“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

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A person God turned around many times.

Sunday, July 29, 2018

Adventists beware, or we may find ourselves excluded from the Latter Rain

“When they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified God, saying, Then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life.” (Acts 11:18).

The Jews were God’s chosen people. They were special to Him because they reflected their father Abraham. But eventually, as a nation they loved Satan and hated Jehovah.

“Thus saith the LORD, The heaven is My throne, and the earth is My footstool: where is the house that ye build unto Me? and where is the place of My rest? For all those things hath Mine hand made, and all those things have been, saith the LORD: but to this man will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembleth at My word.” (Isa. 66:1,2).

Yes, they had the temple. Yes, they had the Hebrew religion. Yes, they had the pure sacrificial and the ceremonial systems. They were “Jews by nature, and not sinners of the Gentiles.” (Gal. 2:15). They looked good, real good. But they wouldn’t tremble at His word. They wouldn’t be made poor and contrite. He couldn’t get into their hearts. They missed the whole message from their uncorrupted sacrificial and ceremonial systems.

“For Thou desirest not sacrifice; else would I give it: Thou delightest not in burnt offering.
The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, Thou wilt not despise.” (Ps. 51:16,17).

“Behold, Thou desirest truth in the inward parts: and in the hidden part Thou shalt make me to know wisdom.
Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which Thou hast broken may rejoice.” (Ps. 51:6-8).

“Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.
Cast me not away from Thy presence; and take not Thy holy Spirit from me.
Restore unto me the joy of Thy salvation; and uphold me with Thy free Spirit.” (Ps. 51:10-12).

Israel would not fall on the Stone and be broken. And this was their downfall. What about us? We have the Sabbath, the sanctuary, the truth on the state of the dead, the true Second Advent, the Spirit of prophecy. Will we stumble upon the Unknown God and fall upon His Mediator?

Jesus couldn’t get into their thinking. His Spirit of righteousness couldn’t enter and invigorate their spirits of sinfulness. His holy Spirit couldn’t quicken their spirits that were dead to all things holy. Throughout the centuries as their God, He could save but few. Through good times and bad, His benefits and punishments, His blessings and His curses, every opening He made they closed off.

“He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.
But whereunto shall I liken this generation? It is like unto children sitting in the markets, and calling unto their fellows,
And saying, We have piped unto you, and ye have not danced; we have mourned unto you, and ye have not lamented.” (Matt. 11:15-17).

What about us SDAs? Aren’t we indicted by ancient Israel?

From Healthy Living, 1169-1173, p. 280, 281

“The Modern Church Repeating the History of Ancient Israel. The trials of the children of Israel, and their attitude just before the first coming of Christ, illustrate the position of the people of God in their experience before the second coming of Christ. Review and Herald, 1890, No. 7.

“Satan’s snares are laid for us as verily as they were laid for the children of Israel just prior to their entrance into the land of Canaan. We are repeating the history of that people. T., No. 31, p. 156.

Do we tremble at these words? Are they the word of the Lord to us? Or, are we treating Ellen White as inconsequential, like Israel treated Moses and the prophets, despising the messengers of the Lord, and then building great sepulchers in honor of them?

Do we treat the Sunday denominations’ genuine converts to Jesus with the disdain that the Jews treated the Samaritans? Have we read the following statement correctly?

Notwithstanding the widespread declension of faith and piety, there are true followers of Christ in these churches [emphasis mine]. Before the final visitation of God’s judgments upon the earth there will be among the people of the Lord such a revival of primitive godliness as has not been witnessed since apostolic times. The Spirit and power of God will be poured out upon His children. At that time many will separate themselves from those churches [emphasis mine] in which the love of this world has supplanted love for God and His word. Many, both of ministers [emphasis mine] and people, will gladly accept those great truths which God has caused to be proclaimed at this time to prepare a people for the Lord’s second coming. The Great Controversy, p. 464.

According to the above quote, “the people of the Lord”, who receive the revival of primitive godliness that will rival the Gentile majority apostolic church, are many true children of Christ in the Sunday denominations. They and many of their pastors will come out of their churches and join the 144,000 of the Advent movement that will be preparing to battle for the heavenly Canaan.

I saw that the holy Sabbath is, and will be, the separating wall between the true Israel of God and unbelievers; and that the Sabbath is the great question to unite the hearts of God’s dear, waiting saints.
     I saw that God had children who do not see and keep the Sabbath. They have not rejected the light upon it. [emphasis mine] And at the commencement of the time of trouble, we were filled with the Holy Ghost as we went forth and proclaimed the Sabbath more fully…. This enraged the churches and nominal Adventists,… as they could not refute the Sabbath truth. And at this time God’s chosen all saw clearly that we had the truth, and they came out and endured the persecution with us [emphasis mine].
 Early Writings, p. 33.

The idea may seem counter-intuitive; it may sound heretical to Adventists; it may be unwelcome. But, from what I am witnessing on YouTube the Sunday denominations right now have many people who are getting ready to preach the everlasting gospel in the Latter Rain. These newborns in Jesus are getting ready to be among the 144,000. Even if they wrongly believe that the 144,000 will be converted Jews during the last half of a purported secret rapture period and seven year tribulation, these new converts from every nation and denomination, whose hearts and will have been humbled and broken by Jesus, will preach and testify in the Latter Rain according to Great Controversy, page 464.

They have not rejected the light on the Sabbath or our other distinctive doctrines as their fathers have, and as the groups have in which they are a part. True, they are heavily influenced by the errors of Rome still existing strong in the Sunday denominations. But, under the new future, powerful revival within faithful Seventh Day Adventist regenerated children of God, and the persecution that they will undergo because of their preaching, multitudes of the current explosion of people falling on the humbling, stumbling Stone, will come out from among those churches and join the Adventist people. There will have been deep repentance toward God and faith in Jesus, not only in those testifying, but also in the many YouTube commenters rejoicing together with them in their testimonies.

As we saw in Angela’s and Charo’s testimonies, and many other non-Adventist YouTube testimonies, the Lord is gathering a people to do the final work. He is doing the work Himself because Laodicea has been slumbering and sleeping, and far from holding the truth in righteousness. Adventists beware: if we fight against the YouTube testimonies that align with Steps to Christ and the rest of the Spirit of Prophecy, then Jesus will fight against us for their sake. We may find ourselves excluded from the Latter Rain.

“Yea, truth faileth; and he that departeth from evil maketh himself a prey: and the LORD saw it, and it displeased Him that there was no judgment.
And He saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no intercessor: therefore His arm brought salvation unto Him; and His righteousness, it sustained Him.
For He put on righteousness as a breastplate, and an helmet of salvation upon His head; and He put on the garments of vengeance for clothing, and was clad with zeal as a cloke.
According to their deeds, accordingly He will repay, fury to His adversaries, recompence to His enemies; to the islands He will repay recompence.
So shall they fear the name of the LORD from the west, and His glory from the rising of the sun. When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the LORD shall lift up a standard against him.
And the Redeemer shall come to Zion, and unto them that turn from transgression in Jacob, saith the LORD.” (Isa. 59:15-20).

It is a scary thought that, with me or without me, the gospel will be preached. But, the precedent for that happened to the Jews 2,000 years ago.

“For more than a thousand years the Jewish people had awaited the Saviour’s coming. Upon this event they had rested their brightest hopes. In song and prophecy, in temple rite and household prayer, they had enshrined His name. And yet at His coming they knew Him not.” Desire of Ages, p. 27.

“Among those whom the Jews styled heathen were men who had a better understanding of the Scripture prophecies concerning the Messiah than had the teachers in Israel. There were some who hoped for His coming as a deliverer from sin [emphasis mine]. Philosophers endeavored to study into the mystery of the Hebrew economy. But the bigotry of the Jews hindered the spread of the light. Intent on maintaining the separation between themselves and other nations....” Desire of Ages, p. 33.

“Among those whom [Christ’s disciples] had been taught to despise were souls longing for help from the mighty Healer, hungering for the light of truth, which had been so abundantly given to the Jews.” Desire of Ages, p. 402.

“Therefore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof.” (Matt. 21:43).

