I Would Have

I Would Have

I Would Have

“I would have pulled Joseph out. Out of that pit. Out of that prison. Out of that pain. I would have cheated nations out of the one God would use to deliver them from famine.

I would have pulled David out. Out of Saul’s spear-throwing presence. Out of the caves he hid away in. Out of the pain of rejection. I would have cheated Israel out of a God-hearted king.

I would have pulled Esther out. Out of being snatched from her only family. Out of being placed in a position she never asked for. Out of the path of a vicious, power-hungry foe. I would have cheated a people out of the woman God would use to save their very lives.

I would have pulled Jesus off. Off of the cross. Off of the road that led to suffering and pain. Off of the path that would mean nakedness and beatings, nails and thorns. I would have cheated the entire world out of a Savior. Out of salvation. Out of an eternity filled with no more suffering and no more pain.

And oh friend. I want to pull you out. I want to change your path. I want to stop your pain. But right now I know I would be wrong. I would be out of line. I would be cheating you and cheating the world out of so much good.

Because God knows. He knows the good this pain will produce. He knows the beauty this hardship will grow. He’s watching over you and keeping you even in the midst of this. He’s promising you that you can trust Him. Even when it all feels like more than you can bear.

So instead of trying to pull you out, I’m lifting you up. I’m kneeling before the Father and I’m asking Him to give you strength. To give you hope. I’m asking Him to protect you and to move you when the time is right. I’m asking Him to help you stay prayerful and discerning. I’m asking Him how I can best love you, and be a help to you. I’m believing He’s going to use your life in powerful and beautiful ways. Ways that will leave your heart grateful and humbly thankful for this road you’ve been on.”
– Kimberley Henderson (Published on Being Created in His Image)

“For thou, O God, hast proved us: thou hast tried us, as silver is tried. Thou broughtest us into the net; thou laidst affliction upon our loins. Thou hast caused men to ride over our heads; we went through fire and through water: but thou broughtest us out into a wealthy place”
Psalm 66:10-12

For the true child of God there is no darkness where He does not intend to bring us to the greater light. There is no trial too great that the Great Shepherd will not watch over the soul of His Own. There is no sorrow His comfort cannot fill and no separation too great that He will not compensate with Himself. Let us face this coming year with the true knowledge of His sovereign Wisdom at work on our eternal benefit.

Blessed are those whose strength is in you, in whose heart are the highways to Zion. As they go through the Valley of Baca they make it a place of springs; the early rain also covers it with pools. They go from strength to strength; each one appears before God in Zion”
Psalm 84:5-7

Brian Troxel

Touching Jesus

Touching Jesus

“And Jesus said, ‘Who touched me?’ When all denied, Peter and they that were with him said, Master, the multitude throng thee and press thee, and sayest thou, ‘Who touched me?”
Luke 8:45

Faith is the conduit through which His virtue and power flow. The panacea for the human race is found in the virtue of Him flowing unto all who come to Him by faith.

“And Jesus said, Somebody hath touched me: for I perceive that virtue is gone out of me”
Luke 8:46

It is His virtue that brings healing and salvation to humanity. We read in this passage that many were thronging about Jesus, touching Him but with no consequences. One woman, in her desperation, touched Him in Faith; a living faith sufficient to release the transmission of His Life into her hopeless condition. The flow of that vibrant Life filled her with amazement and fear. There was no reference or ability to prepare her for its wonder! The purpose of God in Christ is to bring us to that place of unconscious dependency upon that virtue continually sustaining and invigorating us. The parable of the vine is the hope of all who aspire to live within His dominion; a perpetual fountain where we are made partakers of the Divine Nature! (2 Peter 1:4)

Through His death on the cross, we were reconciled to God. We were invited into the commonwealth of God in Christ. As glorious as this is, we are now invited to the banqueting table of His provisions to the end we would feast upon Him who is our living bread. It is by our eating and drinking of Him that will grow into Him! We were reconciled by His death, but we are ever being saved by the power of His Life flowing and producing His likeness within. Him.

“For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life
Romans 5:10

Reconciliation is the beginning of His work in us. The Holy Spirit has come to lead and guide us into Him who is the truth and the power of the New Covenant.

“Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me”
John 15:3

The bearing of fruit and the divine enablement to live beyond the resources of self requires an enlargement of our capacity to draw from Him the virtue needed to reveal Him in this world. The works of God through us are dependent upon the Life of Christ within us. Faith is the vital link between His resources and our needs and, even more importantly, the needs of others.

Self-less living, Love, and compassion for others, is bound up in His heart being poured into ours. It is here we most reveal the truth and verity of our abiding in Him.

