ARISING IN THE NIGHT!

ARISING IN THE NIGHT

”And I arose in the night”
Nehemiah 2:12

The test of faith is not only what we do in the times of light and blessing but how we respond in those times when we cannot see our way. Here we see a dark time for the people of God; the City of God was burned with fire, the gates destroyed, and rubble filled the streets. The enemy was strong in the Land and the oppressors kept diligent watch that there should be no rising up of the people of God.

Nehemiah had a call from God to see the City arise from the rubble. There was a cry in his heart for the City not for himself. The burden caused him to arise, the vision was strong upon him, his purpose was clear and his God was Great. He did not wait for others to “catch the vision”; he did not wait for the “conditions” to improve.  He arose to fulfill the cry of God in his heart.

True Vision produces DEEDS of FAITH. True vision brings us into the reality that our God is willing, able and faithful to provide substance and strength for the purpose for which we have been apprehended. While men linger in the night the tares are planted…

“But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat”
Matthew 13:25

While men sleep the enemy sows deception and error; thoughts that sound right but destroy the truth of the seed that was planted. Excuses and reasons why we cannot arise, why the people of God should be content to just maintain the status quo while the City of God remains divided, weak and barren, are all tares sown in the night.

“The slothful man saith, there is a lion in the way…”
Proverbs 26:13

LET US ARISE even in the night to see HIS Glory once again covering, filling and empowering the Church of JESUS CHRIST. Let us arise, lay aside the seeking of our own prosperity, and find HIS heart to seek the welfare of the Children of God!

“God’s program for reviving His people is definite and clear. First Elijah repaired the altar of Jehovah that was thrown down. That is the place to begin. All the ruin that sin has wrought must be cleared away by confession. Things must be made right with God; restitution must be made where it is due. Unless this is done definitely and thoroughly, prayer for reviving is vain. Too many are praying today without repairing the altar by confession of sin, without digging a trench of separation from the world and without a surrender that is even unto death. No wonder such prayer is fruitless”
Andrew Gih

Brian Troxel

FEED THEM

FEED THEM

“You give them to eat”
MATTHEW 14:17

Somewhere within the development of a healthy believer’s life there comes a startling moment when there must be the transition from a child always needing someone to feed them to becoming a source and supply for others. True ministry will facilitate and press those within its sphere to bring about this life of progression from relying on the bread of others to becoming bread for others.

Here we see Jesus looking over the multitudes with great compassion and His first response is to turn to the disciples and desire of them to feed the multitudes. He is ever beckoning us to come and participate (fellowship) with HIM in the bringing forth of HIS KINGDOM in the earth. The validity of any ministry is revealed in the development of those around it to become a unique, powerful ministration of the SON in their lives unto others. This is the nature of the Kingdom of God.

We live in a day where thousands upon thousands of believers sit year after year listening to others teach, preach and minister to them without a cry rising up within their own hearts to become life and bread to others. HOW CAN THESE THINGS BE? How long will this unnatural and stagnant condition continue? When will there be a recognition of the futility and impotency of our ways? Can we not hear the call to us from the Book of Hebrews…?

“For though by this time you ought to be teachers,
you need someone to teach you AGAIN the first principles of the
oracles of God; and you have come to need milk and not solid food”

HEBREWS 5:12

When there is a lack of development within the people of God, those with father’s hearts are ever there to be faithful to exhort and admonish the people of God onward… “let us go on to perfection…” (HEBREWS 6:1).

How sad it is to see the teacher/pupil relationship continue for years and years without change. To see the same people sitting and listening to sermons, tapes, teachings, seminars and countless other forms of the “multimedia” world we live in WITHOUT THE CORRESPONDING GROWTH AND DEVELOPMENT OF THE MINISTRATIONS OF THE LIVING CHRIST WITHIN THE HEARERS is incomprehensible! This is not only an indictment of the condition within the Body of Christ in this hour it is a clear revelation that we are living in the last days.

“Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes,
will He really find faith on the earth?”

