Becoming ONE

Becoming One

Becoming One is the result
of following the One Shepherd

“And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice, and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd”
John 10:16

Unity is inevitable where God reigns. Within the secularized landscape of Christendom, there are many who hold to the teachings of men, the agendas of men, and the ways of men. This allows the self to remain intact while claiming to follow the Crucified One. The true child of God who follows the Voice of the Shepherd cannot remain in the shallows of separation and division. Those who hear His voice grow INTO the ONE FOLD because they follow the ONE SHEPHERD. Unity of heart is the incomprehensible work of the Spirit of Christ. There is a fusion in the fire of His love of those who follow Him alone.

“Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently”
1 Peter 1:22

Only through obedience can we know this unifying power. Those who cling to mere teachings of the Shepherd without the corresponding obedience to Him will never feel the fervency of the power of the love of God. It is His Voice that draws and gathers His Own. In the act of abiding in Him, the unifying wonder of His Life joins member to member.

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ,
he is a new creation…”
2 Corinthians 5:17

Unity is the result of a New Creation Life that transcends pride, variance, strife, and the divisive ways of men. Obedience to the truth is how the old leaven of the natural man is put to death (mortified Romans 8:13) by the Spirit of God in those who desire purity of heart. It is the “pure in heart” who see God; it is the pure in heart who are brought “unto the unfeigned love of the brethren”. This purity can only be known by each one “obeying the truth” in the sanctum of their own hearts. Unity is the offspring of obedience. Those who hold only to the tenets of Christ, though loved of Him, will never truly touch the power of this unifying love. Unity cannot be known apart from obedience, for unity, the true Unity of the Body of Christ is the result of His Lordship in our lives.

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

His Lordship is revealed by our obedience. It is the un-crucified self with all its passions, its desire for pre-eminence, it’s holding of unforgiveness, its refusal to humble itself, its inability to feel the press of His Spirit to seek reconciliation, its lack of understanding the need to preserve the Unity of the Spirit, that can never fathom the depths of the Love of Christ.

Sheep and Goats

The Judgment of God upon His own is pronounced upon the nature of the individual, not upon the beliefs of the individual.

“And before Him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left”
Matthew 25:32-33

The sheep are those who have received the Lamb of God and have allowed His Life to permeate their own heart by virtue of being partakers of the Divine Nature. The goats are those who may have experienced the “new birth” but failed to allow the nature of Christ to bring them into submission and obedience to Him. They may cry out “Lord, Lord…” and perform miracles and great “Christian” works yet have never been “known” of Christ Himself. They may have sat under His teachings, known His word, taught others, prayed, and a host of other things; everything except obey His Word and humble themselves to the WAY of Christ. These are the goats who by their very nature believe the things of Christ, but will not submit themselves to the doing of His Will. It takes the Life of Christ to obey the Will of the Father. It is that same Life that unites them into ONE BODY.

“But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light,
we have fellowship one with another…”
1 John 1:7

Brian Troxel

PODCAST – The Four-Fold Revelation

The Four-Fold Revelation
of
Christ in You

“And I looked, and behold, a windstorm came out of the north, a great cloud, and a fire flashing itself, and a brightness to it all around. And out of its midst, like the color of polished bronze, it came, out of the midst of the fire. Also from its midst came the likeness of four living creatures. And this was how they looked: they had the likeness of a man, and four faces were to each, and four wings to each of them, and their feet were straight feet and the sole of their feet like the sole of a calf’s foot. And they sparkled like the color of burnished bronze.  And the hands of a man extended from under their wings on their four sides. And their faces and their wings were to the four of them,  joining each one to the other by their wings. They did not turn in their going, each one went toward the front of their face.  And the likeness of their faces: the face of a man, and the face of a lion, on the right side to the four of them; and the face of an ox on the left to the four of them, and the face of an eagle to the four of them. So their faces were. And their wings were spread upward, to each, the two wings were joined, and two wings of each covering their bodies.  And each went toward the front of their faces. To where the spirit was to go, there they went; they did not turn in their going.  And the likeness of the living creatures: they appeared like coals of burning fire, like the appearance of torches; it was continually circling among the living creatures. And the fire was bright, and out of the fire went forth lightning.  And the living creatures kept running and returning, like the appearance of a flash of lightning
Ezekiel 1:4-14

