I can, I will, I must Part II
“Purpose and Vision”
Synopsis of Bible Study 09/10/09
Delivered by Bishop Walker III
The bible says in Proverbs 29:18: 18Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he. You cannot talk about purpose without talking about vision, because purpose gives birth to vision. In other words God has a purpose for your life and what is revealed to you becomes vision. God has a purpose on your life and the moment of revelation or the moment it gets revealed, it becomes vision.
The question is what is vision? `Vision can be defined as having an insight or a revelation of God’s plan and purpose for an individual or nation. So when we have knowledge of God’s plan and purpose for our life, then we can say that we have a vision for our existence. In other words, to have vision means to have an understanding of God’s intentions for creating us. Vision really is saying that we understand why God created us.
There is an idea we must discuss in terms of vision and dreams. We really want to know if our dreams are tied to our visions. What is this all about? We will give you some dreams that are found in the bible as a frame of reference. It is good to know where these dreams and visions are located throughout the bible. We will tell you some things about them as a systematic point of reference.
Abimelech’s dream – Gen 20:3-7
Jacob’s Ladders Dream-Gen 28: 12- 17
Jacob and Laban’s guidance dream – Gen 31: 10 -24. Laban is Jacob’s uncle and so you have this dream given in terms of guidance.
Joseph’s Dream – Gen 37: 5 – 11. God showed Joseph a dream showing that he was going to rule over his brother’s. He made the mistake of sharing that dream with his brothers.
Baker and Butler Dream – Gen 40: 5 – 8. Joseph was the interpreter of those dreams while he was in prison and he explained to one that he was going to die and the other one would be elevated.
Pharaoh’s Dreams – Gen 41. This was the dream that spawned the stock market. Our modern day stock market came out of Pharaoh’s dream, because when he dreamed this dream he called all the magi or magicians to interpret the dream and they couldn’t. He called Joseph and he told them that there would be 7 yrs of famine. He told him to save up and he would have seven years of plenty.
Solomon’s dream – 1 Kings 3: 5- 9. This was Nebuchadnezzar’s dream of the image you have in Daniel 2. Daniel interprets this dream. Daniel also interprets the dream in Daniel 4. .
Daniels dream of the Nebuchadnezzar’s Dream of a tree – Daniel 4
Daniel’s dream of four beasts – Daniel 7.
In the New Testament:
Joseph’s dream – Matt 1:20. This is the dream of Joseph Mary’s husband. This was the dream concerning Joseph’s wife.
Pilate’s wife’s dream -Matt 27:19. This is the dream that the Holy Spirit gave to Pilate’s wife telling Pilate not to mess with the man name Jesus. This was why he was apprehensive to send Jesus to crucifixion.
Abraham’s 2nd call vision – Gen 15
Isaiah’s call – Isaiah 6 – It was a vision. He said I the year King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord high and lifted up. This was vision.
Ezekiel’s call was given in a vision or dream – Ezekiel also gets this vision of the temple judgment in Ezekiel chapter 8 – chapter 10.
Valley of Dry Bones – Ezekiel 37. This was vision.
Ezekiel then get’s another Temple vision – Found in chapters Ezekiel 40-48
Daniels Visions – Daniel had several visions found in chapters Daniel 8-12
Zechariah had several visions – Zech 1 – 6.
The man from Macedonia – Acts 16:9-10 – This was an instance where Paul and Silas are on their 2nd missionary journey headed in one direction and received what is known as the Macedonia Plea. It was men that said come over and help him. They take this detour to go help this man and go preach the word of God in Philippi. The bible declares on the way there, they were taken captive and they were falsely accused and beaten and put into a Roman jail cell and the bible says at midnight they sang praises unto God and the prisoners heard them and the chains and doors were opened. All of this happened because of a dream, a vision.
The Entire Book of Revelation – this entire book is based on a vision an angel of the Lord showed to John.
1. This is a vision statement: Whatever God reveals to us in a dream has a divine plan, not a personal agenda. – You will dream about personal things, but that has nothing to do with God.