To be reconciled to Him by His death is one thing. It is quite another thing to be saved, empowered and sent of Him into this dark and destitute world. They who know of His sanctifying Life become vessels prepared and fit for His purposes!

“Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself from what is dishonorable, he will be a vessel for honorable use, set apart as holy, useful to the master of the house, ready for every good work
2 Timothy 2:21

As we partake of Him, we become ready, willing and divinely enabled to do His Work.

“…as my Father hath sent me,
even so send I you”
John 20:21

Brian Troxel

Fyodor Dostoevsky

The Verity of Faith

“let God be true, but every man a liar”
Romans 3:4

“Believe to the end, even if all men went astray and you were left the only one faithful; bring your offering even then and praise God in your loneliness.”
Fyodor Dostoevsky

The reason faith is unshakable is because the author of it, Jesus Christ, remains faithful to those who are the children of its mysteries. By faith we understand, by faith we stand and by faith the wonder of His Life resides and pulsates within our being revealing the Divine Truths of Himself.

“Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea…”
– Psalm 46:2

Brian Troxel

Faith and Understanding

Faith and Understanding

“By faith we understand…”
Hebrews 11:3

Faith is the faculty by which the glorious truths of God become the eternal thoughts and desires in our own hearts.

Faith is the means by which the mystery of Christ becomes woven into the fabric of our life lived here.

Faith is the conduit by which the Word of God produces “living epistles known and read of all men”.

⊃⊂

“Understanding is the reward of faith. Therefore, seek not to understand that you may believe, but believe that you may understand.”
Augustine

Brian Troxel

PODCAST – (14 minutes) To This Man Will I Look

The Foundations of the Lord

PART TWO

(Short Message only 14 minutes long)

…to this man will I look

 

“For all those things hath mine hand made, and all those things have been, saith the LORD: but to this man will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembleth at my word.”
(Isaiah 66:2)

The Gospel of Freedom

The Gospel of Freedom

“For ye know what commandments
we gave you by the Lord Jesus”
1 Thessalonians 4:2

Freedom of self is but a path to bondage and depravity. The Gospel of God offers an entirely new and radical freedom; freedom from self. To hold the words of God in the intellect only, without allowing them to bring us under His Lordship, is the bane of religion. The full salvation of God lies in Him becoming our life in order for us to reveal His.

The “gospel” of today often ignores the fact that God has given us “commandments”. It tends to focus on our freedom rather than His. We receive forgiveness to deal with our guilt, yet our essential self remains unchanged. This is not the full salvation for wherever “self” remains so too does the rebellion, the disobedience and the carnal tendencies which contaminate and refute His Lordship in our lives.

“For the mind of the flesh is death, but the mind of the Spirit is life and peace; because the mind of the flesh is hostile towards God; for it is not subject to God’s law, neither indeed can it be. Those who are in the flesh can’t please God”
Romans 8:6-8

Paul writing to the Church at Thessalonica declared that he had given them commandments concerning their walk and growth in the Lord. If commandments are spoken of today many are offended; they label it “legalism” and cover their ears from the truth. We must stop and ask ourselves where these commandments came from. They came “by the Lord Jesus”.

“For ye know what commandments
we gave you by the Lord Jesus
1 Thessalonians 4:2

What is the spirit and purpose in which they are given to us?

“For this is the will of God,
even your sanctification…”
1 Thessalonians 4:3

A gospel which presents only the truth of justification without the need of becoming vessels which are sanctified, is not able to impart the power and the wonder of His Salvation. Jesus came to save us from our sins, not to offer a salvation to enable us to remain in our sins.

“What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid”
Romans 6:15

Paul prefaced this powerful truth by declaring emphatically:

“For sin shall not have dominion over you:
for ye are not under the law,
but under grace…”
Romans 6:14

If we in truth hold to this powerful word, we must conclude that IF we are under grace sin shall NOT have dominion over us. It is the grace of God that breaks the chains of sin. Grace is not a sentiment; it is the power of God to free us from the dominion of sin. Freedom from sin is a revelation of the measure that our lives are lived under His grace! Grace frees us from the penalty of the Law because it causes us to live above the dictates of the law by the power of the Law of His life in us (read Romans 8:3-4*). That is the true freedom of a life in Christ. The commandments are spiritual and because of that we must walk in the Spirit to fulfill them. Only a spiritual man can fulfill a spiritual law.

The carnal man bristles at the very mention of the word “commandments” for it strikes at the heart of rebellion. One may speak the words of the redeemed yet live and walk under the dominion of the carnal mind. God’s word speaks to all who walk in the flesh.

