Lesson 9

CHAPTER NINE

BREAKING THE YOKE

OBJECTIVES:

Upon completion of this chapter you will be able to:

C Identify the three -fold yoke of bondage.

C Describe the three-fold yoke of God.

C List the steps that bridge the gap between the yoke of bondage and the yoke of God.

C Identify spiritual results of breaking of the yoke of bondage.

KEY VERSES:

Come unto Me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart and ye shall find rest unto your souls.

For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light. (Matthew 11:28-30)

INTRODUCTION

This course has covered:

Visualization: Identifying the vision .

Conceptualization: Understanding the concept of purpose behind the vision. Objectification : Objectives for fulfilling the vision .

This final section of the course concerns Expectation in which you become part of the fulfillment of the vision .

God’s desire is to bring you to an expected end:

For I know the thoughts I think toward you saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. (Jeremiah 29:11)

That expected end is fulfillment of the vision, finishing the work of God:

My meat is to do the will of Him that sent me, and to finish His work. (John 4:34)

Whenever you enter into something new, it always requires leaving the old. Birth requires leaving the security of the womb.

God is asking you to take a new step of faith:

But the Lord says, Do not cling to events of the past or dwell on what happened long ago. Watch for the new thing I am going to do. It is happening already you can see it now. (Isaiah 43:18, The Living Bible)

You may have been bound by doctrine which claims the power of God is no longer for today.
You may have thought the extension of the Gospel to the world was the responsibility of
ministers or missionaries. You may have been bound by tradition or denominations which
prevented you from joining hands with the rest of the Body of Christ in the harvest fields of
the Lord.

But God has given you a new vision. You are becoming part of a new network of spiritual laborers bound together by unity of purpose.

A NEW NETWORK

The Bible records two separate incidents involving the use of a net in the natural world which illustrate a great spiritual truth .

The first event occurred at the beginning of Christ’s earthly ministry and is recorded in Luke

5. The disciples had been fishing all night and caught nothing . Jesus told them :

Launch out into the deep and let down your nets for a draught. (Luke 5:4)

Peter said:

Master, we have toiled all the night and have taken nothing; nevertheless at thy word I will let down the net. (Luke 5:5)

When they let down the net they caught so many fish that it broke and they had to call their partners in another boat to come help them. The catch was so great that it filled both boats and they began to sink . Peter was amazed at this but Jesus told him :

Fear not, from henceforth thou shalt catch men. (Luke 5:10)

The catch Peter was experiencing in the natural world was nothing compared to the great harvest he would reap in the spirit world as he became a fisher of men.

A similar incident is recorded at the end of Christ’s ministry in John 21 . The disciples had fished all night and caught nothing. At Christ’s command they cast in the net and, once again, it was filled with fish . But this time was different than the first . The net did not break:

Simon Peter went up and drew the net to land full of great fishes, an hundred and fifty and three; and for all there were so many, yet was not the net broken. (John 21:11)

These two events actually happened in the natural world, but they were parallels of a great spiritual truth . The first time the net broke but the second time it did not. What made the difference?

The first net was an example of the efforts of man. Peter was a fisherman by trade. He knew the natural methods and the tradition of fishermen. Through the broken net Jesus showed him that the efforts of man could not fulfill the vision and work of God.

When Peter realized the great work to which God was calling him he cried out:

Depart from me; for I am a sinful man, O Lord. (Luke 5:8)

Peter would become a fisher of men. The old network could not accommodate the great spiritual harvest. Peter would have to abandon the traditions of man. He must cross the line of separation between Jew and Gentile. The old network must be broken and he must become part of a new network .

Jesus did not come to destroy the old, but to fulfill it through the new . He did not destroy the law, but added new meaning to it. He did not abolish the blood sacrifice for sin, but fulfilled it through the shedding of His own blood for the remission of sin.

Jesus warned about putting new wine into old wineskins. The old wineskins would not be able to hold the new wine just as the net could not hold the fish. The challenge of the Great Commission cannot be accomplished with anything less than a new net in the spirit world.

Between the first and the second fishing trips, a new network had been created. These natural fishing incidents were parallels of what had happened in the spirit world.

This new spiritual network can accommodate the vision which Jesus gave. But to enter it, one must step from the old into the new. The old yoke must be broken. The old net must be

destroyed in order for the new net to hold.

THE YOKE

Yokes were used all over the ancient world to unite animals together to labor in the harvest fields . They are still used for this purpose in many nations today.

Jesus spoke of the yoke when He said:

Come unto Me all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me: for I am meek and lowly in heart; and ye shall find rest unto your souls.

For My yoke is easy and My burden is light. (Matthew 11:28-30)

The vision He has given is of the harvest field. Today that field represents three billion people who have never received the Gospel message .. .And He tells us this challenge is "easy" and "light"?

That is exactly what He is saying. But the old network, the old yoke, cannot accommodate the vision. You cannot fulfill it in yourself. You cannot do it through the efforts of man. You must become part of the new network and be yoked together with Him.

THE YOKE OF BONDAGE

We are all under a yoke of some type. You are either under the yoke of bondage or you are under the yoke of God.

The yoke of bondage is three-fold. You can be in bondage to either sin, self, or man.