“The Lord is…longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” (2Pet. 3:9).

But “He is not slack concerning His promise, as some men count slackness… The day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night.” (2Pet. 3:9,10).

“The LORD, The LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilt.” (Ex. 34:6,7).

“Therefore this iniquity shall be to you as a breach ready to fall, swelling out in a high wall, whose breaking cometh suddenly at an instant. And He shall break it as the breaking of the potters” vessel that is broken in pieces; He shall not spare.” (Isa. 30:13,14).

What are the fruits Jesus is waiting to see? Honest self-assessments, surrender, repentance, obedience to His Law through His Spirit.

Honest assessment of self’s standing before God.

“Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?” (2Cor. 13:5).

“And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.” (Luke 18:13,14).

“Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.” (Matt. 16:24).

“And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after Me, cannot be My disciple.” (Luke 14:27).

Angela’s thoughts were without guile before God. “Am I truly saved? Am I truly born again? If I am, how could I have lived this wicked life, 20 years in the church looking no different that anybody else in the world, and do the things that I have done and lived the life I have lived, if I was truly born again, if I had real salvation.”

Charo’s was the same. “Like I do now, for example. [Before] it was a thing of, ‘Well, I haven’t done that’. ‘I need to [do that], I need to.’ It wasn’t [like now], ‘I want to, I desire to.’

Or, even praying, you know, before I would [say]—‘I’ll pray for my dad to be saved. I’ve got to pray for my grandparents to be saved.’ It was this, ‘Check, check, check’ [from] a list of to-do. It wasn’t a desire. There wasn’t a Spirit [implanted] desire in me. It was just my to-do list.

Another thing I realized was there was no power in my life to overcome sin. I would see things in my heart that were wrong. [I would] see things in my life that were wrong, and [I would] just go, ‘Man I just need to get a grip and do this. I just need to buckle [down] and do this [right thing], or stop doing this [wrong thing].’ And I would just beat myself up all the time, ‘I cannot overcome this in my life. Why am I having so much trouble with this?’ And I would see other Christians that I knew, and think, ‘Yeah, they have problems, but it’s almost like… they overcome. Why is it that I am stuck on this one thing, or on this other thing? Why is it hard for me to forgive? Why is it hard for me to stop doing this, or not do this, or whatever? Why is it so hard?’

And I’m not painting a picture of a Christian that is, you know, walking on a cloud, that doesn’t have problems. But there is that power to overcome, and I could not see in my life that [overcoming power]. [My life] was just struggle, and struggle. And I felt like I was getting worse, that I was just even struggling to appear…to appear godly. And I’m thinking, ‘A Christian does not have to struggle for that.’ I mean, at least I knew enough from preaching and years of, you know, at least hearing my husband, and hearing other preachers.

You know, and other things, I would wander when preaching was going on, I would just—my mind would be on the grocery list. It was like my mind was somewhere, it was always wandering.… Or, even the fact that I would think, ‘Oh, that person can do that. But that’s because they are emotional, [and] I’m just not an emotional type of person.’  You know, ‘They cry and they go to the altar. But well, I’m just not that kind of person.’ It was always an excuse for [continuing] my [old] ways. It was always, ‘Well, so-and-so is ministering. Oh, that’s because she wanted to be nice [just] to show off.’ [Reproof] wasn’t anything about me; I always had an excuse for what was going on in my heart, to make me feel better. But that wasn’t even working anymore. [My focus began to change.] It wasn’t about anyone else. It wasn’t about what so-and-so was doing [or] what so-and-so wasn’t doing. It was on my heart.”

This is practical godliness.

Humiliation before God

“And they that are left of you shall pine away in their iniquity in your enemies’ lands; and also in the iniquities of their fathers shall they pine away with them.” (Lev. 26:39).

“Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time.” (1Pet. 5:6).

Surrender to the will (the Law) of the King.

“For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts [higher] than your thoughts.” (Isa. 55:9). “Now we know that what things soever the Law saith, it saith to them who are under the Law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.” (Rom. 3:19).

This means surrender to the super-high standard of God’s righteousness, surrender to His chastising Spirit of Prophecy.  “For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.” (Rom. 10:3).

“Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time.” (1Pet. 5:6).

“And therefore will the LORD wait, that He may be gracious unto you, and therefore will He be exalted, that He may have mercy upon you: for the LORD is a God of judgment: blessed are all they that wait for Him.” (Isa. 30:18).

“If they shall confess their iniquity, and the iniquity of their fathers, with their trespass which they trespassed against Me, and that also they have walked contrary unto Me;
And that I also have walked contrary unto them, and have brought them into the land of their enemies; if then their uncircumcised hearts be humbled, and they then accept of the punishment of their iniquity:
Then will I remember My covenant with Jacob, and also My covenant with Isaac, and also My covenant with Abraham will I remember; and I will remember the land.” (Lev. 26:40-42).

“I was alive without the Law once: but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died.
And the commandment, which was ordained to life, I found to be unto death.
For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me.
Wherefore the Law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good.
Was then that which is good made death unto me? God forbid. But sin, that it might appear sin, working death in me by that which is good; that sin by the commandment might become exceeding sinful.” (Rom. 7:9-13).

“He that believeth on [the Son of God] is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already.” (John 3:18).

“Then Job answered the LORD, and said, Behold, I am vile; what shall I answer Thee? I will lay mine hand upon my mouth. Once have I spoken; but I will not answer: yea, twice; but I will proceed no further.” (Job 40:3-5).

First surrender to the Law and will of God, then surrender to the grace of His Crown Prince.

Taken from my June 30 post: “…And so what happened was there was a retreat at the church I was going to—and it was strange—it was like this was the first time. Before I was always kind of forced to go to church. But this was the first time after months of feeling guilty that there was just a new feeling about it. It was like there was some—. God was doing something, and I didn’t understand what it was. But on Saturday night I got alone by myself and I just cried out to God. I wasn’t around anybody. There wasn’t anybody telling me what to do. I didn’t even know what to pray. But I needed help.

And I began to cry out to God for Him to take me, to change me, to save me. And really all I could say at first was, “I’m sorry. I’m sorry. I’m sorry. I’m sorry.” I just repeated that over and over to the Lord. I was just broken. Just weeping before the Lord because I knew what made it so bad, what made the feeling so heavy was that God was so good. It was like, I had never known the presence of God before. But that night God came—it was unmistakable—God came. And it was like, His goodness was present. His love and His worth [were] present. And I was broken. I felt, I felt like humbled to the dust, clinging to the dust because I had sinned against a God that was good.

I had sinned against a God that was holy and lovely and pure, and a God even who had loved me. And I knew that. I don’t know how I knew that, but I knew that. And I was broken because of it. Just full of remorse and just telling the Lord, ‘I’m sorry, I’m sorry.’

But then, the tears of pain and of contrition out of nowhere turned into joy. And it was like my soul was flooded with assurance that God accepted me, God loved me. I belong[ed] to God and I didn’t even really know the right terminology about, ‘I’m saved’, or I didn’t know to say that. But I knew this: I was saying ‘Jesus is my Lord.’ That’s what I was saying. And I was telling the Lord, I just told Him, I said, ‘God’—I mean I can remember saying this, just telling the Lord, ‘You can have my life. Just take my life. I don’t want to keep it. I want it to be Yours.’ It was like, it was surrender, but it was a happy surrender. And that’s really what it means, like in the Bible when you see yourself as a sinner when you begin to feel heavy laden, Christ says, ‘Come to Me.’ And that’s what I did.”

“Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to Him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God…. But now we are delivered from  [the curse of] the Law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter.” (Rom. 7:4,6).

“For I delight in the Law of God after the inward man: but I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?” (Rom. 7:22-24).

“And Jacob was left alone; and there wrestled a Man with him until the breaking of the day. And when He saw that He prevailed not against him, He touched the hollow of his thigh; and the hollow of Jacob’s thigh was out of joint, as he wrestled with Him.” (Gen. 32:24,25).

It was in the wrestling with the heavenly Adversary that Jacob gained the faith that would justify him before God.

