"For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it.Matthew 7:14(NASB)
I saw a door standing open in heaven, and... the voice said, “Come up here, and I will show you....” (Revelation 4:1 NLT)
My aim, in cooperation with the Lord, is to make everything preeminently practical; and so we apply the challenge immediately, and I ask you, is the Holy Spirit within you presenting God's fullness in His Son in an ever-growing way? Is that the nature of your spiritual life? If not, then you must have some definite exercise before the Lord about it; there is something wrong. The anointing means that, and if that is not the nature of your spiritual life, there is something wrong in your case in relation to the anointing. To Nathanael the Lord Jesus said, "Henceforth" (our old English word is "hereafter," but I think many people have mistakenly thought that means the "after life") "ye shall see the heaven opened, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man." Hereafter, of course, was the immediate hereafter, the days of the Holy Spirit which were coming so soon. With an open heaven you see, and you see God's meaning concerning His Son.
That open heaven for the Lord Jesus was the anointing. The Spirit descended and lighted upon Him. It was the anointing, and it is the same for us. The open heaven is the anointing of the Holy Spirit from the day of Pentecost onward upon Christ within us. That open heaven means a continually growing revelation of Christ.
Oh, let me urge this. I am brought back to urge this.... The open heaven at once brings God's revelation in Christ to your very door, makes it available to you, so that you are not dependent in the first place upon libraries, books, addresses or anything else. It is there for you. However much the Lord may see good to use these other things for your help and enrichment, you have your own open heaven, your own clear way through, and no closed dome over your head. The Lord Jesus is becoming more and ever more wonderful in your own heart, because "God, that said, Light shall shine out of darkness" hath "shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ" (2 Cor. 4:6)
You, who once were alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now He has reconciled in the body of His flesh through death, to present you holy, and blameless, and above reproach in His sight—if indeed you continue in the faith, grounded and steadfast, and are not moved away from the hope of the gospel. § That you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world.
Therefore, beloved, looking forward to these things, be diligent to be found by Him in peace, without spot and blameless. § Be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ.
Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy, to God our Savior, who alone is wise, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and forever.
If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin. § He who is bathed needs only to wash his feet, but is completely clean.
I have taught you in the way of wisdom; I have led you in right paths. When you walk, your steps will not be hindered, and when you run, you will not stumble … Do not enter the path of the wicked, and do not walk in the way of evil. Avoid it, do not travel on it; turn away from it and pass on … Let your eyes look straight ahead, and your eyelids look right before you. Ponder the path of your feet, and let all your ways be established. Do not turn to the right or the left; remove your foot from evil.
The Lord will deliver me from every evil work and preserve me for His heavenly kingdom. To Him be glory forever and ever. Amen!
He (the Holy Spirit) shall glorify Me (the Lord Jesus)" (John 16:14).
The Spirit's ministry within is the displacement of the old man, and the emplacement of the New Man.
"The Father works to will, and He is ready to work to do, but, alas! many Christians misunderstand this. They think because they have the will it is enough, and that now they are able to do. This is not so. The new will is a permanent gift, an attribute of the new life in Christ. The power to carry out this will is not a permanent gift, but must be each moment received from the Holy Spirit. It is the one who is conscious of his own utter powerlessness, as a believer, who will learn that by the Spirit alone he can live the Christian life." -A.M.
"Our manner of speaking may often mislead us. We would say, The work of the Spirit is to save souls. Yes, but why - just to save them? No; in order that the Lord Jesus may have His place. Those souls are to be residences' of the Lord Jesus. The Spirit may instruct believers and build them up - for what purpose? Just that they should be mature Christians? Not at all; but so that the Lord Jesus shall have a larger place.
"No matter what the Spirit does, He has one all-inclusive object and end - the glorifying of the Lord Jesus Christ: that is, the giving of Him His place, and then filling all things with Him. Do not think of the being filled with the Spirit,' or the fulness of the Spirit,' in any other way than this. The Holy Spirit's filling is intended to be a filling of all things with the Lord Jesus Christ." -T. A-S.
