FOR THE BED IS SHORTER…

FOR THE BED IS SHORTER…

“For the bed is shorter than that a man can stretch himself on it:
and the covering narrower than that he can wrap himself in it.”

Isaiah 28:20

It is the nature of man to seek rest in something less than God’s true provision. These other things may provide some semblance of rest. They might offer some sense of relief by covering our true need, but it is only religion. We seek rest in teachings, doctrine, submission to someone or something, even in the scriptures themselves, but God has designed these things to provide only a partial rest. True rest is found only in Him. Man lays hold of concepts to hide in; that everything is put off to some day in the future; some great work of God that is yet to be. This actually produces poverty of mind and soul. It obscures the relevance of today and leaves its adherents bereft of any sense of rest in the today of life. We seek rest in the fact that that we are in “submission” to an organization, perhaps some apostle, some teaching or religious order while Jesus cries out in the simplicity of truth,

“Come unto me… and I will give you rest…
take my yoke upon you and learn of me
and ye shall FIND rest unto your souls”.

Matthew 11:28 – 29

Our need is to begin to look objectively at the fruit of our ways. The journey into truth must start by us becoming truthful to ourselves. This is the day of which the scriptures declare that the “effect” of every vision is at hand. What is the effect of our personal vision? Is it producing a greater, more intimate walk with Jesus; a greater apprehension of His Life and Power in us? Has it created a deeper experiential truth of Him in our daily lives? What is the fruit of the things that we hold to? Do we pass each day in the “rest” of an adherence to a belief while we sit in faithless inactivity and squander the precious time that we have by saying “some day….”? Or do we, as Jesus beckons us in the scripture above, “Come unto Him…” every day? Do we rise up each morning with the earnest desire that today we actively “take up His yoke” and seek that life of walking and doing in the great adventure of life with Him. For that is the true place of learning. It is the only place where we will “FIND” rest unto our souls. The FIND here speaks of something that is the result of searching. The “COME unto Him” speaks of rising up from where we are and going to Him. These things speak of movement and change. They speak of relationship and submission to His will on a daily basis. There is no full or true rest in anything outside of JESUS. The wisdom of God has designed this life so that the bed of men’s concepts will always be “shorter” than the need of man. True rest comes when a man can stretch himself out in full and never worry about the “edge” of his resting place. This is a place of wonder and peace for we have found that our resting place is larger than our being. We are free from worry and anxious care for we have found our rest in Christ himself. This is a rest of great activity! It is a rest of being so one in Him that we naturally do and live as a pure expression of the Father’s Heart. Jesus is the Sabbath of God yet as He walked among men, the scriptures testify that He went about “doing good”. Oh the glory of such a life where, without taking thought, we naturally live and move and have our being in God’s SON!

Brian Troxel

DOING GOOD

DOING GOOD

“How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth
with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good,
and healing all that were oppressed of the devil;
for God was with him”

Acts 10:38

The power and evidence of the operation of the Holy Ghost in the life of Jesus was that he went about doing good. There are many who contend that the evidence of the Holy Ghost in a person’s life is speaking in tongues. While this may be it has been lost that the purpose of the Holy Ghost coming to his people from God’s perspective is to make us witnesses (Acts 1:8) through out the world unto him. We get caught up with so many things and lose sight of the reason why we are here. We are called unto love and good works. It is vital that we have the love of God burning in our hearts in such intensity that the result is a life that goes about doing good to those around us. The Holy Ghost operating in our lives is not only the power to deliver those that are oppressed, but to be filled with such love as to make that faith reach out to the lost. It is to such things that we have been called. We know that we are not saved by works but it is equally true that by doing good works we reveal that salvation that has been freely given to us. The servant is not above the master. If his life was lived in the context of this world by doing good are not we called to the same? A good fountain will give forth good water and a liberal soul will be expressed in generosity. These are the principles of fruit in his creation. Let us go out into this world with the lamp of the Lord burning brightly through the good works of those who have been empowered by His Spirit to walk as he walked.

