Eternal Life and the Resurrection – Part Two

The Resurrection

Part Two

The resurrection of the dead is simply the revelation of the seed which was sown. If the life was evil, filled with self-seeking, self-loving and self-dependence so will it be in the resurrection. If we plant the seed of a noxious plant that will be its resurrection.

Awake to righteousness, and sin not; for some have not the knowledge of God: I speak this to your shame. But some man will say, How are the dead raised up? and with what body do they come? Thou fool, that which thou sowest is not quickened, except it die: And that which thou sowest, thou sowest not that body that shall be, but bare grain, it may chance of wheat, or of some other grain”
1 Corinthians 15:34-37

In the Resurrection, God gives a corresponding body to the seed sown. What we become through the outworking of the cross of Christ and the power of His Grace determines the wonder of our resurrection. Paul prefaces this word on the resurrection with “Awake to righteousness and sin not”.

It is critical that we begin to correlate our walk here with our resurrection there!

“But God giveth it a body as it hath pleased him,
and to every seed his own body…”
1 Corinthians 15:38

“To every seed its own body…” May God open our eyes to the power and truth of this, that we may not live in the slumber of religion but that we would in fact “Awake to Righteousness”. Let us re-examine the truths we hold and the clear teaching of Christ. Paul wrote concerning his own life:

“Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.”
2 Timothy 4:8

Why could Paul state this?

“I have fought a good fight,
I have finished my course,
I have kept the faith”
2 Timothy 4:9

The confidence of his resurrection was based upon his life here on earth. He had fought the good fight, he had finished his course and purpose in God, and he had kept the faith of Christ alive and relevant in his heart.

We cannot slumber in our walk here and expect the rewards of righteousness there. His reward is with Him and He will reward every man according to their works. May the light shine and may we seek fellowship with others that will exhort and encourage us to live “godly in Christ Jesus”.

Who will render to every man according to his deeds: To them who by patient continuance in well doing seek for glory and honour and immortality, eternal life: But unto them that are contentious, and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, indignation and wrath, Tribulation and anguish, upon every soul of man that doeth evil, of the Jew first, and also of the Gentile; But glory, honour, and peace, to every man that worketh good, to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile: For there is no respect of persons with God”
Romans 2:6-11

And again:

“And, behold, I come quickly;
and my reward is with me,
to give every man according as his work shall be
Revelation 22:12

Our resurrection will be according to the life we live not because of some religious confession we make. May God awaken us to live righteously, truthfully and confidently in the power of His Grace.

The gift of eternal life is not by works but by grace through faith. However, the manner of our resurrection will be proportional to our faithfulness to the talents received, His commandments kept and obstacles overcome.
“To him that overcometh will I give…”

If there be no overcoming there will be no receiving
of the promises of God in that day
(Read the message of Christ to the seven churches
for insight. Revelation 2:1-3:22)

God’s Word to us, “Awake to righteousness and sin not”, is clear. Any teaching which contradicts the clear truth of this is deception and error.

Brian Troxel

Quote for Today – F.W. Robertson

Quote for Today

“What the world calls virtue is a name and a dream without Christ. The foundation of all human excellence must be laid deep in the blood of the Redeemer’s cross, and in the power of His resurrection.”
– Frederick William Robertson

Quote for Today – Brendan Jaster

Quote for Today

“That which does not die cannot be raised”
Brendan Jaster

“Thou fool, that which thou sowest is not quickened,
except it die”
1 Corinthians 15:36

Quote for Today – Thomas Kelly

Quote for Today

“The deepest need of humans is not food and clothing and shelter, important as they are. It is God. We have mistaken the nature of poverty, and thought it was economic poverty. No, it is poverty of the soul, deprivation of God’s recreating, loving peace”
Thomas Kelly

“He restoreth my soul”
Psalm 23:3

Thought for Today – Resurrection

Thought for Today

“I am the resurrection”
John 11:25

Wherever and whenever the heart of a wandering soul, a lost soul or a dying soul meets the wonder of Him, resurrection and life are the immediate result. He is not only the Resurrected One, He is the ever resurrecting one. Regardless of age, status in life or circumstances, He is our resurrection. Newness of life, joy, worship and praise are the on-going expressions of any life beholding Him. Death, sorrow, fear, discouragement and despair flee from His presence as shadows disappear from radiant light.

Linger not in the shadows of human reasoning or the stains of sin or unbelief. Come to the fountain which will never fail; whose waters are filled with the abundance of His Life, cleansing, refreshing and replenishing us with the vigor of His eternal life.

“Come ye saints, look here and wonder,
See the place where Jesus lay;
He has burst His bands asunder;
He has borne our sins away;
Joyful tidings,
Yes, the Lord has risen to-day”
Thomas Kelly

THE CALL TO LIFE

THE CALL TO LIFE

“But if by the Spirit you put to death
the deeds of the body,
you will live.”
ROMANS 8:13

Life; it is the purpose for which the SON has come.

“I am come that they might have life,
and that they might have it more abundantly”
JOHN 10:10

Jesus did not come to introduce to the world a new teaching, a new religion or a philosophy. He came to destroy the works of the devil and to bring LIFE to His fallen creation. Life does not consist of knowing something or knowing about a thing. LIFE, true life, consists of abiding in HIM.