LUKE 18:8

“And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets,
some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers,
FOR the equipping of the saints FOR the work of ministry,
for the edifying of the body of Christ,
till we ALL come…”

EPHESIANS 4:11 – 13

Brian Troxel

HIS VOICE

HIS VOICE

“And ye said, Behold,
the LORD our God hath showed us his glory and his greatness,
and we have heard his voice out of the midst of the fire:
we have seen this day that God doth talk with man, and he liveth.
Now therefore why should we die? for this great fire will consume us:
if we hear the voice of the Lord our God any more, then we shall die.
For who is there of all flesh, that hath heard the voice of the living
God speaking out of the midst of the fire, as we have, and lived?
Go thou near, and hear all that the Lord our God shall say:
and speak thou unto us all that the Lord our God shall speak unto thee;
and we will hear it, and do it.”
Deuteronomy 5:24 – 27

Though Israel saw the works of God in Egypt and at the Red Sea it is here that they first caught a glimpse of the fact that He speaks to men. This reveals the possibility of relationship. It is one thing to see the moving of His hand; it is quite another to hear Him speak and enter into the place of comprehending His WILL and PURPOSE. Relationship denotes responsibility and accountability. Religion does not mind acknowledging God, nor does it have a problem with even His miracles and His words if they are related to us from a book or someone else. But the thought of hearing His voice for ourselves brings us to the edge of reality. It brings us to the awful place of His fire, His presence, and into the place of knowing. Religion is like an anesthetic; it gives us enough understanding to make us feel comfortable, but leaves us in enough darkness that we do not have to face that penetrating light and feel the heat from the fire of His presence. For it is in knowing that we see to some degree our state and His glory. It is in hearing His voice that He communicates His Will and His purpose for our lives. This is a fearful place. It is a place that strips us from the comfort of the shadows of obscurity into the knowledge of the Holy One by the revelation of Himself in and by His living Word.

“Ye have neither heard his voice at any time, nor seen his shape.
and ye have not his word abiding in you: for whom he hath sent,
him ye believe not. Search the scriptures;
for in them ye think ye have eternal life:
and they are they which testify of me.”

John 5:37

The Jews had a confidence in their knowledge of the scriptures, yet that knowledge instead of revealing the Christ, blinded them to the seeing of Him, “…for in them ye think ye have life…” Their confidence was in the knowledge of words rather than in the hearing of His voice. If they had heard His voice they would have seen Him and known Him. The voice of the Lord is ever speaking into the earth looking and longing for His creation to hear and come that it might know Him and be changed.

It is the voice of God that calls us to the true knowledge of Him and to the awful revelation of ourselves. It is the voice of God that calls us to separation and obedience. No wonder the desire to remain in the comfort of obscurity. But, it is also the voice that reveals the Lamb of God in all of His Grace and Glory. It is the voice that draws us away from our sin and our sickness unto Holiness, without which no man can see God. It calls us to the place of worship, to the place of fellowship with Him, to the place of the mount of God baptized with fire and glory and ultimately it brings us to the place of His divine purpose, Christ in you the full hope of Glory. His voice is for one purpose; to make us so one with Him that our life becomes His voice to others, our life becomes his provision to those He brings our way. When the people asked John the Baptist who he was he simply replied…“I am a voice of one crying out in the wilderness… ” They could not recognize him because they knew not the voice that spoke through him, and that voice was to prepare the way for the true Shepherd who was to follow. It’s in hearing His voice that we become an echo of the One who is, who was and who is to come; “for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy”. Let us not draw back in the hearing of His voice but as Elijah who upon hearing the “still small voice” wrapped himself in his mantle and presented himself to the Will and the Purposes of God.