“So then they that are in the flesh
cannot please God”
Romans 8:8

We may quote scriptures and be involved with a church or some Christian sect, but if we walk in the flesh we “cannot please God”! Those who are truly spiritual fulfill the Law of God for they are partakers of the ONE who came to fulfill the Law, not abolish it!

“Don’t think that I came to destroy the law or the prophets. I didn’t come to destroy, but to fulfill”
Matthew 5:17

Thanks be unto God who has brought a true and powerful salvation to all who by faith enter into a Grace which makes us free from the Law of Sin and Death.

“If the Son therefore shall make you free,
ye shall be free indeed”
John 8:36

The Gospel of Christ is not in Word only; it is revealed in the power to break the dominion of sin and free us from the works of the flesh. The deliverance of God is seen here in our past, in our present, and in a living hope for our deliverance in the future.

“…who delivered (past) us out of so great a death, and does deliver (present); on whom we have set our hope that he will also still deliver us (future)  italics mine
2 Corinthians 1:10

Ω

“For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus
hath made me free from the law of sin and death”
Romans 8:2

Brian Troxel

Have This Mind – Part One

Have This Mind

Part One

“Have this in your mind,
which was also in Christ Jesus,”
Philippians 2:5

“We would see Jesus”

Truth became incarnate in Jesus Christ. We are told many times in the scriptures that Truth is a person; He is the embodiment of the heart and character of God Himself. Jesus boldly declared to His disciples “he that hath seen me hath seen the Father”. Things buried within the Gospel of John are significant and to the human intellect often cryptic and obscure. Only by the gracious illumination of the Holy Spirit do we begin to see the veiled wonders of God. At this particular juncture Jesus chose the words “he that hath seen me” while in other places Jesus would declare “they who are of the truth, hear my voice”. On this occasion the aspect of “seeing” was the vital truth Jesus sought to convey to His disciples.

The life of Christ was lived before His disciples to an extent that others were not privy to. They beheld Him in His private moments, and they knew that He spent time alone with His Father. They witnessed the power of God flow into the lives of countless multitudes in healings, in deliverances and in the demonstration of God’s character such as in the case of the woman taken in adultery. Their exposure to Him in all facets of His life was a comprehensive revelation of the Father.

The response of Jesus to Philip’s seemingly innocent request (John 14:8) was/is heart rending and filled with a piercing truth for us as well; Truth is more than a teaching; more than something learned by the accumulation of knowledge. It is beyond the reach of human thought!

“He that hath seen me
hath seen the Father”
John 14:9

This powerful truth ought to revolutionize our seeking of Him. Truth cannot be contained or held within the precepts of men, for truth must be seen by the same Spirit which initiated His very conception in Mary. Truth is a person. To see Him correctly we must walk, live and abide in that same Spirit who alone can make Him known to us.

He that hath seen me
hath seen the Father.

In other words, Philip, when you beheld me feeding the five thousand by the power of compassion, when you heard me confronting the blindness of the Scribes and the Pharisees, when you saw the lepers healed, the gift of sight given to the blind, me washing the disciple’s feet, and the demonstration of power when I rebuked the storm, all of these things were the revelation of my Father. Truth is more than words; it is expressed in character and works. It is shown in our ability to minister Him to our children, it is revealed in the concourse of everyday life. It is not only the Sunday sermon; it is the Life Christ Himself shining through the medium of our humanity in our every day life. In His life as a man, within the frailty and the humanness of Christ, the glory of God was evident to such an extent that Jesus declared unequivocally: “he that hath seen me, hath seen the Father”.

“It is enough for the disciple that he be like his teacher,
and the servant like his lord”
Mathew 10:25

The Call of God is much more than becoming familiar with His Word, more than the formation of correct doctrines and promises believed. His call to His disciples is to bear His likeness, His character, and His heart in this world!

“But we all, with unveiled face seeing the glory of the Lord as in a mirror, are transformed into the same image from glory to glory, even as from the Lord, the Spirit”
2 Corinthians 3:18

It is in our “seeing” of Him that transformation occurs. While it is good to read the promises of God, the purpose of the Holy Spirit is to cause us to WALK in the promises of God. The contrast between these two is as vast as the gulf between life and death. May we allow the power of the Testimony of Jesus to impact us to the core of our beings with the enormity of His Call.

He that hath seen me
hath seen the Father

Where there is no beholding of Him there can be no change.

