Fervent in Spirit

Fervent in Spirit

“Be Fervent in spirit”

“Do not be slothful in zeal,
be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord.”
Romans 12:11 (ESV)

To “be fervent in spirit” is the result of a heart that has touched Him, the touchstone of all creation.

Fervency in spirit is the Divine imprint upon a heart made alive by the fire of His being filling our own. Intensity is the fruit of love and abandonment. His fire within cannot coexist with apathy and lethargy. The true apprehension of us by Christ is described in the pure language of the scriptures.

“When He ascended up on high,
he led captivity captive…”
Ephesians 4:8

His resurrection is the basis of this captivation by Him. He took my addictions, my lost and captive heart and by the revelation of His wonder, those things lost their grip. Resurrection Life is the source of true freedom! There are no self-help strategies, no answers for the human condition other than Christ Himself. It is not the Christ of religion, words, and doctrines. It is only as the resurrected ONE reaches down from heaven’s Throne of Grace that men and women are set free.

Paul’s whole premise of faith was the Resurrected One; not words about Him but the very Life of Him. Who can behold Him and remain pragmatic, dispassionate, and satisfied with anything less than the fire of God burning within?

“And if Christ be not risen,
then is our preaching vain,
and your faith is also vain”
1 Corinthians 15:14

To all who struggle with sin, with failure within and without, come to Him, seek Him, for He will not turn away from a broken and contrite heart. He came and more importantly IS come, to set the captives free and to make them new creations filled with the vibrancy of His Life.

“For whosoever
shall call upon the name of the Lord
shall be saved”
Romans 10:3

Addictions are simply our attempt to fill the emptiness, the hurt, the abandonment, and the sorrow of heart that comes to all in this broken world. Freedom is found in His love, His forgiveness, and His life filling us unto the true freedom for which He has redeemed us. When Christ fills the heart there is no room for other things! His fulness is our freedom.

Fervency of spirit is the resounding wonder of a life captivated by His beauty.

“Do not be slothful in zeal,
be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord.”
Romans 12:11 (ESV)

It is the fervent in spirit who serve the Lord.

See: Morning by Morning

Brian Troxel

What is a Pharisee?

What is a Pharisee?

“Then Jesus spoke to the multitudes and to his disciples, saying, “The scribes and the Pharisees sat on Moses’ seat. All things therefore whatever they tell you to observe, observe and do, but don’t do their works; for they say, and don’t do.”
Matthew 23:1-3 (WEB)

There is much contained in the Words of Jesus. His words are full of truth and that truth pierces to the core of a man’s heart. In this discourse, it is striking to note the audience to whom He spoke.

“Then Jesus spoke to the multitudes and to his disciples

The word that follows is important to all who call themselves by His Name. His warnings are given to everyone in general “and to His disciples”. It is a word to us, to all generations who desire to walk rightly before Him. There will always be those who ascend to prominent religious positions, speaking good things. Jesus declares what things people should hearken to and DO.

“All things therefore whatever
they tell you to observe, observe and do”

True disciples are to recognize God’s word even if it is spoken by some who may live hypocritically or carelessly. God’s Word is true regardless of its source. The emphasis in this warning from the Lord is found in a very short word… DO. A disciple is one in whom the word of the Lord influences their living. It is not the mental aspect; it is not merely the enlightenment of the mind while leaving one’s conduct unaffected. Doing is the revelation of true discipleship. Many hear, many teach. It is the focus of the Holy Spirit to bring us into the realm of becoming through obedience.

“…but don’t do their works;
for they say and don’t do.”

Jesus considered their lack of works as their works. Their works were to talk of the things of the Lord without doing. Their non-doing became their works; much like not deciding inadvertently becomes a decision. True faith is the agency through which the works of God are born. The essential nature of faith is to reveal the Life and the Works of its Author. James declares:

“But he who looks into the perfect law of freedom, and continues, not being a hearer who forgets, but a doer of the work, this man will be blessed in what he does.”
James 1:25

The subtlety of Pharisee-ism is a fearful and easy thing into which any disciple can fall. We can become comfortable in our beliefs rather than in our relationship with Him. Disciples follow Him. They participate in the doing of His Will on the earth. They are involved in the works of Christ for He is their Head, and they are His hands, feet, and heart in this world. Because they are of His Body, they move with Him.

May we be warned in our own walk. Let us heed the exhortations of Him to flee the Pharisaical ways of speaking without doing, of teaching without being a demonstration in our own lives. The truth of our words is to be evidenced in our homes, in our workplaces, and in our fellowship with those who are His.