2. Whatever God reveals in a dream will always line up with his word. God won’t give you a dream about somebody’s wife for instance. When you have a dream, you need to ask yourself is your dream about divine agenda or a personal agenda and you need to ask if it consistent with God’s word.
7 characteristics of vision
1. Godly vision involves prophetic revelation from the Holy Spirit. Proverbs 29:18: 18Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he. – Your vision is bigger than you. The Holy Spirit is so powerful that when he gives you vision, we must realize that it is bigger than we are.
a. You can’t localize your vision. Sometimes we want to hold on to something like it is ours, but it is not. Vision belongs to God. God implements vision through us to help others. Proverbs 18:1: 1Through desire a man, having separated himself, seeketh and intermeddleth with all wisdom. – Your vision will not make sense to others because God didn’t show it to them, he showed it to you.
b. Revelations between dreams and visions: The day of Pentecost had come and Peter was giving a response to the people saying that they were not drunk. Peter was saying that this was in fact what was prophesied by Joel in the last days. Acts 2:17: 17 ‘In the last days,’ God says, ‘I will pour out my Spirit upon all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy. Your young men will see visions, and your old men will dream dreams. – This scripture lists visions and dreams separately, so it implies that visions and dreams are two separate things. This is how they work together. What we see here is a dream is something an older person sees, but it is unattainable in their lifetime. Whereas a younger person sees a vision, which motivates them to apprehend something that they can make come to pass during their earthly time. People that see vision will one day dream dreams for the next generation. Dreams of the old become visions of the young. Martin Luther King Jr. had a dream, but it was never fulfilled in his lifetime. Barack Obama had a vision, but that vision was birth out of a dream.
c. There is a famous quote concerning dreams from T.E. Lawrence of Arabia: “All men dream; but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find that it was vanity; but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act out their dreams with open eyes, to make it possible.” T.E. Lawrence. We dream with our eyes open, because we make things happen.
2. Godly vision is a basic human need. Without God, you will be like a car that runs out of gas. God gives vision motivated by the word of God. Like gas in a car, the word of God keeps motivating us to aspire to what we see. Happy is he that keeps the laws. The word is what keeps us in between the time of when vision is revealed and the time vision is manifested.
a. The two most important things in your life is the day you were born and the day you realize why you were born. Why is this? It is because we got a word that made us realize why we were here.
3. Vision quickens faith and zeal to take action and perseverance to sustain the action taken. The clearer your vision is to you, the bolder your action will be. Proverbs 28:1: 1 The wicked run away when no one is chasing them, but the godly are as bold as lions.-When God shows you something, you are bold because you have a Godly authority. Show me a zealous person, and I will show you vision. A zealous person is one that is allowing their vision to motivate them. What happens if you get people outside to motivate you, they become cynical and walk away, creating doubt within you.
a. Paul says to Timothy that he spoke God’s prophetic words to him so he could fight the fight of faith.1 Timothy 1:18: 18 Timothy, my son, here are my instructions for you, based on the prophetic words spoken about you earlier. May they help you fight well in the Lord’s battles.
b. Anyone who know what God told them to do, are not timid. They are bold. Daniel 11:32: 32 He will flatter and win over those who have violated the covenant. But the people who know their God will be strong and will resist him.
4. Godly vision can and should be shared with others who desire or need to hear what God is saying to them through you. – Habakkuk 2:2: 2And the LORD answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it. – Writing your vision down communicates to others what you are after, sets boundaries, and creates balances. If you don’t write it down, you have nothing to gauge by and show you that you are off course. People are always pulling at you and it is easy to get off course. What can happen is before you know it; you end up doing other people’s vision and yours ends up left undone. If you write your vision down, you can tell if you are being pulled away. Ex-We have a vision for Mt Zion church. Many people want a lot from Mt Zion, because it is a big church. There are people who even want to buy the membership list for marketing purposes. Mt Zion tells them no, because their agenda does not line up with our vision. We have to stay on course. If you don’t write your vision down, you don’t have a course to chart. Write it your vision down.
a. The late Dr Samuel Proctor, Bishop Walker’s mentor, says when you write your vision; no matter how big, it should be able to be summed up on T-shirt. If you can’t put it on a T-shirt, it should be summed up and defined a little more. Bishop says he is learning to say no. We have to realize that “No” is an answer. Let your vision say no when you are being pulled away from it.
