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Posts Tagged ‘God’s Call’

Thought for Today

The Wick

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“…and he (Moses) looked, and, behold,
the bush burned with fire,
and the bush was not consumed”
Exodus 3:2

God’s purpose for man is revealed in this verse. The call of God is to bring men and women to this one end: lives that burn with His fire through fragile earthen vessels. In a fully yielded life of surrender we become His light to the world.

The secret of this life is in the wick drawing upon the oil of His Spirit allowing His pure desire and heart to be the flame. The only way the wick will not burn up is by keeping the flow of oil constant through the power of an abiding relationship. Where there is no flow the wick will burn out and become useless, no longer able to shine with the wonder of the flame of God.

The oil without the flame is of little value. So too are the gifts and ministrations of the Holy Spirit apart from the purifying and glorifying flame of God within the vessel. The magnificence of this life cannot be known without these three components: The Flame of God, the Oil of the Holy Spirit and the Fragile Earthen Wick.

“And the bush was not consumed”

Ω

“It is of the Lord’s mercies
that we are not consumed,
because his compassions fail not”
Lamentations 3:22

Brian Troxel
http://www.aword.info

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ALWAYS ABOUNDING

“Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast,
unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord,
forasmuch as ye know that your labour
is not in vain in The Lord”
1Corinthians 15:58

As God’s people we are to be ALWAYS abounding in the work OF The Lord. This is not to be confused with work FOR The Lord; rather it is work OF The Lord. While visiting some relatives this week I noticed this scripture on a plaque in their home. It was in another version and it really struck me with great conviction. “Always abounding”! This phrase can only be applied to Disciples. This is not a part time occupation, not a scarce and rare moment in the life of a true believer. It speaks of being occupied with His Work and a fulfilling of His desires in our daily life. The “always” is based upon a faith that knows “that your labour is not in vain”. It is a deep assurance that if we walk faithful to Him, “abounding” in His Work, we shall surely reap fruit unto His Glory. Men who believe little, do little. This walk and journey of life can only be according to the faith which is at work in our hearts. We reap according to our sowing, we grow according to our doing, and our faith is exercised by the doing of His will.

Those who are “always abounding in the work of The Lord” are “steadfast” and “unmovable” in The Lord. By the handling and working of the things of our Father we remain engaged in the power of His reality. There is a subtlety in just “knowing” things about God; without the “doing”, the things of the Spirit become distant, doctrinal and mysterious. They become ethereal and rare rather than the simple flow of Him in and through our lives. Many speak of the “will of The Lord” as a hidden thing that is hard to find. Let us be reminded that Paul is speaking to His brethren in Corinth; not a select few, but the whole church there. We must put away wrong thinking and seek this life of “always abounding in the Work of the Lord”.

“Wherefore be ye not unwise,
but understanding what the will of the Lord is”
Ephesians 5:17

Brian Troxel
http://www.aword.info

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THE NEW WINE SKIN

OUR BROTHERS KEEPER

“And the clean person shall sprinkle
upon the unclean on the third day,
and on the seventh day:
and on the seventh day he shall purify himself,
and wash his clothes,
and bathe himself in water,
and shall be clean at even.”
NUMBERS 19:19

Within the sacred writings of the Old Testament we are constantly amazed at the glimpses into the New Covenant! In this passage we read that an Israelite who in his daily life touched something unclean (making him unclean) or something dead (bringing a ministration of death into his life), required a ministration in order for him to be received back into the life of the community of Israel. If only we could see the import and the necessity for us to so interact with one another that the community of faith (known as the Body of Christ) would begin to flow in the love of God and edify itself in HIS Love.

