Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.Hebrews 11:1(NASB)
All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me. Therefore, as you go, disciple people in all nations. (Matthew 28:18,19 ISV)
But who is to go? It is the Church, and His irreducible nucleus of the Church is two. It is a corporate thing, the bringing of the significance of the Body into view. When there is a functioning in the Spirit, it is nothing less than Christ risen, ascended and exalted, going on with His work through His Body, with all those limitations dismissed. That is tremendous! It is either true, or it is not true. If it is true, it is an immense thing. If it is not, well, what fools we are! But here it is, and, oh! that the Church might learn more of what it means to be in living union with a risen Christ! That there should be a company, two or three or more, though limited physically here on this earth by time and space, yet really functioning in the Holy Spirit, so that the universal Christ — all that it means that He is there at God’s right hand — is having some expression! I would to God that this could come home to you by the Spirit and that you could grasp it, for what differences it would make! We have a long way to go yet before this is appreciated adequately. But it is true!
When you touch these things, human language is a vain instrument for expression. “The exceeding greatness of His power” — the superlatives in this realm! Oh, for this enlargement by a new apprehension of the greatness of Christ in His Person, in His death, in His resurrection! Well, then, the supreme thing the New Testament shows is that the Church on its true, spiritual basis corresponds to Christ risen. Not "the Church" as we know it here on earth, for it does not. But God’s thought about the Church is not an impossible and merely idealistic one. It is a practical thing. Two saints, simple, humble and unimportant in this world, but really meeting together in the Spirit, can be a functioning instrument of Him to whom has been committed all authority in heaven and on earth. With them all these old limitations can be dismissed and they can at one moment touch all the ends of the earth. Do you believe that? This is really the meaning of our glorying in Christ risen. It has to be something more than emotion, and more than glorious doctrine; yes, more than a truth to which we give some assent.... If it is true that we are one with a risen, enthroned Lord, it ought to have tremendous repercussions. May it be so!
That we should be holy and without blame before Him in love.
God from the beginning chose you for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth, to which He called you … for the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. § Whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified. § Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ.
I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. § God did not call us to uncleanness, but in holiness.
Have faith in God. § Without faith it is impossible to please Him. § With God all things are possible.
Is My hand shortened at all that it cannot redeem? Or have I no power to deliver?
“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.” § “Try Me now in this,” says the Lord of hosts, “if I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you such blessing that there will not be room enough to receive it.”
Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; nor His ear heavy, that it cannot hear. § Lord, it is nothing for You to help, whether with many or with those who have no power.
We should not trust in ourselves but in God who raises the dead.
Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy" (Lk. 15:21a).
From prodigals, our Father has made us possessors. "Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light" (Col. 1:12).
"If I, once a lost prodigal, want to know the measure of my acceptance with the Father, He alone defines it for me. It is only as I know what the Lord Jesus is to the Father in glory that I can in any degree truly estimate my own acceptance in Him: Had He my sins laid on Him? How is He now accepted? For as He is now accepted, so am l; and therefore it is the Gospel of the glory of the Lord Jesus Christ. Try for your own acceptance, and it will always be a dubious and imperfect thing. Get to understand His acceptance, and your soul will be enlarged into all the fulness and blessedness not only of His, but of your own, because you are in Him.'" -J.B.S.
"Many are looking to find some good in themselves, and in most cases without being conscious that they are doing so. Effort, disappointment, self-reproaches, and self-occupation, make up the weary round of their lives, with now and then, perhaps, a gleam of spiritual happiness. No man's heart will ever be gladdened by the joy of divine acceptance until he has learned that there is not a single bit about him, as a man in the flesh, that does not deserve the judgment of God." -C.A.C.
"It is a wonderful moment when by faith we appropriate and occupy our position in the favor of the Father - when we know that we are received by Him in all the acceptance of His Son. We do not then think of ourselves, or our unworthiness, at all. We think of the Lord Jesus - His perfections, His suitability to divine favor, His infinite acceptance with the Father - and by faith we have access into the favor of which He is so worthy." -C.A.C.