How men and women in this day quickly trade away their true standing in God and seek out men who will speak to them in the stead of God! How sad it is that there is a professional “ministry” who would stand in the place of God so that the people can shirk their responsibility and sit in pews when they should be up and about doing the will of their Father. Where is that ministry which will confront this lethargy and speak with power and unction to cause people to recognize their birthright as “sons” and draw near to God with hearts that long to hear and obey the voice of the Almighty? Where is that true ministry such as John the Baptist that rejoices when his disciples forsake him to follow in the footsteps of the Son? May God arise and pour out His fire in this day to ignite the hearts of His people to give our lives unto Him as living sacrifices’!

“An empty altar will receive no fire…”
Frank Bartleman

Brian Troxel

HEART OF A PRIEST PART FOUR

HEART OF A PRIEST

PART FOUR

THE ROYAL PRIESTHOOD

“To whom coming, as unto a living stone, disallowed indeed of men,
but chosen of God, and precious, Ye also, as lively stones,
are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood
,
to offer up spiritual sacrifices,
acceptable to God by Jesus Christ”

I Peter 2:4 – 5

The language of the New Covenant is one that conveys the thought, power and purpose of God in His people. We are living stones by VIRTUE of coming to THE LIVING STONE. In coming to HIM we learn, discover and partake of HIS qualities and heart. There can be no building up into a corporate expression that glorifies HIM if we are not walking in HIS TRUTH, LIKENESS and CHARACTER. We ARE living stones (plural) that are being (present tense) built into a Spiritual HOUSE (singular) for HIS GLORY. It is not a church building; it is not a ministry (Apostle, Prophet, Evangelist, Pastor or Teacher). Rather it is a CORPORATE HOLY PRIESTHOOD that will in truth offer SPIRITUAL SACRIFICES UNTO GOD THROUGH JESUS CHRIST. The only purpose of the individual ministrations in HIS HOUSE is to PRODUCE this priesthood within the lives of the individual living stones.

Throughout the New Covenant we read over and over of the value and preciousness of the individual expression but here we see the cry for the summation of all ministries into the SINGULAR expression. We do not read of the Bodies of Christ, families of God, faiths of Christ, houses of God, and other plural concepts.

“So we, being many, are ONE body in Christ,
and every one members one of another”

ROMANS 12:5

“For we being many are ONE bread, and ONE body:
for we are all partakers of that ONE bread”

I CORINTHIANS 10:17

“For as the body is ONE, and hath many members,
and all the members of that ONE body,
being many, are ONE body: so also is Christ”

I CORINTHIANS 12:12

“But now are they many members, yet but ONE body.
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”

I CORINTHIANS 12:20

There are far too many scriptures to list here for the sake of brevity, but even in these few examples we MUST recognize the discrepancy between what we see here and the abomination of what we see in the “Christian Expression” around us. Our FAITH must reveal HIS HEART and purposes. FAITH IS THE SUBSTANCE OF THINGS NOT SEEN. If I believe in this ONE HOUSE and this ONE ROYAL PRIESTHOOD then with every fibre of my being I should interact with the people of God around me to this ONE END. If our lives resemble the ONE LIVING STONE (which was rejected by the RELIGIOUS builders of HIS DAY) then it must be that our lives not only be rejected by the religious builders of our day, but that we find ourselves in truth being built into a SPIRITUAL HOUSE by becoming that ROYAL PRIESTHOOD to see it to completion.

Men who are content to live outside of the “institutions of men” without love and concern for the spiritual wellbeing of HIS people know not the HEART OF GOD. ALL THINGS ARE TO BE SUMMED UP IN CHRIST! ALL THINGS ARE TO SEE HIS PURPOSES FULFILLED IN HIS PEOPLE! That is the heartbeat of those who have seen, heard and felt HIS HEART in this hour. THERE IS ONE BODY, ONE SPIRIT, ONE HOPE OF OUR CALLING, ONE LORD, ONE FAITH, ONE BAPTISM, ONE GOD AND FATHER! It is unto this END that we live and because of THIS TRUTH we NOW labour that we may present EVERY MAN complete in Christ! That is the only purpose of ALL ministry; though the individual expressions are all unique and different this is the ONE END to which we labour. Our lives must be true to this ONE THING and how we actually interact with the people of God on a daily basis IS THE REVELATION OF OUR FAITH IN THIS MATTER!

