The Cross of Christ

The Cross of Christ

Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus,
that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.”
2 Corinthians 4:10

The call and purpose of God in Christ Jesus is to the end that we become an expression of the life and wonder of Jesus. Our interaction with the Holy Spirit is about the “manifestation” of His Life in us. He alone is to be the fulcrum upon which our life is lived. God’s singular focus is the glorifying of the Son; as our hearts become aligned by the power of the Holy Spirit we are caught up in this grand purpose. The signature of a life lived in the grace of God will be summed up by the cry:

“He must increase; I must decrease”

There is a hidden dynamic of life available within the confines of the Cross of Christ. A life of resurrection awaits those who would enter into the reality of discipleship. There is but one avenue of advance; one door, one key and one price for the surpassing glory of His Life being manifested in us: a dying to self. It is here that even the call to ministry must be refined within the consuming fire of God until its sole purpose is to manifest His life at the cost of our own. The pathway is littered with many who have started out well only to become enamoured by their own expressions of ministry and the adulation of others. How perilous is this way and how deceptive the human heart is at every juncture in our journey!

His ministration subtly becomes “our” ministry. The people we minister to become “our fellowship” and “our church”. The dregs of fallen Adam usurp the blessings of Christ. It is one thing to start out well but few there be that end well. The safeguard is to remain faithful to the truth; speak truth, live truth and identify with Him who is the truth. Relationships must be subservient to the truth. It is here that the weight and the power of the Cross is revealed. Popularity and acceptance are virulent enemies of the cross and the human heart is susceptible to both. Paul presented this vital truth in the Book of Galatians:

“But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed”
Galatians 1:8

Paul himself made it clear that his standing with the people of God in his day was founded on him being held within the truth of God and not in the office of his apostleship. Every ministration of God which causes schisms, division and a calling of people unto themselves, “their” church or fellowship, is an affront to the person and the lordship of Jesus Christ.

Only those who are living daily unto this ONE end will know of the wonder, the power and the excellency of the glory of the Resurrected Christ!

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

Brian Troxel

Speaking the Truth – Part One – Truth and Partiality

Speaking the Truth

Part One

Truth and Partiality

“Them that sin rebuke before all,
that others also may fear.”
1 Timothy 5:20

The true love of God cares about others within the Body of Christ. It is not silent nor does it turn a blind eye to sin within His House. The “wages of sin is death”. Do we really believe this? Has sin become so rampant, so common and prevalent that we care little about its horror? Have we become so anesthetized in our own hearts that we dare not confront that which is without because of the compromise within?

Paul followed his charge (the above scripture) to Timothy with:

I charge thee before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, and the elect angels, that thou observe these things without preferring one before another, doing nothing by partiality
1 Timothy 5:21

Denominations, sects, kingdom-building and the desire to please others, has become more important than the truth of God. We are more concerned with people’s opinions of us than we are with staying true to God’s Word and purpose. The need to fill the pews and be popular outweighs the purity and power of God’s living truth. We sacrifice truth upon the altar of our agendas and desires. We place men upon pedestals and hold them to a different standard than we do others.

Paul speaks this truth concerning himself:

“But even if we or an angel out of heaven should preach a gospel to you contrary to what we proclaimed to you, let him be accursed!”
Galatians 1:8

The love of truth, for the sake of God’s glory in our midst, must exceed the love of our personal relationships. God’s house is to be holy and pure, having the same love one for another; it is to that end we live and move within His Body. There are to be no schisms or sects and no favoritism. Timothy was charged with the solemn task of accountability to God, he was to live in the simplicity of honoring and glorifying God. There was no favoritism and the repulsion of treating one member differently from another.

Truth is truth.

Truth is not relative! The devastating lie of “relativism” has crept into the very core of the Church of Jesus Christ. We may speak truth to one brother and turn a blind eye to another but God has a word for such an unspeakable act: HYPOCRISY.

The condition of the Church of Jesus Christ today is a sad testament to this hypocrisy. The Love of God has fallen to such a low degree where we have set His Call to holiness below that of our relationships with others. A relationship that cannot survive the speaking of truth to one another is a carnal relationship and is based upon something other than God.

Woe to us if we walk in partiality, sectarianism and the horror of a love that only loves its own. Woe to us if we walk in anything less than the pure love of truth.

The Call of God is going out to bring forth a people who love in deed, word and truth without partiality.

“For while one saith, I am of Paul;
and another, I am of Apollos;
ARE YE NOT CARNAL?
1 Corinthians 3:4

How many today speak these same things? I am of the Pentecostal church or the Alliance church; I follow a certain leader or a particular teaching; are we not carnal? Within these boundaries partiality flourishes and so does sin!

“For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying,and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?”
1 Corinthians 3:3

There is a simple solution to this.

“But speaking the truth in love”
Ephesians 4:15

Love is the only motive and power which can cause the walls of sectarianism, denominational-ism and carnal factions to be removed.

The true love of God will not and cannot stand idly by and watch a brother/sister or fellowship/church destroy their lives or the life and unity of the Body of Christ without speaking to it. It is an impossibility. When sin is viewed from a lethargic heart it is easy to say nothing. When it is seen for the deadly thing it is we cannot remain silent. Apathy begets apathy. Love is the only answer to apathy. Love is the only thing which can and will break down the walls of carnal thinking and carnal doing. Where the fear of man reigns secularism and denominational-ism will prevail. Whenever love and truth are the impetus, God is glorified.

The Test

There is a simple test to know the validity of our relationships. Set your heart to the speaking and receiving of truth. If the relationships hold then God is the foundation. If contention and strife arise then know that the foundation is built upon the sand of men’s ways and not God’s.

The call of God today is to seek with all of our hearts to be true within the secret places of our lives. Love God above all. Be true to Him and from such a spring you will drink the refreshing waters of the eternal fellowship of Christ IN His Body.

“For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.”
John 3:20-21

Brian Troxel