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Posts tagged ‘Grace Life’

Limitless Life Devotional

Victory, Authority, Abundance

Zechariah 9:11-12

“As for thee also, by the blood of thy covenant I have sent forth thy prisoners out of the pit wherein is no water. Turn you to the strong hold, ye prisoners of hope: even today do I declare that I will render double unto thee;” (KJV)

Through Christ, God has provided the way out of a dry, dull, boring life, a life marked by the expectation of lack and suffering.  In fact, in Christ we have been given God’s very own life, including his own emotional wealth and natural prosperity! We have been plugged into the victory and authority of the resurrected Christ, who conquered every one of earth’s trials and distresses, and seated us above all natural principalities and powers (Ephesians 1:18-22). Scripture is even so bold as to declare that you have been given all authority in Christ, so that ‘nothing shall by any means hurt you’ (Luke 10:19 KJV). This means that our lives are no longer marked by pain, inferiority, or struggle – instead, we are inheritors of vast blessings in our finances and natural circumstances to such an extent that we will be able to lend to nations without borrowing from anyone! (Deuteronomy 28:12). It is the goodness of God that transforms us from an insecure need to rely on self and others, to being fully reclined in the sweet paradise of His bliss-filled goodness, seated in the victories and culture of heaven in the here and now!

Some people think that we need to strive, serve, or earn our way into the God-quality of life. Others believe that we must imagine it into existence. However, Scripture is clear that there is one way and one way only to experience the abundant, victorious life – a life so rich in quality that it eradicates any consciousness of lack – and that is simply through hearing and enjoying the grace of God as revealed in Jesus Christ! As we look to Jesus, his love effortlessly begins to switch us from self-consciousness, to a consciousness convinced of the all-sufficiency of Christ. As we enjoy the revelation of Jesus Christ for us, in us, and as us, living waters flow up from within us and water our whole lives with the power-filled blessings of the Gospel! (John 7:38). Faith for the God-quality of life, which includes natural as well as spiritual blessings, is not something we have to muster up. Hebrews 11:1 defines faith as ‘the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen’ (KJV). In other words, faith is co-knowing with God what God knows to be true of us in our union with Christ, which is why Colossians 2:17 states clearly that ‘the substance belongs to Christ’ (NASB). Christ’s victory ushers the substance of heaven into our lives! (by the way, enjoying the Gospel is not a work either, but an effortless by-product of seeing the grace of Jesus Christ and his goodness towards us!)

Just like holiness and sanctification, we manifest the entirety of our authority, victory, and prosperity through Christ and Christ alone. This is why Ephesians 1:7 exclaims that the grace of God is given to us with wisdom ‘…according to the riches of his grace’ (KJV). In other words, it isn’t according to our good works or our striving. It is all through Christ and his grace that we have gained the victory! Through Christ we can declare along with Zechariah that we have been removed from the dry, difficult pits of life (‘the pit where there is no water’), and shown so much favor and grace that we not only have ‘double for our trouble’, we also have become ‘prisoners of hope’. Christ has made our future so positive, so filled with that confident expectation of good, that we can expect nothing less than full-fat goodness to manifest in our circumstances and finances!

Limitless Life Devotional

Leaving Dead Works Behind

Hebrews 6:1 (KJV)

“Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works…”

Scripture exhorts us that a foundation of faith is ‘repentance from dead works’. Dead works here do not refer to sin, but to those actions we do to try to gain favour with Jesus or to achieve righteousness. Dead works are the root, which produce sin as a fruit in our lives. We are no longer under a system of receiving from God through the works of the law and our own self-efforts. Rather, we receive everything in the Christian life through ‘the hearing of faith’ (Galatians 3:2). As we continually surround ourselves with the Good News Message the fruits of our life become ‘perfection’ and righteousness. This is why Jesus tells us to ‘repent and believe the good news’ (Mark 1:15, NIV). Repentance is the Greek word metanoeo which simply means ‘to change one’s mind’. This happens as we hear the Good News, and allow it to convince us of the love of God towards us, and the lavish kindness we have received in him. Dead works are swallowed up by life as we continually hear, and are thus convinced, of the truths of faith. As Ephesians 1:3 declares, ‘the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ!’ (NIV). This is an unconquerable, undefeatable fact in our lives, as Christ’s finished work has united us with the Lord and made us one spirit with him! (1 Corinthians 6:17).