“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 4:4 – 6

Brian Troxel

THE DAYS ARE COME

THE DAYS ARE COME

“The days of visitation are come,
the days of recompense are come”

HOSEA 9:7

His return is directly related to judgment and recompense. To the faithful His return is one of rewards and glory; to the disobedient and slothful a day of reckoning and recompense. To those who know Him not it is the day of great judgment. His coming has many aspects; the refiner’s fire, the owner of the vineyard, the King of the pounds and talents, the Chief Shepherd and many other expressions that indicate far more about His return than just taking His people to a city with streets of gold. The propagation of flippant teachings regarding His return will have to be answered for.

It is a KING that is returning to bring justice, equity and righteousness to this world that has rejected Him and His Salvation. It is the DAY of the LORD; a day in which His ministers in the earth will give an account for what was taught and how they conducted their lives. He is coming and it is time for us to turn our hearts to Him that we would be purified in the burning Fire of His presence even from the things we cannot see! I am responsible even for the things I am not aware of for He will search us out and reveal our hidden places if we ask Him to do so.

David cried out in Psalm 51:10 “Create in me a clean heart…” The Hebrew Verb used here is only used in reference to God (never to man) for it is a word that means to bring something forth out of nothing. We need the creative power of the Son at work in our hearts to bring forth a clean heart. A Religion that short circuits the desperate cry of the human heart with nice teachings, smooth words, dissertations of future events, and programs that keep His people from the power of the cry of an honest heart, will suffer great sorrow in the days ahead. The Church of Laodicea was a church that thought they were “rich and had need of nothing” and they knew not that they were “poor, wretched, blind, miserable and naked”. God is never angry with a people because of their condition, for that is why He came! His anger is because in spite of their need they said “I am rich…” Wrong teaching produces wrong living. If there is no change, there is no growth. If we are not growing from faith unto faith, strength unto strength and glory unto glory then we need to consider our ways.

It is a Day to sound the ALARM; to cry out against the infiltration of sin and destruction in the church. It is a DAY to raise the standard of His righteousness and HIS PROVISION for men to be FREE. If there is no provision for Sin, no provision for those bound up in the wages of Sin, then it is time to close the doors and stop the show. It is utter folly to preach against SIN if there is no provision for it. A POWERLESS GOSPEL BRINGS FORTH POWERLESS LIVING.

“And if Christ is not risen, then our preaching is empty
and your faith is also empty”

I CORINTHIANS 15:14

A RISEN CHRIST is the only provision that we have for victory over SIN. Empty preaching comes from hearts that know not HIS power or HIS resurrection. Today we can have victory over the temptations of this world BECAUSE HE LIVES and because HE LIVES WE CAN LIVE ALSO.

“Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness
in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world”

I JOHN 4:17

Brian Troxel

FOR THE BED IS SHORTER…

FOR THE BED IS SHORTER…

“For the bed is shorter than that a man can stretch himself on it:
and the covering narrower than that he can wrap himself in it.”

Isaiah 28:20

It is the nature of man to seek rest in something less than God’s true provision. These other things may provide some semblance of rest. They might offer some sense of relief by covering our true need, but it is only religion. We seek rest in teachings, doctrine, submission to someone or something, even in the scriptures themselves, but God has designed these things to provide only a partial rest. True rest is found only in Him. Man lays hold of concepts to hide in; that everything is put off to some day in the future; some great work of God that is yet to be. This actually produces poverty of mind and soul. It obscures the relevance of today and leaves its adherents bereft of any sense of rest in the today of life. We seek rest in the fact that that we are in “submission” to an organization, perhaps some apostle, some teaching or religious order while Jesus cries out in the simplicity of truth,

“Come unto me… and I will give you rest…
take my yoke upon you and learn of me
and ye shall FIND rest unto your souls”.

