Under the Shadow

Under the Shadow

 

“For thou, O God, hast proved us: thou hast tried us, as silver is tried. Thou broughtest us into the net; thou laidst affliction upon our loins. Thou hast caused men to ride over our heads; we went through fire and through water: but thou broughtest us out into a wealthy place”
Psalm 66:10-12

For the true child of God there is no darkness through which He does not intend to bring us to greater light. There is no trial so great that the Great Shepherd does not watch over the soul of His Own. There is no sorrow and no separation so great that it cannot be compensated with Himself. Let us face this coming year with an understanding that His sovereign Wisdom is at work for our eternal benefit.

“Blessed are those whose strength is in you, in whose heart are the highways to Zion. As they go through the Valley of Baca they make it a place of springs; the early rain also covers it with pools. They go from strength to strength; each one appears before God in Zion”
Psalm 84:5-7

It is needful that we prepare our hearts for the things which lie ahead. Things are changing quickly as God is allowing a time of suffering and counting the cost. A cost-less gospel is about to become a precious Gospel. Religious liberties as we have known them will give way to intimidation, prison and even death. Yet in the midst of all this a new-found liberty will be born in those who have followed Him with a full heart; it is called the liberty of the Spirit. It is the same liberty that Paul had in prison, the same liberty the disciples had in the Macedonian prison to sing and worship God, the same liberty of Peter and other disciples who rejoiced in being found worthy to suffer for His Name. A new day is dawning upon the North American Church; which for the most part it is still fighting for a way of life that has failed to produce an overcoming church. God in His wisdom will bring a purging of the filth and the infiltration of the world from His House. Just as Jesus with great vehemence drove the money changers out of the Temple in His Day, He will once again purge the haughtiness from His House of whom we are. The divisions, the strife, the competition and the contagion of pride gives testimony that the liberty we have enjoyed thus far has not furthered His Glory in our midst.

Let us receive from Him this chastening that in the purging of all worldly contaminants He may reveal to the world a broken, pure and holy people. May we turn to Him in the secret places of our hearts with repentance and sorrow knowing that from such God will not turn away.

God’s Word to the Church OF the Laodiceans…

“As many as I love,
I rebuke and chasten:
be zealous therefore, and repent
Revelation 3:19

This is the Word of the Lord to His Church. It has grown lukewarm, its pursuits are worldly, it is rich in the things of the world, and there is no end of teachings, sermons and programs. It is not the content which is lacking; it is the spirit in which it hears the things of God. Works without faith and Faith without works are the hallmarks of a lukewarm and lethargic people. Let us prepare ourselves for His coming; a coming which is contrary to many of the teachings of our Day!

“But who may abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth? for he is like a refiner’s fire, and like fullers’ soap…”
Malachi 3:2

He is coming to cleanse and purify His Church, to purify His people that He may receive unto Himself a worthy Bride – pure and spotless free from the corruption of the world and fully alive unto Him.

Peter declared emphatically:

“For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?”
1 Peter 4:17

Before God judges the world, He must first cleanse and purify His house. It is to this end that HE IS COMING TO NORTH AMERICA!

He cares much more about the issues of our hearts than He does about our lifestyle and “freedom”. A Bondman in the Lord is freer than the richest man in the world. The true servant of the Lord is Free regardless of his circumstances and manner of living. There is only ONE place to hide in the storm which is about to break – His Name is Jesus!

“He that dwelleth
in the secret place of the most High
shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty”
Psalm 91:1

While many quote this scripture, we must comprehend what it is saying. The place of safety is where the “shadow of the Almighty” falls. It falls upon those who abide in the “secret place” of Christ Himself.

John declares how we can know that we are abiding in that “secret place”:

“And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in Him, and He in him. And hereby we know that He abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us”
1 John 3:24

Do we keep His commandments? Do we walk unstained from this world? Do we love our brothers and sisters deeply and freely? Do we seek forgiveness from others, and in turn forgive others freely? Are we in truth “living epistles, known and read by all men”? Do we live our faith and is our life consistent with the words we speak?

The Spirit of God tells us emphatically that the evidence that He abides in us is the Divine enablement to Do His Commandments!

Let these words penetrate our hearts: “Hereby we know that HE abides in us”!! How? We honor, keep and do His Will! We deceive ourselves if we walk in disobedience to His Word yet comfort ourselves with His Word.

This is a time to reconsider our “location” in Him. Do not let tomorrow pass without considering the verity of your life in Him and His Life in YOU. Those who have the Son living and dwelling within declare the truth of it by their walk.

I share these things because of my own need for fellowship which challenges, confirms and stirs my heart to love and follow Him more deeply. We are here corporately to “present every man perfect in Christ”.

“Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus
Colossians 1:28

Let us in godly fear turn again to Him who alone can be our hiding place in the storm which is about to break!