5. Godly vision must be consistently obeyed to be fully realized. The Children of Israel (the parents) didn’t reach the Promised Land because of disobedience, not lack of vision. Acts 26:19: 19 “And so, King Agrippa, I obeyed that vision from heaven. – Here is how you know you there with your vision. When you feel an overwhelming sense of divine obligation, you are there. Ex- Bishop Walker explains how he was called to preach. Many have asked did he hear God’s voice. He said no, because that would have put him in cardiac arrest. He said that the feeling was so overwhelming, he could not fight it and it would not let up until he submitted to it.
6. Godly vision leads to a change of present situations through a transformation of personal character. We know all things work together for them who love the Lord and are called according to his purpose, but we have to realize that vision involves external things along with eternal character. 28And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. 29For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.-Talents and gifts can get you there, but character is what keeps you there. There are some of you who are asking God to put you on the fast track to your blessing. In other words, you do not want to take the steps that are necessary in getting to your success. God doesn’t give you the top level yet, because you might not be ready yet. This is all about God protecting you. When you follow the steps, at this level you can mess up and it is under the radar. On the top level, there is a whole other level of exposure. If you make the same mistakes on the top level as you did on the lower level, it can lead to much destruction, so God leaves you on the lower level so that you can learn and build character. Character brings on elevation. God promotes based on what your character can handle. God want let you embarrass the kingdom. God is so serious about it; the level itself can dictate the character. In other words you act with better character, because of the level that you are on. Ex-In every school, every neighborhood, every business office, and etc…, there is someone that goes to Mt Zion, because it is so big. Now Bishop explains that he can be driving down the road and somebody cuts him off at the last minute, he doesn’t say anything when he gets even with the car though he wants to, because the last thing he would need is somebody to say, “Your Pastor cursed me out on Hwy 65”. In other words, there are things that he will not allow his character to become, because of the level that God has placed him on.
7. Godly vision leads to a mission which requires a plan to succeed. This is where vision takes on a practical mission. Proper, prior, prayerful, planning, prevents, pitifully poor performance. We don’t just do stuff without prayerfully planning. We don’t want to end up trifling. There is a strategic process involved. We strategically plan and then we perform it, because we don’t want to be pitiful.
1. You have purpose, vision, and assignment. Purpose is your assignment. The knowledge of your assignment is called vision. The pursuit of you vision is called ministry. Ministry is not always church related. Everything you do is ministry if it is your assignment, because it meets someone’s needs. Why would God give you something that didn’t meet people’s needs?
2. Plans and purpose: Jeremiah 29:11: 11For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. – Gods purpose for an individual or people are constant, but his plan to achieve that purpose may vary from time to time.
What is time?
1. Time is a short interruption in eternity. It is a period that is allocated to you, to fulfill what you were sent here to do. –When Habakkuk says it is for an appointed time, we must know that this time is given to us so we can complete our purpose. Habakkuk 2:3: 3For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry. – If this time is not used, it is wasted time.
2. Dr Myles writes “He who has time to burn will never give the world much light. Killing time is not murder, its suicide”. Myles Munroe
3. We need help spending the time as we should. Psalm 90:12: 12So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom. – The scripture is saying Lord help us to spend the time as we should. Many people say if they could get some of their time back, they would do things different. Time is so important, and you have to be careful how you guard your time. Every day you should be pursuing your purpose or ministry. When you are a person in your purpose, time is something you don’t want to waste. In fact it irritates you when people call you and want nothing. Your time is valuable. If you don’t value your time, nobody else will. When you guard your time, you are stretching right now and reaching toward your not yet.