Matthew 11:28 – 29

Our need is to begin to look objectively at the fruit of our ways. The journey into truth must start by us becoming truthful to ourselves. This is the day of which the scriptures declare that the “effect” of every vision is at hand. What is the effect of our personal vision? Is it producing a greater, more intimate walk with Jesus; a greater apprehension of His Life and Power in us? Has it created a deeper experiential truth of Him in our daily lives? What is the fruit of the things that we hold to? Do we pass each day in the “rest” of an adherence to a belief while we sit in faithless inactivity and squander the precious time that we have by saying “some day….”? Or do we, as Jesus beckons us in the scripture above, “Come unto Him…” every day? Do we rise up each morning with the earnest desire that today we actively “take up His yoke” and seek that life of walking and doing in the great adventure of life with Him. For that is the true place of learning. It is the only place where we will “FIND” rest unto our souls. The FIND here speaks of something that is the result of searching. The “COME unto Him” speaks of rising up from where we are and going to Him. These things speak of movement and change. They speak of relationship and submission to His will on a daily basis. There is no full or true rest in anything outside of JESUS. The wisdom of God has designed this life so that the bed of men’s concepts will always be “shorter” than the need of man. True rest comes when a man can stretch himself out in full and never worry about the “edge” of his resting place. This is a place of wonder and peace for we have found that our resting place is larger than our being. We are free from worry and anxious care for we have found our rest in Christ himself. This is a rest of great activity! It is a rest of being so one in Him that we naturally do and live as a pure expression of the Father’s Heart. Jesus is the Sabbath of God yet as He walked among men, the scriptures testify that He went about “doing good”. Oh the glory of such a life where, without taking thought, we naturally live and move and have our being in God’s SON!

Brian Troxel

SECURE SERVANTS

SECURE SERVANTS

“Jesus KNOWING
that the Father had given
all things into his hands,
and that he was come from God,
and went to God;
He riseth from supper,
and laid aside his garments;
and took a towel, and girded himself.
After that he poureth water into a basin,
and began to wash the disciples’ feet”

JOHN 13:3 – 5

Servanthood is directly related to our security in terms of relationship with God. Men who are insecure cannot, will not, ever touch upon the power of the HIS humility. “Jesus knowing” was the basis of HIS ability to serve and minister to others. HIS relationship with God was not determined by what HE did; HIS knowing of who HE was was not defined by the position HE took with other men. HE knew and was secure in HIS relationship with the FATHER. True ministry knows that the secret of the people of God flowing, moving and being empowered in their own ministrations of the risen Christ is directly related to each member being “rooted and grounded in the love of God”. Men may function in the gifts of the Holy Spirit but that is not true ministry. Ministry is that which flows from member to member because of relationship not gifting…

“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

The Body of Christ is “fitly joined and supplied” by means of the joints which speak of relationship and love flowing from member to member. The Corinthian Church excelled in the operation of the Gifts of the Spirit, yet they were carnal and filled with strife and emulation even to the point of pitting one ministry above another. They did not realize that the true power of edification and ministry took place in serving one another in Christ. They did not see that the gifts, when they are not coupled with the character of the Son, could not produce ministry but could only express ministrations that (without the character of Christ) would not produce the unity and the love of God in the local church.

It is in each of us knowing and walking in the power of a safe and secure walk with God that we can serve one another in true love and power. King Saul was an insecure man, because his obedience was partial and his heart obstinate, and when he beheld the life of David and heard the singing of the maidens of the greater works of David his insecurity drove him to persecute and drive David away.

SECURITY can only be known by a walk of love and obedience for that is the revelation of HIM that alone will give us boldness in the Day of Judgment.

“Herein is our love made perfect,
that we may have boldness
in the day of judgment: because as he is,
so are we in this world”

I JOHN 4:17

Brian Troxel

FAITHFULNESS

FAITHFULNESS

“The prophet that hath a dream, let him tell a dream;
and he that hath my word, let him speak my word faithfully.
What is the chaff to the wheat? saith the LORD.
Is not my word like as a fire? saith the LORD;
and like a hammer that breaketh the rock in pieces?”

