Church of Christ – Let’s Take Hell!

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I was once a Member of the Duncanville, Texas Church of Christ where

I was baptized. Charles Hodge, a well-known preacher, was the minister

during the 8 years I attended there. I learned a great deal from “Hodge,”

who always had a pocket filled with candy for the kids every Sunday.

Over the years, as I’ve gone about teaching a Bible Study called “Jesus Said,”

of all the attendees from all the denominations who have taken part in

this series, it has always been Members of the Church of Christ that

have always had the best handle on the Scriptures, especially among the

young people. I was always secretly quite proud of that fact.

My reason for writing this message is simple: I want people in the

Church of Christ to be made aware that there’s more!

When I was diagnosed with a hereditary spinal disease at age 28, I

became desperate. I began asking many people of various Christian

flavors to pray for me. It was only when I permitted those who

believed in the laying on of hands and anointing with oil to do so that

I began to experience results. These days, my doctor says I have a

“textbook spine.” I’m 47 as I write after having been told I would be

immobilized by the time I was fifty. In fact, on New Year’s Eve 2001,

I moved to Stephenville, Texas to be closer to my children so that I

could get help washing clothes, carrying groceries, etc. I had no job,

knew no one, but quit a good-paying job and relocated out of

desperation.

These days, I travel in different circles. I am a staunch supporter of

the burgeoning House Church movement and I write and speak in

homes in regard to this topic. I am also a Non-denominational

Workplace Chaplain, traveling to ten Nursing Home facilities

throughout the state, responsible for the spiritual growth of over 500

employees throughout North Central Texas.

One afternoon, while returning home from a day at my firm’s Grand Saline,

Texas facility, I received a call from a man in Washington State. He

prefaced his conversation by stating that he was a Member of the Church

of Christ and, after reading something I had written online, felt that he

should call me. He related a story of how, as his mother lay dying in

ICU ten years ago, two women came by asking if they could pray for

and anoint her with oil. Her physician had just warned the family that

their family’s beloved matriarch would not make it through the night.

Reluctantly – but out of desperation – the man’s father decided to allow

the two women to pray. The next day, fully expecting that his mother

had expired during the evening, he walked up behind the physician who

turned around, smiled broadly, hugged him “like a long-lost brother,”

and tearfully exclaimed, “She’s gonna live!”

Ten years later, she’s still alive.

My personal contention is that the fullness of the Holy Spirit is

available to everyone with the faith to step out and submit themselves

to Him for Kingdom use. In Luke 11:9-13, Jesus encourages us with

these words, “So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek

and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For

everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who

knocks, the door will be opened. “Which of you fathers, if your son

asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead? Or if he asks for an egg,

will give him a scorpion? If you then, though you are evil, know how

to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father

in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”

I have found that those who dare to ask are the individuals who

understand that, whether God chooses to heal a person through their

ministry or not, whether the prophetic utterance one dares to speak is

true, whether one’s Word of Knowledge is appropriate or not, the

worst that can happen is that they completely miss God. The one being

prayed for may die. The one they prophesied over may have no

witness whatsoever to what was said. Oh, well…in those cases, the

one who stepped out in faith is now stronger for having exercised

their faith muscles. In those moments when they DO experience what

co-laboring with God is all about, their faith and confidence grow

and, well…watch out, devil!

The best that could happen? Isn’t it obvious? Sick people will be healed,

people will be amazed and put their trust in God, a prophetic word will

edify, exhort and comfort, just like all New Testament prophecy is

SUPPOSED to, etc.

But if all of us choose to do NOTHING, guess what will happen?

NOTHING!

Romans 8:11 tells us that the same Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead

dwells within us. Let Him out! Work WITH God. In 1 Corinthians 3:9,

the apostle Paul reminds us, “…we are God’s fellow workers; you are

God’s field, you are God’s building.”

Release the healing virtues of the Lord Jesus Christ into someone’s

sick body.

Declare peace into a chaotic situation.

Take authority over the demons in control of someone’s life.

Go on…I dare ya! More importantly, God dares ya. So does Satan. Far

too often, God’s people are bound with fear. We’re afraid of looking

stupid. What if the sick person dies? What if they ridicule us? “I’m no

prophet,” one might say to themselves, “…who do I think I am anyway?”

With that kind of logic, what if a baseball player never swings his bat

for fear of striking out? What if he DOES swing and belts a home run?

In Philippians 1:20, Paul writes, “According to my earnest expectations

and [my] hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but [that] with all

BOLDNESS, as always, [so] now also Christ shall be magnified in my

body, whether [it be] by life, or by death.” Paul was not merely HOPING

to glorify God with his actions; he EXPECTED that God would use him

whenever he stepped out in faith. He was “fully persuaded” (Rom 4:21)

that God had power to do what He said He would do.

Are WE fully persuaded?

Are YOU?

Recently, I was inspired by an article I’d read about persecuted Chinese

Christians who will go into an area and actually ask to see the most

sickly person in town. Their God-ordained strategy? When this person

is healed, others will come to believe.

So, armed with the confidence which that article had inspired, while

visiting another facility, I asked to see the sickest person there. I was

directed to a man named Curtis who, I was told, was dying. I was

informed that he was a lifelong member of the Church of Christ and his

family was there with him. After speaking words of faith and

encouragement to his relatives, testifying to the healing power of God

in my own life and in the lives of others I know, the family agreed to

allow me to lay hands upon their beloved Curtis and pray. In fact, at my

request, they encircled his bed and laid hands upon him with me. There

were tears as I prayed and hugs and expressions of gratitude as I left

Curtis in God’s hands.

