“Oh, the unspeakable greatness of that exchange,—the Sinless One is condemned, and he who is guilty goes free; the Blessing bears the curse, and the cursed is brought into blessing; the Life dies, and the dead live; the Glory is whelmed in darkness, and he who knew nothing but confusion of face is clothed with glory.” Trailady

My Photo
Location: United States

A person God turned around many times.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Strife for life

Hello brother,

I felt the need to write to you about last Sabbath. I feel like I ignored you during the fellowship dinner. You had gone out of your way to come to worship with me and spend some time together and I didn’t give you the time you deserved.

I didn’t mean to ignore you. I was wanting to talk with B___ who sat across from us, and I was hoping you would enjoy conversation with his friend next to him. It’s hard for me to divide my attention up. I’m not the gracious conversationalist I need to be. I have so much to learn from Jesus, to be like He was and is.

I’m sure you will disagree about my lack of attention, because you always want to affirm me, and I appreciate that. But I want you to know that I want to edify you and make you stronger all the time. I want and keep praying that the Lord will give me just the right things to say that will give you the tools you need to overcome the adversary. Satan certainly is a real foe and a great threat if we don’t have the living, active grace of God constantly working in us through faith in Him, “the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.” (Rom. 5:5).

D____, I also wanted to encourage you in your battle to get to the bottom of your affliction. I was very encouraged when you told me that shame was causing you the grief you suffer. That said to me that the Holy Spirit was making advancement, even against the mighty, dug-in and entrenched spiritual army you are fighting. Your revelation seemed to me like the cog of a ratchet, setting itself firmly into the next tooth, awaiting the next tooth and then the next, one victory gained after another until the final overthrow of Satan once and for all. It certainly is coming.

I want to tell you in Christ’s stead, “Flesh and blood hath not revealed this to you, but my Father in heaven.” Stay patient, praying, and faithful. Brother, it’s your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. “Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.” (Rev. 14:12).

When Jesus said, “Seek ye first the kingdom of God,” He wasn’t speaking lightly of it. Most people don’t realize what is involved in seeking. Because He also said, “Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able.” (Lk. 13:24). Then He goes on to say that He ate at their tables and taught in their very streets, but they still won’t be in the kingdom. They didn’t strive, and the door came closed on them.

But, D_____, you are striving. This is why you will, I say, you will have right to the tree of life, and enter in through the gates into the city. I declare this based solely on the promises of God’s word. “Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on Him, If ye continue in My word, then are ye My disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” (Jn. 8:31,32).

This word strive is related to the word strife. There necessarily must be much strife in gaining the kingdom. No slovenly soldier will ever gain it. This is why thousands were turned away from Gideon’s army. They drank their water and went through the motions of fighting, playing like soldiers, but their hearts weren’t in the fight. So they were rejected. You are highly prized, though you don’t feel that could possible be. Jesus is very proud of you because you are responding to His drawing. So continue responding until you are free, and free indeed.

This deeper idea seeking by striving is exactly the way Solomon describes the search for God.

My son, if thou wilt receive my words, and hide my commandments with thee;
So that thou incline thine ear unto wisdom, and apply thine heart to understanding;
Yea, if thou criest after knowledge, and liftest up thy voice for understanding;
If thou seekest her as silver, and searchest for her as for hid treasures;
Then shalt thou understand the fear of the LORD, and find the knowledge of God.
For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of His mouth cometh knowledge and understanding.
He layeth up sound wisdom for the righteous: He is a buckler to them that walk uprightly.
He keepeth the paths of judgment, and preserveth the way of his saints.
Then shalt thou understand righteousness, and judgment, and equity; yea, every good path.
When wisdom entereth into thine heart, and knowledge is pleasant unto thy soul;
Discretion shall preserve thee, understanding shall keep thee:
To deliver thee from the way of the evil man, from the man that speaketh froward things;
Who leave the paths of uprightness, to walk in the ways of darkness.

The nominal church-goer’s idea of seeking God is a very half-hearted way of doing it. And that is why they never find Him or ever come to know Him. The striving is all part of the knowing. “Ask and ye all receive; seek and ye shall find; knock and the door shall be opened unto you” never happens for them because they don’t throw themselves into the fray, or rather, allow themselves to be sucked into it. When they ask and seek and knock, they don’t do so vigorously.

They don’t bang on the door, or ask and seek God furiously. That is why they don’t become the powerful sons of God. They never responded during the embryonic stages of birth, therefore it is impossible for them to be born from above. They die and are miscarried from salvation.

We who do strive have nothing with which to glory in striving. All we have done is respond to the Holy Spirit’s work in our hearts. But it’s a real glory to know that here is great, wonderful evidence that we are being worked by Him, that God hasn’t left us, after all the failures we done.

He is merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin. This is the God we serve. And D_____, I am proud to fight next to you. Real proud. You are not a fellow soldier who will turn away from the battle and leave me warring alone.

You will receive the wonderful approbation that is given to all the saints who ever overcome, “Thy name shall be called no more Jacob, but Israel: for as a prince hast thou power with God and with men, and hast prevailed.”



Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home