JEREMIAH 23:28 – 29

Faithfulness to God is a rare commodity in our day; to simply give what has been given. Faithfulness means remaining faithful to HIM regardless of the response of those around us. To remain true to what we see and hear in our God, whether or not it is popular or convenient, is the essence of LIFE IN HIM. The truth of God is at its very core simple. It is not for the wise, the respected or the strong of this world… it is for the child like in heart. It is for those who are free from desiring respectability or the approval of men, for we have seen the vanity of our own heart and of those around us. To seek to honour HIM and be true to HIS heart and desire in the earth is FAITHFULNESS. To be free of ulterior motives, agendas and selfish pursuits and remain true to HIS purpose is FAITHFULNESS. Our portion is to give what we have received; to tell the dream, speak HIS WORD and DO HIS WILL. What a precious portion that is! This is the fellowship of and in the SON. To partake of HIS WILL in the speaking and the doing is the FELLOWSHIP OF LIFE; the exercise of my LIFE in HIS. Blessed are those who are faithful for they SHALL reap even though now the fields seem barren, the companions of the way few and the skies grey. The HARVEST IS COMING! Let us not grow weary but be encouraged in the doing, speaking and walking for our God is faithful! We cannot reap tomorrow unless we sow, speak and toil in the fields today. Men who are faithful are thus because they know that GOD is faithful.

“Who then is a faithful and wise servant,
whom his lord hath made ruler over his household,
to give them meat in due season?
Blessed is that servant,
whom his lord when he cometh shall find so DOING

MATTHEW 24:45 – 46

Brian Troxel

The Kingdom – Part 3

OBEDIENCE

“Though He was a Son,
yet learned He obedience
by the things which He suffered”

Hebrew 5:8

By its very nature true Obedience is not a thing into which a man can be born; it is in essence a life of growth and development.  True Obedience requires understanding and knowledge concerning the One who is to be obeyed.  It is beyond the capability of a three year old to fully know and understand either the sacrificial love of a parent or the obedience required.  A good parent knows what is right and proper for the development of the child and conducts their life accordingly, sacrificing their own comfort for the good of the child.

As the Son of God, Jesus knew from eternity, perfect union, fellowship and oneness with the Father.   But as the Son of Man He came as a little child to grow up and learn obedience clothed in human weakness and frailty!  He did not have any disobedience in His Life, but He grew into obedience unto the Father as a man, clothed in human flesh.  He grew and developed as a MAN, from the weakness of human infancy into the full expression of the MAN CHRIST JESUS.       

“And the child grew, and waxed strong in spirit,
Filled with wisdom: and the grace of God was upon Him”

Luke 2:40

He grew into manhood as any man; he suffered the same temptations as you and I, yet without sin!  And as He grew HE learned of His Father’s will as a MAN.  His responsibilities as HE grew required an ever growing obedience to the Father’s will; there was never any disobedience but there was a constant lying aside of His WILL as a man in order to do the Father’s will.  That is the cross.  That is the suffering that Jesus knew and walked in.  We see Him in the Garden crying out in agony over the hour that was upon HIM to such an extent that “His sweat was as it were great drops of Blood”…

“Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me:
nevertheless not my will, BUT THINE BE DONE”

Luke 22:42 – 44

May we see the depth of His obedience unto the Father that we may value the privilege that is ours to walk and “learn” of Him in the school of obedience!

