Cherith – The Place of Separation

Cherith – The Place of Separation

“Get thee hence, and turn thee eastward,
and hide thyself by the brook Cherith”
1 Kings 17:3

The true path of the Lord will always culminate in the setting apart of a vessel unto Himself. “Cherith” literally means separation, derived from a Hebrew root meaning to “cut off”. This life of separation is not the result of works of the flesh or caused by carnal means; it is always entered into by the simple obedience of an individual unto the Word of the Lord. As such, this place of separation will always be filled with special provisions of God to sustain one in the center of His Will.

“And it shall be, that thou shalt drink of the brook;
and I have commanded the ravens to feed thee there”
1 Kings 17:4

In these times of loneliness and separation God Himself comes in new and profound ways. There is a drawing near, a learning and a dependency upon Him and His provisions; a time of being hid in the wonder of God Himself. This place of separation brings one to new places of freedom from other comforts and even our reliance on friendships for in the presence of God there is room for none other than God Himself.

“And it came to pass after a while,
that the brook dried up…”
1 Kings 17:7

These separations are intended by God to be temporary in the life of His own, not permanent dwelling places, for God’s desire is that the vessel be poured into the lives of others. The special provision of God dries up and the Word of the Lord comes to move on in new power and a closer relationship with Him. The vessel is prepared for greater works by the cutting off of former things. On this occasion there was a widow in need of the touch of the Lord who would also be a source of new sustenance.

“And the word of the Lord came unto him, saying,
Arise, get thee to Zarephath, which belongeth to Zidon,
and dwell there: behold, I have commanded
a widow woman there to sustain thee”
1 Kings 17:8-9

This same work of God was evident in Paul the Apostle who was set aside for three years in the wilderness of Damascus in order to become a chosen vessel in the purposes of God (Galatians 1:15-18). To what end was the separation of Paul?

“To reveal His Son in me…”
Galatians 1:16

Brian Troxel

Thought for Today – Unbelief and the Good News

Thought for Today

Unbelief and the Good News

“Why could not we cast him out?
And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief”
Matthew 17:19

God’s movings and the shining forth of His salvation are proportional to our faith. It is in the crucible of the realities of life that the true condition of the church is revealed. Truth is the vehicle and the means whereby His thoughts concerning us are expressed. We often speak of truth in terms of His love for us, in terms of His promises and His plans and purposes; but Jesus is always “laying the axe to the root” of our lives. His words can be sharp and to the point. We must see that these words in truth are also the proof of His love.

“Because of our unbelief”

This child would have gone on in the condition in which he came. The agony of his father would have remained unchanged, the situation unaffected by the prayers of the unbelieving disciples. It is here that Jesus presented the truth of the matter. It was not a word given to condemn; it was given to them to arise from where they were into where He had called them to be.

Unbelief is not something about which we should feel condemned. It is His desire that we face our unbelief with the certainty that He has something better, fuller and more blessed concerning our walk in Him. His sharp word spoken to our unbelief is filled with the heart of One who is calling us to better things. It is our response to His word wherein lies the crisis. Do we turn a deaf ear to this reproof or do we acknowledge it. The truth is that the our powerlessness is in the condition of our heart and not in His power? Are we offended by this word or do we feel the promise pulsating within it?

There is always a cure for unbelief, but there is no cure for a heart that refuses the verdict of Jesus. His exhortations are always given to us in order that we may lay these things to heart and not make excuses; to let His words cut asunder our hardness of heart and turn to Him for the fuller measure of all that He is.

“Ye have sown much, and bring in little…
Thus saith the Lord of hosts;
Consider your ways”
Haggai 1:6-7

We must consider our ways for unbelief is the fruit of how we walk, how we think and how we live. Let us hear these words of exhortation and count them as promises of greater things. His heart is full and His call goes out to any who would hear.

“Unto you first God,
having raised up his Son Jesus,
sent him to bless you,
in turning away every one of you from his iniquities”
Acts 3:26

It is called the Good News for in turning from our ways we will find His!

“Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness
and forbearance and long-suffering;

not knowing that the goodness of God
leadeth thee to repentance?”

