The Living

The Living

“For we which live
are alway delivered unto death for Jesus’ sake…”
2 Corinthians 4:10

There are scriptures that are particularly impregnated with power and the sharpness of the “sword of the Spirit”. They are cutting, filled with the wonder of God’s thoughts concerning the life we live and the choices we make. The early church had a different set of values than we do now. Paul’s definition of those who are alive in Christ is drastically different than the general message we hear today in the church in our land.

“For we who are living” – those who are alive in Christ are “always” delivered unto death. His Will is being worked out in their lives through the choices made and the obedience expressed. Paul concludes this scripture with the promise of LIFE to those who walk in true discipleship:

“…that the life of Jesus
may also be revealed in our dying flesh”
2 Corinthians 4:10 (LSV)

In other words, those who are the “living” demonstrate by their walk a corresponding revelation of the LIFE of JESUS! Much of what we define today as being “alive” in Jesus would fall short in God’s estimation.

God’s Word to the Church at Sardis:

“These things says He who is having the Seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars: I have known your works, and that you have the name that you live, and you are dead…”
Revelation 3:1

The early church considered those who were “alive” to be those whose faith was pressing them into a life of identification, causing them to know the truth and cost of discipleship. The Cross of Christ can never be carried doctrinally. We will never touch the pulse of His Life in our daily lives by glibly quoting scriptures. By its very nature, His Life in us must render an effect upon the lives of others.

“..that the life also of Jesus
might be made manifest in our mortal flesh”
2 Corinthians 4:11 (KJV)

Our life is not to be evaluated by our confession; it is to be measured by the impact of Him on others through our frail and fragile earthen vessel. If He does not have His Way IN us, He will not have the means to impact the world THROUGH us.

Are we alive? Is the life of Jesus touching our families, our workplace, our brothers, and sisters in Christ? Do others see and feel Him radiating from our unpretentious life?

Paul prayed earnestly for Philemon:

“That the communication of thy faith may become effectual* by the acknowledging of every good thing which is in you in Christ Jesus.”
Philemon 1:7 (* cause an effect)

Let this stir our hearts; “…that the communication of THY faith may become effectual”. In other words, may our faith influence others. A faith that is in word only, though true, will not impact the lives of those around us. An ineffectual life is a disobedient life. Faith, to be faith, must communicate JESUS. To whatever measure He is residing, to whatever degree His death is being worked in us through obedience, is the depth to which the power of His Life will be known. It is impossible to know the power of the Cross except through the medium of OBEDIENCE.

The Call in Christ to Discipleship

“For we which live are alway delivered unto death for Jesus’ sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh.”
2 Corinthians 4:10 (KJV)

See: Mediatative Moment

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Smooth words, elaborate teachings, overt signs, and wonders,
will never replace the power of a crucified life.

Brian Troxel

The Reason for Grace

The Reason for Grace

Then many of His disciples having heard,
said, This Word is hard; who is able to hear it?”

John 6:60

If it were easy; if it were something we could do on our own… there would be no need for Grace. The hard sayings of Jesus are not only offensive to the natural man, it is beyond the strength of man to walk in their wonder. We can either attempt to bring down His Word by diluting it or we can allow Him to raise us up on eagle wings.

“…they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength;
they shall mount up with wings like eagles…”
Isaiah 40:31

Grace and Truth

“For the law was given by Moses,
but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.”

John 1:17

Grace has come. It comes to all who will seek out the ONE who can lift us up into heavenly places and make us walk in the dynamic of His Spirit. Grace is the power to walk in truth. It is what turns the broken, the addicted, and the lost into lives filled with purpose and freedom.

The Grace of God is offered in Christ Jesus the resurrected ONE. Come to Him and allow His grace to fill your heart with the divine enablement to walk free and to live free.

See: The Gospel of Freedom

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“If it were only the exercise of the body, the moving of the lips, the bending of the knee, men would as commonly step to heaven as they go to visit a friend: but to separate our thoughts and affections from the world, to draw forth all our graces, and engage each in its proper object, and to hold them to it till the work prospers in our hands, this, this is the difficulty.”
– Richard Baxter

“I thank my God always on your behalf,
for the grace of God which is given you by Jesus Christ”
1 Corinthians 1:4

BT

The Pilgrim Way

The Pilgrim Way

To be made whole,
We need brokenness,
To be made strong,
weakness.

To give life to others,
the cross

To be fruit-bearing branches
The Life of the Vine

To live life fully…
death to self
To be filled with Joy…
The spirit of mourning.

To be truly free…
to be His bond-servant.