a. Time starts when we were born and ends when we die. You have to keep having visions why you are still alive. Ex- Bishop Walker says when he comes to pray over your sick bead, he doesn’t just pray for healing. He says he prays for purpose too, because he believes even at those last moments, you have a purpose. Even if it is nothing more than to show us how to have faith in our last months, you have purpose.
b. Eternity has neither beginning nor end.
c. God who is eternal exists outside time.
d. God sees the end from the beginning and sets our course according to his overall purpose for us. God is speaking to your end. He is not looking at your right now. You just need to start what he has already finished.
e. God gives everyone purpose a time that allows it to reach perfection. Don’t miss your appointed time.
f. Time is always given for a purpose. Bishop explains this is why he doesn’t waste our time. Ex -People ask how does Mt Zion grow and he responds that he doesn’t waste his member’s time. They know when they come to church; they know bible study is going to be an hour or an hour and 10 mins at most. You can’t keep people in church all night long and expect them to go home and take of their family. They can’t do this if you have them in church until midnight. Bishop explains that he has been at conferences where it starts at 7pm and put him up at 9pm. By 9:30 he would be through and waiting in the office for the Pastor to come back and he said it would be midnight before he returned. He said he would sometimes leave and say “You can just mail it to me”.
g. Time that is not used for its intended purpose is wasted and lost.
When God first called Bishop Walker to preach, he was 20yrs old. He was going to law school, and God redirected him. He came to Nashville to go to Divinity School. He did not know anything about Nashville except for the show called “Hee Haw”. Bishop gets to Nashville and begins making an investment in his assignment (by attending Divinity School). After being here a month or so, he started seeing stuff different. People would drive by and see pastures, and Bishop would see condos and office buildings. People thought he was crazy and after a while he started questioning his sanity too. God says to him, “son this is vision”. God could not show him these visions first, because he wasn’t ready yet. God had to wait until Bishop invested into his vision. Since he made an investment in the vision by going to school, God knew he could trust him with vision. God knows we will not manage vision well if we are not willing to invest in it. God told Bishop “If you keep the vision under divine supervision, I will always give you provision, you will never have division, or very seldom a need for re-vision. If you see something and you can afford it, it is not vision, it just a good idea. Vision is always bigger than your bank account. God says if it is my will, it’s my bill.
Bishop right out of seminary got the opportunity to serve as Pastor of the Mt Zion Baptist Church. Mt Zion became Bishop’s first church. God gave a vision of new church in place for Mt Zion 2or 3 yrs inside of Bishop’s Pastor Tenure. God had shown Bishop this big Mega Church we enjoy today, but they only had $3000 in the bank for the building fund at that time. Because Bishop had seen the vision, he shouted over this often and there were some people that would look at him and think to themselves, “bless his little heart”. When the time came, Bishop launched the project around 1995 or 96 and lots of things didn’t make sense. He was struggling with his vision. There were still a lot of gaps in looking at how this was going to work. One day Bishop was working on his dissertation at Princeton in the library and he read a book called “The Republic” by Plato and he began having a conversation with himself about the discourse of a chair. It was fascinating the book implies that you are not sitting in the chair; you are sitting in a manifestation of an idea. Someone had to get a conceptualization of the chair in order for the chair to manifest. In other words, if there was no revelation of the chair, the chair maker would never have a blueprint to make the chair in which you sit. As a result, you are sitting in the end result of a revelation. The chair is really up here (the mind) instead of where you are sitting. It made Bishop think that perhaps there are two types of people inside the church. There is the revelation vs. manifestation crowd. In 2001, Mt Zion’s original intent was to have one balcony. The church kept growing and they had to add the 2nd balcony. Mt Zion marched into the church in Oct. of 2001 and they didn’t sell any candy or fish or anything like that to get into the new Church. Bishop Morton preached and Bishop Walker explains he had seen people shout that never had shouted before. Some of the Elders and Deacons were concerned that Bishop was in shouting mode. They thought if anyone would shout over the blessing, it would be him. They feared that he was burned out. After the service, Bishop had to explain to them that way back in the 1996 when God showed him the vision, he shouted then. There are people that have to have manifestation in order to thank God, but there are others that only need revelation that it is going to happen.