Romans 2:4

Brian Troxel

Thought for Today – Arise and Shine

Thought for Today

Arise and Shine

“Arise, shine! For your light has come,
and the glory of Yahweh has risen on you.
For look! darkness shall cover the earth,
and thick darkness the peoples,
but Yahweh will rise on you,
and his glory will appear over you”
Isaiah 60:1

God calls to us to shine though darkness is covering the earth. He sends His light to us in the face of Jesus Christ that we may “arise” in the growing night. It is in Christ that the arising glory of God empowers and strengthens His own to be beacons of Hope to the lost. Our light has come; His life in us is the light of men. His Life is our Light.

“In Him was life
And the Life is the Light of men”
John 1:4

The Life of Christ within is our salvation. Teaching is good and necessary for a season but the teaching must give way to the Life. Teaching must produce a hunger for Him to live and reign within our hearts. In hearing of His life, the true in heart launch their lives into the great ocean of all that He is. The teaching of His extraordinary grace must produce lives that are not content with the “hearing” of His goodness; but like Paul we cry out to know experimentally the “width and length and depth and height” of all that He is (Ephesians 3:18). There is an inward pursuit to “know Him” (Philippians 3:10) for it is in the true knowing of Him we are enabled to walk in the power and wonder of His salvation.

Our living Hope is not based on outward words; our hope is sure because of the Christ within. He is our hope, He is our salvation and He is the substance and surety of all that God has promised.

“To them God willed to make known
what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles:
which is Christ in you, the hope of glory”
Colossians 1:27

May we arise in this hour being fully persuaded of His promises. Come to Him with full intent to drink of the waters of His salvation from the living well of His own being.

“Ho, everyone who thirsts
Come to the waters…”
Isaiah 55:1

Ω

“Blessed are those who hunger
and thirst for righteousness…”
Matthew 5:6

The More of God

The More of God

“And when they had prayed,
the place was shaken where they were assembled together;
and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost,
and they spake the word of God with boldness”
Acts 4:31

They prayed and the place was shaken. They prayed together (in unity) and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost! They had already received the Baptism of the Holy Spirit but this was a fresh outpouring. Whatever we have received… there is more; whatever may be our current understanding of the Body of Christ… there is more. No matter where we are in Him there is more. In our indifference we settle for ordinary and think nothing of the more. We are not stirred by the prayer of Jesus “Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” If our hearts are satisfied with less than His manifest presence in our midst we are a short sighted people.

The secret of His presence is found in the unity of hearts, purity of purpose and a genuine love of His people. This was not a church denomination or some isolated group; this was the Body of Christ giving themselves up to God and His purposes. They were not special; they were simply His. They loved His people without division; they were One in Him and the prayer prayed was the expression of One heart and One Spirit.

Not only was the place shaken when they prayed, but the infilling of the Holy Spirit gave them the boldness to declare the Word of God with power. We speak of the baptism of the spirit in our day but where is the power and the impact of it on our brothers and sisters and the world at large? It is time to turn from our ways, repent and seek Him with earnestness of heart; to recognize the little with which we are satisfied. The result of living in His Spirit is to ONE END and that is to glorify Him alone. He must increase and we must decrease.

“And when they had prayed,
the place was shaken where they were assembled together;
and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost,
and they spake the word of God with boldness”
Acts 4:31

This is the testimony of those who live for one purpose: to glorify God and honor Him by the life they live. God will always respond with power and glory whenever and wherever His people please Him.

Brian Troxel
www.aword.info

Thought for Today – Love

Thought for Today

Love The Fruit of Obedience

“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

Obedience is the means by which God brings His own unto His end: a pure heart. Love is the perfection of God within an individual’s life. Those who “love not, know not God”. It takes little effort for others to see Him when God’s Love is resident in a life. Understanding deep things, functioning in gifts and ministrations are all good but if we have not love “we are nothing”. To be devoid of love is to be empty of God. When people stop caring over the condition and state of another life they have essentially stopped living. Life consists of loving, caring, encouraging and exhorting for all of these expressions proceed from the same Source.

“For whom the LORD loves He reproves,
Even as a father corrects the son in whom he delights”
Proverbs 3:12

“As ye know how we exhorted and comforted
and charged every one of you,
as a father doth his children…”
1 Thessalonians 2:11

The well-spring of all true expressions of the Holy Spirit flow from the Father’s heart into the lives of those who through the medium of obedience have their hearts purified with a fervent love of God’s people.

