Quote for Today
“You must get into His presence to feel His presence”
“You must get into His presence to feel His presence”
“The Lord God hath given me the tongue of the learned,
that I should know how to speak a word in season
to him that is weary: he wakeneth morning by morning,
he wakeneth mine ear to hear as the learned.”
Those priests of God who are walking in the way of truth begin to be “awakened” to hear His heart within their own. In the mystery of relationship with Him there is a divine enablement to “speak a word in season” to those who are faint and weary. Through the medium of knowing and experiencing Him in our own walk we touch His ways and His heart to the end we may be wise in the ministration of His grace to others. Whether it be encouragement, hope, a kind word or even a word of admonishment it is all with the earnest desire to see our brothers and sisters rise up and finish the race set before us.
The ear of the “learned” is to come to a place of being tuned in to His voice and heart. It is not something which can be learned through books, counselling strategies, Christian seminars and other means of education. The true understanding of such things can only be found in a life “yoked” with Christ in God. He (Jesus) is the sum of all wisdom, love and true knowledge and it is in Him we learn to live and move and become the very extension of all that He is. This heart is really only available to the true disciple who has discovered the wonder and joy of following Him and the necessity of carrying his own cross. This way is fraught with the discovery of one’s self. It is a way of repentance, transformation, and glory. In the Old Testament the priesthood was mainly obtained by birth but in this New Covenant we are made priests by the ministration of His Life within us through obedience and relationship.
“And hath MADE us kings and priests
unto God and his Father;
to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever”
It is His purpose to make us kings and priests unto Him who alone is the “Great High Priest” of better things to come.
“But Christ being come
an high priest of good things to come,
by a greater and more perfect tabernacle,
not made with hands…”
It is in our learning of Him and His ways that we discover, grow and develop the “tongue of the learned” because our “ears have been awakened morning by morning” to His living word.
“But also in this very thing, bringing in all diligence,
filling in your faith with virtue; and virtue with knowledge;
and knowledge with self-control; and self-control with patience;
and patience with godliness; and godliness with brotherly love;
and brotherly love with love. For these things being in you,
and abounding, THEY will make you not idle,
not unfruitful in the full knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
For the one in whom these things are not present is blind,
being shortsighted, taking on forgetfulness
of the cleansing of his sins in time past. On account of this, brothers,
rather be diligent to make sure of your calling and election;
for doing these things, you will not ever fall into sin .
For so will be richly furnished to you
the entrance into the everlasting kingdom
of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ”
2Peter 1:5-11 (LITV)
THOUGHT FOR TODAY
The works which Faith has wrought in us and through us becomes the very means by which we enter into His Kingdom.
“…the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him,
Who art thou? And he confessed, and denied not;
but confessed, I am not the Christ. And they asked him, What then?
Art thou Elias? And he saith, I am not. Art thou that prophet?
And he answered, No. Then said they unto him, Who art thou?
that we may give an answer to them that sent us”
I JOHN 1:19 – 22
The individuals quoted here were not interested in truth; they merely asked questions of John that they could satisfy the curiosity of the religious leaders of that day. Apparently the leaders of that day had such little interest in the things of God that they could not even be bothered to seek out the substance of these things for themselves. History has a tendency to repeat itself. Man’s unregenerate heart at its basic state remains unchanged throughout the history of man. The rhetoric remains; the terminology may change, and the thing that God is doing may be different, but the response is the same, Religion prefers the historical account of an event rather than the current manifestation, or as Peter would state “the present truth”, of God’s will in the earth. The true seeker is one whose passion is to know HIM more today than was known of HIM yesterday. In the glimpses we are afforded there is a grace that compels us to cry out for a truer and deeper seeing of HIM. Men seek that which they love and pursue the things on which their heart is set.