To receive all things…
Count all things as loss.

To know the magnificence of Christ,
Love the truth, walk in the truth,
and surrender to the Truth.

To know His Fulness,
Love all, forsake all and lose all.

In giving we receive.
In losing we gain.
In dying we live.

In following we lead.

Blessed be the name of the Lord!

The Pilgrim Way

Brian Troxel

The Eclipse

The Eclipse

“Let not the earth of me eclipse the power of You”.

This phrase ran through my heart the other morning.  The fact that the moon can eclipse the sun, flimsy clouds can impede its warmth, and the rotations of the earth completely hide it, are all pictures to me of the importance of keeping my heart fixed upon Him.

God in His infinite wisdom has placed within us, a will; the ability to choose, to make decisions, and to set our affections on things to which we are inclined. It is in this crucible that salvation’s power is most evident. Outward storms of life can affect us, they can bring affliction and distress, but it is ultimately our attitude and will that determine the outcome of life. A religion that does not move the will, does not capture, and harness its choices, does not affect it with a Love that overrules our base desires, would be a dismal experience.

It is within the mystery of His Will subduing our own, causing us to make heavenly choices, that Grace is most revealed. To stay the course, to fix our affections upon Him who walked purposefully to Calvary’s despicable death by His own unshakeable Will, is the true hope of our salvation. That indomitable Love that shaped His decision is the same Love that will fulfill His redemptive work in fallen man.

“Wherefore he saith, When He ascended up on high,
He led captivity captive…”
Ephesians 4:8

May our love of Him fully captivate our hearts, may His grace bind our hearts to the altar, may His strength fill our weakness, that we stay true to the course set before us.

“He must increase, but I must decrease”
John 3:30

Brian Troxel

 

PODCAST – Your Own God!

PODCAST – Your Own God

Hear HIM!

“God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the prophets in many portions and in many ways, in these last days has spoken to us in His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the world” (Heb 1:1-2)

In times past God spoke through men, but now in these last days, He is speaking by His Son, in and through YOU! The five-fold ministry is to bring YOU into your unique ministry, to develop and add YOUR voice to THE VOICE of many waters that YOU should become HIS VOICE to others.

God has already apportioned to each of us a mighty deposit of His Spirit, but we don’t enter into it by prayer, but by obedience. God has already given you the land, but now says, “My land is not to be talked about, My land is to be walked about!”

Brian Troxel

Grace for Others

Grace for Others

For I know with an absolute knowledge and stand persuaded in the Lord Jesus that not even one thing is unhallowed in itself except it be to the one who reasons it out to be unhallowed. To that one it is unhallowed. For, if because of food your brother is made to grieve, no longer are you conducting yourself according to love. Stop ruining by your food that one on behalf of whom Christ died. Therefore, stop allowing your good to be spoken of in a reproachful and evil manner; for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the sphere of the Holy Spirit; for the one who in this serves the Christ is well pleasing to God, and because having met the specifications is approved by men”
Romans 14:10-13 (Wuest Translation)

Paul prefaced this plea to the Body of Christ with:

Who are you who judge another’s servant? To his own lord he stands or falls. Yes, he will be made to stand, for God has power to make him stand. One man esteems one day as more important. Another esteems every day alike. Let each man be fully assured in his own mind. He who observes the day, observes it to the Lord; and he who does not observe the day, to the Lord he does not observe it. He who eats, eats to the Lord, for he gives God thanks. He who doesn’t eat, to the Lord he doesn’t eat, and gives God thanks. For none of us lives to himself, and none dies to himself
Romans 14:5-6

(May the very Spirit of Christ be the arbitrator of our hearts).

My previous post (Thought for Today -Christmas) was in response to attending a school Christmas concert of one of my grandchildren. I sat there as each individual class got up to sing some silly song about Santa, reindeer or snow. I found it heart-breaking that there is a generation arising who knows and hears little of the precious Name of Jesus. After 6 or 7 classes, one got up and sang a beautiful song about my Saviour, His birth and resurrection; I found myself thanking God that there was one teacher who was making an effort to make known His Name. I discovered afterwards that she had written the song herself. To me she was a great light shining in the darkness and it made me want to be the same. It encouraged me that there was one who had a heart to make known His Name and do it in such a way that her whole class was being taught the message of His birth, death and resurrection. The ministration of the Gospel went forth in a very simple and yet profound way. She was not afraid of this contentious day; she used it for the Glory of God.

My own experience growing up was in a godless family with a violent father; at one point I was living on the streets at the age of 13. However, I remember back in one of my grade school days, while participating in a Christmas concert, I was singing a certain carol and there was such a joy that welled up in my heart! To this day I know it was God’s grace touching a very lost and lonely life.

