Podcast – The Eyes of God
“…and in the center and around the throne, four living creatures full of eyes in front and behind.” (Rev 4:6)
“This charge* I commit unto thee, son Timothy,
according to the prophecies which went before on thee,
that thou by them mightest war a good warfare…”
1 Timothy 1:18
The word translated “charge” in the above scripture is actually a command in the Greek (see note below). The promises of God are given to His own that, by receiving them, they may war rightly to see them come to pass. The promises of God require warfare to be real and vital in the lives of His own.
“And if a man also strive for masteries,
yet is he not crowned, except he strive lawfully”
2 Timothy 2:5
In his second letter to Timothy, Paul uses the Olympic athlete as an example to observe and be instructed thereby. Paul follows this statement declaring:
“Consider what I say;
and the Lord give thee understanding in all things”
2 Timothy 2:7
There is a striving and a contending for the crown of the call of God upon us. Few of God’s people comprehend the strenuous effort required in “laying hold” of the prize of our call in Christ. The apathy and the complacency of many is a source of suffering for those who know God. The sum of all the energies of Paul were expended in his pursuit of laying hold of God.
“Every man who strives in the games exercises self-control in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown, but we an incorruptible. I therefore run like that, not aimlessly. I fight like that, not beating the air, but I beat my body and bring it into submission, lest by any means, after I have preached to others, I myself should be rejected”. (“Unapproved, unworthy, spurious, worthless. In a passive sense meaning disapproved”)
1 Corinthians 9:25-27
Paul says he fights like that! He is fully involved (spirit, soul and body) in the fight of faith. He has one resolve in the entirety of his being. He is fully persuaded in his press to obtain the Crown OF Life to which he has been called. His life bears evidence of the faith and fire of God burning within! There is no value in glibly quoting the scriptures if we lack the evidence of faith in our daily life. How it must weary God that there be contentment in the quoting of scriptures without the corresponding evidence; but rather families out of order, poorly handled finances, lives lived in pursuit of other things, and an inability to impart the power of faith into the lives of those around them. Paul, in the passion of the Spirit of God, cries out:
“So run, that ye may obtain”!
1 Corinthians 9:24
The Christian life is not about just believing, it is about obtaining!
“Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible”
1 Cor. 9:25
“For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ”. 1 Thess. 5:9
“Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ”
2 Thess. 2:14 (what a staggering call)
“Therefore I endure all things for the elect’s sakes, that they may also obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus…”
2 Timothy 2:10
“For by it the elders obtained a good report”
“Who through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions…”
The list is too long and too precious to be listed without prayerful consideration of each one as a powerful truth. I am stirred this morning as I consider the grace and mercy of God, and the ethos of a generation who know little of the cost nor the power associated with the call of God. There is a generation who find contentment in words rather than a life of godliness.
“Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ”
How few understand the cry of Paul’s heart, “that I may win Christ”. To those who do not pursue the person of Christ, this statement will be an enigma and a mystery. There will be an inability to see the pure truth contained within its wonder. The secret of the Lord is with them who fear Him, and it is to such that He reveals His Covenant (Psalm 25:14). The power of this Word ignites a hunger within and a thirst which cannot be quenched. Oh, the folly of words without fire, purpose without passion, and a powerless Christian gospel which does not birth a singular pursuit of Him! Life lived outside the grip of the fire of His love is meaningless and vain. He is the One Object of our faith; He is the Pearl of Great Price; He is the Fire which burns within.
“As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God. My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God: when shall I come and appear before God?”
Those who bear His Fire
Shine forth His Light;
For the Light without
Is evidence of the Fire within.