“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

This picture presented to us in the Book of Numbers clearly demonstrates the heart of God. We are not here to live independently from one another. We are to interact in the out workings of God. Men who have no desire to flow with others will not know of the fullness of God. God in His wisdom prescribed this WAY for the unclean to be so ministered to by his brothers that he is brought back into the life of the community. There is no mention here of the shedding of blood but of the sprinkling of water unto cleansing. This is not dealing with redemption and salvation; this is a ministry of the washing of the water by the Word being ministered to one another. It is like washing one another’s feet as we journey in this world full of darkness, temptation and death. This is a life found within the ministrations of the Holy Spirit, member to member, cleansing, encouraging and exhorting. If there is to be any real desire for righteousness and purity how the Body of Christ needs to see the vitality of this life of interaction!

Our independence, lack of trust and pride keep us from the power of this life. It is God’s way and in refusing His way we are left to our own. We have in the New Testament a picture of this in the revelation of Christ raising Lazarus from the dead. Only Jesus has the power to raise the dead; but once Lazarus has been raised Jesus turns to His Disciples and says “Loose him, and let him go”.

“And he that was dead came forth,
bound hand and foot with graveclothes:
and his face was bound about with a napkin.
Jesus saith unto them (the disciples),
Loose him, and let him go”
JOHN 11:44

Just as with Lazarus, Jesus speaks the Life of Resurrection to every true child of God. He then expects us, as His disciples, to remove the grave clothes (lingering effects, ways and habits of the “old man”) that bind. He tells His Disciples to “loose him and let him go”. Can we not see the connection? We are HIS BODY, and as such, by the interaction with one another, we are to be the means by which every man becomes truly free. Too many of God’s people are sitting passively in pews, or isolated in little groups, or alone, while the power and the WAY of God go untouched due to our lack of interaction. We are to be the New Wine Skin but as long as we refuse to walk in this way He will not pour out the New Wine.

“Then He spoke a parable to them:
“No one puts a piece
from a new garment on an old one;
otherwise the new makes a tear,
and also the piece that was taken out of the new
does not match the old.
And no one puts new wine into old wineskins;
or else the new wine will burst the wineskins and be spilled,
and the wineskins will be ruined.
But new wine must be put into new wineskins,
and both are preserved.
And no one, having drunk old wine,
Immediately desires new;
for he says, ‘The old is better.’”
LUKE 5:36-39

We keep thinking that He is going to patch up the old! Perhaps if we had a new pastor or a new teacher or a new youth leader; or perhaps if we just prayed a little harder we could get OUR way of “fellowship” or method of meeting to work. It will not happen. IT IS A NEW DAY and the new day REQUIRES a new and fresh outpouring of the Holy Spirit! The former things must pass away! The problem is that people like the old wine. They say the old wine is better, they resist change, are set in the old ways and do not desire the new enough to forsake the old. It is because of this that God must go out into the highways and the byways to bring in new people who have not “acquired” the taste of the Old Wine.

GOD HAS A WORD for those who linger in the old and leaking wineskin; He has a Word for those who desire the Old Wine instead of the NEW…

“Moab* hath been at ease from his youth,
and he hath settled on his lees,
and hath not been emptied from vessel to vessel,
neither hath he gone into captivity:
THEREFORE, his taste remained in him,
and his scent is not changed
JEREMIAH 48:11

Moab* is a people who were the incestuous offspring of Lot; they were born out of a desire to save or preserve the seed of Lot after the judgements of Sodom. They will not change, they refuse to be “poured from vessel to vessel” and because of this THERE IS NO CHANGE in their own lives.

“Remember ye not the former things,
neither consider the things of old.
Behold, I will do a new thing…”
ISAIAH 43:18-19

It is a day to forsake the former things for it is the DAY of the New Wineskin; a day to seek and desire to fulfill God’s heart: the full revelation of the “Body of Christ”. It is a day to forsake the format and the structure of the old wineskin that will NOT make room for the new. Let us embrace the power of the life of the Son where the New Wine Skin is birthed by the vital relationships of the people of God, each member beholding the Head, even Christ.