“… And he said, I will not let Thee go, except Thou bless me…. And He said, 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.… And He blessed him there.” (Gen. 32:26,28,29).

And then came the glorious picture of a well-worn soldier coming home from war. “And as [Israel] passed over Penuel the sun rose upon him, and he halted upon his thigh.” (Gen. 32:31).

“Yea, he had power over the Angel, and prevailed: he wept, and made supplication unto Him: He found him in Bethel, and there He spake with us.” (Hos. 12:4).

“By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.” (Heb. 10:10).

“But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed. Wherefore the Law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.” (Gal. 3:23,24).

“The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into his hand. He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.” (John 3:35,36).

Powerful repentance with faith in Jesus' grace that reaches all the way to heaven

“Hear, I beseech Thee, and I will speak: I will demand of Thee, and declare thou unto me.
I have heard of Thee by the hearing of the ear: but now mine eye seeth Thee.
Wherefore I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes.” (Job 42:4-6).

“Thousands were led to embrace the truth preached by William Miller, and servants of God were raised up in the spirit and power of Elijah to proclaim the message. Like John, the forerunner of Jesus, those who preached this solemn message felt compelled to lay the ax at the root of the tree, and call upon men to bring forth fruits meet for repentance. Their testimony was calculated to arouse and powerfully affect the churches and manifest their real character. And as the solemn warning to flee from the wrath to come was sounded, many who were united with the churches received the healing message; they saw their backslidings, and with bitter tears of repentance and deep agony of soul, humbled themselves before God. And as the Spirit of God rested upon them, they helped to sound the cry, ‘Fear God, and give glory to Him; for the hour of His judgment is come.’” Early Writings, p. 233.
“John had been bitterly disappointed in the result of his mission. He had expected that the message from God would have the same effect as when the law was read in the days of Josiah and of Ezra (2 Chronicles 34; Nehemiah 8, 9); that there would follow a deep-seated work of repentance and returning unto the Lord. For the success of this mission his whole life had been sacrificed. Had it been in vain?” Desire of Ages, p. 216.
“I asked the meaning of the shaking I had seen and was shown that it would be caused by the straight testimony called forth by the counsel of the True Witness to the Laodiceans. This will have its effect upon the heart of the receiver, and will lead him to exalt the standard and pour forth the straight truth. Some will not bear this straight testimony. They will rise up against it, and this is what will cause a shaking among God’s people.  
     I saw that the testimony of the True Witness has not been half heeded. The solemn testimony upon which the destiny of the church hangs has been lightly esteemed, if not entirely disregarded. This testimony must work deep repentance; all who truly receive it will obey it and be purified.” Early Writings, p. 270.

“But when Jesus heard that, He said unto them, They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick. But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” (Matt. 9:12,13).

“I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.” (Luke 15:7).

“Him hath God exalted with His right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.” (Acts 5:31).

Obedience to God’s Law through the Spirit

“But shewed first unto them of Damascus, and at Jerusalem, and throughout all the coasts of Judaea, and then to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, and do works meet for repentance.” (Acts 26:20).

“But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?
Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance:
And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.
And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but He that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: He shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire:
Whose fan is in His hand, and He will throughly purge His floor, and gather His wheat into the garner; but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.” (Matt. 3:7-12).

“And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.” (Luke 24:47).

“Him hath God exalted with His right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.” (Acts 5:31).

“Now I rejoice, not that ye were made sorry, but that ye sorrowed to repentance: for ye were made sorry after a godly manner, that ye might receive damage by us in nothing.
For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death.
For behold this selfsame thing, that ye sorrowed after a godly sort, what carefulness it wrought in you, yea, what clearing of yourselves, yea, what indignation, yea, what fear, yea, what vehement desire, yea, what zeal, yea, what revenge! In all things ye have approved yourselves to be clear in this matter.” (2Cor. 7:9-11).

“And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.
But if the Spirit of Him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, He that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by His Spirit that dwelleth in you.
Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh.
For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.” (Rom. 8:10-13).

Taken from my post January 6:

“So I got down one night soon after I was reading the Bible, maybe a few days later. I just prayed, I remember praying, I prayed, and I was like, ‘Jesus, if You are real, can You please show me that You are real, or show me that this is true?’ And I had a dream immediately. And in my dream—it’s hard to explain—but, it’s like I saw a figure in front of me, and I knew it was Jesus. He was just standing there, and I knew it was Jesus. I’m not saying that was actually Jesus in my dream, but when I prayed for that dream I had it and I knew that this was it.

So, from that point on I just got on my knees and just confessed my sins, gave my life to Jesus Christ, gave my life to God. And my whole life just changed. The Holy Spirit came over me, my whole spirit just changed. All those things I told you about, smoking, drinking, cheating, adultery, all that stuff fell off, Boom, Boom, Boom, like it was nothing. Everything was leaving me. And I was overcoming that stuff like it was nothing. I lie to you not. Things that I thought were impossible, things that I had questions, things that I have seen many, many people not be able to overcome, Jesus showed me that it’s been possible, and I have overcome them myself. And I’m a living testimony. And all of these things were just falling off of me just easily. And every day that goes by I’ve been worshiping Jesus more and more. He’s been providing more and more miracles in my life everyday.

And that’s how I came to Jesus Christ. He just saved my life. And my spirit changed. My spirit changed from wanting to do whatever I want, wanting to commit all of these evil things, wanting to smoke, and wanting to lie and cheat. My spirit changed from that to literally wanting to be righteous, wanting to do right things. Literally, innate…instinct, my instinct is no longer to do those evil things. My instinct is to want to do the right thing, to want to be righteous, and want to serve God. That’s my instinct now; that’s my spirit now. A whole new spirit was given to me by Jesus Christ, by God. Thank God.”

How can we dismiss these people’s experience and be so suspicious of them? How can we call this the counterfeit revival that Ellen White warned us of? To do so is not right. To do so is to blind our minds to the future true revival that garners “a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues,” that, with or without us, will surely stand “before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands.” (Rev. 7:9).

Everyone who will not fall on the Stone Jesus Christ and be broken; everyone who will not confess from a poured out soul His work of salvation, as have these YouTube heroes of faith, will not see the kingdom of God coming from God out of heaven. They are rich in this world and have need of nothing from heaven. They are the 99 righteous persons who have no need for repentance; they were never lost. They are praying to themselves; their prayers go no further than the ceiling. They have no certainty of salvation because they have no salvation. The Spirit doesn’t witness with their spirit that they are children of God because they aren’t children of God.

Thursday, July 26, 2018

Delivered from the Law of self by serving the Law of the Spirit

“There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.” (Rom. 8:1,2).

This was the grand conclusion to the case against the Law that Paul was building. “But now we are delivered from the Law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter…. So then with the mind I myself serve the Law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.” (Rom. 7:6,25). Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the Law of God, neither indeed can be. (Rom. 8:7).

Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the Law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to Him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God. (Rom. 7:4).

“We should serve [the Law] in newness of spirit” is what Paul was saying. I used to misunderstand and dislike the idea of serving the Law. I wanted to serve a Person—Jesus. But when understood correctly, that is exactly what Paul was saying, except with an added PERSON. We serve Jesus and His Father. God, the great Schoolmaster, uses His Law as His Representative to escort to His Son all who will be humbled by it and cry out for a faithful Saviour.

“All that the Father giveth Me shall come to Me; and him that cometh to Me I will in no wise cast out.” (John 6:37).

“Before faith came, we were kept under the Law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed.
Wherefore the Law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster....
Now I say, That the heir, as long as he is a child, differeth nothing from a servant, …
But is under tutors and governors until the time appointed of the father.” (Gal. 3:23,24; 4:1,2).

“For whom the Lord loveth He chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom He receiveth.
If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the Father chasteneth not?” (Heb. 12:6,7).

The Father is the great Law creator, Christ the only Begotten of the Father, “Messiah the Prince” (Dan. 9:25), “the great Prince which standeth for the children of thy people” (Dan. 12:1), is His Chief of police, and His angelic hosts are His police force.

“He doeth according to His will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay His hand, or say unto Him, What doest Thou?” (Dan. 4:35).

