'He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches To him who overcomes, I will grant to eat of the tree of life which is in the Paradise of God.'Revelation 2:7(NASB)
Wherever two or three are gathered (drawn together as My followers) into My name, there I AM in the midst of them. (Matthew 18:20 AMP)
Jesus, as the Truth, is contrasted with Satan, the liar. But He is also contrasted with all representations, types, symbols, outward forms, etc., which were and are not the true, the real. When our Lord spoke of His body as the Temple, deliberately refraining from the fuller explanation because of the fixed prejudice of His hearers, He introduced the great truth of the transition from one dispensation to another, and the complete change in the nature of temple and worship. It was because Stephen saw this and declared it that he was murdered by these very people. Said he: "The Most High dwelleth not in houses made with hands" (Acts 7:48). Paul said the same to the Athenians (Acts 17:24). This does not mean that God never came into representations when they wholly corresponded with His thought. Both the Tabernacle and the Temple were "made with hands" and God came into them in power and glory, but not to commit Himself to the thing. The time came when He forsook both and He was no longer found there. They were only temporary representations and His presence was conditional.
The "true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, not man" (Hebrews 8:2) is "not of this creation." The whole Letter to the Hebrews has to do with this change from the earthly and temporal to the heavenly and spiritual. Hence, He is no longer in "temples made with hands." To come right to the point: the New Testament teaches that the Temple in this dispensation is a Person, and persons incorporated into Him through death, burial and resurrection, and "baptized into one body by one Spirit" (1 Corinthians 12:13). We must also remember that Jesus foretold the passing away of that entire temporal system, with Jerusalem as its center and representation. With His foreknowledge of the passing of the earthly, temporal and material things; places, systems, fixed locations, and outward forms, the Lord Jesus put the whole matter of survival upon Himself as the constituent of a spiritual structure against which the very powers of hell would not prevail. Against fixed localizing and systematizing of Himself and His presence He was emphatic, and history is evidence of how right He was. If, according to John 3:16, salvation is a matter of "whosoever," the Lord's presence and true worship, according to Matthew 18:20, is "wheresoever."
God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power. § It pleased the Father that in Him all the fullness should dwell. § Of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace.
You anoint my head with oil. § The anointing which you have received from Him abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you will abide in Him.
The Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.
The Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.
If the blood of bulls and goats and the ashes of a heifer, sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies for the purifying of the flesh, how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? §The blood of sprinkling … speaks better things than that of Abel.
We have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace.
When Moses had spoken every precept to all the people according to the law, he took the blood of calves and goats, with water, scarlet wool, and hyssop, and sprinkled both the book itself and all the people … Then likewise he sprinkled with blood both the tabernacle and all the vessels of the ministry. And according to the law almost all things are purified with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no remission.
Ye are not in the flesh but in the Spirit" (Rom. 8:9).
It requires more faith concerning the Spirit than concerning the Son.
"The believer, having received the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus,' comes under the influence of the law' of that Spirit (Rom. 8:2). The operating principle of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus' ever works in the direction of profound self-judgment, and of the consciousness that we have in the Lord Jesus not only righteousness, but a divine Source of satisfaction and strength.
"This law' operates not to give a sense of claim (law), but of divine gift (grace) and resource and support. And thus it makes the one in whom it operates free from the law of sin and death.' It gives the consciousness that divine goodness is an unfailing resource for our hearts, and that all the treasures of that goodness are stored up in Christ Jesus, that we may learn them there, and find the life of our spirits in the growing knowledge of Him." -C.A.C.
"The law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus' made me free from the law of sin and death' - not the life,' but the Spirit of life,' - not our effort, but divine strength; not self-occupation, but occupation with Him in whom we are before the Father, and in whom the divine favor rests upon us full and constant, because on Him it rests." -F.W.G.
"The law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death' (Rom. 8:2). There is the substitution of the power of the Spirit for the power of a right will and human effort, the substitution therefore of occupation with the glorified Lord Jesus Christ for occupation with spiritual growth; for then and thus alone is growth obtained." -F.W.G.
"Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh" (Gal. 5:16).
“Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect… .” Philippians 3:12
It is a snare to imagine that God wants to make us perfect specimens of what He can do; God's purpose is to make us one with Himself. The emphasis of holiness movements is apt to be that God is producing specimens of holiness to put in His museum. If you go off on this idea of personal holiness, the dead-set of your life will not be for God, but for what you call the manifestation of God in your life. "It can never be God's will that I should be sick." If it was God's will to bruise His own Son, why should He not bruise you? The thing that tells for God is not your relevant consistency to an idea of what a saint should be, but your real vital relation to Jesus Christ, and your abandonment to Him whether you are well or ill.
Christian perfection is not, and never can be, human perfection. Christian perfection is the perfection of a relationship to God which shows itself amidst the irrelevancies of human life. When you obey the call of Jesus Christ, the first thing that strikes you is the irrelevancy of the things you have to do, and the next thing that strikes you is the fact that other people seem to be living perfectly consistent lives. Such lives are apt to leave you with the idea that God is unnecessary, by human effort and devotion we can reach the standard God wants. In a fallen world this can never be done. I am called to live in perfect relation to God so that my life produces a longing after God in other lives, not admiration for myself. Thoughts about myself hinder my usefulness to God. God is not after perfecting me to be a specimen in His show-room; He is getting me to the place where He can use me. Let Him do what He likes.
For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal.. but mighty through God to the pulling down of satanic holds.
2 Corinthians 10:4
Nehemiah was a man that lamented that the walls of Jerusalem were broken down. He wept and grieved in deep anguish for the devastated ruins of his once great home, and for days he prayed in travail of spirit over the condition of the city of Zion. But Nehemiah began to repair the broken walls and fallen bulwarks of God’s city.
How often we see the physical conflicts of Israel translate into our spiritual battles. The Church is in a similar, sorry state of disrepair, as gospel truths become distorted. Like Nehemiah, Christians should be building our own spiritual wall of protection. In the physical realm Nehemiah built-up Jerusalem’s broken walls with stones. In the spiritual sphere, Christians should build a rampart with our intercessions.
Nehemiah’s literal wall-building mirrors our own fortification of “All-Prayer”. Israel’s literal weapons of warfare parallel our own spiritual weapons of Ephesians 6. Nehemiah was distressed by the shocking state of disrepair of God’s beloved city and we should be pained by disunity in the Church in these increasingly dark days. Nehemiah built a material wall to safeguard the city – chosen and beloved of God, and we should build a spiritual wall of protection – around Christ’s beloved bride. The physical weapons of Israel were metal swords and spears and helmets. The spiritual armour for the Church is Christ – all we need is found in Him.
We need to be undergirded with His truth and remain covered in His righteousness. We should minister the gospel of peace and have trust His word implicitly – as fact. We should take the helmet of salvation and the believers’ sword, which is God’s Word. We should be watchful and alert – praying on all occasions for the body of Christ. We need to consciously put-on Christ each day... and throughout the day.
The weapons of our warfareread more
God predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of His will
God also predestined us to be conformed to the image of His Son,
In Him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of Him Who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of His will
What God predestines are unchangeable plans made in His eternal council chambers. Christ was predestined to be God’s perfect sacrifice for the sin of the whole world. Paul was predestined before the ages, to speak God’s wisdom in a hidden mystery. And God in His wisdom designed a plan that whosoever will – may receive salvation.
Salvation was determined upon one thing – believe on the Lord Jesus Christ: believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved. But believing is a choice – for God ordained that man should be given a freewill to accept or to reject His gift.
No one is predestined to be saved, for salvation is a free gift to be received, by faith. No one is predestined to be lost, for all men are given a free-will to accept or reject. Those who accept God’s free salvation, by grace through faith in Christ, are saved. Those who choose to reject His free gift condemn themselves through unbelief – there is no middle ground.
Predestination is based upon God’s grace, which is accessed by faith in Christ alone. Predestination is not the whim of a random, heavenly dice – but faith in Christ. Predestination is a non-meritous response, to God’s gracious provision in Christ. Predestination has not one iota of human merit attached, but is by faith in Christ. Predestination stems from God’s foreknowledge of all who would trust in Jesus. Predestination is based on grace alone, by faith alone, in Christ alone – period.
And because God is omniscient, He knows the choices that everyman will ever make. God foreknows all who will accept salvation andread more