As the son of a pastor, Vernel Samuel grew up in the church and heard thousands of sermons. This caused him to both respect and place a high value on Scripture.
But one subject he didn't hear much about was grace, a virtue that is sorely lacking in the church today. He struggled with temptation and self-condemnation, not living the life of freedom God wanted him to live.
Once he took hold of the book of Romans, however—especially Chapters 5, 6 and 8—Samuel put away the urge to condemn himself, and the Holy Spirit began to reveal truth to him about grace. It's a message he now adamantly preaches as the senior pastor of Hungry 4 God Church in Brooklyn, New York, and on his podcast, The Grace Revolution, on the Charisma Podcast Network.
"As a young man, I started dabbling with pornography and sexual temptations. But like any good Christian, I began to pray, 'Please God, help me with this,'" Samuel told Dr. Steve Greene on a recent episode of Greenelines on the Charisma Podcast Network. "I was upset at myself and began beating myself up and felt like a failure. All of the teachings I knew, none of them were helping me to get free.
"One day, I did a study on the book of Romans, and in Romans 5:17, it says that when you receive the gift of righteousness, an abundance of grace will reign in your life," Samuel said. "I didn't understand what it meant to be under grace. When I got to Romans 8, where it says there is no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, I was like, 'Why am I condemning myself? I'm under grace.' I needed to learn it. The Holy Spirit revealed to me this message of no condemnation, and I began to confess my righteousness. ...
"What we're seeing now is the end of an era of church. God is destroying religious trappings that have been hindering people from coming into the New Covenant lifestyle," he said. "What we're going to see is a new order of grace-filled, empowering leadership establishing the church. ... We're going to see a new resurgence of worship gatherings all around the country, our nation, where people are just going to come, and the glory of God is going to me made known. We're going to see supernatural fruitful growth in individuals' lives."
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