"If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, because of this the world hates you.John 15:19(NASB)
But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ" (Phil. 3:7).
"Whosoever will lose his life for My sake, the same shall save it" (Lk. 9:24). Once we learn this great paradox of the Lord, all will be gain, our good, and His glory.
"Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ' (Eph. 3:8). Unto me, who am less than the least.' In spiritual learning we take degrees downward, not upward, as in ordinary universities. It is a great temptation to those who serve to be arriving at something above the common standard, but God gives out His best work to less than the least.' His service wants depth, not height." -C.A.C.
"The test of genuine revelation is as to whether the one concerned is manifestly well crucified to a desire for power, position, influence. Can that one be resisted, assailed, thwarted, rejected, without in some form seeking to come out even or on top? An element of personal domination or self-vindication will spoil the outreach and discredit the servant. Oh, the peril of getting hold of Divine Truth in order to use it!" -T. A-S.
"We are wounded in order that we may learn from the great Physician how to bind up wounds and give aid. The Father visits us with trials in order to teach us to carry the burdens of others. We ourselves must first go to school before we can be teachers of others."
"Ye have not chosen Me, but I have chosen you" (John 15:16).
Let us go on and get past the elementary stage in the teachings and doctrine of Christ, advancing steadily toward the completeness and perfection that belong to spiritual maturity. (Hebrews 6:1 AMP)
Do not let us stay with our beginnings, but let us go on. Now what does going on mean? Well, of course, for us it is a going on in a spiritual way. We are in a new dispensation, and this is a spiritual dispensation. But there is one thing that I want to suggest to you as meaning our going on. It is true of Israel in the wilderness, although it was an earthly thing with them, the same thing is true with us in a spiritual way. If you look again into this letter to the Hebrews, you will discover this, that going on spiritually is a matter of putting into practice what the Lord has said. Do you realize that we never go on by being told things by the Lord? Now that sounds like a very strange thing to say. The Lord can speak to us Himself. We may have His word, we may have all the teaching that He can give us, we may know all the truth of God, we may have had it all for many years, and yet, although we may have had it all, we may be standing still. No, it is not a matter of knowing what the Lord has said. It is a matter of putting that into practice. Doing what the Lord has said, that is the only way of going on.
How are we to go on then? We are to sit down quietly and say, "Now what has the Lord said to us?" Perhaps it may be over these past four or five weeks, or it may be over years past.... Now through the reading of His Word you may have a great mountain of truth, and yet you may not be going on, and the Lord may not be with us, as He wants to be with us. The Presence of the Lord is power, the Presence of the Lord is Life, the Presence of the Lord is holiness. Oh, the Presence of the Lord means much, but it is all very practical. The Lord does not believe in theory. He does not believe even in textbooks. The Lord is a very practical Lord. And His attitude toward us is this: Look here, I have said this to you, you have heard it. Perhaps you have rejoiced in it. Perhaps you have believed it to be true. Perhaps you thank the Lord for it. But what have we done about it?
Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy. § The exhortation … speaks to you as to sons: “My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord, nor be discouraged when you are rebuked by Him.” § Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.
We do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. § For in that He Himself has suffered, being tempted, He is able to aid those who are tempted. § God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able.
He will judge Your people with righteousness, and Your poor with justice. The mountains will bring peace to the people, and the little hills, by righteousness … He shall come down like rain upon the grass before mowing, like showers that water the earth. In His days the righteous shall flourish, and abundance of peace, until the moon is no more. § Glory to God … , and on earth peace, goodwill toward men!
Through the tender mercy of our God … the Dayspring from on high has visited us; to give light to those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace. § Peace through Jesus Christ— He is Lord of all.
These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world. § Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. § The peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
An hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers. God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and in truth.
When Adam sinned in disobedience to God he immediately died, spiritually. The spirit of Adam – the essential part of his being that communicated with God, died. Ever since that first spiritual death, all humanity have been born dead in their sin. Every member of the human race, since Adam, is born out of fellowship with God. Every man and woman since creation has no capacity to fellowship with the Lord.
Man is born spiritually dead and can only function through the old sin nature. Man remains spiritually separated from God until they are made alive in Christ: for that which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. John 3:6
It is only at the point of birth from above that our human spirit is made alive unto God. It is only believers that are capable of fellowshiping – or communing with the Lord: for God is Spirit and only the spirit of man can interact with the Holy Spirit of God, and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and truth. John 4:24
The immovable barrier between God and man was demolished by the Man, Christ Jesus. The veil of the temple, separating man from God, was torn asunder by the Lord Jesus. But only a believer has the capacity to come before the throne of grace – through Christ. The unbeliever remains dead in their sins and estranged from their Creator God. Only a believer has a human spirit that is alive and can commune with the Holy Spirit.
Before the cross, man had to approach the Lord through a mediator – God’s high priest. Sin offerings, burnt offerings – ANY offerings were maderead more
It pleased God to reveal His Son in me, that I might preach Him.
There was a special reason that it pleased God to reveal His Son in Paul. It was not to call Paul to preach.. but to preach HIM – to preach Christ. It was proclaiming Christ Jesus the Lord that was Paul’s ministry. It pleased God to reveal His Son in Paul that he might preach Christ.
A ministry that does not have Christ at the centre is an abortive mission. A man or movement without Christ as preeminent is of no consequence. Preaching Christ, proclaiming Christ, publishing Christ is God’s pleasure.
It is not about establishing a movement or becoming a preacher. It is not about propagating a teaching method or helping the needy. It is not about having lots of members or holding special conferences. It is all about Christ – that I may preach Him.
But down through the centuries so much Christian work excludes Christ. Proclaiming a mission statement is too often the abortive work of a ministry. Publishing a programme has become the norm in much evangelistic work. Preaching anything and everything except the only thing of importance.. that I might preach HIM – that I might preach Christ – that I might preach Christ Jesus and Him crucified.
It is not about special observances or sticking to some basic rules. It’s all about Jesus and keeping Him the centre of our heart and life. We are not all called to be preachers – but we can all ‘preach’. It was Frances of Assisi that has been identified as saying: 'Preach the gospel, and if necessary, use words.'
And we too should preach Christ and if necessary use words. We should not preach our mission, or our own message. We should preach Christ. We should not consider our own teaching or testimony – but His. When God reveals His Son in you, nothing should stand before Him.
When Christ is the unifying central object ofread more