Both members of the Godhead stand behind the Law of love and righteousness. Both are infinite love. Both are infinite righteousness.

When we are justified and remade into children in His image we no longer need the Law—as a schoolmaster. “For [we] are all children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.” (Gal. 3:26. We are heirs, as this world’s princes govern according to the education that they learned under their “tutors and governors”. Once appointed they must abide strictly by their training. The object lesson from Paul to the Galatians is that once we have patiently learned our hard lessons of life, then we are appointed to our place in His plan for us. “For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise.” (Heb. 10:36). Once we have received Christ’s justification and His promised Spirit, then we are 100% faithful to His will, His Law, as are the princes of this world, which “are ordained of God.” (Rom. 13:1).

We don’t stop serving God and His Law because we serve Christ and His cross. We serve the Law of God through the cross of Christ. We serve both God and Christ, both Law and Christ—we serve “Thy Law” (Ps. 119:97). “We are delivered from the Law” (Rom. 7:6) through “Thy Law”. The Law, which was dead without a knowledge of the Person of Jesus, and thus “was weak through [our] flesh” (Rom. 8:3), caused us to keep it by our own strength through lifeless “motions” (Rom. 7:5), “dead works” (Heb. 9:14; 6:1). We were automatons, lifeless ethical robots, going through the church related motions and religious routines, keeping the Law by our own efforts.

“The principle that man can save himself by his own works lay at the foundation of every heathen religion; it had now become the principle of the Jewish religion. Satan had implanted this principle. Wherever it is held, men have no barrier against sin.” Desire of Ages, p. 35. The power of Satan over us is a Personless Law, a Christless Law, a loveless Law.

“Behold My servant, whom I uphold; Mine elect, in whom My soul delighteth; I have put My Spirit upon Him: He shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles.
He shall not cry, nor lift up, nor cause His voice to be heard in the street.
A bruised reed shall He not break, and the smoking flax shall He not quench: He shall bring forth judgment unto truth.
He shall not fail nor be discouraged, till He have set judgment in the earth: and the isles shall wait for His Law. ” (Isa. 42:1-4).

“The strength of sin is the law.” (1Cor. 15:56). But, the strength of righteousness is Thy Law. The personless Law is a carnal law. Thy Law is the Law of the Spirit who raised His Son from the dead to make Him the channel for His Law to enter our heart.

“Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to Thy word.
With my whole heart have I sought Thee: O let me not wander from Thy commandments.
Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against Thee.
Blessed art Thou, O LORD: teach me Thy statutes.
With my lips have I declared all the judgments of Thy mouth.
I have rejoiced in the way of Thy testimonies, as much as in all riches.
I will meditate in Thy precepts, and have respect unto Thy ways.” (Ps. 119:9-15).

Thursday, July 19, 2018

The Son of God was made

“And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God.” (Rev. 3:14).

In many ways Satan has labored to hide the precious Child of the Most High from this fallen world, even theologically. People have used Revelation 3:14 to prove that Jesus was a created being, thus not divine. Many non-Trinitarians have so much desired to keep the Father as the “only true God” (John 17:3) that they have made Him the only divine being in heaven, and the Son as non-existent until He was incarnated. Jehovah’s Witnesses and Oneness Pentecostal folks have put this into their doctrines. The Mormons have denigrated Christ by saying that redeemed humanity will become Gods like Jesus is. Catholicism degrades the exaltation of Christ by exalting Mary above Him, or on an equal status with the only-begotten Son of God. And, more subtly, Trinitarians do damage to the Son of God by not allowing Him to be begotten of the Father. In their minds He must be equal in age and status, and thus He cannot really be the Son of the Father. By narrow interpretations of scripture, Trinitarians have lost the bigger picture given from the whole Bible, which the post-apostolic fathers wanted to have in order to be like all the pagans. As a result, they stole Christ’s Spirit of comfort and grace from Him, and gave it to Satan through the ages-old Third Person of the Godhead. But, as persons go, we have only one God and one Lord (see 1 Cor. 8:6), “the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom Thou hast sent” (John 17:3), whom to know is life eternal. Only two persons united in Their eternal Spirit.

Nevertheless, the Son of God is the one and only first begotten, “Monogenes Prototokos Uihos”, “who is the image of the invisible God, the FirstbornG4416 of every creature: for by Him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by Him, and for Him.” (Col. 1:15,16). Jesus has dwelled in His Father’s bosom since the very beginning, from everlasting. “No man hath seen God at any time; the only begottenG3439 SonG5207, which is in the bosom of the Father, He hath declared Him.” (John 1:18). “But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall He come forth unto Me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.” (Mic. 5:2).

But in this post we aren’t going to try to prove that Jesus was created. Yet, many times throughout the New Testament the Book said that Jesus was “made”. However none speak of His creation. Of course, the most well-known “being made” of the Father was to make Jesus one of us. “Wherefore when He cometh into the world, He saith, Sacrifice and offering Thou wouldest not, but a body hast Thou prepared Me.” (Heb. 10:5). To this mysterious work Jesus submitted. The human creation that He would indwell for eternity was a work from His Father that Jesus wholly agreed to. Thus, in all things it behooved Him to be made like us; and in all things it behooved Him to do His Father’s will.

“But of Him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption.” (1Cor. 1:30). Jesus has become our total rehabilitation into the original image of God Adam lost. Jesus is made this because of all the other things He was made. “Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body. For we which live are alway delivered unto death for Jesus’ sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh.” (2Cor. 4:10,11). Our total rehabilitation is a joint effort between His Spirit and our spirit.

“And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening Spirit.” (1Cor. 15:45). Though His Father prepared Him a body to tabernacle among us, He could not be bound within that tabernacle. The first Adam, who was not divine, though perfectly adapted to receive the quickening Spirit from Christ, had a spirit must reside within him for ever. Adam’s spirit could only be sensed apart from his person as influence. It was a holy influence that moved and changed the intelligent and conscientious world around him, but his influence could not affect inanimate matter. Yet, Jesus, the first Son of God and the last Adam, had the body of Adam, but the Spirit of His Father that filled heaven and earth.

“For He hath made Him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him.” (2Cor. 5:21). Jesus likened Himself to the brazen serpent that Moses lifted up in the wilderness. The serpent represented deception and sin. As He commanded Moses to make that serpent, God made Jesus the embodiment of deception and sin.

“Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the Law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree.” (Gal. 3:13). Likewise with 2 Corinthians 5:21, the serpent that was hanging in the tree of knowledge of good and evil was cursed above all beasts of the earth, reveals the curses from God that Jesus took in our place. The Son became a lightning rod to keep our tabernacles from burning down. He became the focus of all the Father’s pent up, righteous rage and hurt because we joined forces with the enemy of the eternal kingdom.

“But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth His Son, made of a woman, made under the law.” (Gal. 4:4). When God gave His only Begotten a human body, He gave His Son no special treatment. There was no respect of persons given to this new Man. “Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered.” (Heb. 5:8). His body, inheriting the fallen, weakened nature of Mary, was subjected to the same forces that we are subject to in our inheritance of the same nature. And He suffered the same consequences for having that fallen, weakened nature. With weakened brain power, He received an intellect that God developed into infinite wisdom. With a weakened soul, He received a depth of yearning for His Father that developed into infinitely deep soul, which could be so full that when He poured it all out it satisfied the Father’s need to have that again from Adam’s race. His holy relationship with the Father permitted His Father’s Spirit to have perfect access to the fallen, weakened nature that He inherited, to keep His Son from sin. Therefore, Jesus had a fallen, weakened, yet sinless nature. “For what the Law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: that the righteousness of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.” (Rom. 8:3,4).

“But made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men.” (Phil. 2:7). In this verse we see that everything that made Jesus what He was came from not the Father’s doing solely. Jesus played a big part in everything that He was. It was His choices every day to seek to be sculpted by His Father’s Spirit and providences that would chisel the Son into the perfect exhibit that pleased the Father. The Son was cut out of the mountain of God’s righteousness without human hands. The Son’s perfect product of sanctification and sealing was a cooperative effort between the Creator and the special, God-like creation, Adam. It was that way with the second Adam; and so it must, and can, be with us.