Brian Troxel

HEART OF A PRIEST PART III

HEART OF A PRIEST

Part Three

“And they shall teach my people
the difference between the holy and profane,
and cause them to discern between the unclean and the clean”

Ezekiel 44:22

In this day of obscurity and confusion there is to be a priestly people who rise up and so present Christ that it produces an ability within the people of God to easily see the difference between the holy and profane and to discern between the unclean and the clean. This ability to discern between good and evil is contingent upon the heart of each believer becoming free from personal agendas and secret motives. It is in the ministration of the living word, sharp to the very piercing of our inner hearts, that we are made free to see and hear clearly the issues that stand before us.

“For the word of God is quick, and powerful,
and sharper than any twoedged sword,
piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit,
and of the joints and marrow,
and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart”

Hebrew 4:12

There is a need for men and women who have not circumvented this crucial work of the Lord. These people desire and seek the face of God to be purified from things that would taint His gracious expression of Life through them. In the very refining of our own hearts we are enabled to encourage and exhort others to endure His refining work because of our own experience. When one teaches without the experience of the dealings of God it can only produce a cold and indifferent expression; one that has no ability to impart the wisdom or consolation of the mercies of God. Mercy is given to the merciful, grace is given to the gracious and faith is given to those that are faithful.

In the New Testament priests are made, not born (Revelation 1:6). Priests become priestly by the ministration of God’s goodness and grace. It is His goodness that leads us to repentance, His truth that causes us to see ourselves as we really are, and His mercy that holds us in the seeing of such things.

“And he shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver:
and he shall purify the sons of Levi,
and purge them as gold and silver, that they may
offer unto the LORD an offering in righteousness”
Malachi 3:3

“Then shall ye return, and discern
between the righteous and the wicked,
between him that serveth God and him that serveth him not”

Malachi 3:18

Brian Troxel

SECURE SERVANTS

SECURE SERVANTS

“Jesus KNOWING
that the Father had given
all things into his hands,
and that he was come from God,
and went to God;
He riseth from supper,
and laid aside his garments;
and took a towel, and girded himself.
After that he poureth water into a basin,
and began to wash the disciples’ feet”

JOHN 13:3 – 5

Servanthood is directly related to our security in terms of relationship with God. Men who are insecure cannot, will not, ever touch upon the power of the HIS humility. “Jesus knowing” was the basis of HIS ability to serve and minister to others. HIS relationship with God was not determined by what HE did; HIS knowing of who HE was was not defined by the position HE took with other men. HE knew and was secure in HIS relationship with the FATHER. True ministry knows that the secret of the people of God flowing, moving and being empowered in their own ministrations of the risen Christ is directly related to each member being “rooted and grounded in the love of God”. Men may function in the gifts of the Holy Spirit but that is not true ministry. Ministry is that which flows from member to member because of relationship not gifting…

“From whom the whole body
fitly joined together
and compacted by that
which every JOINT supplieth,
according to the effectual working
in the measure of every part,
maketh increase of the body
unto the edifying of itself in love”

EPHESIANS 4:16

The Body of Christ is “fitly joined and supplied” by means of the joints which speak of relationship and love flowing from member to member. The Corinthian Church excelled in the operation of the Gifts of the Spirit, yet they were carnal and filled with strife and emulation even to the point of pitting one ministry above another. They did not realize that the true power of edification and ministry took place in serving one another in Christ. They did not see that the gifts, when they are not coupled with the character of the Son, could not produce ministry but could only express ministrations that (without the character of Christ) would not produce the unity and the love of God in the local church.

It is in each of us knowing and walking in the power of a safe and secure walk with God that we can serve one another in true love and power. King Saul was an insecure man, because his obedience was partial and his heart obstinate, and when he beheld the life of David and heard the singing of the maidens of the greater works of David his insecurity drove him to persecute and drive David away.

SECURITY can only be known by a walk of love and obedience for that is the revelation of HIM that alone will give us boldness in the Day of Judgment.