Brian Troxel

The Sum of Life

The Sum of Life

“So then death worketh in us,
but life in you”
2 Corinthians 4:12

The radical nature of the Kingdom of God is one of mystery and paradox; it is contrary to the constitution of natural man. Entering into it requires the death and renunciation of the self-life in order to touch the wonder of its power. The very LIFE of the Kingdom of God is only available in Jesus. There is “salvation in no other name” and there is LIFE in no other. He ALONE is the Kingdom and He ALONE is the Way into the Kingdom. He is the TRUTH of the Kingdom and He is the LIFE of the Kingdom.

“For the Jews require a sign,
and the Greeks seek after wisdom”
1 Corinthians 1:22

Here Paul sums up the inclinations of the world and the people of God. His people desired signs and wonders and others sought “wisdom” (Greek word “sophia” from which we derive the word philosophy). The nature of the heart of man has not changed. God’s Kingdom will not be found by these means for Paul goes on in the very next verse of scripture:

“But we preach Christ crucified,
unto the Jews a stumblingblock,
and unto the Greeks foolishness”
1 Corinthians 1:23

Christ crucified is the pivotal point upon which the entire purposes of God rest. The Way into this Kingdom is dependent upon the extent of our identification and participation in His death being worked out in our lives. The corresponding revelation of His Life in us will be to the degree of “death” being worked into us. This happens through the operation of His Holy Spirit combined with our own will yielding in true discipleship. Smooth words, elaborate teachings and overt signs and wonders will never replace the power of a crucified life. It is in this place that God’s work must culminate if we would enter into the wonder of His Life. Again Paul continues:

“But unto them which are called,
both Jews and Greeks,
Christ the power of God,
and the wisdom of God”
1 Corinthians 1:24

It is in those who are called that this revelation is made known. The nature of a call requires a response and the call to discipleship is predicated with an “if”. The “if” allows a free-will response from the individual. Entrance into the Kingdom is not by words, understanding, or signs and wonders but by the crucible of the Cross.

“For we which live are alway delivered unto death for Jesus’ sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh”
2 Corinthians 4:11

The end and purpose of all life is “…that the life of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh”.

The summation of the purposes of God for each of His own is to one end and it is to such that we labour to make it so in the lives around us.

“Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus: whereunto I also labour, striving according to his working, which worketh in me mightily”
Colossians 1:28-29

Christ crucified—–Christ glorified,
Self-crucified——Christ glorified.

Brian Troxel

Ministration of the Word

Ministration of the Word

“They that sow in tears shall reap in joy”
Psalm 126:5

We are told in the Parable of the Sower that “the seed is the word of God”. Those who sow such precious seed must do so in the same Spirit in which that Word was given. Many may speak the scriptures, but few sow the “Word of God”. When the word is sown by the Spirit of God it teems with His life and power. There is an impartation into the lives of those who hear with ears of faith; the fire of Life burns, the heart of man is quickened, and Jesus is glorified.

“And they were astonished at his teaching, for he taught them as one who had authority, and not as the scribes”
Mark 1:22

In order for the ministers of God to speak with authority, their lives must be subject to the authority of the Word. Authority comes from submission. Otherwise, if men share His Word but their life is not subject to His Word, that authority of Jesus will be lacking. Even the Roman Centurion knew and understood this.

“For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me: and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it”
Matthew 8:9

The true authority in the Spirit comes to those who are under His authority. His Word has precedence in their lives. It takes very little discernment to know those who serve God and those who do not. There is a fire and the fragrance of Christ’s lordship in the hearts of those who are subject to His will. This touching of His life in one another is called fellowship. The fellowship of the Spirit is not the result of adherence to a teaching, but of Light; His Light resident within His own.