“…but don’t do their works;
for they say and don’t do”

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“A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and he fell among robbers, who stripped him and beat him and departed, leaving him half dead. Now by chance, a priest was going down that road, and when he saw him he passed by on the other side. So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan, as he journeyed, came to where he was, and when he saw him, he had compassion.”
Luke 10:30-33

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“So speak ye, and so do,
as they that shall be judged by the law of liberty”
James 2:12

See: Words and Deeds A.W. Tozer

Brian Troxel

Being of Him

Being of Him

“I believe that one reason why the church of God at this present moment has so little influence over the world is because the world has so much influence over the church.”
– Charles Spurgeon

“And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are.”
John 17:11

One cannot be of this world and know the unity of His Spirit. To “be of the world” is to be at variance with His people, His nature, and His Life. To prefer our brother or sister over ourselves, to feel the call to union with Him is to seek that in His people. The unity of Him is simply the resplendent nature of Him drawing us to one another, this drawing is the joy and fruit of those who live in His Spirit.

“For if ye love them which love you, what thank have ye? for sinners also love those that love them. And if ye do good to them which do good to you, what thank have ye? for sinners also do even the same.”
Luke 6:32-33

Love of the Truth
is the Nature Of God in Man
The Love Of the Truth
Causes us to Love IN Truth

See: Holy Love

BT

Weakness and Power

Weakness and Power

“Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses,
so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”
2 Corinthians 12:9

Paul clearly saw his weaknesses as necessary for the power of Christ to be revealed. Those who rely on their own inherent strength to serve the Lord will never know the joy of this hidden secret. Our human weakness is the platform from which His glory is revealed! Faith glories in our inabilities and in our willingness to be lead. The carnal man uses weakness as an excuse to not obey God’s leading. But those who live in Him find their weaknesses advantageous to stepping into God’s strength and resources.

“For when I am weak, then I am strong…”
2 Corinthians 12:10

There are graces and resources of God hidden in our weakness. The sling of a young child slew the Goliath of the enemies of God. The source of this victory was God’s grace and the willingness of a young man to obey despite the circumstances.

“He that observeth the wind shall not sow;
and he that regardeth the clouds shall not reap”
Ecclesiastes 11:4

Those who rely on their own strength observe the outward conditions with their own eyes; they see the obstacles rather than the divine strength of God. The eleven disciples beheld the storm yet Peter alone ventured into the storm because of the faith of God moving within. It was only when the priests stepped into the Jordan that the power of God parted its flooding banks. It was not until Paul and Barnabas worshipped God that the prison was shaken. Let us not consider our own meager resources in serving our God. Let us not be ones who behold the winds and the clouds – our God is able!

“He that observeth the wind shall not sow…”

As we feel the winds of adversity arising in our land may we still be faithful sowers.

“…he that regardeth the clouds shall not reap”

Let us not fear, let us not restrain our outreach into the world around us – He is able!

Once we recognize our weaknesses in the Spirit of faith we no longer ask God for deliverance from them but recognize that these are the very things through which HE has chosen to make Himself known. Many say “when God strengthens me – THEN I will go forth”. But years pass, weaknesses remain, and this short life ends in the poverty of unbelief. Faith moves. It trusts and knows that God uses the “weak things to confound the wise”!

“For the sake of Christ, then,
I am content with weaknesses…”
2 Corinthians 12:10

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“Be ye strong therefore, and let not your hands be weak:
for your work shall be rewarded.”
2 Chronicles 15:7

See: Moments of Faith

Brian Troxel

C.H. Mackintosh

Quote for Today

C.H. Mackintosh

“We have the Bible in our hands; but how little we know of its teaching! And how little are we governed by it! We go on, from week to week, year to year, with things which have no foundation whatever in its pages- yea, with things utterly opposed to its teaching; and, all the while, we boast of having the Scriptures, just like the Jews of old, who made their boast of having the oracles of God, while those very oracles condemned themselves and their ways, and left them without a single plea.”
C.H. Mackintosh

It is always good to hear the warnings from the preachers of old. There is safety in being exhorted to consider in our heart of hearts the words which cause us to look carefully at our alignment with His Word. May His Word govern the very core of our lives that we may live in its truth.

They who honor His Word honor Him.

BT

Watchman Nee

Watchman Nee

“…and in their ministering to the LORD and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Separate to Me both Barnabas and Saul to the work to which I have called them,”
Acts 13:2 (LSV)

Service Unto the Lord

“No one can truly work for the Lord who has not first learned to minister to Him. It was while Barnabas and Saul ministered unto the Lord and fasted that the voice of the Spirit was heard calling them to special service.