Because our spirits are holy, this means that our roots (the deepest parts of us) are holy – the more we are aware of this, the more the fruits in our life conform to this perfection and holiness! Dead works, and a lifestyle of sin, become irrelevant and invalid as we understand that we have perfect righteousness in Christ. As 2 Corinthians 5:21 puts it, ‘For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him’ (KJV). This is a past-tense statement to convince us of our firm, unshakable, consistent righteousness in him apart from works – righteousness through Christ has already freely been given to us, and we do not have to work towards this. Our only job in the New covenant is to hear the Good News, so that we can effortlessly believe, and thus receive, what is included in our freely accessible inheritance, and consequently experience every blessing in Christ!  (John 6:29; Hebrews 4:11).

It is of utmost importance to remain under the message of grace, enjoying the all-sufficiency of Jesus, because dead works will never produce the desired results in our lives. 1 Corinthians 15:56 details to us that ‘the sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law’ (KJV). In other words, the more we try to gain righteousness through our own efforts (the law), the more the symptoms of sin and death will manifest in our lives. Yet the message of our righteousness in Christ always results in manifest life and peace! (Romans 8:11). The message of God’s grace revealed in Jesus is God’s only mechanism for successful living, and through it, you will receive every miracle and breakthrough that you have been longing for!  – You do not have to worry about grace resulting in sin or apathy, either, as Titus 2:12 (NIV) articulates: ‘the grace of God teaches us to say ‘no’ to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in this present age’. In other words, grace inspires and motives us, not only to avoid the wrong things, but also to enjoy the correct things. So under grace, you will still pray, read the Bible, and worship Jesus (perhaps more than ever before!), yet the motivation for these activities is entirely transformed. Under grace, praying, reading the Bible, and worshipping Jesus becomes filled with positive expectation, love, and joy. We no longer do these things to become right with God. Instead, they become adventures of discovery; mechanisms to enjoy the limitless beauty, riches, and kindness of Jesus, and to see and experience all that which has been included in our vast, wealthy inheritance. We have been made more spiritual than ever before in Christ, through Christ, and for Christ! When you say ‘hello’ to the message of grace, you simultaneously say ‘goodbye’ to dead, dry, tiresome works!

Limitless Life Devotional

Rested Abundance

“You must obey God’s law about the Sabbath
and not do what pleases yourselves on that holy day.
You should call the Sabbath a joyful day
and honor it as the Lord’s holy day.
You should honor it by not doing whatever you please
nor saying whatever you please on that day.
Then you will find joy in the Lord,
and I will carry you to the high places above the earth.
I will let you eat the crops of the land your ancestor Jacob had.”
The Lord has said these things.” – Isaiah 58:13-14 (NCV)

The Sabbath throughout scripture is a shadow of Jesus Christ. In Christ we discover a true, abiding Sabbath rest as the Gospel revelation of who we are in him, who he is to us, and who he is for us ushers us into the eternal realm of God’s all-sufficiency which brings delight and refreshing. As we enjoy the finished work of Jesus Christ, we enter into the Sabbath realm of faith, where God has completed all that needs to be finished, worked out, and sorted in our lives. In Christ, God has done it all, and He desires that we simply recognise this, so that we can enjoy the manifest blessings of his heart! God longs for His people enjoy the benefits and blessings of resting and trusting in the all-sufficiency of Christ within the New Covenant. This joyous living entails recognising that you are in a perfected, righteous union with the Godhead, having everything that they are and have – everything that is true of them, is true of you, and everything that is not true of them, is no longer true of you. You are not a dirty rotten sinner, you are the dearly beloved of God, and a wonderful expression of his being! 2 Corinthians 5:21 declares that God ‘made him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him’.