We read here in Romans 8 that LIFE is known by those who “by the Spirit” are enabled to put the deeds of the body to death. Life is realized by overcoming the deeds of our body by the operation of HIS SPIRIT within our lives. The call to “discipleship” IS the call to life. The CROSS, being the very instrument of death, in our walk with God becomes the very PRINCIPLE by which HIS LIFE is discovered. While the “church” today is overloaded with teachings, sermons, “resources” and programs she is in fact worldly; compromised and powerless in the realms of victory over sin and carnality. More sermons, teachings and conferences will not avail us one iota of the wonders of HIS LIFE. Getting the latest revelation from the multitude of “prophets”* and “apostles”* will not bring this precious resource to the human heart. For the LIFE that JESUS gives is the very life of resurrection. It is a life that arises from the principle of death. It is a life that pulsates with the ability to overcome and reign in Christ Jesus our Lord. On the cross Jesus himself was reigning in a life that conquered death and the grave. It is a life that is undefeatable and eternal in the scope and power of all it holds in its sway. It speaks of something that is beyond the comprehension of men, beyond what we can imagine, consider or even has “entered into the heart of man”.

“Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard,
neither have entered into the heart of man,
the things which God hath prepared
for them that love him”
1 CORINTHIANS 2:9

This LIFE is not to be discovered by simply knowing the scriptures; being able to quote them, expound upon them and claim them as our own. That precious written word bears witness of JESUS. It is the ONE central thought of the whole New Covenant…JESUS THE CHRIST, THE ONLY BEGOTTON SON.

“Search the scriptures;
for in them ye think ye have eternal life:
and they are they which testify of me.
And ye will not come to me,
that ye might have life”
JOHN 5:39-40

It is in the coming to HIM we have life. When the HOLY SPIRIT has such sway within our lives that we can by the very power of God put to death the deeds of our own body we HAVE LIFE. It is in the participation and partaking of the “Divine Nature” that we are made free from the horror of self and that old Adamic Nature. How long will the people of God be content with hearing about this life, sermons on what it looked like in someone else, without the very CRY for it to become the pulse of our own?

We read of that “exceeding abundant” dynamic of God’s power at work toward us BEING “according” (in proportion) to the power that is at work in us! The only limitation to HIS LIFE working in us is our cooperation in HIS WILL. The Cross is simply the Will of God walked out in my life. Teaching, as important as it is, will never be a substitute for OBEDIENCE.

“Now unto him that is able to do
exceeding abundantly
above all that we ask or think,

according to the power that worketh in us”
EPHESIANS 3:20

The validity that we are truly HIS is revealed by those who know the deep and painful inworking and outworking of the CROSS.

“And they that are Christ’s
have crucified the flesh
with the affections and lusts”

GALATIANS 5:24

This is the stamp of the ownership of Christ within the LIFE of HIS OWN. This call to the experiential co-crucifixion with Christ is the one thing that destroys within us the propagation of self and the desire for self-realization. The same CROSS, that leaves the debris of self and the associated bondage of all that goes with it strewn along the path of the ardent disciple, is also the matrix from which His Life is manifested through our fragile earthen vessels.

While men chase after the latest “miracle worker”, and thousands of sermons and teaching go forth every day, there remains the eternal call of the Spirit of God to DISCIPLESHIP. “If any man would be my disciple, let him deny himself and pick up his cross and follow me.

To those who are weary and heavy laden with the words, and the never ending flow of information and resources, the promise of Jesus stands as an open door beckoning us to “come to Him” and we will have rest for our souls.

Can we hear the fresh call to the simplicity of discipleship? Can we see beyond the horror and pain of the death that the cross would work in us? Can we see past the agony, humiliation and suffering of all that it would bring and to see HIS LOVELY FACE SHINING IN THE GLORY OF THE UNDIMMED LIGHT OF HIS LIFE?

“Looking unto Jesus
the author and finisher of our faith;
who for the joy that was set before him
endured the cross, despising the shame,
and is set down
at the right hand of the throne of God”
HEBREWS 12:2

 

*NOTE  This is not to diminish any true ministry in the Body of Christ however hearing without doing is but vain religion.

Brian Troxel

FOLLOWING JESUS – Part One –

FOLLOWING JESUS

PART ONE

“And whoever does not take his cross
and follow me is not worthy of me”
MATTHEW 10:38

Following Jesus without a cross is impossible. We must take this verse at face value. This is His estimation of a disciple. The Gospel of today does not mention such things. We now have a gospel that costs nothing, spoken in nice surroundings with gentle music playing in the background. It does not call us to obedience nor is it ministered with the unction and power of the Holy Spirit. There is no call to radical change and the immediate surrender of our WILL unto Him. Simply raise your hand while no one is looking, murmur a recited statement, go every Sunday to “church” and believe. A crossless gospel produces powerless adherents. The depth and power of the anointing is revealed in the fruit it produces.