“Being made so much better than the angels, as He hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they.” (Heb. 1:4). His name was Michael Jehovah, Son of Elohim. “The Word was with God, and the Word was God.” (John 1:1). “Michael, your Prince” (Dan. 10:21), “Michael, [the first] of the chief princes” (Dan. 10:13), “Michael…the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people” (Dan. 12:1), judging “with equity [in favor of] the meek of the earth” (Isa. 11:4), saving “them to the uttermost who come unto God by Him”, He “ever liveth to make intercession for them.” (Heb. 7:25). “From of old, from everlasting” His “goings forth” (Mic. 5:2) in His Father’s constant, long-term development grounded the Son into an immoveable Being of perfect God-likeness, a Chip off the old Block, a perfect Mediator for all of creation before the Ancient of Days. Michael, the only name that means, “who is like God”, in His angelic form was much higher than the highest created angel, “that in all things He might have the preeminence, for it pleased the Father that in Him should all fullness dwell.” (Col. 1:18,19).

“For verily He took not on Him the nature of angels; but He took on Him the seed of Abraham. Wherefore in all things it behoved Him to be made like unto His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people.” (Heb. 2:16,17). Jesus’ incarnation is the most often meaning of His being made. But here we begin to see that a greater work than incarnation was the work put into Him becoming the High Priest to save mankind.

“But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that He by the grace of God should taste death for every man. For it became Him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the Captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.” (Heb. 2:9,10). Jesus was perfect in character every day of His life. Even at the moment of conception He was “that holy thing…called the Son of God.” (Luke 1:35). Yet, He wasn’t made perfect for His priesthood without going through Gethsemane and Golgotha. He had to be made a High Priest. A female may be a mothering person, but she cannot be a proper mother until she passes through the agonies of childbirth. Likewise, our great “Mother of all living” (Gen. 3:20) must pass through the waves of agony in Gethsemane for our second birth. “And being in an agony He prayed more earnestly: and His sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground.” (Luke 22:44). He must suffer infinitely in order to have the infinite patience and forebearance that we need from our upbringing into the perfection of His Father.

“For every high priest taken from among men is ordained for men in things pertaining to God, that he may offer both gifts and sacrifices for sins:
Who can have compassion on the ignorant, and on them that are out of the way; for that he himself also is compassed with infirmity.
And by reason hereof he ought, as for the people, so also for himself, to offer for sins.
And no man taketh this honour unto himself, but he that is called of God, as was Aaron.
So also Christ glorified not Himself to be made an High Priest; but He that said unto Him, Thou art My Son, to day have I begotten Thee…. And being made perfect, He became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey Him.” (Heb. 5: 1-5,9). A queen bee is regular worker bee until it is made into a queen. Likewise, Jesus was the highest in heaven, equal to His Father in power and glory. But, not until Gethsemane was the Son made equal to God as Mediator when His love held up under the infinite justice of the Most High for our sake, God thus creating in His Son the necessary equal and opposite power of infinite mercy sufficient to save repentant man and to maintain the righteousness of the Law.

“Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast, and which entereth into that within the veil; whither the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made an High Priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.” (Heb. 6:19,20).

“For it is evident that our Lord sprang out of Juda; of which tribe Moses spake nothing concerning priesthood.
And it is yet far more evident: for that after the similitude of Melchisedec there ariseth another Priest,
Who is made, not after the law of a carnal commandment, but after the power of an endless life.
For He testifieth, Thou art a Priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.” (Heb. 7:14-17).

“For the law made nothing perfect, but the bringing in of a better hope did; by the which we draw nigh unto God.
And inasmuch as not without an oath He was made priest:
(For those priests were made without an oath; but this with an oath by Him that said unto Him, The Lord sware and will not repent, Thou art a Priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec:)
By so much was Jesus made a surety of a better testament.…
Wherefore He is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by Him, seeing He ever liveth to make intercession for them.
For such an High Priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens;
Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people’s: for this He did once, when He offered up Himself.
For the law maketh men high priests which have infirmity; but the word of the oath, which was since the law, maketh the Son, who is consecrated for evermore.” (Heb. 7:19-22,25-28).

God made His Son all that He is. And Jesus will make His children all that we need to be if we will be as submissive to His workmanship as He was to His Father’s.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Maintaining a spiritual battery

“Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.” (Heb. 4:16).

The connection with Christ by means of His Spirit is of utmost necessity to every newly born child of God. As we grow in knowing Jesus, we grow in grace. We become more and more established in Him.

“The God of all grace, who hath called us unto His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you.” (1Pet. 5:10).

We are made reliable, dependable for God’s purpose of representing Himself and His liberating Law of righteousness. His grace becomes a spiritual battery in us, so that our faith is not fleeting, blown down by every temptation or wind of doctrine from the brilliant D.D., Doctor of Deception.

Our spiritual battery is never self-charged. It always needs to be plugged into the higher source of power, higher than the heavens. It needs to be plugged into life, the Source of life, Jesus the Son of God. We are only ever “a living soul” (1Cor. 15:45). He always is and has always been the “quickening Spirit” (1Cor. 15:45). We are the clay; He is the Potter. “We all are the work of Thy hand” (Isa. 64:8), “His workmanship” (Eph. 2:10). He is the good Shepherd, and we the sheep of His pasture.

“His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns; and He had a name written, that no man knew, but He Himself.” (Rev. 19:12).

He can give us the life from His Father, He can sanctify us in good works, because He sunk into the lowest hell. He took upon Himself the avalanche of God’s wrath against our detestable, natural, self-righteous sinfulness. Jesus has a name that no one else knows but Himself because no one else but He has passed, or will be called to pass, through the tribulation of damnation that He passed through. He can sing a song that even the 144,000 cannot sing. But having passed through their own ultimate human test, they will sing their own song of victory that synchronizes and harmonizes with His greatest, ultimate test and most glorious song.

“Though He were a Son, yet learned He obedience by the things which He suffered; and being made perfect, He became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey Him.” (Heb. 5:8,9).

“Thou lovest righteousness, and hatest wickedness: therefore God, Thy God, hath anointed Thee with the oil of gladness above Thy fellows.” (Ps. 45:7).

His righteousness is solid as a rock. And therefore He rules the Earth with a rod of iron.

“And she brought forth a man Child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her Child was caught up unto God, and to His throne.” (Rev. 12:5).

“And out of His mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it He should smite the nations: and He shall rule them with a rod of iron: and He treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.” (Rev. 19:15).

“And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever.” (Dan. 2:44).

His children are made solid by His gift of life, in His righteousness, and in His presence. And as Christ has ruled the nations with a rod of iron, so do they.

“And He that overcometh, and keepeth My works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father. And I will give him the morning star.” (Rev. 2:26-28).

“And if any man will hurt them, fire proceedeth out of their mouth, and devoureth their enemies: and if any man will hurt them, he must in this manner be killed. These have power to shut heaven, that it rain not in the days of their prophecy: and have power over waters to turn them to blood, and to smite the earth with all plagues, as often as they will.” (Rev. 11:5,6).

“I waited patiently for the LORD; and He inclined unto me, and heard my cry.
He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings.
And He hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the LORD.” (Ps. 40:1-3).

“Jesus answered and said, …Are ye able to drink of the cup that I shall drink of, and to be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with? They say unto Him, We are able. And He saith unto them, Ye shall drink indeed of My cup, and be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with.” (Matt. 20:22,23).

We must have a God-gifted faith that doesn’t flee at the troubles of this life, a battery that He recharges every day.

“We have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.
We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair;
Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed;
Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.…
For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day.” (2Cor. 4:7-10,16).

That battery needs a demand, as Paul stated above. Our faith must be tested constantly. It needs to be worn down, troubled, perplexed, and persecuted. At the end of the day, its charge needs to be near dead, and in great need of recharging. If it is not brought into trying situations, and put under demands for patient endurance, burdened with work, then the safe conditions we create of cloistering up in a monastery of our own devising, constantly receiving a charge without giving a discharge, cause it to cease to be able to be charged. Like all batteries that are not completely discharged before recharging creates in them a “memory”, where the amount of voltage that it can discharge for use remains limited to only the voltage capacity not discharged before recharging, so it is with the faculty of faith.