Understanding the New Covenant of God’s gracious, supply-filled rest effortlessly and completely transforms our language. As we recognise that God’s way of prosperity and victory is to enjoy the fulfilment and manifest arrival of our salvation in Christ, we begin to be confident in our God rather than in ourselves! We no longer live ‘doing whatever we please’ out of a false, independent, limited sense of self. Instead, we will ‘find joy in the Lord’ who has ‘carried us to the high places of the earth’, and will continue to do so as we trust and believe in His finished work! God is a good Daddy and he wants to manifest success and influence throughout our lives, saturating everything in our world with his abundant unmerited favour! Through placing our trust in the all-sufficiency of Christ, will feast on his blessings which follow us everywhere we go, and discover that as we do we no longer speak, think, and function out of a sense of deficiency (‘nor saying whatever you please on that day’). We will speak God’s words of faith, which release the power and life of heaven into our circumstances!

As Hebrews 4:3, 9-10 (NKJV) articulates: ‘we who have believed do enter that rest…there remains therefore a rest for the people of God. For He who has entered His rest himself also ceased from his works as God did from His’. So beloved of God, relax, recline, and receive the blessings of the New Covenant. No matter what you are facing today, there remains the powerful, wonder-working word of grace, spoken by the Father and articulated in the person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ. This word effortlessly transports us into the realm of rest and abundance, in which God has already provided for you. The revelation of faith has the power to bring you abundance and blessing, carrying you to the high places of this earth! You are wired for success through ceasing from your own works, to enjoy the devoted doting of the Godhead through Jesus Christ!

 

Locate Yourself Correctly

By Josh Hunt

6The gospel is the greatest message in the Cosmos! What God has done in Christ has ensured our happiness for all time! Are you enjoying the reality Jesus came to give you? Well, as I have heard Joseph Prince say – paraphrased – ‘there’s nothing wrong with the message, and there’s nothing wrong with you.’ Often when preachers assert the validity of the message they preach they blame their listener; [read in angry preacher voice] “there’s nothing wrong with Jesus, there’s nothing wrong with the Word, so the problem is with you!”

But there is nothing wrong with you, in-fact, Jesus has made you right! The message and reality of the gospel is true. There’s nothing wrong with it, and there’s nothing wrong with you! But allow me to ask you, are you enjoying it? Are you enjoying the glorious news of the5 New Covenant? Enjoying is imperative for, well, enjoying. Faith enjoying is a glorious way to see and enjoy the spiritual inheritance in the tangible! Are you enjoying? It’s so fun! Life with our Daddy is so exciting! His goodness overwhelming!

So many people are hearing the grace message, yet some are struggling to feel it in their emotions. Some are left saying; “Thank Jesus for the cross! But, where is the joy?” There is a difference between intellectual assent and enjoying and believing the truth. Many are becoming free intellectually, and knowing the benefits to an extent; however, in order to enjoy the full benefit, we must enjoy the reality by faith. It’s possible to learn the truth of new birth in Christ, but still locate ourselves in deadness. Worry, fear, anxiety, depression, can be all signaling signs that we may be, at times, locating ourselves incorrectly. As Joseph Prince says; ‘right believing produces right living.’ The same is true; wrong believing produces wrong emotions.

Don’t ‘settle’ in the natural. Don’t be deceived into thinking and believing that a contradiction, whether an emotion or circumstance, can dictate the level of glory you can experience! Didn’t anyone tell you that you have been joined to Christ? Mortality was swallowed up by immortality! Your life is supernatural! You are supernatural! One with deity, Married to Majesty! And, don’t try to ‘achieve’ in the supernatural. Don’t be tricked into thinking and believing that you have got to build a relationship with God in order to enjoy the gospel. Some people are so worn out through trying to attain happiness and joy through prayer, fasting, or ‘abiding’. No, didn’t anyone tell you that you are joined to Christ, Married to Majesty?! Don’t ‘settle’ in the natural, and don’t try to ‘achieve’ in the supernatural. Instead, ‘settle’ into the arms of Daddy God, and rest in what Jesus has 7‘achieved’ for you! In other words, the key is to enjoy the gospel by faith!