We live in a world of information, data and knowledge, but NONE OF THESE HAVE ANY VALUE UNLESS WE COME TO REALIZE OUR RESPONSIBILITY TO THESE THINGS!  We have teachers who teach “truth”, seminars where Christian “principles” and “concepts” are taught ad infinitum and yet without the yoke of responsibility there is no DEVELOPMENT IN THE APPREHENSION OF HIS LIFE.   It is certainly true concerning our day…

“Ever learning, and never able to come to the
knowledge of THE TRUTH”

II Timothy 3:7

For it is not A TRUTH but THE TRUTH.  The Truth is HIS LIFE in us; the TRUTH who alone can make us free.  The truth is a person and HIS NAME IS JESUS, for HE SHALL SAVE US FROM OUR SINS!
In the book of Hebrews it goes on to say…

“And being made perfect,
He became the author of eternal salvation
UNTO ALL THAT OBEY HIM

Hebrews 5:9

The depth of our salvation is revealed by the depth of our obedience.  For it is in being saved from the slavery to our own will that we are freed to live in HIS.

Ω

“What we think of, what we know, or what we believe is, in the end, of little consequence.
The only thing of consequence is what we do”

John Ruskin (1819–1900)Ω

The Kingdom – Part 2

“Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again,
he cannot SEE the kingdom of God”

John 3:3

How easily satisfied we are with seeing the things of God; to “SEE” the things of the Kingdom is wonderful but many are content to stay in this place. Within the HEART of the Son, however, there is a CRY for the people of God to ENTER the Kingdom.  Men by nature are content with “seeing” while the Spirit of God has come to bring us to “being”.

“Verily, verily, I say unto thee,
Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit,
he cannot enter into the kingdom of God”

John 3:5

The Kingdom of God first and foremost must start within the heart of every believer.  The very word “Kingdom” denotes authority and rule.  It is a place or citizenship into which we must be born; a Kingdom where Faith is the essential imprint of each citizen (not an intellectual understanding).  There is an impartation of the wonder and glory of faith given graciously to all who in truth and sincerity call upon the name of the Lord.  Faith is a substance (Hebrews 11:1); not some religious concept or feeling.  By it we are enabled to manifest HIS character, glory and power in this dark and dying world.  Faith is never static or barren.  We read in Hebrews eleven the expressions of men and women who “BY FAITH…” revealed their God in their day!

The entrance into this Kingdom is quite different from the mere seeing of it.  It requires obedience and submission for that is what a Kingdom is.  The issues of our own life must become the Throne Room of God.   Lust is conquered by LOVE, bitterness displaced by grace and forgiveness, selfishness destroyed by selflessness and “our life” becomes hid with Christ in God!  It requires discipleship, not by force but by a freewill love offering unto our Redeemer, Shepherd and King.  The word “EXCEPT” signifies that certain conditions must be met.

“Except a man be born
of water and the Spirit,

he cannot enter into the kingdom of God…”

“Except ye be converted, and become as little children,
ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven”

The entrance into the Kingdom is also characterized by obedience

“Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven;
but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven”

The way into the Kingdom runs between two great evils both of which are the result of self will and stubbornness.  On the one hand we have a “faith” that produces no expression, no works and no real impact on the world around us.  It is a “faith without works”.  It is barren and impotent because is a faith that is in word only since it lacks obedience and submission to HIS Will.  The other great error is the expression of works that are borne out of self will and rebellion.  Men may prophesy, cast out demons, preach wonderfully in His Name and do “good works” but at the heart of it all there is a working of iniquity (lawlessness and self-will).  The end is to build up their ministry, their church or organization.

“Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity”

Matt. 7:22 – 23

The Kingdom of God is relationship.

“My sheep hear my voice, and I know them and they follow me

John 10:27

Concerning the religious leaders of that Day Jesus said….

“Ye have neither heard His voice at any time, nor seen His shape”

John 5:37

The WAY into the Kingdom is one of being a “hearer and a doer”; to hear without doing brings us into deception and misery (James 1:22).  To do without hearing brings us into the snare of pride and self righteousness.  We have been called to ENTER into HIS REST where we cease from our own works and come into the LIFE of DOING HIS in our everyday life.

“Seeing therefore it remaineth that SOME MUST ENTER therein,
and they to whom it was first preached entered not in because of  *unbelief …”

Hebrews 4:6

* (Greek: obstinacy & disobedience)