“Now unto Him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy”
Jude 1:24

His Second Coming
Characterized to this Generation

“And it shall be in that time, I will search Jerusalem with lamps, and punish the men being settled on their lees; who say in their heart, Jehovah will not do good, nor will He do evil. And their goods shall become a prize, and their houses a waste. They shall also build houses, but not live there. And they shall plant vineyards, but not drink their wine. The great day of Jehovah is near; it is near and rushing greatly, the sound of the day of Jehovah. The mighty man shall cry out bitterly there. That day is a day of wrath, a day of distress and pressure, a day of waste and ruin, a day of darkness and gloom, a day of clouds and thick darkness, a day of the ram’s horn and alarm against the fortified cities, and against the high towers. And I will bring distress to men, and they shall walk like the blind, because they have sinned against Jehovah. And their blood shall be poured out as dust, and their flesh like dung. Their silver and their gold shall not be able to deliver them in the day of the wrath of Jehovah. But all the earth shall be consumed by the fire of His jealousy. For He shall make a complete, yea, a speedy end of all those living in the land”

Zephaniah 1:12-18

God is searching the hearts of who lay claim to His Name in this hour. He who spared eight people in the days of Noah is no respecter of persons. He is Holy and He is coming back for* something not just to something. He is coming back for a Bride who has made herself ready because of the expectation and hope in her heart. Her love is genuine and intense; she honors His word because she honors Him. At the end of the Book of Revelation she is saying the same thing as the Holy Spirit for she has become One with Him.

“And the Spirit and the bride say, Come”
Revelation 22:17

Throughout the scriptures we are exhorted to search our own hearts, to take account of our lives unto Him and to evaluate the state of our hearts in relationship to our keeping His Word.

“Let us search and try our ways,
and turn again to the Lord”
Lamentations 3:40

“Examine yourselves,
to see whether you are in the faith.
Test yourselves…”
2 Corinthians 13:5

“And he that keepeth* His commandments dwelleth in him, and He in him. And hereby we know that He abideth in us, by the Spirit which He hath given us”
1 John 3:24

_________________

*Noteτηρέω (tēreō) “Figuratively, to obey, observe, keep, fulfill a duty, precept, law, custom, or custom meaning to perform watchfully, vigilantly, with the acc. (Mat 19:17; Joh 14:15, Joh 14:21; Joh 15:10; 1Ti 6:14; 1Jn 2:3-4; 1Jn 3:22, 1Jn 3:24; 1Jn 5:2-3; Rev 12:17; Rev 14:12)…”
Dr. Spiros Zodhiates

*Note: God’s return is predicated upon His purposes in the Church and He is coming back FOR a Bride who has made herself ready, He is returning for the “precious fruit” of the earth and has long patience for its harvest. For a glimpse of this magnificent truth please read His Appearing

Brian Troxel

A Spiritual Checkup

A Spiritual Checkup

This is an excerpt of my own heart’s internal desire to remain current and alive unto my God and Saviour.

Spiritual Ignorance is the result of disobedience.

The Remedy:

“But he that doeth truth
cometh to the light”
John 3:21

Spiritual Stagnation is the result of fruitless living.

“Every branch in me that
beareth not fruit he taketh away”
John 15:2

Spiritual Apathy is the result of not abiding in Him.

“If a man abide not in me,
he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered”
John 15:6

Spiritual Poverty is the result of robbing God of the gift of ourselves to Him.

“Will a man rob God?
Yet ye have robbed me”
Malachi 3:8

The Remedy:

 “I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God,
to present your bodies as a living sacrifice,
holy and acceptable to God,
which is your spiritual worship”
Romans 12:1

Repentance and godly sorrow is the great gift of God’s mercy to us. In turning we shall be turned, and in godly sorrow is found the wonder of His Joy. Humbling ourselves is the precursor to Him being magnified in our lives.

I now rejoice, not that you were made sorry, but that you were made sorry to repentance. For you were made sorry in a godly way, that you might suffer loss by us in nothing. For godly sorrow produces repentance to salvation, which brings no regret”
2 Corinthians 7:9-10

Σ

 “Examine yourselves,
to see whether you are in the faith”
2 Corinthians 13:5

Brian Troxel

Living Waters – Part Two

Living Waters

Thirsting, Drinking and Flowing

Part Two

“If the clouds be full of rain,
they empty themselves upon the earth”
Ecclesiastes 11:3

How simple is the wise man’s observation? Those who are full of Christ must empty themselves upon the earth. Such is God’s heavenly purpose! Jude and Peter speak to those who have deviated from the well of Life: those who are “carried about by winds” (lifeless teachings and the “methods of men”; Ephesians 4:14); “carried about with every wind of doctrine and the methods of men” whereby they become “wells without water…” (2 Peter 2:17) and “clouds without water…” (Jude 1:12).

“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 1:12

These ones are comfortable in our midst and to a large degree the present day ministry is satisfied with “wells without water”. There is a  contentment with the complacency of a dry and barren people in whom there is no water. A people who are unaware of their accountability to BE springs of living water to the world around us is the indictment and fruit of a ministry that knows not God. The reason Jude and Peter addressed these things is because we will all give an account…

“…each man’s work will be revealed.
For the Day will declare it, because it is revealed in fire;
and the fire itself will test
what sort of work each man’s work is”

1 Corinthians 3:13

Paul pleads with the believers in Corinth.