You are not ordinary, so stop locating yourself in the ordinary! You are not a victim to your circumstance. It is not fitting for the wonderful (you), to locate themselves anywhere but heavenly realms. You may have spent your whole life locating yourself in the natural, believing you are less than who God says you are, but today, you can relocate! Maybe you’re struggling with negative circumstances? You have options you may not know about!

It will help you in locating yourself correctly if you understand what grandeur you have been plugged into! You’ve got a great inheritance:

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ” (Ephesians 1:3 KJV)

Union with the King of the Universe has its benefits; you are blessed, with every blessing God has! The Christian life is not a process of one becoming blessed, or receiving spiritual treasures. The Christian life starts with unequivocal wealth and blessing! The phrase “who has blessed” is one Greek word, eulogeō, meaning to ‘invoke a benediction upon’. In Christ, God has pronounced every pleasing blessing heaven has to offer on you! You have a great inheritance. Also, just because it says “spiritual blessing”, doesn’t mean that the 8blessings aren’t those that can translate to tangible realities. No, “spiritual” is telling us where these blessings are located. The treasure chest is in the spiritual realm.

You’ve also got a great identity:

“According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will” (Ephesians 1:4-5 KJV)

You are something very special! The Spirit longs for you to know your royal identity, to see yourself as you are, located in Christ. These verses reveal so much about the believers great identity; 1) We are holy (hagios = “pure”, “saint”, free from sin, made holy at the core of being). 2) We are blameless (amōmos = “faultless”, “unblamable”, united to Jesus therefore forgiven and unpunishable). 3) We are before him (katenōpion = “directly in front of: before (the presence of)”, the NIV says “in his sight”, however, this isn’t just a Jesus-goggle thing, God doesn’t just see us as holy and blameless even though we’re really not. No, he has made us to be holy and blameless and seated us on his lap, we are before him, in his presence continually.) We are also, as Ephesians 1:4-5 goes on to say, “adopted as his sons” – You are declared to be God’s baby and given spiritual life and immortality!

And you’ve got great power:

“The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints, And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power” (Ephesians 1:18-19 KJV)

Paul doesn’t pray that the mighty Spirit of God would make us weak vessels strong. No! Paul prays for the eyes of our hearts to be enlightened – enlightened to know that we have a great power on the inside of us. Enlightened to know that we are powerful, sharers of 9God’s great omnipotence! My goodness the believer is powerful. You are packing so much glory and power. If you realized just how powerful you actually are you would walk with such confidence! Agree with God. The Old Testament exhorts the weak to say that they are strong (Joel 3:10), but under the New Covenant God has made you strong – strong with his incomparable power and strength.

So, you have a great inheritance, a great identity, and a great power. But, are you locating yourself in the great? Are you enjoying truth? Right now, right here, where are you locating yourself? You see, even if you aren’t locating yourself in the gospel reality, it will still be true, you will still have a great inheritance, a great identity, and a great power, but you won’t be able to enjoy it to its fullness. You are designed, however, to experience heaven on earth. You will only be at home when you locate yourself in heavenly places. And, through enjoying and locating yourself in heavenly places you will make your home like heaven!

Every one of us has a built in GPS system. We wake up in a morning and often allow our GPS to locate us in the natural, in our circumstances, in our wrong beliefs. Sometimes people live in this negative auto-pilot; some continue to allow themselves to locate themselves in the natural – this then produces negative feelings and emotions, a stability that is built on an unstable foundation. However, when we start to realize the other realm, the heavenly realm, we allow ourselves to locate ourselve10s in the heavenly realms. When we locate ourselves in the gospel reality, in Christ, we see the power and glory of God manifest in our outward lives, bringing the full force of our inheritance with it. We see heaven on earth! So, locate yourself correctly! Start to enjoy faith. Live your life with an enthusiastic awareness of the kiss of heaven. Locate yourself in heavenly places. Locate yourself in the gospel reality!