“For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single,
thy whole body shall be full of light”
In this day of information overload we see and hear much curiosity in the “teaching” that some ascribe to; as if truth were simply an arrangement of scriptures arbitrarily put together with which we can substantiate any given lifestyle. This type of religion has very little (if any) effect upon the ones who hold such views. For truth to be true it must necessitate a CHANGE in the one who holds it. It must first of all CONVICT an individual of the absolute necessity for the REDEMPTIVE act of God; an ongoing CRY for CHANGE at the heart level of who we are. Truth is not a statement of our doctrines. Rather it is the SPIRIT of GOD working from within to transform the very fabric of our being, what we are by nature, into an expression of the Living God. THE PURPOSE OF TRUTH IS TO MAKE US TRUE. The sad testimony of this hour is that there is a satisfaction in knowing about the historical events of God without any pursuit to know HIM in a greater way today. When Jesus spoke of the Kingdom of God HE gave the following parable…
“The kingdom of heaven is like a merchant seeking beautiful pearls,
who, when he had found one pearl of great price,
went and sold all that he had and bought it”
MATTHEW 13:45 – 46
Truth will not be found of those who casually ask, leisurely inquire or by those who seek the approval of men. Truth is known of those who understand the costs associated with its acquisition. We cannot grow in truth while we cling to our own untruthful self and self-interests. We cannot remain where we are if we are caught up in the pursuit of HIM who is truth. Truth always beckons us to more of HIM! It bids us to “take up our cross and follow HIM”. It does not allow us to hold onto unforgiveness, envy, lusts, jealously and anger; it produces a deep awareness of our own poverty and brings us to the realization of our riches in the Risen Christ.
The journey into truth beckons us to “ask” in order to receive, “seek” in order to find and to “knock” in order to enter its door; “Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leads unto life, and few there be that find it”. (Matt 7:7 – 9)
“I want deliberately to encourage this mighty longing after God. The lack of it has brought us to our present low estate. The stiff and wooden quality about our religious lives is a result of our lack of holy desire. Complacency is a deadly foe of all spiritual growth. Acute desire must be present or there will be no manifestation of Christ to His people. He waits to be wanted. Too bad that with many of us He waits so long, so very long, in vain”
A. W. Tozer
“Thy Rod…comforts* me”
Without correction and accountability personal growth and fruitfulness becomes stagnated and stunted. Men who refuse correction cease to grow and cease to live. Jesus said “every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit”. We see this truth so aptly revealed in the world around us. Everything concerning life needs to be channelled in order to have direction and purpose. A river without banks is a flood, electricity without a path and a purpose we call “static” and a believer in God who has no personal vision or “mark” (Philippians 3:14) is one who will be without discipline or purpose. A good landscaper prunes his garden that it may grow and become all that he has purposed and envisioned it to be when he planted it. Jesus said that His father was the Vinedresser and they that are of this Vine (Jesus) are to bear fruit that the Father may be glorified. Therefore Fruit is anything that pleases and glorifies the Father.
It is in us receiving of His correction that we grow in fruitfulness and the inherent ability to bring forth expressions of the Son to glorify the Father. Let us hear the admonition from God’s Word; “My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord, Nor detest His correction; For whom the Lord loves He corrects, Just as a father the son in whom he delights” (Proverbs 3:11 – 12) The proof of God’s Love and His ongoing investment into our lives is REVEALED IN HIS ROD. We read In the Old and New Testament of the evident Hand of God actively expressing His Love and correction in the lives of people; some were EXERCISED by it and others refused it with eternal consequences. Men who refuse correction choose a life that eventually comes to ruin. God’s Word has summed up this truth in one powerful verse…
“He who keeps instruction (Hebrew: correction) is in the way of life,
But he who refuses correction goes astray”
Does this not convey to us the reason behind the apostasy in our land today? Is there not a reason that the LOVE OF MANY has grown cold and indifferent? People are content to go through the motions of religion while failing to realize that we are here to BEAR FRUIT unto HIM who has called us out of darkness into HIS LIGHT that we might ever live to GLORIFY HIM.
God’s Word to HIS PEOPLE today is one of grave importance; one that reveals and lays bare the reason that we are in such disarray, impotence and apathy….
“I have even sent to you all My servants the prophets,
daily rising up early and sending them.
Yet they did not obey Me or incline their ear, but stiffened their neck…
This is a nation that does not obey the voice of the Lord their God
NOR RECEIVE CORRECTION.
Truth has perished and has been cut off from their mouth”
JEREMIAH 7:25 – 28
It is a Day for us to turn, to receive correction and to be EXERCISED in it that we may come forth as Gold tried in the Fire; purified and freed from our own agendas to DO THE WILL OF HIM that there may be Glory and Honour in His House.
King David knew well the power of change and repentance found in the ministration of truth from others in His day and the fruit that comes from the receiving of it.
“Let the righteous strike me; It shall be a kindness.
And let him rebuke me: It shall be as excellent oil;
Let my head not refuse it”
“Cheap grace is the preaching of forgiveness without requiring repentance,
baptism without church discipline, Communion without confession,
absolution without personal confession.
Cheap grace is grace without discipleship,
grace without the cross, grace without Jesus Christ”
* See Psalm 23 Part 12 for the definition of the Hebrew Word used here