Path to Ministry – Servanthood

The Path to Ministry

Servanthood

“I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing:
therefore, choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live”
Deuteronomy 30:19

The way of God is ever before us. His call, His purposes and His desire are presented unto us throughout the scriptures. Our life in Him is bound up in the choices we make. By our choices, this life in Him is either discovered or lost.

“Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?”
Romans 6:16

Mankind was created for obedience; it is the pathway to freedom. The above scripture reveals that one’s choice (yielding) determines whose servant they will be.

Whom or what we serve is the revelation of whose servant
we truly are regardless of what we profess!

The wisdom of God is clear and simple. All our professions, declarations and outward shows of religious activity are weighed in the balances of true obedience. Obedience is the fulcrum by which our true relationship with God is revealed. If I yield myself to sin, I am the servant of sin, regardless of my profession. Truth is truth and it is in “becoming” alive unto Him whereby we are made free from the power of sin over our lives. The true wonder of our “becoming” servants of God is the result of His victory being wrought out in the reality of our daily lives.

Servanthood to God is the highest call. A true servant of God serves Him, chooses Him and obeys Him from their heart. The individual who truly serves and obeys God, lives and walks in the Victory of Christ Himself. Without this victory we do not come to know the power and the glory of being a “servant of God”.

“Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ,
called to be an apostle…”
Romans 1:1

The depth and power of Paul’s apostolic expression was in corresponding measure to His servanthood to Christ. Whenever Paul defined his relationship to Christ, he always expressed it as servanthood not as apostleship. His apostolic expression was the result of his servanthood – not the other way around.

“I thank Him who enabled me, Christ Jesus our Lord,
because He counted me faithful, appointing me to service”
1 Timothy 1:12

Paul’s appointment to service was a result of his faithfulness to God. We must discover that the way into the true ministry to which God has called us will only be known by our faithfulness in serving and obeying Him.

We live in a day in which many of God’s people do not know their call or purpose in God. This dilemma can only be solved through the medium of obedience. Without obedience to God alone the riddle of the call of God to each of His own will remain unsolved and unfulfilled. It is in the yielding of ourselves unto obedience that we become servants of righteousness. If we yield ourselves unto sin, we become servants of sin. Jesus declared emphatically:

“No man can serve two masters…”
Matthew 6:24

Ministry today is often presented as serving people, a church, or an organization. In reality the true ministry of God serves Him, speaks His words and works His works.

“For am I now seeking the favor of men, or of God?
Or am I striving to please men?
For if I were still pleasing men,
I wouldn’t be a servant of Christ
Galatians 1:10

An individual who seeks the esteem or favor of others cannot be at the same time a servant of God! Compromise is the womb of spiritual death. True humility frees an individual from the opinions of others and is the fragrance of a life in submission to God alone. There is much compromise within “Christendom” today. There is an impotency within the lives of those who seek the approval of men rather than God. Truth has been rendered powerless for it is often presented through the lives of those who do not know the workings of the Cross of Christ. It is the Cross which frees us from ourselves and bring us into singular devotion unto Christ.

“Paul, an apostle, (not of men, neither by man,
but by Jesus Christ, and God the Father…)”
Galatians 1:1

Any ministry which validates itself by something other than doing and being a servant of Christ, will never know the power of a true servant of God.

Jesus prefaced His word, “No man can serve two masters”, with the need for a singular heart.

“The light of the body is the eye:
if therefore thine eye be single,
thy whole body shall be full of light”
Matthew 6:22

The Light and Life of Christ fills the heart which is single in its purpose to serve God alone.

Paul summed up his life in very simple terms:

“separated unto the Gospel of God”
Romans 1:1

Σ

“Set your affection on things above,
not on things on the earth”
Colossians 3:2

Brian Troxel

Quote for Today – EM Bounds

Quote for Today

“Trust always operates in the present tense. Hope looks toward the future. Trust looks to the present. Hope expects. Trust possesses. Trust receives what prayer acquires. So, what prayer needs, at all times, is abiding and abundant trust”
– E.M. Bounds

Quote for Today – CR Oliver

Quote for Today

The Awakening on the Ile of Lewis Scotland

In every awakening, there is someone who prepares their heart and desires that others do the same. The element of heart preparation is crucial to any move of God.