 

New Covenant Prayer – Part 2

By Josh Hunt

In this article I want to look at New Covenant prayer, exactly; what is it? And probably as equally precisely; what it is not! Well, let’s start by stating the obvious, what most Christians believe, even those shrouded with legalism: prayer is powerful. Now I want to clarify this by calling to remembrance the fact that it is actually the finished work of Jesus which is powerful, but prayer can be a way that faith is expressed, resulting in power. Of course this statement is only true if prayer is Spirit-led, and although many think they know what that means, the truth is that Spirit-led prayer is prayer that is in line with grace and is inspired and filled with the power of the Spirit and the outrageous love of our great Daddy God. So, saying that prayer is powerful and that it ought to be Spirit-led, let’s go a little bit deeper into what prayer actually is and how it works.

In order for us to understand new covenant prayer, we must know what underlines it, what its foundation is. Most Christians seem to stop at non-descript foundations; if you ask most believers what the foundations of the Christian life are, they will probably tell you things like; obedience, bible reading, prayer, and maybe giving. But those are all activities that can enjoyed. Truly though, the foundation of the Christian life, and indeed the foundation of prayer is Jesus! Jesus Christ and his Finished Work is the foundation of prayer and new covenant prayer is perfectly at home, and in-line with this foundation!11

This foundation (Jesus) of course oozes with what Jesus came and accomplished through his incarnation, his death, resurrection, and ascension! This foundation oozes ‘it is finished!’, and although many are stuck in a mind-set which asks for more, true prayer remains to be enjoying that which we have already been given! While we are on the subject of asking for more, let me say; God has provided a holistic Salvation, a Salvation that is complete and contains every blessing we could ever need and imagine, so how can we seek that which we have been given? Asking for what Jesus has already provided is common among church folk, but is foreign to the apostle Paul; who boldly, consistently, reminded the church that they are complete and have been given everything that Jesus is and has! He even went as far as to say that we are ‘joint-heirs’ with Christ (See Romans 8:17)!

One of the most common misconceptions of prayer is that prayer is a weapon with which we ‘win’ (whatever the ‘win’ may be). However, the truth of Jesus (the foundation of prayer) tells us that in him we already have victory. In the new covenant we find again and again the tale that Jesus has won and we get to share his victory! Also, when Paul talks about our spiritual weapon and armour, he doesn’t mention prayer as a tool to victory in and of itself (see Ephesians 6), what he does mention however, are beliefs that are centred upon the Finished Work of Jesus! Prayer does not achieve, Jesus achieved!

Although prayer isn’t a work for us to use to move the divine into giving that which we lack (an impossibility as we have been given all that Jesus is and has), prayer is a channel which faith can use to enforce the victory that Jesus has already won! The Holy Spirit loves to love us in wonderful and spectacular ways, and show us our beauty in ways that are intimate and real. And, although this can take many different forms, it is being conscious of this, mainly the Spirit in us and around us, for us, and in love with us, that constitutes prayer. It is in this way that faith can operate in, and move through. Through this consciousness (and again, this could take many different shapes), grace, through faith is searching the deep things of God, and leading us to enjoy the wonderful life given to us in Jesus! As I have heard it said; ‘prayer is kissing our Father’s face’!

When we understand prayer as a way to simply be loved, and enjoy our Daddy’s nearness, we disconnect with ideas of prayer being hard, or as being a tool to attain something foreign or distant! Prayer being simply an enjoyment of Daddy God introduces us to the privilege of ‘want to’; we aren’t left having to pray in order to get God to grant us a good day, or to stop the devil coming after us, no, prayer becomes a thing of enjoyment; something we get to do (turning our attention to Daddy God), when we want to, in whatever way or form we like. Prayer does not take away from enjoying life, prayer is kissing God and being kissed in the midst of enjoying the fullness of life that he has already given us! 9

As I have already said, prayer can be a channel which faith uses to operate. New covenant prayer is turning and kissing our Daddy God, enjoying his love, and meditating on his promises, what’s more is that prayer can take many different forms. Some have heard that new covenant prayer is not striving or asking for what God has already given us, but its _______ [fill in the blank]. The problem that can happen with defining prayer by a function or outlet of prayer is that then it can be turned into a formula, and a formula is different than enjoying the living Holy Spirit. Prayer can look like some traditional outlets; commanding promises into existence, talking to God, speaking the word etc. But the heart of prayer is being loved and partnering with Holy Spirit. Faith may operate through prayer and it may look like the above, however, you could also enjoy your inheritance through methods that are personal to you (not that the above can’t be).