“…unto Him
shall the gathering of the people be”
GENESIS 49:10

How can we continue to meet in the name of some denomination, or in the ways of some great teacher or organization, how long can we gather in the name of anything other than JESUS! The early Church had no other name, they had no other impediment in their coming together for they were drinking of the New Wine for it was poured out into a New Wine Skin. The word testifies that they were in ONE ACCORD PRIOR to the outpouring of the Holy Spirit for the NEW WINE SKIN must precede the pouring forth of the precious HOLY SPIRIT.

In 2 Kings God pleads with His people to give heed to His Word and change their ways and they refused and instead of obeying Him they clung to their former ways…

“Howbeit they did not hearken,
but they did after their former manner”
2KINGS 17:40

Can we not hear, is their not within our very hearts the cry for something real, powerful and NEW? How long will we cling to the former things, how long will we languish in that which is old and leaking? When will we so desire the new that we rise up and forsake that old and impotent way? A man’s desire for a thing must come to the place of such intensity that it produces the arising and the seeking for it.

*NOTE: Moab is a seed who springs out of the mighty deliverance from Judgement   In which Lot’s wife was turned into a pillar of salt, Moab is a type of a people who desire to preserve THEIR way, THEIR position and THEIR relevance in the things of God. They will not change, they refuse to be “poured from vessel to vessel” and because of this THERE IS NO CHANGE in their lives. The taste of the wine that flows from them and the scent of their spirit and their heart remains intact and to such a people there will be NO NEW WINE. Moab’s inheritance and place of abiding in the Old Testament was the Dead Sea! Can we not see the end of such ways?

“Therefore also now,
saith the Lord,
turn ye even to me
with all your heart…”
Joel 2:12

Brian Troxel

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CALLED WITH A HOLY CALLING*

“How precious
also are thy thoughts unto me,
O God!
how great is the sum of them!”
PSALM 139:17

The true knowledge of God within a man is born out of intimacy. Intimacy with God brings a man to the precipice of purpose and the fear of the Lord. It is in this place of understanding we begin to comprehend the immensity of the thoughts of God concerning our being as a unique and precious work of God. In the unfolding of this knowledge comes a sense of accountability to “finish” the work and the purpose for which we have been created.

From science we are now told that the blueprint of an individual’s life (DNA), if it were stretched out linearly, would reach the moon over 6000 times. This unique and comprehensive instruction set of an individual is only the beginning of what we are. The everyday interaction with circumstances and others are all part of the great sum of HIS thoughts toward us becoming His expression in the earth. For Christians to think that their lives are to be lived without purpose is a tragedy in itself. Without this intimacy with God there can be no true comprehension of the CALL and PURPOSE of life. Aimlessness is the result of a Gospel that presents a God who is at the whim of men to decide whether or not to “accept” HIM. This presentation has really put man on the throne rather than God. Men who KNOW that they are the result of an eternal call (with a purpose and a sense of being accountable for the fulfillment of that call) are no longer drifting through life left to their own resources. God’s WORD to Jeremiah was:

“Before I formed thee
in the belly I knew thee;
and before thou camest forth
out of the womb I sanctified thee,
and I ordained thee a prophet
unto the nations”
JEREMIAH 1:5

The declaration of this to Jeremiah was to gird him with the strength of purpose; to equip him to withstand the opposition and the persecution of all that he would face. It is the same for us in our day. We need to know that we are here to spend our time concerned about our “Father’s business” just as Jesus was.

“And if ye call on the Father,
who without respect of persons
judgeth according to every man’s work,
pass the time of your sojourning
here in fear…”
1Peter 1:17

Those who fear the Lord know that to squander our time here will be accounted for in the Day of Judgment. The writer of Hebrews declares…

“Let us therefore fear, lest,
a promise being left us
of entering into his rest,
any of you should seem
to come short of it”
Hebrews 4:1

The Call of God implies accountability. In Philippians Paul speaks of apprehending that for which he had been apprehended; to lay hold of the purpose, to press toward the MARK of the high call of God in Christ Jesus. Those with a true sense of being called of God know they have, through unfathomable mercy, been apprehended at a great cost to God Himself. To fail to finish the race set before us, to linger and to squander the wonder of this CALL, is the greatest tragedy men can bring upon themselves.