“For the preaching of the cross
is to them that perish foolishness;
but unto us which are saved
it is the power of God”
1 CORINTHIANS 1:18

We hear much today about unanswered prayers and the inability to overcome the temptations and issues within our lives. THERE IS A CONNECTION; no Cross no Crown. If there is no dying to self, there can be no victory OVER self. We want all that God offers plus we want all that the world offers and wonder why nothing seems to work. Discipleship is the only way into HIS LIFE. A crossless gospel is a lifeless gospel. A crossless message leaves the human soul bound by the sorrows of sin and death even though it quotes the scriptures with all of its promises. When will we realize that the “promises of God are yeah and amen IN HIM”.

“Therefore if any man be in Christ,
he is a new creature”
2 CORINTHIANS 5:17

Where is this newness of Life? IN HIM. If I do not follow Him I will never find myself in HIM. They that are HIS love HIM, they that love HIM follow HIM, and they that follow HIM pick up and carry their cross. There is no other way. May HIS SPIRIT waken us from our slumber and our apathy. May we understand anew that complacency and comfort with this present world produces spiritual poverty that leads to sin and death.

The disciples on the Day of Pentecost were instantly transformed into flaming torches of glory and they counted the sufferings that came their way (because of their lives and the words they spoke) as a privilege and a blessing. Yet, in spite of the glory and the empowering they experienced, we read of that there is a pressing into and a “salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last day”! They did not consider that they had “arrived”. They were consumed with following and laying down their lives for the “excellency of KNOWING HIM”. If we cannot see we cannot follow. May the Lord give us eye salve that we may see more clearly. May HE save us from our apathy and contentment and birth afresh in us the HOLY FIRE of His Presence. May HE COME with a presence that turns us away from man’s way, that births within us a Holy repentance, and that leads us back to the way of the altar and the LOVE OF HIM. May the CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST ARISE AS A SPOTLESS BRIDE UNIFIED IN THE LOVE OF HIM where the pride and agendas of men have been crucified and we now live to bring Glory and Honor to Him and Him alone. May we see that the crowning work of His Grace in the Body of Christ is to culminate in the Bride speaking in perfect union the Words of the Spirit…

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

Brian Troxel

PSALM 23 – PART 8 – THE VALLEY OF THE SHADOW OF DEATH –

PSALM 23

PART EIGHT

THE VALLEY
OF THE SHADOW
OF DEATH

“Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death…”
PSALM 23:4

Throughout this Psalm we read of Him leading us to places of quiet waters and green pastures, in paths of righteousness and yet in the midst of all this we read here of walking “through the valley of the shadow of death…”! How can these things be? Is He not our Shepherd? Is He not in charge and in control of all the things going on around us? We are so struck with the contrast and the suddenness of this verse that we rarely embrace its context within this Psalm. We often hear it quoted because we see all around us God’s precious people walking in, enduring and experiencing this valley that is to them the very dark and real “shadow of death”. How difficult it is to relate this to the purposes of God, to relate this to “Our Shepherd” in whom we are to place our absolute trust. We question, we struggle and we wrestle with the “whys” and the “purposes” of such suffering and often in these experiences we know silence and a seeming sense of aloneness. It is here that we must draw upon HIS character and discover that the “Valley of the shadow of death” is really an extension of the “paths of righteousness” and that HE who loves us most is not deterred in His purpose to MAKE us sons of God by causing us to walk in the same paths that HIS only begotten Son walked. HE walked in them to “become” the Captain of our salvation (Hebrews 2:10); we walk in them to “attain” the reality of HIS life and salvation!

“…that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection,
and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death,
if, by any means, I may attain to the resurrection from the dead”
PHILIPPIANS 3:10

The “power of HIS resurrection” is the life that springs forth from identification with HIM in HIS death. May God work in us the growing realization that the “valley of the shadow of death” is the door way into the knowing of HIM and the power of HIS resurrection! It is the means by which we experience the greatest depth of fellowship with and in HIM! The life of the true Christian is one filled with contrast and contradiction; strength OUT of weakness, beauty FOR ashes, the oil of Joy FOR mourning, light shining OUT of darkness, victory OUT of seeming defeat, love IN the midst of hatred, forgiveness IN the face atrocity and hate, and resurrection life OUT of death! Who is sufficient for all these things? ONLY JESUS the RISEN CHRIST! It is HIS life in us that gives us hope for the dawn. It is HIS life that is the resurrection life and as we walk in the “paths of righteousness” we are found walking in the way of the discovery that HE is in fact “our hope of Glory”.

The “valley of the shadow of death” is the way by which we come to know and trust in HIM in all things. Such knowledge is not learned quickly, it is not learned by sermons and teachings, it can only be known in personal identification with HIM as we WALK with HIM who is “the WAY, the Truth and THE LIFE”.

We (if we have “tasted of the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come”) are all pilgrims and fellow heirs of this life and this walk and as such we must discover the need for greater depths of fellowship and relationship than what we see around us today. For if we are truly in fellowship with HIM it must be revealed in fellowship with those who are walking in this way! “If we walk in the light in the light AS HE is in the light we HAVE fellowship one with another”. The verity of one is revealed in the reality of the other.

Brian Troxel