“But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light,
we have fellowship one with another”
1 John 1:7

The fellowship of the Spirit is not a function of teaching but of Light, His Light resident in His own.

Submission to the Word
is revealed in our obedience to it

Brian Troxel

Compromise

Compromise

“Nevertheless among the chief rulers also many believed on him;
but because of the Pharisees they did not confess him,
lest they should be put out of the synagogue”
John 12:42

What was the Holy Spirit’s judgment on this?

“For they loved the praise of men
more than the praise of God”
John 12:43

When men and women lack the fortitude and courage to walk and seek God’s favour on their own, they will invariably seek their identity in “fitting in” with others. Many see the inconsistencies and compromise, yet remain complicit, ignoring the cry of their inner hearts. They succumb to conformity, to the protocols and doctrines of men at the expense of God’s glory. They become traitors to Christ; professing faith while choosing the acceptance of man over the call of God.

The penalty for such betrayal is beyond estimation, not only in this life but for eternity. Families are often destroyed by remaining in the throes of compromise for the sake of a horribly misplaced loyalty; parents (because of a loyalty to man) expose their children to lifeless concepts of God which often results in a life of wandering and futility.

The worth of a thing is determined by the price someone will pay for it. Those who esteem the praises of men more worthy than God’s pay a bitter price in the end. What people esteem becomes the compass by which they direct their life and they who value the approval of men must by necessity wander out of the Way of God.

“The man that wandereth out of the way of understanding
shall remain in the congregation of the dead”
Proverbs 21:16

May the grace of God work in us an uncompromising walk of faith. It is better to walk alone with God than to abide in the congregation of the dead.

“The fear of man bringeth a snare”
Proverbs 29:25

Brian Troxel

PODCAST – The Four Cherubim & God’s Tapestry (an introduction)

The Four Cherubim & God’s Tapestry (an introduction)

“The first creature was like a lion, and the second creature like a calf, and the third creature had a face like that of a man, and the fourth creature was like a flying eagle.” (Rev 4:7)

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

“THE TIME OF SEALING”

“THE TIME OF SEALING”

sound the alarm

“And it shall come to pass at that time
That I will search Jerusalem with lamps, and punish the men
who are settled
* in complacency, who say in their heart,
‘The Lord will not do good, Nor will He do evil.”

ZEPHANIAH 1:12

In this time of silence preceding the conclusion of all that God began in Christ, there is a searching and a measuring of men’s hearts where eternal destinies are being determined. It is a subtle hour and a most critical time as the lamps of some begin to grow dim as the Bridegroom tarries. The Hebrew word used here for settled* (see below) means to become thick, slow and curdled. It speaks of people who start out well but who, as time passes, become set in their ways and are no longer flexible. They are no longer able to flow in the purposes of their God. Their waiting has turned into stagnation; the brightness of their hope has become dim. The vision has turned from a quest and a pursuit into a doctrinal concept that no longer energizes their hearts and minds. This is a slow and certain death; it is the enemy of us all! Slowly the obscurity falls like a veil over the heart and the whispers of the enemy speak with great cunning and craftiness, “what difference does it make, nothing seems to make a difference, I will just “settle” here and live comfortably…” In other words, “The Lord will not do good, nor evil” I will just pass the time here as other men. If calamity comes I will “then” be ok..

It is in this time throughout the history of God’s dealings with men that there is a marking and a sealing; a determining and a measuring of the hearts of His people. In the silence there are great things at work as God prepares for the unveiling of all that He has purposed. May we consider a couple of examples….

