Finally then, brethren, we request and exhort you in the Lord Jesus, that as you received from us instruction as to how you ought to walk and please God (just as you actually do walk), that you excel still more.1 Thessalonians 4:1(NASB)
Let us then be eager to know this rest for ourselves, and let us beware that no one misses it through falling into the same kind of unbelief as those we have mentioned. (Hebrews 4:11 Phillips)
Why all these exhortations in the New Testament to go on? Why is the New Testament just made up of exhortations and encouragements and warnings to the people of God about going on? And why is the New Testament such a practical Book? Because real spiritual progress and the Presence of the Lord depends upon bringing everything that we know right up to date. I wonder if you could tell me the number of times in the New Testament that that one thing occurs. It is a quotation from Israel's life in the wilderness. And it is this: "Today if you will hear His voice, harden not your heart." Again and again, those words are put in the New Testament. Today! Today! Today! You see, all this has got to be brought into NOW. All our progress for the future depends upon what we are doing with what we know NOW. So the Lord says to us, "I am with you if you are going on. And going on means putting into practice and effect all that I have said to you." Our growing knowledge of the Lord depends entirely upon our daily obedience to the light which we have....
So when the Lord speaks, and we bring that which He has said, and we say: "There is something to be done about this. I do not just put that into the store of my knowledge. I do not just add that to all that I know. I look to see what that requires of me in a practical way. And when I see what that means, then I get to the Lord to have that made real and living in my life." Brethren, the people who do that will be going on. They will be entering the Promised Land. They will be entering into His Rest. They will be entering into the joy of the Lord. Because that is what the Lord wants - people who take hold of everything that the Lord says, and make it practical. So the writer of the Hebrews says, "Let us go on." In what other way can we go on? We are not on a literal journey on this earth. Our Promised Land is not something on this earth, in this world. No. Christ is our Promised Land. Christ is God's fullness of purpose for us. So, we have got to take everything that has been said to us about Christ, and put it into practical effect. That is what it means to go on. And that is what it means to have the Lord fully with us!
You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you. § Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom.
How can a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed according to Your word. With my whole heart I have sought You; oh, let me not wander from Your commandments!
When wisdom enters your heart, and knowledge is pleasant to your soul, discretion will preserve you; understanding will keep you.
My foot has held fast to His steps; I have kept His way and not turned aside. I have not departed from the commandment of His lips; I have treasured the words of His mouth more than my necessary food. § I have more understanding than all my teachers, for Your testimonies are my meditation. § If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.
You have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, to an innumerable company of angels, to the general assembly and church of the firstborn who are registered in heaven, to God the Judge of all, to the spirits of just men made perfect.
These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off were assured of them, embraced them and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. § For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body that it may be conformed to His glorious body, according to the working by which He is able even to subdue all things to Himself. • [The Father] has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love.
As sojourners and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul.
He said to me, My spiritual strength is sufficient, for it is only by means of conscious weakness that power is developed" (2 Cor. 12:9, Wms.).
Early in our Christian life the general conception is that God is a wonderful Helper. Later, as we experience failure, we come to know full well that if anything is going to be accomplished in and through us, He must do it all.
"Everything you need in the Christian life, no matter what it may be, comes from the Father alone. You will see more and more the utter futility of trying to make yourself a keen Christian; that your best efforts are as futile as your worst failures; that your Christian life is to be a continual miracle that the Father must work every minute; that the only thing you have to do is to depend utterly, and altogether, and all the time on Him. You will see that what you need is not more effort or determination, but more of the Father; a deeper, more continual trust and dependence upon Him." -D.T.
"For the discovery of our sinful condition and getting deliverance from the reign of sin, there is an experiential process in us. The doctrine is that we died unto sin with Christ: that is Romans Six. But the resting on the truth found there as a doctrine, is connected with the experience found in Romans Seven; the result being in Romans Eight.
"Now this experience is the painful learning that we have no strength to make good what we would and what is right. There is a point in the experience which often helped, but it is not deliverance; that is, hating the evil which yet works in me. But after this I find what I hate too strong for me, and I am brought to the consciousness of my being without strength - the point to which the Father was leading me all along." -J.N.D.
"For when I am weak (in myself), then I am strong (in Him)" (2 Cor. 12:10, Wey.).
“Whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.” 1 Corinthians 10:31
The great marvels of the Incarnation slips into ordinary childhood's life; the great marvel of the Transfiguration vanishes in the devil-possessed valley; the glory of the Resurrection descends into a breakfast on the sea-shore. This is not an anti-climax, but a great revelation of God.
The tendency is to look for the marvellous in our experience; we mistake the sense of the heroic for being heroes. It is one thing to go through a crisis grandly, but another thing to go through every day glorifying God when there is no witness, no limelight, no one paying the remotest attention to us. If we do not want mediaeval haloes, we want something that will make people say - What a wonderful man of prayer he is! What a pious devoted woman she is! If you are rightly devoted to the Lord Jesus, you have reached the sublime height where no one even thinks of noticing you, all that is noticed is that the power of God comes through you all the time.
Oh, I have had a wonderful call from God! It takes Almighty God Incarnate in us to do the meanest duty to the glory of God. It takes God's Spirit in us to make us so absolutely humanly His that we are utterly unnoticeable. The test of the life of a saint is not success, but faithfulness in human life as it actually is. We will set up success in Christian work as the aim; the aim is to manifest the glory of God in human life, to live the life hid with Christ in God in human conditions. Our human relationships are the actual conditions in which the ideal life of God is to be exhibited.
And for their sakes I sanctify Myself… that they also might be sanctified through the truth.
The bottom line is that every believer has TWO ‘lives’ the old life and the new life.
1 the old sin nature from Adam and
2 the new born again life of Christ
Any attempt whatsoever to consecrate the old Adamic life will lead to certain failure. God organised it that way.. for He’ll have absolutely nothing to do with the OLD. But what a blow to the believer who wants to consecrate his old life and tries to do so… This too often has a devastating effect on believers – as life becomes increasingly hard. He wants to live a consecrated life as outlined in scripture, but find it’s impossible. And God planned it so – for only self-failure can bring forth true consecration.
The apostle Paul is probably the most logical and methodical thinker in all scripture. Step by step he lays out the entire process that takes a believer to true consecration – and the best example is in the book of Romans chapters 6-8. He explains in Romans chapter 6, where you want to get to – a life a lived for God. He explains in chapter 7 that it is impossible to ever live a life for God – our way. Then he takes you into the realms of how it is possible, but only God’s way.
The one who has experienced the failure of Romans 7 – is a vessel God can use. This almost never happens in the early flush of faith – but after decades of training, For the old sin nature must be recognised for what it is – a life of self.
Metcalf gives a succinct outline of the problem and the solution – he writes:- The modern teaching of consecration, which is tantamount to the consecration of the ‘old man,’ seeks to bypass the death sentence and, and therefore, only leads to frustration and failure. When, however, you and I areread more
We are become companions of Christ if we hold fast.
Israel was God’s chosen people, His inheritance, the Lord’s house and God’s flock. Israel was God’s firstborn people, His adoptive son and God was husband to His people. He purchased Israel with blood at the Passover – as a marriage contract with her God. He chose them to be a holy people; a separated nation; a people for His own possession. He called them to be holy for I am holy – but Israel chose the route of apostasy.
And for a time Israel has been set aside, and the dispensation of Israel placed on hold. But the days are coming when the Lord will make a new covenant with Israel: behold, I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah. Jeremiah 31:31 Israel will one day take up her former position on earth as God’s chosen people. Israel was temporarily set-aside at the cross through her rebellion and apostasy .. but God continued to work with a heavenly people; a new creation; the body of Christ.
The church was commissioned a holy people; a separate nation; His own possession. The church has a heavenly calling – we’re Christ’s companions in this heavenly role. The church is called the “heavenly Jerusalem;” “the holy city;” the body of Christ,” We have been commissioned to be partakers of Christ’s own heavenly vocation.
Like Israel, we have a holy calling to be the little flock of our heavenly bridegroom. We have become the temple of the Holy Spirit, heirs of God and joint-heirs with Christ. We were bought with the precious blood of Christ, Who became our Passover Lamb. We are to be holy, for God is Holy and we are to be separated to our holy cause – for it is written, be ye holy; for I am holy 1Peter 1:16.
God betrothed Himself to Israel so that she would be His own satisfaction and joy, but Israel failedread more