"But the Father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe" (Lk. 15:22a).
“I, if I be lifted up, will draw all men unto Me.” John 12:32
Very few of us have any understanding of the reason why Jesus Christ died. If sympathy is all that human beings need, then the Cross of Christ is a farce, there was no need for it. What the world needs is not "a little bit of love," but a surgical operation.
When you are face to face with a soul in difficulty spiritually, remind yourself of Jesus Christ on the Cross. If that soul can get to God on any other line, then the Cross of Jesus Christ is unnecessary. If you can help others by your sympathy or understanding, you are a traitor to Jesus Christ. You have to keep your soul rightly related to God and pour out for others on His line, not pour out on the human line and ignore God. The great note to-day is amiable religiosity.
The one thing we have to do is to exhibit Jesus Christ crucified, to lift Him up all the time. Every doctrine that is not imbedded in the Cross of Jesus Christ will lead astray. If the worker himself believes in Jesus Christ and is banking on the Reality of Redemption, the people he talks to must be concerned. The thing that remains and deepens is the worker's simple relationship to Jesus Christ; his usefulness to God depends on that and that alone.
The calling of a New Testament worker is to uncover sin and to reveal Jesus Christ as Saviour, consequently he cannot be poetical, he must be sternly surgical. We are sent by God to lift up Jesus Christ, not to give wonderfully beautiful discourses. We have to probe straight down as deeply as God has probed us, to be keen in sensing the Scriptures which bring the truth straight home and to apply them fearlessly.
as You, Father, are in Me and I in You, that they may also be in Us, so that the world may believe that You sent Me. I am in them, and You are in Me. May they be completely one, so that the world may know that You sent Me and that You have loved them as You loved Me.
Although we are seated with Christ in heavenly places we live on the earth. While our hearts are seated in the heavenlies our bodies are firmly fixed on earth. While our conduct should reflect our godly status we must also live our lives below.
We were born into the human race but have been reborn into a heavenly people. We are the true aliens in the world and for a time are passing through a foreign land. Our home is heaven – our king is Christ – and our conduct should mirror His beauty.
All born-again believers share these glories – all are participators in these privileges. All the church of Christ are in unity with Him- one with Him – in union with Him, and the heart of Christ is that all who believe on Him are one with Him: as You, Father, are in Me and I in You, that they also may be in Us, so that the world may believe that You sent Me. I am in them, and You are in Me. May they be completely one, so that the world may know that You sent Me and that You have loved them as You loved Me. John 17:21
We have a heavenly future but currently we have an earthly responsibility to be one – to live in unity one with one another – to reflect the Lord Jesus Christ., but we are not left to flounder in our own strength in the raging waters of this world. We are not expected to copy what Jesus did or try to be like Him – in our own strength. We have not been leftread more
Verse after verse the apostle Paul pours out his heart – pleading for the body of Christ. He breathes out the inner yearning of his soul – that all might know more of Christ. This earnest pleading of his heart is also a portion of his wider teaching to the Body.. that they have the light of the Lord and His tender love in their mind and heart – that they access His divine power and heavenly presence in heart and mind.
Having revealed to Christ’s Church the eternal riches of God’s grace towards them, Paul begins to intercede for all the saints in His powerful prayer of prayers. He prays that they may come to know God and the Lord Jesus Christ more and more.. that they grasp; understand; believe and appropriate the many riches of His grace – that the Spirit of wisdom opens their heart to see their incomparable inheritance.
Paul prayed.. that the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know Him better, that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which He has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in His holy people and His incomparably great power for us who believe…. Ephesians 1:17-19
This potent prayer of Paul was inspired by the Spirit to teach and edify all the saints. This is not only a plea from Paul – but exposes the Father-heart of God Himself. It is God Who wants all His children to know and understand the riches of His grace.. and the Spirit has been tasked to guide us into knowledge; understanding and truth. And this is not only for the Ephesian believers but for all who are children of God. This is a prayer for you and me – that we know more fully the bounties of His grace – that we come to understand the staggering riches of God’s grace towards us all.
And it is throughread more