City of God – “Ye Are Come”
“Ye are come unto the City of the living God … to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect, and to Jesus the Mediator of the New Covenant.”
The vast horizon of all that is presented to us in this one scripture should be enough to take our breath away!
“Ye are come…”
Let us be gripped by the present tense of this great truth. Many believe that one day after we die we will go to that great city; that is not the tense presented here. The true ministers to the Church in that day (as in every succeeding generation) understood they were participants in this City.
“Ye are come…”
Those who live and walk in His Spirit have a sense of belonging to the great congregation of God. They inherently know they are an integral part of His Body here and now. In our understanding of the truth “ye are come” unto the City of God we recognize the necessity of our involvement and participation by which we see His wisdom at work in her!
The scope of the Church (the true Church) is beyond the bounds of human reasoning. Carnal men may endeavor to take the things of God and make them their own but the power and reality of their apprehension of it are marred by their egos and self-centered agendas. Those who do not understand the truth of “ye are come unto the City of God” will be swayed by the need to be a part of something earthly and soulish. The desire for acceptance, even at the expense of not walking in the truth, will be the overriding influence on their decisions. Because of their insensitivity to the Spirit of God, they must find their identity in something or someone else.
1Co 3:1 “And I, brothers, was not able to speak to you as to spiritual, but as to fleshly—as to babies in Christ;
1Co 3:2 with milk I fed you, and not with meat, for you were not yet able, but not even yet are you now able,
1Co 3:3 for yet you are fleshly, for where [there is] among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are you not fleshly, and walk in the manner of men?
1Co 3:4 For when one may say, “I, indeed, am of Paul”; and another, “I—of Apollos”; are you not fleshly?
1Co 3:5 Who, then, is Paul, and who Apollos, but servants through whom you believed, and to each as the LORD gave?
1Co 3:6 I planted, Apollos watered, but God was giving growth;
1Co 3:7 so that neither is he who is planting anything, nor he who is watering, but He who is giving growth—God;
1Co 3:8 and he who is planting and he who is watering are one, and each will receive his own reward according to his own labor,
1Co 3:9 for we are fellow-workmen of God; you are God’s tillage, God’s building.”
This mindset of needing to follow someone or belong to something prevents the impartation of the more profound things of His Spirit. When we truly grasp the enormity of the truth of the ONE CITY of God we can no longer carnally choose one ministration over another. We appreciate that the City encompasses the expressions of all His true ministers. One may water, another may exhort and admonish, and another may plant.
As we see the whole picture of the City of God we cannot remain uninvolved, distant, or isolated from it. This City has a name; one that should cause us to walk in great reverence in all that we do. The name of this City is the Body of Christ. If we are of this City we recognize that we are “members one of another”! We feel the threads of His Life linking us to something vital and not of this world. There is a stimulus to reach out, to pray for, and to be involved with those in whom we sense the heartbeat of Christ.
Throughout the ages, those who have the “faith of Abraham” have been consumed with the pursuit of this City. David wrote of it in the Psalms, Moses beheld it, Ezekiel prophesied of it, Jeremiah wept over it, and Paul, Peter, John, and all the true ministers of God invested their lives into the building of it. Do we not feel the pull and the press of God to also give of ourselves?
“For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ”
2 Corinthians 11:2
What was Paul’s fear for The Church at Corinth?
“But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.”
2 Corinthians 11:3
The corruption of the serpent beguiled Eve from the simplicity of Christ. That simplicity is:
“With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.”
Many know the words of these scriptures but few in our day have touched the spirit and the power of them. How we live reveals the truth and call of God in Christ we actually know. Those who only love those who love them will never know the wonder of the present truth that we are “now come” to this City of God.
“And I, brothers, was not able to speak to you as to spiritual, but as to fleshly—as to babies in Christ; with milk, I fed you, and not with meat, for you were not yet able, but not even yet are you now able…”
1 Corinthians 3:1-2
Why was Paul not able to speak to them as “spiritual”? Why was he only able to minister the milk of the Word to them?
“For when one may say, “I, indeed, am of Paul”; and another, “I—of Apollos”; are you not fleshly (carnal)?”
1 Corinthians 3:4
Many today say I am a follower of this brother or that teacher; I belong to the Baptist church; I am part of the Pentecostal church. This kind of thinking obstructs our view of the heavenly city. Our involvement in the lives of our brothers and sisters will be proportional to the extent that the truth of this City resonates within our own hearts.
Paul had the passion of the Holy Spirit to see God’s people moving and expressing the gifts of God that had been deposited in each member. In his plea to the Church at Corinth he presents this startling truth:
“To each person the manifestation of the Spirit
is given for the benefit of all.”
1 Corinthians 12:7
“To each person” of this Body God has given “the manifestation of the Spirit”! Paul lists those various manifestations in the scriptures following but men, through their own unbelief, excuse themselves from the verity of His Word. This stance is bolstered by those who claim to be ministers of God but are more interested in filling the pews of “their” church rather than in God’s people experiencing the wonder of His unspeakable gift. Through the functioning of the gifts in His people, we understand the need and the importance of each member. Those with the gift of discernment cannot separate themselves from those with the gift of healing. They cannot say “I have no need” for another.
“And the eye cannot say unto the hand, I have no need of thee: nor again the head to the feet, I have no need of you.”
1 Corinthians 12:21
We disregard God’s Word at our own peril. May the Holy Spirit stir our hearts with the conviction of our carelessness and insensitivity to the truth of the City of God.
Have you come unto this City? Those who walk in the “faith of Abraham” seek the same City as he did.
“For he looked for a city which hath foundations,
whose builder and maker is God…”
The true City of God
is an organism, not an organization!
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