“Herein is our love made perfect,
that we may have boldness
in the day of judgment: because as he is,
so are we in this world”

I JOHN 4:17

Brian Troxel

STRONG HOPE FOR NOW

STRONG HOPE FOR 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

Brian Troxel

FAITHFULNESS

FAITHFULNESS

“The prophet that hath a dream, let him tell a dream;
and he that hath my word, let him speak my word faithfully.
What is the chaff to the wheat? saith the LORD.
Is not my word like as a fire? saith the LORD;
and like a hammer that breaketh the rock in pieces?”

JEREMIAH 23:28 – 29

Faithfulness to God is a rare commodity in our day; to simply give what has been given. Faithfulness means remaining faithful to HIM regardless of the response of those around us. To remain true to what we see and hear in our God, whether or not it is popular or convenient, is the essence of LIFE IN HIM. The truth of God is at its very core simple. It is not for the wise, the respected or the strong of this world… it is for the child like in heart. It is for those who are free from desiring respectability or the approval of men, for we have seen the vanity of our own heart and of those around us. To seek to honour HIM and be true to HIS heart and desire in the earth is FAITHFULNESS. To be free of ulterior motives, agendas and selfish pursuits and remain true to HIS purpose is FAITHFULNESS. Our portion is to give what we have received; to tell the dream, speak HIS WORD and DO HIS WILL. What a precious portion that is! This is the fellowship of and in the SON. To partake of HIS WILL in the speaking and the doing is the FELLOWSHIP OF LIFE; the exercise of my LIFE in HIS. Blessed are those who are faithful for they SHALL reap even though now the fields seem barren, the companions of the way few and the skies grey. The HARVEST IS COMING! Let us not grow weary but be encouraged in the doing, speaking and walking for our God is faithful! We cannot reap tomorrow unless we sow, speak and toil in the fields today. Men who are faithful are thus because they know that GOD is faithful.

“Who then is a faithful and wise servant,
whom his lord hath made ruler over his household,
to give them meat in due season?
Blessed is that servant,
whom his lord when he cometh shall find so DOING

MATTHEW 24:45 – 46

Brian Troxel

THE HEART OF A PRIEST PART TWO

HEART OF A PRIEST

Part Two

“But when he (King Uzziah) was strong, his heart was lifted up to his
destruction: for he transgressed against the LORD his God, and went
into the temple of the LORD to burn incense upon the altar of incense.
And Azariah the priest went in after him, and with him fourscore priests of
the LORD, that were VALIANT MEN: And they withstood Uzziah the king,
and said unto him, It appertaineth not unto thee, Uzziah, to burn incense
unto the LORD, but to the priests the sons of Aaron, that are consecrated
to burn incense: go out of the sanctuary; for thou hast trespassed;
neither shall it be for thine honour from the LORD God”

2 Chronicles 26:16 – 18

True priests have only one responsibility and that is to represent the Lord and His purposes and to serve Him with their whole heart. Here we have the story of the King of Israel, a good King until his heart became lifted up, who sought to do things that did not pertain to his calling. Azariah and his fellow priests were men of valour who were not impressed by the fact that this man was a King for they served the King of Kings. True priests do not serve organizations, fellowships, ministries or causes; they serve only their God and King.

“Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ”
Romans 1:1

People with divided interests cannot be true priests. Where there are other agendas there is no longer a single eye. We are to be His. We are not here to support causes nor a teaching or some other “worthy” ideal but to serve Him and His purposes only. Everything must be subservient to the WILL of God. HIS WILL must transcend relationships, “callings” and ministries for in the end we are to minister to HIM ALONE. Out of this singleness of purpose we will discover that in serving HIM we begin to see and understand HIS call and purpose in the lives of others. We are then to serve and facilitate that call in their lives, to nurture and mentor in such a way as to see that “call” of God realized in their life. We must ever stand for truth and the investment of God and never allow personal sentiment to cloud our ability to remain objective in the things of God. These are HIS people, HIS disciples and it is HIS life that has been and is being invested. We are to be merely stewards (not lords) of the Grace of God concerning His people, the sheep of His pasture. All of Paul’s dealings with the Church in various localities were to see them grow up into HIM who is the Head of all things.