“Examine yourselves, whether ye be IN the faith;
prove your own selves…”
2 Corinthians 13:5

Wherever true faith is living and beating within the life of an individual, the ministration of the life and works of its Author will be evident. The flowing of the living waters is the fruit of those who thirst and drink from the well of Christ.

“If ANY man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.
He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said,
out of his (own) belly shall flow rivers of living water
John 7:37-38

There is "no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus". The Word of God is given to bring change and transformation. The Call of God is to come higher and to go deeper into this ONE of whom the scripture declares..."unto us a son is given". He has been graciously given unto us... without reserve, without merit and without measure. The Call of God is for us to come and drink deeply of His provisions... from which the flow of His wonder becomes our own experience. The call goes out even now "If ANY man truly thirst for this life", may we respond and come afresh to Him!

Brian Troxel

The Conversations of Jesus

The Conversations of Jesus

Luke 10:25-29

“Luke 10:25 And, behold, a certain lawyer stood up, and tempted him, saying, Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?
Luke 10:26 He said unto him, What is written in the law? how readest thou?
Luke 10:27 And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself.
Luke 10:28 And he said unto him, Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live.
Luke 10:29 But he, willing to justify himself, said unto Jesus, And who is my neighbour?”
Luke 10:25-29

Even the most casual conversations of Christ demonstrate depth, wisdom and power as revealed in the magnificence of His Word.

“And, behold, a certain lawyer stood up, and tempted him, saying, Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?”

The seemingly innocent question of a respected teacher of the law, as seen through the eyes of the Spirit of God, is in fact a man tempting God. Jesus saw his heart and knew that the mask of sincerity was meant to hide the intent of exposing the Living Christ as a fraud. The question was an effort to catch Jesus in His Own words that the Pharisees might find fault with Him. The religious ones of His day were ever seeking to discredit Him for His very presence; His life and wisdom were a constant reproach to the wickedness of their own hearts.

Jesus the Son of God was never lax in His abiding in the Father; he had no moments to Himself. His diligence and life of separation was on display for the world to see. May God grant to us the unction, the grace and the power to be ever alive in Him; no “me time”, no moments of casual conversation where our words are unguarded and carnal. There is a life, (oh a deep life of wonder) where we are held within the dictates of a Grace so abounding, so deep and so consistent that our words are birthed and directed by His Spirit ruling and reigning within.

“He said unto him, What is written in the law? how readest thou?”

Jesus responds not with what the Word says. Rather the wisdom of God turns the questioner into the one being questioned with “how do you read”? Often what a person reads and how a person reads are two very different things. The contradiction lies in the heart, not in what is written. Now the man is forced to answer in front of all.

“And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself.”

The man answers correctly. His belief is right but his standing with God is not. How we need the penetrating light of God to bring what we believe into the light of doing and becoming what we believe. Jesus responds to him:

“Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live…”

His belief was right, but this gave the man no assurances of the “eternal life” he desired. When we separate the life that we now live from the “eternal life” offered to us in the Son we reveal a disconnect with the purposes of God.

Jesus was bringing this man to the fundamental truth that the “eternal life” he sought was found in the life he now lived.

“…this do, and thou shalt live…”

Can we not feel the prompting of His Spirit to live and walk this day in the power and wonder of the “now life”? “This do and live…” Let these words penetrate and lay hold of our hearts. Let them grip us with such force that every day is seen as a great adventure into further depths of Him!

“But he, willing to justify himself, said unto Jesus, and who is my neighbour?”

Here is where the fault lay within the heart of this man. Whenever our response to truth is one of justifying ourselves, we can be assured we are not walking in “eternal life” in our own personal experience. It is the horror of religion to believe one thing and walk in another. Eternal life must be found within our own hearts and the verity of the life we now live. The discrepancy between these two (what we believe versus how we live) is the thermometer of how far we have progressed in our journey into Him who is the Life. Paul stated to the Church at Corinth:

Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith;
prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves”
2 Corinthians 13:5

Paul was not talking about doctrinal faith in the things they knew. He was speaking of the faith which determined the life they now lived. This is the crucible of every believer. It is here where doctrinal adherents are separated from true disciples. The continual quest to know Him or, as Paul declares, “to apprehend” this Christ comes from a heart that knows its inherent need of Him in order to walk correctly every day. Paul goes on in his discourse to the Philippians to say, “not that I have obtained… but I press on…”. The discrepancy was not a cause of condemnation; it was the very matrix from which Paul’s pursuit of Christ was birthed. We must see that it is not what we believe but what we do because of the truth whereby we discover His Life.

“…but if ye through the Spirit
do mortify the deeds of the body,
ye shall live
Romans 8:13

“…and the life which I NOW live in the flesh
I live by the faith of the Son of God,
who loved me, and gave himself for me”
Galatians 2:20

Brian Troxel