The Staff and the Rod of the Shepherd are both wielded by the same heart
to bring us to the same end. David found comfort in both and so should we

The measure of an individual’s life is known by the love beating within one’s heart for the life of the Son in those around us.

Love is the fire which births the words of life, the fire of life and the works of life.

“By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples,
if ye have love one to another”
John 13:35

Brian Troxel
www.aword.info

 

The Mystery of God and His Appearing

PODCAST – from Boulder Street Church

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Thought for Today – The ING of Life

Thought for Today

The “ING” of Life –

“If you will not believe,
surely you will not be established”
Isaiah 7:9

Believing in God is not a one-time event. In a true and vital reality, it is to be more equated to breathing than some momentary experience. The Hebrew words used for “believe” and “established” are expressed here in the imperfect tenses. The imperfect tense would suggest (for the sake of clarity) these words culminating in an “ing”, indicating an ongoing and uncompleted work. It is in our believing that our lives will be in the ongoing work of being established. The work of the Holy Spirit is ever embellishing, ever rooting and establishing us in Christ. It is in the ongoing reliance upon Him where His work takes on the power and substance of true in-wrought character and stability in our lives.

“If ye continue in my word,
then are ye my disciples indeed”
John 8:31

Discipleship is not a fleeting momentary experience. It is a life-long necessary experience. As breathing is to our natural life so is believing, trusting and faithing in our relationship with Him. The life of the branch consists in its live and continuous connection to the vine. Jesus in this parable uses the word “abide”. It is here within the context of this one living principle that we discover the wonders and glory of the increasing of His Kingdom within our own hearts.

“If ye abide in me,
and my words abide in you,
ye shall ask what ye will,
and it shall be done unto you”
John 15:7

This life of abiding, believing, and trusting in Him is an active principle of life. Any true expression of faith is revealed in obedience and response to His Word. To abide in His word means to respond to its influence and lordship. It is not uncommon to see a dead branch connected to a living plant. The connection is there but the dead branch no longer has a live relationship with its source. The identity of the branch is known by the fruit it bears. We see a branch bearing grapes we know that it is a grape vine. The fruit is the signature of the life of the vine. They who do not abide in Him lose their identity and confidence in Him. When people lose their identity they have no ability to impact the lives around them. Faith becomes a thing rather than a life. It becomes an ideal or a teaching rather than a heartbeat. This is what death is in our spiritual lives. Faith without works, branches without fruit and cold dead hearts without His life being the continuous inspiration of our very breath are the symptoms of a decaying branch.

“Every branch not bearing fruit in Me,
He takes it away”
John 15:2 (BLB)

Ω

“But become doers of the Word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. Because if anyone is a hearer of the Word, and not a doer, this one is like a man studying his natural face in a mirror; for he studied himself, and has gone away, and immediately he forgot of what kind he was. But the one looking into the perfect law of liberty, and continuing in it, this one not having become a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in his doing”
James 1:22-25

Brian Troxel
www.aword.info

Thought for Today – Mercy –

Thought for Today

Mercy

“You have magnified Your mercy
which You have shown to me in saving my life.
And I am not able to escape to the mountain
lest some evil overtake me and I die.
Behold, now, this city is near, to flee there,
and it is a little one. Please let me escape there!”
Genesis 19:19

This is the first instance in which mercy is mentioned in the scriptures. God’s impending judgement upon Sodom could not be executed until Lot left the city (because of Abraham’s prayer). God told Lot to go to the mountain to be safe but Lot was fearful and called upon God’s mercy to circumvent God’s will! Rather than obeying God he used God’s mercy to walk in a partial obedience. Such is the half-hearted response to God throughout the history of man. God granted Lot’s request but it is a sad testimony.

This scripture came to mind the other day as I was praying. I found myself asking God for His mercy to do His will. Not only did the above scripture come to mind but also the following:

“For this reason I make request to you,
brothers, by the mercies of God,
that you will give your bodies as a living offering,
holy, pleasing to God, which is the worship
it is right for you to give him”
Romans 12:1 (BBE)

These two passages show the contrasting ways in which we avail ourselves of God’s mercy; one for partial obedience and the other as a complete offering of ourselves to God. Though God may allow the partial we must recognize our tremendous need of His mercy to walk in full submission to Him. True obedience is only possible by the outworking of His mercy in our lives.

