D.S. Warner – True Spiritual Vision

True Spiritual Vision

“We note the characteristics of the church in the days of the apostles, which, by reason of its recent founding and organization by the Holy Spirit, is naturally regarded as exemplary and ideal. It had no creed but the Scriptures and no governance but that administered by the Holy Spirit, who “set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him”—apostles, prophets, teachers, evangelists, pastors, etc. Thus subject to the Spirit, the early church was flexible, capable of expansion and of walking in all the truth and of adjusting itself to all conditions. It was in very essence the church, the whole, and not a section or part. The apostles and early believers did not restrict themselves and become a Jewish Christian sect or any other kind of sect. Peter’s way of thinking would have thus limited him, for as a Jew he declined any particular interest in Gentile converts; but the Lord through a vision changed his mind and advanced his understanding to include the universality of the Christian kingdom. The Holy Spirit in the heart was necessary, of course, to the successful government of the church by the Spirit, otherwise He could not have been understood. There were no dividing lines, for it was the will of the Lord particularly that there be “one fold, and one shepherd.” Jesus had prayed in behalf of the disciples “That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.” These conditions of being subject to the word and Spirit, of leaving an open door through which greater light and truth might enter as was necessary, and of possessing the love and unity of spirit that cemented the believers together and carried them through all their persecution, constituted the ideal and normal status of God’s church on earth as He gave it beginning, of which it was ordained that there should be but one, only one, as long as the world should endure”

“There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling.”

– D.S. Warner

 

Vision and Quest – Part Two

Vision and Quest

Part Two

“And Abraham said unto God,
O that Ishmael might live before thee!”
Genesis 17:18

It is the nature of man to settle for less than God’s purpose. God’s call is never static but always moving His own to higher ground. John was on the Isle of Patmos for the testimony of Jesus. He was in the Spirit, walking in the present truth (the Lord’s Day), when he heard a voice behind him calling to come up higher to see the things of God! How we need fresh stirrings of His Spirit to see greater things than what we currently see and walk in. Men and women of vision are never content with the status quo, never at rest until God’s will is accomplished in fullness. Jesus said He came to do the will of the Father and to FINISH His work. Those who live in the Spirit of Christ hold within their hearts a flame and an intense desire to see God’s will and work completed in this earth where we live. There is a passion for the Body of Christ to arise out of the quagmire of man’s ways, man’s wisdom and man’s complacency.

“Jesus saith unto them,
My meat is to do the will of him that sent me,
and to finish his work.
John 4:34

Whenever Christ dwells and reigns within a heart there is a sense of divine purpose which transcends the call of the world and the religious ways of men. There is an impelling force of the Life of the Son to press and draw us to the greater thing. For thirteen years Abraham thought that Ishmael was the promise. God had a higher call for Abraham than Ishmael. God’s promise came to Abraham long after his own inherent ability to bring forth the promised seed was gone; a pure and blessed son “born of the free woman” (Gal. 4:22). So we too are grateful that He is able to bring forth true fruitfulness in our lives in spite of the Ishmaels of our own making.

In this day of lethargy God calls His own to higher and deeper places in Himself; places that stagger the natural mind and are far beyond our own abilities. He calls us to live out of HIS resources and to flee the reservoirs of carnal reckonings and low expectations of our God. It is a day to lift up our eyes unto the hills and behold the crucified One beckoning us to live in the power and the wonder of His Life. We must let go of the idea that “the Ishmael at hand is God’s doing” that we might see new and wondrous things which we have not considered.

Among the gods there is none like unto thee, O Lord; neither are there any works like unto thy works. All nations whom thou hast made shall come and worship before thee, O Lord; and shall glorify thy name. For thou art great, and doest wondrous things: thou art God alone. Teach me thy way, O Lord; I will walk in thy truth…
Psalm 86:8-11

It is a day to reconsider our ways and to draw near to Him who is able to make the desert bloom and the hearts of all to burn with the Holy Fire of God. There is a life waiting for those who hunger and thirst for more of God. It will turn ordinary men and women into blazing beacons of hope and righteousness. Let us allow His vision to lift us up out of the drudgery of this world to where we can see that the fields are ripe unto harvest. It is to this life we have been summoned by the King of kings. May we be renewed and energized by the power of His Life! God reserves His greatest Light for when the world grows dark.

The present Ishmael must give way to the Son of the promise; the two cannot abide together. It is not possible for the son of the bond woman to share in the inheritance of the Son of Promise.

“Nevertheless, what saith the scripture? Cast out the bondwoman and her son: for the son of the bondwoman shall not be heir with the son of the freewoman.”
Galatians 4:30

Brian Troxel