“But his word was in mine heart as a burning fire shut up in my bones, and I was weary with forbearing, and I could not stay”
parangelia (G3852), “a proclamation, a command or commandment,” is strictly used of commands received from a superior and transmitted to others. It is rendered “charge” in Act 16:24; 1Th 4:2, RV (where the word is in the plural); 1Ti 1:5 (RV) and 1Ti 1:18. In Act 5:28 the lit. meaning is “Did we not charge you with a charge? Vines New Testament Dictionary
“Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee so: thou wast upon the holy mountain of God; thou hast walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire. Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee…”
“So He drove out the man; and He placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life”. (Gen 3:24)
“He hath delivered my soul in peace
from the battle that was against me”
Warfare is the norm for those who are alive and growing in Christ; the world and all of its offerings are the enemy of the true pilgrim of faith. To the diligent of heart, the battles without are an indication of the warfare within. The daily battle is against the condition and weakness of the human heart. If we understand this vital truth, we can grow and develop our life in Him. While many seem unaware of the fierceness and urgency of this battle, there are many others who “fight the good fight” in the unseen world of spiritual things. It is to these that the promises of deliverance and the ministration of grace are extended. Grace is much more than just a sentiment. It is the power of God working within to bring victory and Peace. Peace is the offspring of spiritual victory.
“And when all the kings that were servants to Hadarezer saw that they were smitten before Israel, they made peace with Israel, and served them”
2 Samuel 10:19
“For he had dominion over all the region on this side the river, from Tiphsah even to Azzah, over all the kings on this side the river: and he had peace on all sides round about him. And Judah and Israel dwelt safely, every man under his vine and under his fig tree, from Dan even to Beer–sheba, all the days of Solomon”
1 Kings 4:24-25
The reason Israel had peace was because Solomon “had dominion” over all of his enemies!
There is a depth of peace which is the result of the victories of the Lord within the confines of our own hearts. There is a government of peace which is to rule over our hearts in every situation. This is a peace that the world can never know or fathom; a peace that will rule and reign over our hearts within the concourse of daily life. As the enemies within our lives are brought under the dominion of Christ, (wherein we labour through the workings of grace), we will find this Peace. The dominion of this Peace is the result of His victory being worked out in us,
“For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ”
2 Corinthians 10:3-5
Peace is the fruit of the Kingdom of God. It is a life held in the dominion of Christ where every thought and motive of our hearts become fully obedient and subject to His majesty.
“For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink;
but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost”
It is vital for God’s people to comprehend the vast difference between having a Peace WITH God, and our knowing and abiding in the Peace OF God.
“Therefore being justified by faith,
we have peace WITH God
through our Lord Jesus Christ”
May the power of this truth enable us to rise up from every failure and every fear that hinders us from mounting up with wings as eagles. Our God is for us and we need not fear to take new steps of faith in our desire to walk obediently unto Him. Our peace with Him, secured by the offering of Christ, enables us to boldly rise to the place where His victory over sin and corruption becomes a reality in our own lives.
“For your obedience is come abroad unto all men. I am glad therefore on your behalf: but yet I would have you wise unto that which is good, and simple concerning evil. And the God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet shortly…”
There is a life to be known in Him wherein we are held and kept by the very Peace of God; a peace of such dominion that the situations of life cannot disturb it, nor fear penetrate its wonder. It is a Peace beyond the words and formulas of men, for it is a peace secured by a life which abides in Him and is therefore free from self.
“Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God OF peace shall be with you…”
It is in the doing of truth that we experience the God of this peace dwelling and ruling within our lives. May we as the One Family of God seek to encourage one another to grow and discover the rich rewards of obedience unto Him.
“Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile. Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it. The eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous, and his ears are open unto their cry”
Where evil dwells there can be no peace. Though we have been mercifully justified in Christ, if we give our hearts to sin, we lose the wonder of His peace. We see this same scripture quoted in the New Covenant:
“He who would love life, and see good days, let him keep his tongue from evil, and his lips from speaking deceit. Let him turn away from evil, and do good. Let him seek peace, and pursue it. For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and his ears open to their prayer; but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil”
1 Peter 3:10-12
It is a false and foolish Gospel which presents peace apart from righteousness. Let us see that it is the “goodness of God” which leads us to repentance. The glory of true repentance is that it leads to the experience of the Peace OF God!
“And let the peace of God rule in your hearts,
to the which also ye are called in one body”
One of the most powerful tools God has given us for warfare and victory is found in true fellowship with others; it is designed by God for our encouragement and His glory. When God’s people gather unto Him there is a ministration of His presence to strengthen, invigorate and motivate us to press the battle of the Lord in each of our lives. His presence is the secret to our spiritual victory. Let His love pervade our times together that we may stand shoulder to shoulder in this evil day.