New covenant prayer is all about Jesus. New covenant prayer is all about you. There is no tension between the above statements because the focus of prayer is union; not attaining, but enjoying, and because it’s enjoying it becomes Spirit-led! The flavour of faith is rest, and so of course that should be the flavour of prayer! Nothing about prayer should be detached from the reality that we are in perfect union with Daddy God and have all that he is and has!

So, enjoy faith today! Enjoy your life! Don’t limit prayer to the confines of tradition! Enjoy the Spirit and be led into glorious and happy experience with the one who knows you, who adores and loves you!

Limitless Life Devotional

Enjoying the Old Testament

Romans 1:2-3

‘…the gospel he promised beforehand through his prophets in the Holy Scriptures regarding his Son…’

Many Christians struggle with the Old Testament, and for many different reasons. For those still trapped in the bondage of legalism the Old Testament often seems like a testament of failure; a weight enslaving them to the fear of religion. And even for some who have experienced the freedom for which we have been set free the Old Testament can still seem hard – whether hard to understand, or hard to line up with the God revealed in Jesus – and so those people are still left struggling. The reasons the Old Testament seems difficult are diverse, but the antidote is the same; Jesus! Seeing the Old Testament as testifying to the glorious Jesus and his finished work is the way to enjoy the Old Testament and to allow the Holy Spirit to lead you in revelation from Genesis to Malachi.

The Old Testament is so much more than esteemed. So many view these ancient texts as either history or fiction; they strive to iron out the creases in morality, they make loopholes to ensure their sense of academia is intact.  However, the Old Testament is more than esteemed. The ancient texts testify of Jesus Christ, and much like a picture book, or a treasure map, the Old Testament points and leads to Jesus. In types, symbols and shadows the Old Testament reveals glorious hints of the gospel. To us new covenant saints they invite us to experience revelation, indeed the very revelation of Jesus Christ!

So, I want to invite you to enjoy the Old Testament. Remember though, it should never be a work. No, you are free and the Holy Spirit can lead you into revelation using anything. The Old Testament though is a great tool, which you can use to explore the finished work of Jesus Christ. How exciting to know that the Old Testament is not a boring work of antiquity, but an exciting gift list, whereby you can see all the glorious blessings that are already freely yours in Christ! So feel free, and enjoy the Old Testament!

Limitless Life Devotional

You Are a Carrier of the Radiance and Glory of God

Hebrews 1:3

‘The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being.’

You are so glorious! You are more than you think you are, and you have more than you think you have. You are rich beyond your wildest dreams, and you have been immersed in glory so dense and thick that it makes old testament experience look like a boring midweek meet-and-greet. The bible puts this reality in many difference ways; it says that you are a joint heir of Christ, a new creation, the temple of the Holy Spirit, and so on. However, not many see themselves as the radiance of God’s glory, but you are, you know?

Hebrews 1:3 is very clearly talking about Jesus; this verse reveals that God is like Jesus, and that Jesus is indeed God, full of glory, crowned with honour. But this verse also reveals that we are carriers of God’s radiance and glory, and in-fact actually are the radiance of God’s glory! You see grace means that everything that God is and has, we are and have! Yes, we have received everything from Jesus as a gift; we are not independent sources of deity. But deification is the result of the finished work of Jesus Christ!

So, see yourself as a carrier of the radiance of God; this means that the sparkle of God, his happiness, his glow can shine out of you and affect atmospheres! And see yourself as a carrier of the glory of God; you have access to the riches and favour of God anywhere, anytime! On top of this, see yourself as the exact radiance and glory of God – your identity, your reality is Jesus! You are in him and he is in you! You are not lowly, you are not mediocre. You are everything Jesus is! You are the very righteousness of God, the very radiance and glory of God, the exact representation of his being! Enjoy this reality today, savour the reality of Christ IN you, and believe that any contradiction can be transformed to the image of the limitless, glorious Christ Jesus!

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