A mid-century example is found in the Awakening which took place on the Ile of Lewis in 1949.

When Christine and Peggy (elderly Presbyterians in the 1950’s) began praying for a sovereign move of God over their town of Barvis, on the Ile of Lewis, in Scotland, they sanctified themselves and pledged to pray every evening from 9pm to 3am. Soon, a group of men, led by her pastor, began a prayer meeting at the same times in a Barn. Several months went by while the purging of all spiritual dross was taking place. Finally, one young man stood and cried out to God saying, “My heart is pure, my hands are clean, it is time for you Lord to keep your promise and answer our prayers.” When they opened the barn doors, approximately 300 souls were prostrate in the adjacent field, under conviction of their sins. No preacher had preached, no music had been sung, no appeal had been given—just the power of the Holy Ghost brought conviction and conversion.

“Even so Lord Come”!

Trusting God in the Now

Trusting God NOW

“What I am doing you do not understand now”
JOHN 13:7

Can we trust that this is so in the now of our life? Is there a situation, a perplexity, a painful circumstance that seems to linger without any “proof” that there is an end in sight? Can we with the faith and trust of a child look to the unseen hand of God and believe that even in this HE IS AT WORK? His ways are higher, deeper and motivated by a love and desire to bring us to a greater relationship with HIM. He will not waste or squander the short and precious time that we have here. It is our part to behold HIS work and believe in the hidden hand of HIS wisdom to work for us “the exceeding, and eternal weight of glory”while we by faith walk in the circumstances before us.

“What I am doing you do not understand NOW”

This is the statement of a wise and gracious Father who is working, at this moment, to bring to pass HIS PURPOSES in our life. Though we may not yet see we believe that HE who knows us best loves us most! The clay must be firmly and painfully pressed and molded, the gold heated and tried in the furnace. The lukewarm heart must be subjected to circumstances to revive its warmth and passion for Him, the prodigal son “must come to himself”, and the fruitful branch must be pruned. All these things ARE FOR OUR BENEFIT AND LEARNING.

“What I AM DOING you do not understand now”

Can we see above the storm clouds that this is HIS HAND? Could Joseph possibly grasp that his “brothers” selling him into the hands of rough and heathen men was God’s “DOING”? From God’s perspective HE was sending a man into Egypt, (Psalm 105:17) to one day be the means of deliverance to these same brothers. From the misery and drudgery of slavery and prison rose a wise and tested PRINCE; one whom the fires, darkness and testing did not destroy but were actually servants of the MOST HIGH GOD.

“For You, O God, hast proved us: you have tried us, as silver is tried.You brought us into the net; You laid affliction upon our loins. Thou hast caused men to ride over our heads; we went through fire and through water: but you have brought us out into a wealthy place”
PSALM 66:10 – 12

A wealthy Christian life is one that is going through the processes of HIS LIFE. These are not ones who cry and despair of their poverty; they have discovered and have tasted of the wealthy place. Their waters fail not in drought; their resources are hidden and true. They are like trees that “bear fruit”in every season for their roots are drinking of the River of Life (Revelation 22:2). Let us not succumb to the present circumstances but let us in FAITH and TRUST believe in the ONE that says

“WHAT I AM DOING YOU DO NOT UNDERSTAND NOW,
BUT YOU WILL KNOW AFTER…”

JOHN 13:7

Σ

“We cannot always trace God’s hand,
but we can always trust God’s heart”
Charles Spurgeon

Brian Troxel

I Beseech You

I Beseech You

“I beseech you, brethren,
suffer the word of exhortation.”
Hebrews 13:22

 

True exhortation flows from the lives of those who see the dimness and feel the apathy of the hour in which we live. A slumber has settled upon His Church, but even in that there are those who are beginning to sense the coming incursion of darkness; a virulent uprising against all who are of the light. They who slumber in this deceptive indifference, if not addressed, will culminate in an inability to “stand in the evil day” which is upon us.

Exhortation is shunned and detested by those whom drowsiness is overtaking, even as those who are on the verge of sleep hate the sound of anything that keeps them awake. It is an irritation and a thing to be avoided.