Let’s take the object lesson from a website, and apply it to spiritual things:

“Memory Effect - What it is and what you can do about it
Almost anyone who uses rechargeable batteries has heard of the memory effect problem. For those who have not heard of this problem it is commonly believed that when rechargeable batteries are not fully discharged between charge cycles that they remember the shortened cycle and are thus reduced in capacity (length of use per charge). This problem was very common with rechargeable batteries several years ago. With improvements in batteries and charging technology this ‘memory effect’ is becoming a thing of the past. [Spiritually, the developments of batteries teach us that the memory effect in our grace used to be worse than it is with the later improvements of the gospel. “But now hath He obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also He is the mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises. For if that first covenant had been faultless, then should no place have been sought for the second.” (Heb. 8:6,7). After eons of meek and mild animal sacrifices, when the Son of God came personally, the world now had a meek and lowly God rather than a meek and lowly beast; we saw a lamb-like Man instead of a lamb-like animal. This picture was naturally more promising and more confirming in us because we could see an expression of God’s love more in someone like us and we could trust our repentance to God through a lamb-like Man more than through a lamb-like animal.]

…*Overcharging cells that are near the end of their overall life and their voltage is naturally low. No amount of charging will fix this and the battery needs to be replaced. [It’s an unwelcome truth that every one of us can go so far into the depths of Satan that we can’t come back to God. “But unto you I say, and unto the rest in Thyatira, as many as have not this doctrine, and which have not known the depths of Satan, as they speak; I will put upon you none other burden. But that which ye have already hold fast till I come.” (Rev. 2:24,25). This doctrine referred to delving into spiritualism, which Jesus had said before this. “Notwithstanding I have a few things against thee, because thou sufferest that woman Jezebel, which calleth herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce My servants to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed unto idols. And I gave her space to repent of her fornication; and she repented not. Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds. And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am He which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works.” (Rev. 2:20-23).]

*Diminished capacity due to long storage or non-use.  This can sometimes be remedied by a number of deep discharges.  This has been shown to recover 70% or more of the cell’s original capacity.  If the cell has been sitting for too long and the energy has been depleted it may not be possible to recover any capacity. [For all who call upon the Lord Jesus there is mercy. Even if we have been long time away from communion with Him, and then we come to need Him and we pour out our soul to Him, He hears us and saves us again. But, know that more than one deep repentance and deep prayer will be necessary to restore the original openness and freedom that we had with Him before departing from Him to go into the world. We will spend the rest of our life striving to regain what we lost. But, this is good and necessary. In the end, while we will have perfect peace with God when we return to Him with all of our hearts, all that we had in communion before indulging in sin will not be restored. Most of it will return, but not all of it. Initially, only 70% (maybe more) will be restored because our indulgence of sin damaged our conscience and weakened our soul’s yearning for perfect purity. Our fear and distrust of God’s mercy and Christ’s ability to save us to the uttermost prevent the innocent relationship we had before expending our energies on our lusts. But, persistence can close the gap of the old and new spiritual realities, as trust and continued repentance arc over the remaining communion barrier.]

So how can you maximize the use of your rechargeable batteries? Here are a few steps to take to get the most use out of your batteries: [Let’s get practical. If we are spiritually minded we love the practical steps, the actual, helpful tips that can get us to Jesus. But everyone who is carnally minded hates the practical, helpful steps that show the way to Christ, and that expose whether or not we have come to Him and are obedient to Him.]

1. Invest in a good charger. NiMH batteries should not be charged in a NiCad charger, unless the charger is specifically made for both chemistries. There are cheap chargers and there are expensive chargers. Make sure the charger you get has good reviews and is well made. Chargers with micro-controller chips are usually the best choice. [We need the word of God and prayer to recharge us. But, we need the best Bible, which in my opinion is the King James Version. We also need the glasses of the Spirit of Prophecy that help bring out of the Bible the practical points, magnified by the power of 1,000, bringing to our dull spiritual senses truth that is blinding, making us tremble before God and giving us His gift of repentance, as it should be.]

2. When charging your batteries occasionally discharge them fully before recharging them. This is especially helpful to NiCad batteries. Be careful not to discharge too deeply. (Less than 1v per cell for NiCad and NiMH. E.g., a 3.6v pack to no less than 3v.) Discharging to absolute zero will make your battery useless. It’s best if you have a charger with a conditioner that will cycle the battery for you. [We should never go into battle with our sword of the Spirit without our shield of faith and helmet of salvation. The battle is what tests us and drains us, but without the Lord with us, Generaling and guiding us in the fight, we will be ambushed and surrounded by the enemy’s forces, and taken captive. The last erg of faith will drain from us and we will come away weakened beyond repair. But, if we fight with Him, the Spirit of Christ will call us back from the foray, as needed. Even when we think we should stay to push back the enemy, when we think the battle can’t go on without us, the Spirit will refuse our lack of good judgment. He says to us, “Come ye yourselves apart into a desert place, and rest a while.” (Mark 6:31).]

3. Be sure to store your batteries properly. Do not leave your batteries in a hot car, or in humid conditions. The best storage conditions are a cool, dry place. The refrigerator is fine if you stick in a packet of silica gel with your batteries in a sealed bag to keep them dry. It is a good idea to charge your NiCad or NiMH batteries fully before use if they have been in storage. [Faith is precious, not to be treated casually or of the same value as earthly, bodily requirements of life. What does it profit a man if he loses his own soul? What can he give in exchange for his soul? Ellen White’s accompanying angel gave her a green cord and told her to keep it tucked neatly near her heart and to stretch it out often, or it would get all tangled and knotted like tightly curly hair. “My guide now opened the door, and we both passed out. He bade me take up again all the things I had left without. This done, he handed me a green cord coiled up closely. This he directed me to place next my heart, and when I wished to see Jesus, take from my bosom and stretch it to the utmost. He cautioned me not to let it remain coiled for any length of time, lest it should become knotted and difficult to straighten. I placed the cord near my heart and joyfully descended the narrow stairs, praising the Lord and joyfully telling all whom I met where they could find Jesus. This dream gave me hope. The green cord represented faith to my mind, and the beauty and simplicity of trusting in God began to dawn upon my benighted soul.” Early Writings, p. 81. At the end of each day’s testing of faith, and Jesus is close because we have followed in His cross-bearing, we can go to bed and sleep in a deep state. Each night, preferably 9 p.m. to 3 a.m. equivalent to a good 9 hours of sleep (each hour of sleep before midnight is as good as two hours after midnight), our heart and mind can go into a cold, dead, healthful storage, letting the brain and body repair, and allowing the soul to find thoughts and words of scripture/Spirit of Prophecy passing round and round, unobstructed from the wages of sin. The scriptures cleanse our heart and conscience at each pass of truth, and heal all that Satan did to damage them during the previous working day.]

4. Most cordless phones use NiCad batteries. To maximize your cordless phone battery life, make sure to leave your phone off the base every once in a while until it is dead. Then leave it on the base until it is fully charged. You should leave your phone on the base for at least 24 hours to charge it fully. [This again relates to the daily testing and trying of our faith and prayer life. “Praying always with all prayer and supplication of the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.” (Eph. 6:18). Then at the end of a week of laboring with souls, we can spend the whole day with Jesus on His Sabbath, fully enjoying His presence because we laid down our lives in labor during the previous week. The weekly 24 hour Sabbath is the perfect high day of celebration after the long, difficult six days of baptisms by fire, laboring for others, and squeezing in nightly nine hour naps before waking and restarting more baptisms by fire.]

