldn’t be surprised at that. When the Bible says that the streets of heaven are paved with
transparent gold that gold is crystalline it is so thin that you can see through it, yes there is a figurative
meaning to that but there is also a physical end to that. We’re not talking about God sending us home
to live in great big life styles of the rich and famous mansions because what we are really talking
about is being close to Him but that gold is a real thing it was very real in the garden of Eden and He
has shown us again that it is something that He wants to bless his the people of God with. Alright let’s
move on. Stream number two. Don’t forget folks all of these streams come together to make what we
call the river. Stream number two is called gehon and it means to break forth to bud and gehon flows
through and this is really interesting, the land of cush. The land of cush means the black land and it is
not referring to soil or the trees or the hills it’s talking about the people that live there, it’s talking about
messipotamia it’s talking about where the Africans are and it’s interesting to me that one of the other
streams that I think is so important in the river of God the other thing that has been brought to us is
the healing ministry. For us the healing ministry has come through our black friends Victor and
Charles and reached out and touched Bob Bresse so that Bob goes around the world now holding
healing meetings where people it’s not a lot of fan fare to it not a lot of hupala to it when Bob’s out
there doing it but people get healed at every meeting. You know Charles and those guys like the last
time they were in Denmark and where they turned the whole country upside down, three to four
hundred a day there was what six to seven thousand. They put together about five hundred response
cards for the first week of meetings that they did last time they were in Denmark and they had six
thousand people give their lives to Lord in that week, so much so that the pastor shut down every
program that had that was going on in the church just to get people mobilize to handle this influx. Now
then, here is the thing folks, if you start to getting those numbers of people saved you better be
walking in some type of prosperity if you’re going to house and feed and spiritually cloth all of these
people you will have them going in one door and out the back door cause you will not be able to
follow up on them you will not be able to have the programs necessary to teach them because you
know what we’re not just after getting people saved what we want is to turn people into disciples we
are called to disciple the nations and we have to bring them to the point where you take irreligious
people And you turn them into fully devoted followers of Jesus Christ that’s what brings true revival
and awakening it just perpetuates itself. Right budding forth. You put a seed in the ground you don’t
get a seed back what you get is a tree that has leaves and fruit on it when it buds and you get oddles
and oodles of seeds it’s multiplication as Olive Pick talks about it, kicks into place and if you have the
bishon the prosperity of God in place with the people of God using as they should and you have the
gehon which is the healing of God the miracles the signs and wonders of God beginning to take place
then you have a church that is firing on two cylinders and that’s starting to get the worlds attention.
Let’s look at the third one, also you know as far as breaking forth is concerned just with gehon you
know there is a scripture that says that your healing will break forth speedily. Can I just back up just
very, very briefly, okay bear with me here I missed something that I think is very, very important. On
the first stream bishon part of what that means, what that river means or that stream meant is to
travail and so there is the prosperity end of it but it means to travail. A very, very big part of what God
has brought us into a very big part of that first stream and it’s weird that prosperity and that this
stream of travailing would go side by side but intercession, spiritual warfare all of those things there
very much a part of Dutch Sheets ministry, Cindy Jacobs, Alister Pietry all of these types of people
that are out there you know there is every book from the book Dutch Sheets book on intercession to
George Ottus on Informed Intercession Alister Petry what is that book that he has, wonderful book
what is it called, heavens can’t remember heaven’s gates or something like that excellent, excellent
books that’s a very big part of that first stream and believe it or not those two things go hand in hand
because as we begin to clear out the land of all of the things that are offensive to God through what?
Through repentance identificational repentance and through simple praise for what He has done and
is doing then there is room for God’s people to begin to prosper. Yes Bruno, good seed grows on
good ground exactly you’ve got to have good ground through intercession in order for seed to grow
up. Back to, we looked at gehon which is the healing ministry. Let’s look at the third one here which is
the tigress or the hiditcal there’s two words there for it and this is really interesting this is starting to
get interesting to me, it means rapid but it also means to rapidly set things right. Now we’ve been
introduced to a couple of ministries in the last few years that are totally about rapidly setting things
right in this church individually we have come across and the whole body of Christ has been
introduced this to, maybe you’ve heard it in the form of freedom in Christ or maybe you’ve heard
wholeness in Christ but in this particular church we are using a combination maybe you’ve heard of
Elisha house ministries but in this particular church we’re using something called Steps to freedom
which is a combination of all those things and the main basis of that ministry is reconciliation.