God’s presence was in that room. No, Curtis didn’t get up and walk.

Not at that moment anyway. Let’s face it, even the Ten Lepers were

healed “as they went” while the woman with the issue of blood was

healed instantly and a blind man needed prayer twice. Jesus couldn’t

do much in His own hometown and had to clear the room of faithless

people in order to raise Jairus’s daughter back to life. Curtis is in his

80’s and, as his sister told me, “he knows his Lord.” Perhaps it’s time

for him to go home where he will experience the healing of all healings.

That’s between him and “his Lord.”

That was 15 days ago today. I just received an eMail from the Nursing

Home Administrator. It read, “Curtis is doing very well!”

The day after ministering to Curtis, I was asked to come and minister

at the local hospital to the father of one of our employees, a man in his

80’s who, I was told, was dying. His name was Clarence. Again, the

family was a Church of Christ clan. Again, by the time I finished

sharing testimonies of healing with them, their faith had risen to the

level of attacking Hell with squirt guns. Soon, we were all in ICU –

all ten of us – laying hands on Clarence, their patriarch, family

members hugging, crying, comforting, and agreeing with me in prayer

as I spoke life and healing to our sedated brother in Christ. Two other

family members requested prayer afterward as well.

Though his vitals actually improved the next day, he remained in ICU

seven days later. But that family experienced God that day. No doubt!

They experienced peace. Their focus was redirected to what – WHO –

is the most important person in the Universe. God was there. It was

glorious. Even the menfolk were crying and gave me bear hugs when I

left. One family member has informed me that our encounter has inspired

much God-centered conversation and questions about life, death and

Divine healing.

I’m no healing evangelist. No Benny Hinn. I don’t claim to be a “Faith

Healer” or any such thing. I’m just an average “Joe Christian” who

can’t find anywhere in Scripture where Jesus commands His followers

to “pray for the sick.” No, what I DO find is where He instructs us to

“HEAL THE SICK.” When we know the Healer, it’s pretty safe to say

all I need is (A) the Faith and (B) the opportunities. Whatever happens

next is, frankly, between them and God.

I could go on and on with testimonies of this nature. Some, by human

standards, were apparent, immediate “successes” and others appeared

to be dismal failures. For example, within a few days of each other,

two women – one in her 90s – got up out of their wheel chairs last month

when I prayed in Jesus’ Name. One hadn’t walked in ten years! Some

folks are healed, others aren’t. Some I’ve prayed for require additional

prayer while others have actually died. In every case, somebody is

tremendously blessed and has an encounter with the Spirit of Christ –

each and EVERY time!

Whether it’s healing prayer, prophetic words, the description of a

vision God might give us, I have learned that the worst thing that can

happen is that we look plain foolish whenever we dare to step out of

our comfort zones. Well, shucks! I guess I’ll perpetually be marked as a

fool for Christ, the One who stepped out of His comfort zone for all our

sakes in the first place. Even in the most “foolish” of instances, people

will be blessed as we release the Spirit of Christ from within us…

something we should all do more often, even on a moment-to-moment

basis in day-to-day family life (a great place to practice, by the way).

I am convinced that it all comes down to Obedience and Availability.

Pray when the opportunity arises and minister in the way that God

instructs you to minister. Be available from the time you get out of bed

every day. Watch as God provides Divine Appointments – even if by

eMail or telephone or in an office setting. You just may find that God

will give you a brand new reason for getting up in the morning!

Today, Mother’s Day, I received an email from a man in west Texas.

Apparently, his House Church group – all self-professing Church of

Christ “refugees” – are looking for direction and purpose for meeting.

He asked if I would come and my wife and I have agreed to do so.

Ironically, the House Church movement among those from the Church

of Christ in Texas is spreading rapidly. I’m thrilled to assist in that revival.

This verse of Scripture has been floating around in my spirit for weeks:

2 Corinthians 2:14 (New Life Version) “We thank God for the power

Christ has given us. He leads us and makes us win in everything. He

speaks through us wherever we go. The Good News is like a sweet smell

to those who hear it.”

Amen?

UPDATE: Remember Clarence, the Church of Christ man in the local hospital?

Well, they took him off his respirator Friday morning. The Dr’s thinking was

that he would either breathe on his own or he would die. Well, I visited the

hospital Friday night. He’s breathing on his own, his vitals are good, he was

sitting up in bed and trying to talk, devouring ice chips. We prayed for him

again and he shook my hand twice and thanked me. The countenance of the

entire family in the waiting room had changed as well. It was a wonderful

atmosphere! All glory to God!

On Saturday afternoon, they moved him to a regular hospital room. The family

is ecstatic. Last week, when his daughter asked – just in case he didn’t make it –

if I would officiate his funeral, I replied, “Sure, ask me again in ten years.”

On Monday, Clarence was discharged from the hospital. Glory to God!

Every blessing,

Michael Tummillo

A servant of God

[http://www.YourTown4Jesus.org]

NOW, FORWARD THIS MESSAGE TO AT LEAST 5 OTHER PEOPLE IN YOUR CHURCH.

THEN SEND IT ON TO YOUR BAPTIST, CATHOLIC AND METHODIST FRIENDS, ETC.

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Source by Michael Tummillo

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