My God is above all things; what Satan means for evil, God uses for good. While to some this day is “unhallowed”, to others it is “hallowed”; to me it is neither. I hope, just as this teacher did, only to make HIS NAME known in a world that is perishing for the lack of His Light.

Paul rejoiced whenever and wherever the name of Jesus Christ was made known.

“Some indeed preach Christ even of envy and strife; and some also of good will: The one preach Christ of contention, not sincerely, supposing to add affliction to my bonds: But the other of love, knowing that I am set for the defence of the gospel. What then? notwithstanding, every way, whether in pretence, or in truth, Christ is preached; and I therein do rejoice, yea, and will rejoice”
Philippians 1:15-18

Whether one esteems a day or not, let the LOVE of Christ show through as we are entreated in the Word of God. To me every day is the same; but regarding those who honour the day as unto the Lord and those who do not honour the day, I will not speak evil of them. This is not the spirit of compromise; it is the grace of God lending respect and honour to the faith of God in His people.

Everyone one of us will surely stand at the Judgment Seat of Christ for our words, our thoughts and our actions.

I was totally taken by surprise over the reactions and the flood of comments concerning such a trivial subject. Would to God we would be as zealous over our real issues of life! Issues such as the nature of our thought lives, our lack of charity, and our real need to overcome every vestige of sin and rebellion in our hearts; to the END that we would be immersed in the Love of God.

Be that as it may, to those who have been offended, I heartily apologize as it is not my purpose to stir up controversy or strife.

“I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called 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”
Ephesians 4:1-6

“Glory in the highest places to God,
and upon earth peace among men of good will
Luke 2:14
(Wuest and the literal Greek rendering)

Σ

“For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ”
(2 Corinthians 4:6)

May HE Shine through each of you in the coming year!

Blessings
Brian Troxel

Quote for Today – Amy Carmichael

Quote for Today

Amy Carmichael

“And shall I pray Thee change Thy will, my Father,
Until it be according unto mine?
But, no, Lord, no, that never shall be, rather
I pray Thee blend my human will with Thine.

I pray Thee hush the hurrying, eager longing,
I pray Thee soothe the pangs of keen desire—
See in my quiet places, wishes thronging—
Forbid them, Lord, purge, though it be with fire.”
― Amy Carmichael

Thought for Today – Living Now for Eternity

Thought for Today

Living Now For Eternity

“Knowing that shortly I must put off this my tabernacle,
even as our Lord Jesus Christ hath shewed me”
2 Peter 1:14

The life of the true believer is lived with the reality of eternity in view. Our life is to be held in the context of our departure and our readiness to stand and give an answer for the life we have lived here (2 Corinthians 5:10)*. Peter’s epistle is the result of seeing his life from the eternal perspective. His exhortation to the people of God is one of “endeavoring” to remind them to continue to add to their faith, to grow in the virtue of Christ unto godliness and love. There is a calm and settled approach to his departure from this world. His care is not for himself; his heart is for the condition and welfare of the Body of Christ. They who live with an eternal perspective cannot be uninvolved in the welfare of His people.

“And I will make every effort to ensure that after my departure,
you will be able to recall these things at all times”
2 Peter 1:15

A life unaffected with a concern for the condition of God’s people is the revelation of a life lived unto itself. The eternal Love of God in Christ must produce within His own an expression in harmony with the things that concern Him; to love the things He loves and to hate the things He hates. His anointing rests upon those who walk and live as He is.

“But unto the Son he saith…
Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity;
therefore, God, even thy God, hath anointed thee
with the oil of gladness above thy fellows”
Hebrews 1:8-9

Ω

“Transiency is stamped on all our possessions, occupations, and delights. We have the hunger for eternity in our souls, the thought of eternity in our hearts, the destination for eternity written on our inmost being, and the need to ally ourselves with eternity proclaimed by the most short-lived trifles of time. Either these things will be the blessing or the curse of our lives. Which do you mean that they shall be for you?”
– Alexander MacLaren

Θ

* “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad”
2 Corinthians 5:10

Brian Troxel

Quote for Today – Joseph Parker

Quote for Today

Joseph Parker

“I am the resurrection and the life”: does the declaration end there? Does it not go on to say, “He that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live”? Is the old thunder “come forth” nothing now but a hollow and impotent whisper? Is not Jesus Christ the same yesterday, to-day, and for ever? If ye then be risen with Christ, prove your resurrection by your consecration
– Joseph Parker