“Ye have not chosen me,
but I have chosen you,
and ordained you,
that ye should go and bring forth fruit,
and that your fruit should remain”
John 15:16

In the same intimate dialogue with His disciples Jesus also said:

“Every branch IN ME
that beareth not fruit
he taketh away…”
John 15:2

Paul in Romans chapters nine through eleven sets forth the most magnificent portrayal of the COMPLETE AND UTTER SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD. In this context he continues:

“I beseech you therefore
(because of God’s Sovereignty),
brethren, by the mercies of God,
that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice,
holy, acceptable unto God…”
Romans 12:1

The “beseeching” set forth here is the very cry of the Spirit of God for us to RESPOND correctly to the CALL. The CALL of God REQUIRES response. Failure to respond fully ends in disqualification and shame. This is not a loss of being His child but of failure to enter into the Kingdom of God as joint heirs with Christ.

“For many are called,
but few are chosen”
Matthew 22:14

Peter sums up the whole truth of this with a clarity and power. (Please read these verses reverently and carefully and may the power within them impart to us the truth of God’s heart and purpose for us in this DAY). 2 Peter 1:3-11

“3. According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:

4. Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.

5. And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge;

6. And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness;

7. And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.

8. FOR IF THESE THINGS BE IN YOU, AND ABOUND, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

9. But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins.

10. Wherefore the rather, brethren, GIVE DILIGENCE TO MAKE YOUR CALLING AND ELECTION SURE: FOR IF YE DO THESE THINGS, ye shall never fall:

11. FOR SO AN ENTRANCE SHALL BE MINISTERED UNTO YOU ABUNDANTLY INTO THE EVERLASTING KINGDOM OF OUR LORD AND SAVIOUR JESUS CHRIST.”

Ω

“Who hath saved us,
and CALLED us with an holy calling,
not according to our works,
but according to HIS own purpose and grace,
which was given us in Christ Jesus
before the world began
2TIMOTHY 1:9

*NOTE: While men love to debate the “doctrinal issues” of these things those who know God have, through out the ages, understood that the CALL of GOD comes with definite purpose and accountability. Watchman Nee, who traveled from village to village preaching the Gospel of God, knew that in every village there were men and women who had been called of God and prepared of God to hear the WORD he preached. His absolute determination to preach the Word was because of this: that he knew he must not fail the grace of God. Men who hold to a mere doctrine or teaching will always miss God’s heart but they who know the truth of God’s CALL labour to fulfill that to which they have been called. The belief in the teaching/doctrine of these things can produce lethargy, pride and self-righteousness but unto those who are gripped by the CALL know of the awesome responsibility unto HIM to “make our calling and election sure”. We cannot linger in the debates and opinions of men for there is a inward compulsion to FULFILL GOD’S CALL rather than discussing it.

Brian Troxel

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Sowing and Reaping


“He that goeth forth and weepeth,

bearing precious seed,
shall doubtless come again with rejoicing,
bringing his sheaves with him”
Psalm 126:6

Those who sow precious seed, and carry with it the burden of the Word of the Lord, have this promise…they “shall doubtless come again with rejoicing”. The mere teaching of the word without the tears and burden of the Spirit will never touch the joy of such things. The weeping must precede the rejoicing; the sowing must precede the reaping. To sow in faith one must see by faith the ONE who is the SEED itself. The sowing is carried out for the Glory of the ONE who is to receive all praise and honor. Our reaping will be according to our sowing and our tears. The desire to communicate the Life of the SON unto His own must be the impetus and purpose of all ministrations. The words that HE speaks they are “spirit and they are life”. So too we must come into union with HIM who is the source of all good things; without HIM there is no life or purpose. The desire to see God’s people arise and walk must be the mere echo of the TRUE Shepherd who has laid down HIS LIFE for US! If we are touching HIS LIFE that will become the pulse of our own.