The natural man cannot walk with God; the unregenerate heart will always insist on its own way. To whatever extent our lives are yielded to Him will be the measure of His ministrations of grace and mercy being received.

“Thou in thy mercy
hast led forth the people which thou hast redeemed”
Exodus 15:13

Brian Troxel
www.aword.info

Thought for Today – The Knowledge of God

Thought for Today

sinnomore

Sin and the Knowledge of God

“Awake to righteousness, and sin not;
for some have not the knowledge of God:
I speak this to your shame”
1 Corinthians 15:34

Those who do not address sin in themselves know little of the righteousness of God. The knowledge of the righteousness of Christ is revealed in corresponding measure to our hatred of sin.

Our attitude toward sin is the revelation of our perception of Him and His Righteousness.

To love righteousness is to hate iniquity.

“Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity;
therefore God, even thy God,
hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness…”
Hebrews 1:9

Brian Troxel
www.aword.info

The Invitation – Who Will Go For US?

The Invitation

PART TWO

“Who will go for us?”

“Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying,
Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?
Then said I, here am I; send me”
Isaiah 6:8

In other words, who will represent Me (God) in godliness, righteousness and show forth my character in all their ways. It is one thing to have a dream, a word or a gift. It is another thing entirely to reveal the very character of God Himself.

True Leadership in God’s house exists when His call is fused with character and quality of being. Had David rejoiced in Saul’s death he would not have been a “man after God’s heart”. Had Moses, when God tested him to stand aside while God destroyed Israel to make Moses a great nation, agreed to such a proposal he would have utterly failed to represent God’s heart. Had David slain Saul when God presented the divine opportunity to seize the Kingdom by carnal means he would have failed to represent the heart of God. Those who are called to places of authority will know of such testings and it is in knowing His heart that the approval of God is gained. The Gifts of God without the character of God will always lack His authority and His approval. The gifts may bring a vessel honor and fame in this world but they will never gain the approval of God. There will always be an emptiness which will haunt the disobedient and gifted one.

Within God’s House there are vessels of honor and dishonor.

“But in a great house
there are not only vessels of gold and of silver,
but also of wood and of earth;
and some to honor, and some to dishonor”
2 Timothy 2:20

In the verse preceding this one Paul states… “Let everyone that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity”. This is the true test of the authentic vessels of the Lord. Saul prophesied and Balaam prophesied an infallible word of God yet they were perverse in heart and spirit.

“Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward, and perished in the gainsaying of Core. These are spots in your feasts of charity, when they feast with you, feeding themselves without fear: clouds they are without water, carried about of winds; trees whose fruit withereth, without fruit, twice dead, plucked up by the roots”
Jude 1:11-12

These are blemishes within the assembly of God’s people. They may function in gifts, ministries, and places of leadership and yet be utterly false in the eyes of the Lord (Matthew 7:21-23). They may see and hear right things but it is by their fruits they are known; how they conduct themselves and whether or not they seek the welfare of God’s people even in the face of adversity and rejection.

“Giving no offence in anything, that the ministry be not blamed: But in all things approving ourselves as the ministers of God, in much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses, In stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labours, in watchings, in fastings; By pureness, by knowledge, by longsuffering, by kindness, by the Holy Ghost, by love unfeigned, By the word of truth, by the power of God, by the armour of righteousness on the right hand and on the left, By honour and dishonour, by evil report and good report: as deceivers, and yet true; As unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and, behold, we live; as chastened, and not killed; As sorrowful, yet alway rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things” 2 Corinthians 6:3-10

The true ministrations of God approve themselves by their conduct in all phases of life.

“Who will go for us?”

This is a far more penetrating question than many realize. It is a question which has more to do with who we are than what we do or say.

“Blessed are the pure in heart
for they shall SEE God”

Ω

“God’s plan is to make much of the man,
far more of him than of anything else.
Men are God’s method.
The Church is looking for better methods;
God is looking for better men
― E.M. Bounds, Power Through Prayer

Brian Troxel
www.aword.info