The prayer of the Night Watchman is priestly and borne by those who know their own weakness. There is a comprehension of the necessity to be clothed in the life and power of Christ to stand in this evil Day.

“Consider and hear me, O Lord my God:
lighten mine eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death”
Psalm 13:3

There is a slumber which is unto death. A pervasive and powerful contagion of this deadly slumber has fallen upon His Church. The lamps of the unwise are failing and the residue of the oil of the Spirit is lacking within the hearts of many. It is a poverty of spirit resulting from a heart that does not know its own state.

The Church OF the Laodiceans knew not they were blind; the Church of Sardis said they were alive, yet in God’s estimation they were dead. It is the presumptuous who become careless in thinking that because we are of His Church, we need not be diligent. It is upon people who have known Him that this deception falls:

“For the Lord hath poured out upon you the spirit of deep sleep, and hath closed your eyes: the prophets and your rulers, the seers hath he covered”
Isaiah 29:10

WHY?

“Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honour me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men…”
Isaiah 29:13

Whenever and wherever there are people who know little of repentance and humility it is because they know Him not. Repentance is the atmosphere of those who have touched the glory of the Almighty. No flesh can remain unbowed in the majestic presence of God. Those who speak lightly of this hour are indeed blind to the intensity and the ramifications of all which is about to transpire.

“And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake:
but he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved”
Mark 13:13

Those who “endure unto the end” will be those who have been willing to be despised of all men (including God’s own people) for the sake of His name.  Those who in the time of a false comfort have “sounded the alarm” to call God’s people to walk in righteousness and to warn them of the coming storm.

Because you kept my command to endure, I also will keep you from the hour of testing, which is to come on the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth. I am coming quickly! Hold firmly that which you have, so that no one takes your crown”
Revelation 3:10-11

Let us hold fast in this hour, our lamps burning by the oil of His Spirit, standing in the midnight watch for His coming.

This is God’s Word to His Watchmen of this hour:

“Blow ye the trumpet in Zion,
and sound an alarm in my holy mountain:
let all the inhabitants of the land tremble:
for the day of the Lord cometh,
for it is nigh at hand”!
Joel 2:1

Those who despise the ministry of exhortation do so at their own peril for the Day of the Lord is upon us. The Alarm is to be sounded! Let the true ministers of the Lord weep between the porch and the altar for the people of God.

“Let the priests, the ministers of the Lord,
weep between the porch and the altar,
and let them say, Spare thy people, O Lord”
Joel 2:17

It is the hireling and false shepherds who speak of peace and safety in this hour of great danger. It is the voice of the enemy who speaks pleasant things in the day of preparation. Those who slumber and are not prepared will fall with devastation and judgment. Many who should be warning God’s people of this hour have instead become blind and dumb.

“His watchmen are blind: they are all ignorant, they are all dumb dogs, they cannot bark; sleeping, lying down, loving to slumber”
Isaiah 56:10

Like dogs unable to bark, they cannot sound the alarm for they are blind and spiritually ignorant of the Day which is upon us; they love the comfort of slumber. They speak of “smooth things” because that is what the people want to hear. Their comforting and soothing words falsely assure them of their standing in God while lulling them to sleep.

“But take heed to yourselves, for fear that your hearts become over-full of the pleasures of food and wine, and the cares of this life, and that day may come on you suddenly, and take you as in a net: for so it will come on all those who are living on the face of all the earth”
Luke 21:34

Ω

“I beseech you, brethren,
suffer the word of exhortation.”
Hebrews 13:22

Brian Troxel

SHILOH!

SHILOH!

“The scepter will not depart from Judah, nor the ruler’s staff from between his feet, until HE comes to whom it belongs (Shiloh*). To him will the obedience of the peoples be”
Genesis 49:10

The Scepter of God has passed from Judah. He to whom it belongs has come; Jesus the Christ who now rules and reigns! It is HIS government and rule to which all the kingdoms of this world will bow.