“If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also
my servant be: if any man serve me, him will my Father honour”

John 12:26

Brian Troxel

FAITH AND THE CITY OF GOD

FAITH AND THE CITY OF GOD

“Blessed is the man whose strength is in You,
Whose heart is set on pilgrimage”

PSALM 84:5

Faith is the DYNAMIC within an individual that produces motion and quest. Its very inner workings within a heart must birth a journey. For in its sway, there is communicated to the people of God a clarity of the HEAVENLY to such an extent that this world and all of its offerings pale in comparison to the treasures of God in Christ. Faith can never be static. It has one desire, one purpose; to make real in us the Character, the Beauty and the Power of our Risen Christ. Men who become “comfortable” in a teaching, a form or a method have not seen the City of God. Even Abraham, while living in the Land of Promise, was a pilgrim for his heart was set on the City of God.

“By faith he sojourned in the land of promise,
as in a strange country… for he looked
FOR A CITY which hath foundations,
whose builder and maker is God”

HEBREWS 11:9 – 10

It is in beholding the Heavenly City that we see and understand the contradiction to what we see in the earth. Faith must take us from the quest of our own personal pursuits in Christ to the place of seeking the welfare of the City (the corporate) of God. Nehemiah, though very well situated in the “world” of his day, was exceedingly burdened for the condition and state of the City of God in that day. His heart was broken and burdened for the CITY, not himself. He risked everything (even his life) to see the City of God rebuilt. How much more should we seek out the welfare of His House in these last days? How can we remain quiet? How can we not cry out as we see His house divided, secularized, scandalized and operating as a house of merchandise? Jesus was moved to the cleansing of the temple because His Father’s house was to be a house of prayer not a place of marketing “spiritual things”. The Church of Jesus Christ IS NOT AN EARTHLY ENTITY; it is a spiritual house. It is a Body (singular). It is to function and act like it is singular. The true ministry within it owns nothing and builds nothing for themselves. Their heart is to see the people of God function within their own gifts and callings and to see and ensure the UNITY OF THE FAITH WITHIN HIS HOUSE (Ephesians 4:11 – 13). Men may doubt and mock the reality of such a thing. Faith responds and says THE SON OF GOD PRAYED FOR SUCH A THING IN THE EARTH HOW CAN IT NOT BE?

“…that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You;
that they also may be one in Us,
that the world may believe that You sent Me”

JOHN 17:21

Brian Troxel

THE COMING FIRE OF HIS PRESENCE

THE COMING FIRE OF HIS PRESENCE

“The sinners in Zion are afraid;
fearfulness hath surprised the hypocrites.
Who among us shall dwell with the devouring fire?
who among us shall dwell with everlasting burnings?
He that walketh righteously, and speaketh uprightly…”

Isaiah 33:14 – 15

Gold and silver do not fear the fire for they are not consumed by it, only purified. It is not what we believe that matters; it is what we have become because of what we have believed. This is the DAY of the revelation of the “effect of every vision” (Ezekiel 12:23 – 25) in a man’s life. What we are right now is the culmination of our vision and our faithfulness to it. Every vision has an effect upon a man, and in this day these things are to be made bare.

Two men built a house; one on sand, the other on a rock. Both houses seemed strong, UNTIL the flood came. For the strength of a house is not in the house but in what it is built upon. One man’s house was built on hearing; the other man’s house was built on doing. In the day of ease everything seemed good for both, but it is the storm that reveals the foundation.

It is a time to gather together, a time to assemble for the trumpet is blowing; the four winds are soon to be released. This is the day of substance and reality. This is not a day to speak nice things; it is a day to edify, exhort, and admonish one another that we may be found as gold and silver. For His Presence is coming, His Glory is at Hand and woe be to those who are at ease in Zion; people who have understanding, yet do not realize the implications of this hour. We are at ease when we should be weeping between the porch and the altar seeking God to spare His People in this hour. In our daily lives we should so understand the “terror of the Lord” that we are seeking to persuade men of the time that is at hand. A people who are not content with their preparedness, BUT HAVE A HEART AND A CRY FOR HIS HOUSE, that she would be able to rise up and meet Him as a chaste virgin, pure, spotless and white.