Let us consider the words of faithful Job:

“I have heard of thee by the hearing of the ear:
but NOW mine eye seeth Thee.
Wherefore I abhor myself,
and repent in dust and ashes”
Job 42:5-6

Repentance is the fruit of seeing Him. Only in the seeing of Him are we freed from the limitations and confines of our fallen natures to experience the power of His Resurrection Life within.

May our hearts echo the desire of those who came to Philip:

“Sir, we would see Jesus”
John 12:21

Ω

Hearing Him brings us to obedience
Seeing Him brings us to His Likeness

Brian Troxel

PODCAST – The Foundation of the Lord

The Foundation of the Lord

“Therefore everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts on them, may be compared to a wise man who built his house on the rock. “And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and yet it did not fall, for it had been founded on the rock. “Everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not act on them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. “The rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and it fell—and great was its fall.”  (Mat 7:24-27)

 

The Simplicity of Life – Part Two

The Simplicity of Life

Part Two

“Let your garments be always white.
Let not oil be lacking on your head”
Ecclesiastes 9:8 (ESV)

The free and precious gift of God in Christ is revealed in the garments of joy and salvation; unspeakable mercies of the One who died that we may live. Not only did He take upon Himself the shame, the filth and the degradation of all humanity, but he “became sin”. He who knew no sin “became sin” in order to condemn it thereby enabling us to become the very righteousness of God Himself. His intent was that by the deep operations of His Spirit upon willing hearts there would be a manifestation of His righteousness as He subdues our hearts unto Himself.

“For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh…”
Romans 8:3

To what end was the pure manifestation of the Grace and Glory of God?

That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.”
Romans 8:4

God in Christ crucified the weakness of our sinful flesh in order to “fulfill the righteousness of the Law” in people who walk and live in His Spirit. The precious blood of the Lamb has made a new and living way whereby we have access to the Throne of Grace. In Him alone is the power to live and grow into His likeness!

How long will we linger in the throes of unbelief; thinking His righteousness is in word only with no actual power by which we may overcome all sin? How long will we declare that the disobedience of Adam has greater authority than the perfect obedience of our Living Christ! We are here to overcome by Grace. We are here to reveal His Power by our growth into His Righteousness, not by trying to live up to the dictates of the law in the power of our own flesh. Rather as we yield our lives to Him, we will naturally walk and live by the Law of His Life within.

Growth and development into this wonder requires the tenacity of a life ever learning how to Live within the sphere of His enabling grace so “that as He IS so ARE WE in this world”. (1 John 4:17) Let us take a holy Selah here and let the wonder and the power of this glorious Word of God enter our hearts with the enormity of its “breadth, and length, and depth, and height”. (Ephesians 3:18)

Such a walk is not entered into lightly nor is it known by the confessions of the heart or the aptitude of our minds. It is entered into by faith; a living faith, which will not let us rest, compromise or settle for religious platitudes or doctrinal statements. True faith will press a heart ever onward, ever upward and will not rest until our hearts are in full submission unto Him. True faith embraces and rejoices in Christ as our Saviour, in Christ our Justifier, but its passion is to know Him as our Lord and Master.

“Why call ye me, Lord, Lord,
and do not the things which I say?”
Luke 6:46

How is it that we are content with a salvation compromised with sin and failure? How do we settle for forgiveness of our sin without growing in the power of His Life to be free from its power and dominion? Why is it we sympathize with sin rather than contend with it? It is no wonder the world mocks the sad state of much of the church today. It is time to turn again unto Him who is able to present us faultless before His unutterable glory!

“Now unto Him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy…”
Jude 1:24

Wherever the heartbeat of a living faith resides there is a quest for victory, a pursuit for the righteousness of Christ. This can only be known by those who live under His Lordship. Where He reigns, sin flees.

As we take our place as humble disciples in the school of Christ He will direct and teach us to live by His resources, free from our internal struggles and bitterness. It is in this school that we learn His way to keep our garments white even while we walk amidst the corruptions of this world. We learn through failure and repentance. We walk on, trusting and giving heed to the Living Word which cuts and heals, breaks and mends, until we live free in Christ.

Sadly, many would rather live a “declared righteousness” and see little need to keep their garments clean. They are content with compromise, sporadic and inconsistent living, and a faith lacking in the wonder of Him.

“Yet you have still a few names in Sardis, people who have not soiled their garments, and they will walk with me in white, for they are worthy”
Revelation 3:4 (ESV)

God Himself laments that there were only a few who kept their garments white. It is to such that overcome God gives the promise of walking with Him in the whiteness of His Spirit. May we hear His call to keep our garments clean, looking “unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith”.

“Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame”
Revelation 16:15

Brian Troxel

PODCAST – The Mystery of Faith

The Mystery of Faith