Reconciling ourselves to God reconciling ourselves to our parents, reconciling ourselves to siblings,
reconciling ourselves to our marriage partners our exmarriage partners in the form of forgiveness, in
the form of accountability, in the form of being set free and we’ve seen rapid, rapid change in some
peoples lives as they have been willing to open themselves up and allow God to touch and to bring
this reconciliation this is a very important part of the river. I know that they are using a very similar
thing in Toronto as well and I’m not sure exactly which one it is but they’re using but they have that
one going there. Now then on a national level though this is something that we’ve also been
introduced to Dr. David Mosemdienian’s ministry which is the Watch men it is about nothing more
than setting things right, it’s about reconciliation they have made attempts to reconcile Christians with
the natives, they have made attempts to reconcile the church to the Jewish people and David and
Gordon and Nancy Patterson are in Israel right now they are doing more along those lines but most of
you probably know that last fall I guess it was now they brought the survivors of the St. Lewis to
Ottawa paid for them there was about fifty six survivors left these were people that were on a ship
that went up and down the coast of North America trying to find a place to stay when World War two
broke out there was all Jews on the ship Canada’s official response to that was, “No Jews are to
many Jews in this country”. We turned them away and they all when back and most of them died in
the Nazi concentration camps. God had spoke to David , who is a Egyptian by the way, and said you
know one of the things that holds up a national move of God, God really moving in this country is our
anti-Semitism from the birth of this country. David has been very vigilant and very persistent to see us
do all that we could to set things right and it is a very important part. So we have the first stream
which is prosperity and intercession, we have the second stream which is the healing ministry and we
have the third stream which is a ministry of reconciliation, these three streams. Now we have the
body of Christ firing on three pistons and we are starting to get somewhere. Let’s look at the forth it is
the urphraties and eurphfaties means fruitfulness. Now how many have seen Transformations one
have you seen that tape? If you haven’t seen it you should probably get it a the Christian book room
get a chance to get a hold of there is now Transformations two out but Transformations one it’s
George Ottus junior’s ministry where they have gone around the world chronically on video what
happens when entire communities come together and begin to pray for their community. One of the
amazing things and I cannot remember for the life of me the name of the little village in south America
and it was just full of pagan worship and all kinds of stuff and as the churches began to and it was
this poor, poor little place they were lucky if a few times a month they were able to take some of their
vegetables out of the town to market out of the area and they have gone from that to and they had
just the worst criminal record thing ongoing they have gone from that to now they now have in a town
about twenty six thousand people they now have something like over twenty churches most of those
churches that have been refurbished from being bars and they have been changed into, I don’t think
there is a bar in the entire town left I could be wrong about that the jail there which they had to build a
second one at one point several years ago, the jail has been closed down because they have no
need for it and they now take out in their brand new Mercedes trucks that the farmers are driving and
they have plastered all over these Jesus Saves and Jesus is Lord they now take out what is it like
four times a week they take out these convoys and they showed on the video tape, not a lie, they
showed on the video tape carrots that were here to here that big bunches of carrots not just one or
two but bunches of them and they would show carrots that were as long as a man’s for arm, huge.
Now that’s biblical prosperity when the Israelites went over into that’s biblical fruitfulness when they
went over into the land of inheritance you know they had to bring back the bunches of grapes on a
staff between two guys caring the grapes because they were so big that’s how huge it was and this
ministry is called transformations I went with Chris to the transformations two premier and conference
a few weeks ago and it was absolutely awesome cause what it’s about is empowering the churches
to become fruitful in their labor not just to plug at it on their own and plug at it and plug at it with you
know we got bible study on Monday night we got prayer night on Wednesday night we got kids night
on Thursday night we got youth night on Friday night we got a singles night on Saturday night we got
all this stuff going and for all of that we are seeing about two percent growth a year wooptie do I mean
praise the Lord for that but that is not biblical fruitfulness and what transformations about is the
churches coming together in unity praying for their communities here is the intercession team again
but giving us some real tools through spiritual mapping and through some spiritual warfare to be able
to become fruitful so you’ve got these four rivers these four streams that are flowing the stream that
has to do with prosperity and there is the eddy of intercession in there as well you have got the
stream that has to do with healing something that Charles and Victor and others have brought a lot of
the healing ministries have come up out of Africa. You have, why have they come up out of Africa?
Two reasons people over there have been evangelized like crazy there has been a ton of prayer
going to that place actually there is more than two probably I’d say that the people over there have
learned about tithing

				
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