There is no need to avoid rechargeable batteries. They can save you significant amounts of money over time. Don’t be scared off by the ‘memory effect’. It is easily manageable if it ever occurs.” [There is always the potential for our faith to be overcharged with this world’s goodies. But there is no need to avoid the redemption that comes with Jesus’ love and acceptance. True, oh so true the warning is, “Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God. But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end; while it is said, To day if ye will hear His voice, harden not your hearts.” (Heb. 3:12-15). But, even if a spiritual memory effect does sneak up in us, no one is beyond restoration if they will be humbled by Christ’s strong convictions and let the goodness of God lead them to repentance. Christ’s reconciliation and grace and Spirit are ready to re-infuse us if we are ready through the bowing of our proud self-will and the breaking of our rebellious heart. His yoke of humiliation is easy and His full restoration of justification is available. His mercy endureth forever; His gentleness makes us great.]

Without the struggles and demands of life, we can’t fully use the grace that Jesus gives us for the day. By indulging into spiritual slothfulness and indolence, building up the flesh at the expense of the Spirit, we begin the slide into spiritual dearth. “Take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares. For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth. Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.” (Luke 21:34-36).

Thus, our spiritual battery develops a “memory” that keeps it from fully being recharged. Literally speaking, our renewing everyday from above becomes limited by the small work load that we allow Jesus to put us through for our emptying. Our “inward man’s” need for Christ’s renewing grows smaller and smaller. The capacity of our spiritual battery shrinks. The longer we refuse the baptism by fire, those difficulties that challenge our fruits from the Spirit, where “death worketh in us, but life in [others]” (2Cor. 4:12), the more increasingly our faith battery withers, our love capacity for the things of God shrivels up, our muscle of faith atrophies. Dodging the opportunities to sacrifice self and to serve others we are playing dangerously with the devil, as he celebrates with us and entertains us and waltzes us right over to the edge of his bottomless pit.

“I am the true vine, and My Father is the husbandman.
Every branch in Me that beareth not fruit He taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, He purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit.
Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you.…
If a man abide not in Me, He is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.” (John 15:1-3,6).

Accept the baptisms by fire from others all day, and the baptism by water from Jesus every morning. Let us not fear the demands that come with facing a world of sin. Let its waves beat upon our feeble faith. Put your God to the test, and, yes, let Satan try to beat down your battery like he did our Master in the wilderness and in Gethsemane.

“After the foe had departed, Jesus fell exhausted to the earth, with the pallor of death upon His face. The angels of heaven had watched the conflict, beholding their loved Commander as He passed through inexpressible suffering to make a way of escape for us. He had endured the test, greater than we shall ever be called to endure. The angels now ministered to the Son of God as He lay like one dying. He was strengthened with food, comforted with the message of His Father’s love and the assurance that all heaven triumphed in His victory. Warming to life again, His great heart goes out in sympathy for man, and He goes forth to complete the work He has begun; to rest not until the foe is vanquished, and our fallen race redeemed.” Desire of Ages, p. 131.

“Three times has He uttered that prayer. Three times has humanity shrunk from the last, crowning sacrifice. But now the history of the human race comes up before the world’s Redeemer. He sees that the transgressors of the law, if left to themselves, must perish. He sees the helplessness of man. He sees the power of sin. The woes and lamentations of a doomed world rise before Him. He beholds its impending fate, and His decision is made. He will save man at any cost to Himself. He accepts His baptism of blood, that through Him perishing millions may gain everlasting life. He has left the courts of heaven, where all is purity, happiness, and glory, to save the one lost sheep, the one world that has fallen by transgression. And He will not turn from His mission. He will become the propitiation of a race that has willed to sin. His prayer now breathes only submission: ‘If this cup may not pass away from Me, except I drink it, Thy will be done.’
     Having made the decision, He fell dying to the ground from which He had partially risen. Where now were His disciples, to place their hands tenderly beneath the head of their fainting Master, and bathe that brow, marred indeed more than the sons of men? The Saviour trod the wine press alone, and of the people there was none with Him.  
     But God suffered with His Son. Angels beheld the Saviour’s agony. They saw their Lord enclosed by legions of satanic forces, His nature weighed down with a shuddering, mysterious dread. There was silence in heaven. No harp was touched. Could mortals have viewed the amazement of the angelic host as in silent grief they watched the Father separating His beams of light, love, and glory from His beloved Son, they would better understand how offensive in His sight is sin.  
     The worlds unfallen and the heavenly angels had watched with intense interest as the conflict drew to its close. Satan and his confederacy of evil, the legions of apostasy, watched intently this great crisis in the work of redemption. The powers of good and evil waited to see what answer would come to Christ’s thrice-repeated prayer. Angels had longed to bring relief to the divine sufferer, but this might not be. No way of escape was found for the Son of God. In this awful crisis, when everything was at stake, when the mysterious cup trembled in the hand of the sufferer, the heavens opened, a light shone forth amid the stormy darkness of the crisis hour, and the mighty angel who stands in God’s presence, occupying the position from which Satan fell, came to the side of Christ. The angel came not to take the cup from Christ’s hand, but to strengthen Him to drink it, with the assurance of the Father’s love. He came to give power to the divine-human suppliant. He pointed Him to the open heavens, telling Him of the souls that would be saved as the result of His sufferings. He assured Him that His Father is greater and more powerful than Satan, that His death would result in the utter discomfiture of Satan, and that the kingdom of this world would be given to the saints of the Most High. He told Him that He would see of the travail of His soul, and be satisfied, for He would see a multitude of the human race saved, eternally saved.” Desire of Ages, p. 690-693.

But all who evaded the previous demands, all who denied the golden opportunities provided by the imagined death-like drains by frightful baptisms of fire, will come up to this last test unprepared and unfit for eternity. Their untested faith will disappear forever like the dew before the hot morning Star.

“O Ephraim, what shall I do unto thee? O Judah, what shall I do unto thee? for your goodness is as a morning cloud, and as the early dew it goeth away.” (Hos. 6:4).

“The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away.
Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.
For the LORD knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.” (Ps. 1:4-6).

Will we follow our Master “whithersoever He goeth” (Rev. 14:4), even into our own Gethsemane? Will we have the tested faith and grounded grace that will help us in time of need?

Make sure of Jesus’ love first thing every morning, and then let life drain you again together with your Master in your wilderness, only to be strengthened by His heavenly agencies, and warmed back to life again. Over and over again, this process will cleanse us and prepare us for the ultimate demand. It will be our own Gethsemane, when the coming time of trouble such as never was will try the charge of our faith battery to the max. All the previous demands and drains will prepare for the finale demand—the sealing.

“Great power was with these chosen ones. Said the angel, ‘Look ye!’ My attention was turned to the wicked, or unbelievers. They were all astir. The zeal and power with the people of God had aroused and enraged them. Confusion, confusion, was on every side. I saw measures taken against the company who had the light and power of God. Darkness thickened around them; yet they stood firm, approved of God, and trusting in Him. I saw them perplexed; next I heard them crying unto God earnestly. Day and night their cry ceased not: ‘Thy will, O God, be done! If it can glorify Thy name, make a way of escape for Thy people! Deliver us from the heathen around about us. They have appointed us unto death; but Thine arm can bring salvation.’ These are all the words which I can bring to mind. All seemed to have a deep sense of their unworthiness and manifested entire submission to the will of God; yet, like Jacob, every one, without an exception, was earnestly pleading and wrestling for deliverance.   
     Soon after they had commenced their earnest cry, the angels, in sympathy, desired to go to their deliverance. But a tall, commanding angel suffered them not. He said, ‘The will of God is not yet fulfilled. They must drink of the cup. They must be baptized with the baptism.’” Early Writings, p. 272.   

“Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth.
Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us.
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
As it is written, For Thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.
Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him that loved us.
For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,
Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Rom. 8:33-39).

“For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.” (Rom. 8:18).              

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Angela's testimony

“Hello, my name is Angela. And this is a portion of my testimony. I was raised in the Baptist church by my grandfather. I said the sinner’s prayer at age 11. My cousin had drug me up front, so I just went along. I was then baptized. I had attended that church for 16 ½ years. I was there 3 times a week.  I loved going. I always enjoyed going to church. I looked forward to it. It was the only place I found peace or any kind of happiness in my life.

At age 17 I stopped going. I had a lot of wickedness in my life, and it became worse. And I just really dove in full throttle, basically. Fast forward to the age of 23, 24, I had a child out of wedlock. I was a mess; her father was a mess. We were living together. And so we just proceeded on with life that way, as we knew it.