“For to us a child is born. To us a son is given; and the government will be on his shoulders. His Name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace”
Isaiah 9:6

The long-awaited Day is upon us with the sifting of the nations and the hearts of all who dwell upon the earth (Revelation 3:10). Everyone will be subjected to these siftings for the Day of the Lord is to try all people of every kindred, nation and tongue. Jew, Gentile, Barbarian: all will be tried in the balances of God. It is by Him that all things will be determined.

This SHILOH unto whom all things belong is the Son of Man, the Son of David and a Priest after the order of Melchizedek. There is therefore now no longer Jew or Gentile**(see note below) to whom the promises belong, for the “promises of God are yeah and amen in HIM”.(2 Corinthians 1:20) These promises are only unto those who are in Him! There is salvation in none other. He is the keeper and the summation of all the covenants. He is the fulfilment of all the promises of God and through the offering of Himself all other offerings are obsolete. The Book of Hebrews boldly declares that in the loins of Abraham the Levitical and Aaronic priesthood paid homage to the greater priesthood which was to come (Hebrews 7:9-12).

“For this Melchizedek, king of Salem, priest of God Most High, who met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings and blessed him, to whom also Abraham divided a tenth part of all (being first, by interpretation, “king of righteousness”, and then also “king of Salem”, which means “king of peace”; without father, without mother, without genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor end of life, but made like the Son of God), remains a priest continually…”
Hebrews 7:1-3

The writer of Hebrews continues with this prophetic statement…

Now consider how great this man was, to whom even Abraham, the patriarch, gave a tenth out of the best plunder They indeed of the sons of Levi who receive the priest’s office have a commandment to take tithes of the people according to the law, that is, of their brothers, though these have come out of the body of Abraham, but he whose genealogy is not counted from them has accepted tithes from Abraham, and has blessed him who has the promises. But without any dispute the lesser is blessed by the greater”!
Hebrews 7:4-7

The act of Abraham bringing tithes to this Melchizedek, and the act of Melchizedek blessing him, clearly demonstrates this transcendent Priesthood of God (not that Melchizedek was Christ, but he was a type of Him who was to come)!

David moving in the Spirit of prophecy spoke of this ONE who would come after the order of Melchizedek; (Jesus perplexed the Pharisees in asking them the meaning of this same Psalm). (Matthew 22:42-46)

“The Lord hath sworn, and will not repent, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek”
Psalm 110:4
(Read the whole Psalm for it speaks to our Day of His return and the ministrations of Judgment upon this world).

It is this One of whom it is declared:

“To Him will the obedience of the peoples* be”

The true people of God bring their obedience to Him; not with lip service or with feigned faith and empty prayers, but with willing and pure hearts. Unto Him shall the worship, the gathering and the obedience be. Anything less will be cast into the fires of God. A gospel which declares faith without obedience is not the Gospel of God. The true Gospel is to declare to the nations the Good News by which fallen man can rise from the ashes of rebellion and disobedience unto “the obedience OF Faith”!

“but has NOW been disclosed and through the prophetic writings has been made known to all nations, according to the command of the eternal God, to bring about the obedience OF faith
Romans 16:26

What do the prophetic writings declare? What has NOW been disclosed?

“To him will the obedience of the peoples be”

Let the Truth and the Glory of Shiloh
penetrate our hearts afresh!

*Note: Shiloh שִׁילֹה šiylōh: A masculine proper name meaning Shiloh. It is a noun meaning whose it is or he whose it is (Gen 49:10). The NIV renders it to whom it belongs; the NASB uses Shiloh with a note. The KJV translates it as Shiloh.
**Note: Galatians 3:28, Colossians 3:11, Romans 2:28-29, 3:21-31, 9:6-8, Ephesians 2:11-22, 1 Corinthians 12:13, 1John 2:2, Galatians 2:11-20, 3:14-16, 4:22-31; Hebrews 13:20; John 1:29; 5:37-40 to list but a few.
*Note: "Peoples" (Plural) To all Nations!

Brian Troxel

Quote for Today – John Owen

Quote for Today

“It is to be feared that very many have little knowledge of the main enemy that they carry about them in their bosoms. This makes them ready to justify themselves, and to be impatient of reproof or admonition, not knowing that they are in any danger” (2 Chronicles 16:10)
― John Owen