“And the LORD said unto him, Go through the midst of the city,
through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads
of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that be
done in the midst thereof. And to the others he said in mine hearing,
Go ye after him through the city, and smite: let not your eye spare,
neither have ye pity: Slay utterly old and young, both maids,
and little children, and women: but come not near any man upon
whom is the mark; and begin at my sanctuary…”

EZEKIEL 9:4 – 6

“And I saw another angel ascending from the east,
having the seal of the living God: and he cried with a loud voice
to the four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea,
Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees,
till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads”

REVELATION 7:2 – 3

It is a Day for seeking out those who “cry and sigh” over the state of His House; to dig deep and hide ourselves within the secret place of the Most High. It is a Day to speak, encourage and admonish the people of God to fight off the slumber of this hour, to pray and build up our lives on “our most Holy Faith”. It is a Day to seek out that fellowship that will challenge and provoke us unto the ardent pursuit of Christ Jesus our Lord. It is a Day to know in the reality of our hearts the setting aside of all that this world can offer to purchase that Pearl of great price. This is a costly thing, more than just a casual walk, more than just a religious concept; it is the Battle for Life…HIS LIFE.

“TO HIM THAT OVERCOMES…”

Can we not hear the Word to us, “TODAY”? May the Lord press upon our hearts that we are brothers and sisters of one great family, and BECAUSE of that we speak, we cry out and we plead with one another that we may assemble ourselves together in fear of the Lord and in the awareness of the hour in which we live!

*Note: קָפָא qāpāʼ: A verb meaning to curdle, to congeal; to become settled, stagnant. It refers to something standing still or slowing down its movement, becoming thick (Ex. 15:8). It is used figuratively of a person in great suffering being curdled, tossed about like hardening cream (Job 10:10). It depicts a dead or stagnant spirit in a person (Zeph. 1:12). It means, used with reference to the heavenly bodies, to shrink, to lose brightness (Zech. 14:6).  (S. Zodhiates)

Brian Troxel

Heart of a Priest – Part 7 – Grace & Truth

Heart of a Priest

Part 7

Grace and Truth

“Who comforteth us in all our tribulation,
that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble,
by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.”
2 Corinthians 1:4

The New Testament truth concerning the priesthood is in stark contrast to that of the Old Testament. In the Old Testament one was part of the priesthood by virtue of birth (with certain qualifications being met); in the New Covenant, we are made kings and priests as our hearts cooperate with the dealings of God in our lives. It is no longer a position but a call whereby the individual becomes a priest by growing in the virtues of our Lord Jesus Christ. As His Nature is imparted into our lives there is growth and a transformative work. No longer are we left powerless; His Life residing in our hearts brings change regardless of our age. It is here that we are afforded much grace. Much more than mere statements or religious doctrines, Truth is a life; nothing less than the Life of Jesus being held by faith within the core of our hearts. Living truth is in itself the expression of grace. We must submit to the working of His Way into our lives. No priest can be true if there is a diminishing of God’s Holy Word, His Call or His hatred of sin. True priests are unwavering in the ministration of truth.

Truth will never violate grace and grace will never violate truth. Jesus in dealing with the woman taken in adultery was moved with great compassion toward her. He spoke to the “religious elite” of His day concerning their own issues and then turned to the woman who was before Him and spoke the gracious words “neither do I condemn you”. Such unmerited grace! The Gospel today is full of this powerful truth, however, the complete words of Jesus are often left out of the sermons for He goes on to say “Go and sin no more”! This is Living Truth where grace and holiness meet.

“Mercy and truth are met together;
righteousness and peace have kissed each other”
Psalm 85:10

“For the law was given by Moses,
but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ”
John 1:17

These expressions are only known in those who have tasted of His judgements and His grace to such an extent that the two are one in word and in deed.

“And hath made* us kings and priests
unto God and his Father”
Revelation 1:6

The unity of these ministrations is evidence that one has walked with God. The imprint of His holiness breaks our hearts. The Word of reconciliation to our brothers and sisters and those who do not yet know Him can only be borne by those in whom beats the heart of a priest.