And it was to the divine call they responded, not to the appeal of human need. They had heard no voice but the voice of the Spirit: they had seen no claims but the claims of Christ. It was on His authority alone that they went forth.”
– Watchman Nee

Hope and Purity

Hope and Purity

Hope and Purity

In our growth into His life, we began to comprehend the preparations, the breaking, and the utter abandonment to God required to be “vessels of honour”. The Hope that God puts into an individual’s heart is one that purifies and pulsates with the understanding of the need to become true in order to enter into the high and holy things of God.

“And every man that hath this hope in Him
purifieth himself, even as He is pure.”
1 John 3:3 KJV

There are many forms of hope in the religious world but there is only ONE hope which carries within it the fire and the “Spirit of burning” which has eternal repercussions. It is a hope which prepares hearts for glorious ministrations far beyond the imaginations and the thoughts of men. It is a hope that stirs the heart which has opened itself to the pure ministrations of the Spirit of Wisdom and Understanding. These are the graces of God released into willing and redeemed hearts who relinquish themselves to the unction and the depths of the Love of God which surpasses knowledge. May God in His infinite mercy blow upon the living glowing coals of our hearts the fire of such a hope that we may know its engulfing and all-embracing passion to “know Him” and to be “found in Him.”

Can we not hear, can we not by the living faith of Him beating within us, gaze beyond the veil of human reasoning to touch the hem of a Call which is birthed in us in Christ?

“…because as He IS
so also are we in this world”
1 John 4:17

(Excerpt from coming book)

See: Unity and Hope

Brian Troxel

The Good Shepherd

The Good Shepherd

“What do you think? If a man has a hundred sheep, and one of them has gone astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine on the mountains and go in search of the one that went astray?”
Matthew 18:12

His response in finding the one…

“And if he finds it, truly, I say to you, he rejoices over it more than over the ninety-nine that never went astray.”
Matthew 18:13

There is something deep and precious here. He rejoices more over finding the lost one than He does over the others who have stayed true! May all those who have wandered from His care and His ways take note of His heart. Let not the shame, and the self-castigation keep you from returning. Run to Him and let Him hold out the “everlasting arms” of love and consolation to wrap you in the security of a love that is as endless as the universe itself.

“O let not the oppressed return ashamed:
let the poor and needy praise thy name.”
Psalm 74:21

Let not the voice of the enemy taint your vision of the Love He holds for His own. His searching, His Spirit whispering the words of love and comfort to return to the One from whom the fountains of grace flow readily and unreservedly into the broken, the lost, and the wayward ones. His beacon ever shines to guide the lost home into the harbor of quiet waters.

Softly and Tenderly Jesus is Calling

Softly and tenderly Jesus is calling—
Calling for you and for me;
Patiently Jesus is waiting and watching—
Watching for you and for me!

Brian Troxel

The Shelter

The Shelter

“For thou hast been a shelter for me…”
Psalm 61:3

A shelter must be larger than the one who finds refuge within its walls. His grace is always greater than the reach of our needs. The shelter of Him extends beyond our comprehension. In every circumstance of life, the anchor holds, and His mercies are renewed each morning for the true pilgrim of faith.

He holds us in our failures, our disappointments, and in our night seasons. He holds us in broken relationships, wounding experiences, and failed adventures. When all else fails He remains faithful.

In lonely and desperate times there are resources for us to face the emerging new day. The darkness of night must give way to the dawn’s growing light. Despair will flee in the Light of His countenance. His word beckons the weary one to arise and shine for He will not fail His own (Isaiah 60:1).

“…for a just one falls seven times
and rises up again…”
Proverbs 24:16 (LITV)

The night seasons are given to bring us to greater illumination. In our dependency, upon Him, we are far more intent to learn and be taught of Him. His shelter covers us and unfolds to us a deeper understanding of Him.

“I bless the LORD who gives me counsel;
in the night also my heart instructs me…”
Psalm 16:7 (ESV)

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“And we know that all things work together
for good to them, that love God…”
Romans 8:28

Brian Troxel

The Master’s Use

The Master’s Use

Used of the Master

“If a man, therefore, purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified, and meet for the master’s use, and prepared unto every good work.”
2 Timothy 2:21

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“When a man is right with God,
God will freely use him.
F.B. Meyer

See: The Sanctified Walk

BT