So years, several years down the road life was very chaotic. And I had no peace and no happiness. So the only thing I knew to do was to go back to the only place that I ever had peace, or any kind of happiness. And that was church. So I sought out a church that was just not too far from us. It was a non-denominational church. So I went. I remember pulling into the parking lot and telling God that if nobody ever said, ‘Hello’ to me that I would never go back again. And of course 3 people did; and at that moment that was irritating to me.

So I did keep going. And I met a few ladies and became friends with them. I had spoke with the pastor and told him I had said the sinner’s prayer at age 11, and had been baptized. So he told me that I was just rededicating my life back to the Lord. And I was then baptized again.

And I believed it because I thought since I had said the sinner’s prayer at age 11, that that meant I was saved. I went to all the Bible studies that they had there. I was there every service. Then a day came, and 2 of the gals came over to my home, and told me that I needed to leave my daughter’s father, and that I was unequally yoked. And they showed me the scripture. I knew nothing about that. So I spoke to the pastor, and he said, ‘Yes. That’s true. You do need to leave.’ So I did. I explained to her dad, we weren’t married. We were living in sin. And I was just repeating what they [the church] were telling me.

So, he wasn’t going to have any of it. But I did leave. For a while I had some peace in my life. And, looking back,  I believe its because I was not living in sin. But, other than that the only thing that had changed in my life at that time was I had stopped cussing. And in comparison to some of the gals that I had met at that church, there was no difference in my life compared to theirs. Never, when I was at home, never did I have a desire to read my Bible. I never had a desire to be in prayer. As a matter of fact, I couldn’t even pray. I would go to some prayer groups. And everybody would pray, except for me. I couldn’t do it, and I didn’t know why. So I started asking different people, basically what was wrong with me. And I would be told, ‘You’re just new in your walk. And it takes time to overcome.’ And I know now that those things are true. And then I was instructed by the pastor to attend some Christian counseling. So I did that. And still nothing changed. They, you know, for the most part, gave me truth. They all believed that I was saved. I kept questioning; but then finally I was thoroughly convinced that I was saved because they all thought I was saved.

So, I continued on with that church for a while. Then I switched and went to a Pentecostal Charismatic church. There I had met a gal, and there was something about her that was so different than everybody else. And I wanted what she had. But I couldn’t put my finger on it. So I had become friends with her, and was attending the Charismatic church. And I started then questioning people there, you know, what was wrong with me. And I had spoke with the pastor at that church. And had told him, ‘I had said the sinner’s prayer at age 11, that at the previous church, I was told I rededicated my life back to the Lord. I was baptized.’ So this particular pastor said, ‘Well, you are rededicating your life back to the Lord again.’ And I was then baptized in that church.

I then continued on. I went to all the services and I learned some more things. Each church I went to I learned some; I had some head knowledge to some degree. Anyway, I still was struggling. Nothing was changing; absolutely nothing. And things seemed on the outside to be better. But on the inside it wasn’t. There was no desire for anything. I just kind of went and followed the masses. But as I was questioning some of the people in that church, they had told me that it’s because I had not been baptized in the Holy Spirit. And I did not have the gift of tongues, which that was all new to me.

So, they had prayed for me. Nothing happened. They told me to have faith, and I’d receive it. With my head I tried really hard to have that faith. It did not happen. They had said that if I had had that [faith] that I would have all the power to overcome all the sin in my life. So that was a bit discouraging. I ended up doing some counseling there at that church, although there was one lady [Amy] in all the years that I went to the three churches, there was only one lady that came up to me during a service, and said to me, ‘Do you know Jesus?’ And I was very offended when she asked me that question. I was very full of pride, looking back, and I realize that now how full of pride I was. But I was severely offended by her question. And I looked at her, and I said to her, ‘Well, I know Amy.’ I guess in my mind, because I knew Amy to be a true woman of God, that since I was her friend, and I honestly believed that I was saved, that of course, I know Jesus. So that was my answer to her, which was very idiotic, looking back, and just how ignorant I was with the whole thing. So she let me be.

The speaking in tongues did strike my curiosity. So, I did look that up. I did open my Bible to look that up. And what I did find was that nothing in scripture lined up with how it was being practiced, in that particular church. Everything was very chaotic. All over the map. There was just a bunch of chaos and bunch of hype. And things were not in order, according to what the scripture had said. But I didn’t question anybody on that. And looking back now, it makes me wonder why I never even looked up the scriptures about salvation.

In those two churches in my adult life, all of the messages were inspirational, which was different for me. It did give you a ‘feel good’ feeling. But it was very different because it was very different from the Baptist church. The music was different. That was the other thing that I started feeling uneasy about, was at this charismatic church, the praise and worship was more like a rock concert. I attended enough rock and roll concerts in my days that nothing about that seemed any different at all. And people just running around doing weird things. So that bothered me some.

So as time went on I just grew very tired of the women running around half naked. Nobody seemed to have a problem with that. Looking back now that’s how I see it. Who was I to judge, especially at that time? But, no one seemed to be bothered by that. Now I, on one hand, didn’t run around dressed that way, being raised in the Baptist church, and just the family that I have, the women always dressed very modest. You did not, I wasn’t raised that way by my grandparents, none of my aunts, none of my family, they don’t dress that way to this day. Even though they are not believers, it’s just not something that was ever accepted.

So, the pastor was embezzling money; I still had so many questions, I was going nowhere fast, and I just realized one day--and this may sound very judgmental, and it probably is--is that I just looked around and thought, ‘These people can’t help me. They need help themselves, and they cannot help me.’

So, I left the church. And it’s been almost 10 years since I’ve been out of the church. And probably about 5, 6 months ago, I started watching music videos on YouTube. And I came across 2 different channels. One was ‘Erika’s’ and one was ‘the Bullet of truth’. And there was something about their words, and I was hooked right from the beginning. And the messages they were giving. And so I would watch them and watch them and watch them, and watch them. And every chance I had I would watch their videos. And I started looking up the scriptures, and I started paying more attention. And when I look back now I realize something was stirring because I started to question things about myself and what they were saying. And I started asking myself, ‘Am I truly saved? Am I truly born again? If I am, how could I have lived this wicked life, 20 years in the church looking no different that anybody else in the world, and do the things that I have done and lived the life that I have lived, if I was truly born again, if I had real salvation.’

So I continued listening to their videos, I reached out to both of them. They both responded back to me, and I went on with that. I kept listening, and all the sudden the blinders fell off and I realized that I was not born again. I was a false convert, and I didn’t even know that term. But I know it now.

And the day the blinders fell off I was at work, and I couldn’t wait to get home and get into my room and get alone with God. And so I cried out to Him, and it wasn’t thoughts in my head. It wasn’t a feeling. God met me in my bedroom. And it was from my gut [deep repentance]; and the grief and the joy, all at the same time. And something changed in me at that moment, instantly. And there was a heart change. And God had showed me that all these years I had always gone to man for the answers. I had never inquired of Him. And also that He had been waiting there the whole time for me. And I was completely deceived. He just showed me how deceived I was and how [deluded] I was, and how much I love sin. And also that I did know the way to salvation, but I always looked at it outwardly for everyone else. I never personalized it for myself.

And it’s just ironic to me that God used YouTube, two people that were very instrumental. I thank God for willing vessels still in today’s age, in this wicked world that we live in. And I will be eternally grateful. But it is ironic that God used YouTube [instead of the pulpit]. That still kind of cracks me up, but I am very thankful. And the thing is; now I have a desire to be obedient. I have a desire and a yearning to be in His word, and to be in prayer. I know what real conviction feels like, and I know what it feels like to deny the flesh. And that’s something I had never experienced before either. And I know now who my Deliverer is, where my help comes from, who my Healer is, where my peace comes from, where my comfort comes from. [God is] the only one that I can trust in. There’s never been anybody on this earth, or in my life, and never will be, that can ever compare. He’ll never let me down, and He will always be there.

And so, that’s my testimony, and I’m at the beginning of my journey, but I am so glad that God is longsuffering, and He is patient and merciful. So that is it. Thanks, guys. And be blessed.”