Many years ago, while teaching a class on electricity and attempting to explain the basics of electrons and molecular concepts, I got thinking about salt. Salt is composed of two elements: sodium and chloride. We are called to be salt in this world, to minister him in every phase of our lives. Salt, like truth, is composed of two elements each of which are poisonous; but combined in God’s wisdom salt becomes indispensable to us. It heals, it preserves and it generally makes things more palatable. Religious ideas of grace or holiness are also deadly. Grace without holiness or holiness without grace will destroy the very fabric of a man’s soul. However, combined in the life of the Son they are the means of my salvation and of those around me.

Men and women who bear this living truth know full well the horrors of who they are apart from Him but in the piercing revelation of His light they cannot help but preach righteousness. Isaiah beheld God (Isaiah 6) and was instantly aware of his own condition (as well as all other men) yet he was a flaming expression of God’s truth and holiness. Those who have seen God cannot preach any other Gospel. They cannot make room for compromise within their own hearts or in the lives of those around them. He who is Holy has called us to be holy.

The garments of the High Priest in the Old Testament were white linen with the colors of Blue, Purple and Red woven in. Each of these colors speak of the wondrous virtues of our Great High Priest which become ours as we walk with Him. The Blue speaks of His Holiness and the Red speaks of Grace and Mercy (Redemption). The royal colour Purple is the result of the blue and the red mingled together (mercy and truth combined into one expression)  to reveal the attributes of Our King.

These things cannot be learned by books or teachings. They become ours through the medium of obedience to our Great High Priest. It must be by the Spirit and through the Spirit until we so live in Him that they are expressed through us IN the Holy Spirit. This is the making of the heart of a true priest of God.

*Note: See Heart of a Priest Part 5 Greek Meaning

Brian Troxel
www.aword.info

Spiritual Identity

SPIRITUAL IDENTITY

“But be ye doers of the word,
and not hearers only,
deceiving your own selves”
James 1:22

Spiritual identity is the fruit of obedience. Those who hear the word without doing it will spend their entire Christian experience void of any sense of spiritual identity. They will remain undeveloped children of God without a sense of knowing their call or expression. This state of many of the people of God in our land is the result of an empty gospel that does not call men and women to radical faith; faith that is not in word and doctrinal statements but a faith that is characterized by obedience. James goes on to say…

“For if any be a hearer of the word,
and not a doer,
he is like unto a man
beholding his natural face in a glass:
For he beholdeth himself,
and goeth his way,
and straightway forgetteth
what manner of man he was”
JAMES 1:23-24

It is in the doing that we grow into the knowing of who our God is and in the discovery of this we begin to lay hold of who HE is in US. Many go from meetings every Sunday, to reading the latest teaching on the internet, going to conferences, and accessing all manner of books and resources. Yet they remain undefined and lost in terms of a real knowing of who they are in God. This dearth of understanding within the household of faith cannot be remedied by more teaching and more sermons. One act of obedience will bring greater clarity to an individual’s heart than twenty sermons; the things of God become clear when we hear His Word and OBEY it.

“But whoso looketh
into the perfect law of liberty,
and continueth therein,
he being not a forgetful hearer,
but a doer of the work,
this man shall be blessed in his deed”
JAMES 1:25

We do not see this expression in the New Testament. Men and women were of such stature that they knew their call and their identity. It is those who have come to know God via obedience that grow into confident expressions of His glory and power. Those who obey not know not. Forgetful hearing will never produce an expression that is able to articulate God with precision and power. Consider Peter as he interacted with the crippled man at the temple gate… “Then Peter said, “Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk”. There was no prayer meeting just the simplicity of a man who knew that he was in God and that God was in him. The same Jesus whom he declared is alive in our hearts today to produce living epistles known and read of all men. The impotent gospel preached in our land is incapable of producing these expressions. The power and authenticity of a thing is revealed by its fruit. We need not look very hard to see what the “churchianity” of today has produced; an environment where many have become insensitive and unaware to the call of God.

God has called us unto GLORY AND VIRTUE not an impotent religious life.

“According as his divine power
hath given unto us all things
that pertain unto life and godliness,
through the knowledge of him
that hath called us to
GLORY and VIRTUE”
2 PETER 1:3

Brian Troxel