THE YOKE OF SIN:

I am the Lord your God, which brought you forth out of the land of Egypt [sin] that ye should not be their bondmen; and I have broken the bands of your yoke, and made you go upright. (Leviticus 26:13)

The yoke of Egypt means the yoke of sin. You must have the yoke of sin broken in your lives if you are to come under the yoke with Jesus.

THE YOKE OF SELF:

The yoke of bondage can be a bondage to self:

For that which I do I allow not; for what I would, that I do not; but what I hate, that do I. (Romans 7:15)

Selfishness and pride are examples of the yoke of self.

THE YOKE OF MAN:

The yoke of man is bondage put on you by others:

For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne and lay them on men’s shoulders but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers. (Matthew 23:4)

The yoke of man can include the bondage of guilt , tradition, denomination , or impossible standards of behavior imposed by others.

The three-fold yoke of bondage of sin, self, and man speaks of imposed labor, heaviness, and restlessness.

THE THREE-FOLD YOKE OF GOD

The yoke of God speaks of a united labor instead of imposed labor . It speaks of lightness instead of heaviness. It is a yoke of rest instead of restlessness.

The three-fold yoke of God is easy , light and restful:

Come unto Me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.

For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light. (Matthew 11:28-30)

THREE STEPS TO BRIDGE THE GAP

Jesus provided three steps to bridge the gap between the yoke of bondage and the yoke of God. It is the way out of the old into the new :

Come: You must willingly come to Him. This destroys the yoke of sin.

Take: You must take His yoke. In doing so, the yoke of man is destroyed.

Learn: By learning of Him you destroy the yoke of self.

The yoke of God is not simply imparted by Him. It is shared by Him .

BREAKING THE YOKE

It is God’s desire that every yoke of sin, self, and man in your life be broken. It is necessary if you are to fulfill the vision .

In one Old Testament record, Israel was surrounded by the enemy army of the Assyrians. God spoke to Israel and declared:

The Lord of hosts hath sworn, saying, Surely as I have thought, so shall it come to pass; and as I have purposed, so shall it stand:

That I will break the Assyrian in my land, and upon my mountains tread him under foot: Then shall His yoke depart from off them, and his burden depart from off their shoulders. (Isaiah 14:24-25)

God wanted to break the yoke from off the neck of Israel. But His purpose extended beyond Israel to the nations of the world:

This is the purpose that is purposed upon the whole earth: And this is the hand that is stretched out upon all the nations. (Isaiah 14:26)

What was God’s purpose ? His purpose was that the yoke of bondage be broken from the nations of the world.

A few chapters later it is recorded that:

The angel of the Lord went forth and smote in the camp of the Assyrians a hundred and fourscore and five thousand: and when they arose early in the morning, behold they were all dead corpses. (Isaiah 37:36)

God wants every yoke in your life to become as a dead corpse . He wants to destroy it in order to bring you under the yoke with Him.

HOW WILL IT BE BROKEN?

…and the yoke shall be destroyed because of the anointing. (Isaiah 10:27)

-It will not be destroyed by deep teaching. It will not be destroyed by psychology or education. -It will not be destroyed through counseling or through an organization or

denomination.

-It will be destroyed by the anointing of the Holy Spirit which is the power of God.

But God’s purpose for breaking the yoke extends beyond your life to the nations of the world. He wants to break the yoke of bondage in your life to enable you to fulfill the vision of breaking the yoke from the nations of the world:

This is the purpose that is purposed upon the whole earth: And this is the hand that is stretched out upon all the nations.

For the Lord of hosts hath purposed, and who shall disannul it? And His hand is stretched out, and who shall turn it back? (Isaiah 14:26-27)

RESULTS OF BREAKING THE YOKE

God said:

Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens and to let the oppressed go free and that ye break every yoke? (Isaiah 58:6)

Then He listed the results of breaking the yoke:

Then shalt thou call, and the Lord shall answer; thou shalt cry, and He shall say Here I am…

Then shall thy light rise in obscurity, and thy darkness be as the noon day;

And the Lord shall guide thee continually and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones, and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not.

And they that shall be of thee shall build the old waste places; thou shalt raise up the foundations of many generations; and thou shalt be called, The repairer of the breach, the restorer of paths to dwell in.

(Isaiah 58:9-12)

The results of the breaking of the yoke of bondage are:

-You will know the voice of God . We will call, and the Lord will answer,

"Here I am.” (Verse 9)

-You will be successful in the fulfillment of your vision. Your light will rise in obscurity which speaks of success. (Verse 10)

-The Lord will guide you continually. (Verse 11) -He will be your provision. (Verse 11)
-You will be reproductive. (Verses 11-12)

-You will be like a watered garden which is fruitful. You will be reproductive and those you produce in the spirit world will be reproductive. They will rise up to rebuild the old structures on the right foundation.

God promised Israel in the natural world:

And the tree of the field shall yield her fruit, and the earth shall yield her increase, and they shall be safe in their land, and shall know that I am the Lord, when I have broken the bands of their yoke… (Ezekiel 34:27)

The same is true in the spirit world. The breaking of the yoke results in spiritual productivity.

The old network is inadequate , broken, and empty. It cannot accommodate the abundant harvest. The old yokes of tradition , denomination , self -effort, and unconcern must be broken. New foundations, new yokes, a new network are necessary to enter the gap between sinful man and a righteous God. The vision will only be fulfilled by men and women who have experienced the anointing which breaks the yoke.