We have too long tarried at the tree of knowledge speaking of things about God; discourse after discourse, sermon after sermon, without change and without the rising up of God’s people. Fruit is the corresponding revelation to that which is sowed. We need not look very far to see the issue of the hour. Where there is no breaking forth of the people of God there is a priesthood that has ministered the Word without the Spirit. We live in a generation that desires to hear only good things, smooth things, and words that encourage without accountability. The LOVE of TRUTH has hit such lows that even the people of God refuse to receive admonition and reproof. They have become settled on their lees, comfortable and ignorant of the hour that is about to break. The storm is about to break and the Spirit of God is speaking “who will tell them”. Reproof and admonition is not about our pride it is about truth. Truth ministered in such a way that it will MAKE ME TRUE from the inside out. The true sowing of the Spirit is to bring about a harvest unto HIM. It is about presenting HIS people as a chaste virgin unto Christ. It is not about US, our little fellowship, our church or whatever. It is about us being able to be pure in thought, word and deed. This purity of heart is the lens through which we are able to SEE God (Matthew 5:8).

Jesus wept over Jerusalem because they refused HIM who is true, they refused to be gathered under the wings of His protection, they chose religion over truth and they perished in the greatest genocide the human race has known up until now.

“O Jerusalem, Jerusalem,
thou that killest the prophets,
and stonest them which are sent unto thee,
how often would I have gathered
thy children together,
even as a hen gathereth
her chickens under her wings,
and ye would not!
Behold, your house is left unto you
Desolate”
Matthew 23:37-38

Desolation is the result of rejecting the Word of the Lord. Even in this hour, while it is yet DAY, may the true ministers of the Lord “weep between the porch and the Altar, saying spare Thy people…”. These prayers and the demonstration of such a heart can only come from the lives of those who KNOW HIS HEART. Those who are still trying to build up “their” own church, fellowship or ministry will never touch the CRY of HIS SPIRIT for HIS House and HIS inheritance. We see the revelation of the true elders in the heavens casting their crowns (their accomplishments) away at the name of Jesus, worshipping HIM who is worthy of all praise and adoration. Self has been set aside. The desire for the praise of our brethren is meaningless for there has been a touching of His heart and glimpses of a GLORY which is utterly transcendent. It is to this end we sow and weep knowing that we will “DOUBTLESS come again with rejoicing” bringing our sheaves and laying them at HIS feet!

“Unto HIM be glory in the church
by Christ Jesus throughout all ages,
world without end
Amen”

Brian Troxel

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“VISION”

PART III

“I was not disobedient unto the heavenly vision”
ACTS 26:19

Vision requires obedience. This is not an earthly vision, for earthly visions may simply be ideals, goals or lofty things for which we strive. Not so a heavenly one. A heavenly vision originates in heaven. It is not the product of men and therefore it is not simply an ideal or a religious concept; it is GOD’S CALL.

Here we see Paul nearing the end of his journey and the vision had not faded. It had not been compromised but it beat with a fiery passion as he communicates to everyone the one thing that has produced this expression within his heart. Without obedience the heavenly vision fades. It not only becomes just a teaching, but the beauty of it no longer births a life of pursuit. It is reduced to something that men discuss and debate in theological rhetoric without the “CRY” for its reality.

Obedience is the lamp that illumines our vision. Without it our world becomes small and our view of the size and scope of God’s salvation withers as well. “I” becomes the center from which everything else is viewed. Things are measured by how it relates to “my” wellbeing and we are no longer affected by the needs of those around us. We are unable even to see that “the fields are white unto harvest” for we must have HIS VISION of the world to truly care. Without obedience and participation in the costly exercise of our lives as it relates to GOD’s purpose the vision fades. We are ultimately left with a life that is barren, unexercised in the dynamic of faith, and out of touch with the reality of God’s heart.

The nature of anything is known by its fruit.

“The days are at hand, and the EFFECT of every vision.
For there shall be no more any vain vision…”
EZEKIEL 12:23

Brian Troxel

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