THIS IS THE DAY OF DOING, NOT WAITING; THE DAY OF WALKING in the Love of God to reach out to those around us. It is a day for Love and compassion as we are gripped by HIS HEART for this world. Men who know their day are men who intercede, men who interact with their God to save the Lot’s of this world (Genesis 18:23 – 33); to seek out the hurting, the lost, the defiled and the broken. This is the faith that can and does rise up from its place of comfort to do of His good pleasure while it is yet Today.

Let us gather in true accountability, true desire to become; not to comfort one another in the status quo. “For he that doeth truth cometh to the light…” It is a day of doing truth, having our lives accountable that we might become pure as he is pure. It is in seeking to cover the hidden things that we will surely be consumed in the Holy Fire that will soon walk in our midst. This is the day of mercy, the day of opportunity to rise up and walk in forgiveness, in openness of heart and purity of soul. May the Lord stir us in this hour to turn from our present ways that we might be found in HIM with a righteousness that is able to “dwell with the everlasting burnings” of His presence.

Brian Troxel

The Kingdom – Part 3

OBEDIENCE

“Though He was a Son,
yet learned He obedience
by the things which He suffered”

Hebrew 5:8

By its very nature true Obedience is not a thing into which a man can be born; it is in essence a life of growth and development.  True Obedience requires understanding and knowledge concerning the One who is to be obeyed.  It is beyond the capability of a three year old to fully know and understand either the sacrificial love of a parent or the obedience required.  A good parent knows what is right and proper for the development of the child and conducts their life accordingly, sacrificing their own comfort for the good of the child.

As the Son of God, Jesus knew from eternity, perfect union, fellowship and oneness with the Father.   But as the Son of Man He came as a little child to grow up and learn obedience clothed in human weakness and frailty!  He did not have any disobedience in His Life, but He grew into obedience unto the Father as a man, clothed in human flesh.  He grew and developed as a MAN, from the weakness of human infancy into the full expression of the MAN CHRIST JESUS.       

“And the child grew, and waxed strong in spirit,
Filled with wisdom: and the grace of God was upon Him”

Luke 2:40

He grew into manhood as any man; he suffered the same temptations as you and I, yet without sin!  And as He grew HE learned of His Father’s will as a MAN.  His responsibilities as HE grew required an ever growing obedience to the Father’s will; there was never any disobedience but there was a constant lying aside of His WILL as a man in order to do the Father’s will.  That is the cross.  That is the suffering that Jesus knew and walked in.  We see Him in the Garden crying out in agony over the hour that was upon HIM to such an extent that “His sweat was as it were great drops of Blood”…

“Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me:
nevertheless not my will, BUT THINE BE DONE”

Luke 22:42 – 44

May we see the depth of His obedience unto the Father that we may value the privilege that is ours to walk and “learn” of Him in the school of obedience!

We live in a world of information, data and knowledge, but NONE OF THESE HAVE ANY VALUE UNLESS WE COME TO REALIZE OUR RESPONSIBILITY TO THESE THINGS!  We have teachers who teach “truth”, seminars where Christian “principles” and “concepts” are taught ad infinitum and yet without the yoke of responsibility there is no DEVELOPMENT IN THE APPREHENSION OF HIS LIFE.   It is certainly true concerning our day…

“Ever learning, and never able to come to the
knowledge of THE TRUTH”

II Timothy 3:7

For it is not A TRUTH but THE TRUTH.  The Truth is HIS LIFE in us; the TRUTH who alone can make us free.  The truth is a person and HIS NAME IS JESUS, for HE SHALL SAVE US FROM OUR SINS!
In the book of Hebrews it goes on to say…

“And being made perfect,
He became the author of eternal salvation
UNTO ALL THAT OBEY HIM

Hebrews 5:9

The depth of our salvation is revealed by the depth of our obedience.  For it is in being saved from the slavery to our own will that we are freed to live in HIS.

Ω

“What we think of, what we know, or what we believe is, in the end, of little consequence.
The only thing of consequence is what we do”

John Ruskin (1819–1900)Ω