"How we have degraded the Holy Spirit into a mere power by which we have to do our work! Oh, that the Spirit might be held in honor as the One to fill us with the very life of our Lord Jesus Christ!" -A.M.
"Unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ" (Eph. 4:13).
“All my fresh springs shall be in Thee.” Psalm 87:7
Our Lord never patches up our natural virtues, He re-makes the whole man on the inside. "Put on the new man," i.e., see that your natural human life puts on the garb that is in keeping with the new life. The life God plants in us develops its own virtues, not the virtues of Adam but of Jesus Christ. Watch how God will wither up your confidence in natural virtues after sanctification, and in any power you have, until you learn to draw your life from the reservoir of the resurrection life of Jesus. Thank God if you are going through a drying-up experience!
The sign that God is at work in us is that He corrupts confidence in the natural virtues, because they are not promises of what we are going to be, but renmants of what God created man to be. We will cling to the natural virtues, while all the time God is trying to get us into contact with the life of Jesus Christ which can never be described in terms of the natural virtues. It is the saddest thing to see people in the service of God depending on that which the grace of God never gave them, depending on what they have by the accident of heredity. God does not build up our natural virtues and transfigure them, because our natural virtues can never come anywhere near what Jesus Christ wants. No natural love, no natural patience, no natural purity can ever come up to His demands. But as we bring every bit of our bodily life into harmony with the new life which God has put in us, He will exhibit in us the virtues that were characteristic of the Lord Jesus.
For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all people, It trains us to renounce ungodly living and worldly lusts so that we might live sensible, honest, and godly lives in this present age.
The law of God is a schoolmaster to bring the unsaved man and woman to Christ, but once we are saved it is the grace of God that becomes our teacher and instructor. Some are concerned that an over-emphasis on God’s grace provides a license to sin.. and yet the scripture teaches that grace trains us to turn our back on godless living.
Grace is a teacher that shows us the error of sinful pleasures, and worldly passions. It guides us into the way of self-controlled, upright living in this present evil age.. but I am sure, you argue, that you don’t indulge in worldly passion or ungodly living! Such things smack of immorality, wickedness, and evil, depraved, dishonest minds – but the literal meaning of “ungodliness” is, “not having regard for the Lord”.
Everything and anything that has greater importance to you than Christ, is ungodly. If God is sidelined and is not rightly esteemed, it equates to unrighteous living. If for any reason the Lord is not centre stage of our lives we need to address it.
So what is godliness? What does it mean to live godly in Christ Jesus? How can we have proper regard for the Lord and rightly esteem our Saviour? Well it rests on the attitudes we engender and the choices we make. We need to develop an attitude of humility, that depends entirely on the Lord, and we need to take every thought captive – keep Him central.
Unlike the rest of the creation which depends on fixed properties, laws or instincts. Man was created in the image and likeness of God and given volition – free choice. While the animal & vegetable kingdoms depend on God to uphold and sustain them… man was given freewill to trust in His gracious provision orread more
May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.
2 Corinthians 13:14
Grace is often defined as God’s unmerited favour – but grace covers so much more, God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense is another truism – but it falls far short of the truth. There are many such helpful acrostics that have sought to explain the grace of God:-
Genuinely Redeemed And Cleansed Eternally
Gained Redemption And Completely Exempt
God Reaching Abounding Caring Eventually.
God Reconciled All Committed Enmity
Some use little catchy ditties or rhymes to remind themselves of God’s grace:
Given by God mercifully,
Riches in Christ bestowed freely,
Christ in us the hope of glory,
Goodness and favour from God most high,
Redeemer from heaven sent down to die.
A Saviour born Who is Christ the Lord,
Cancelled the sins of all who believe;
Eternal life – a gift to all who receive.
Often a sermon on salvation is beautifully woven into the initial letters of GRACE,
G – Salvation is a Gift of God – a Good Gift that is Granted to all
R – Salvation is Redemption – Received by faith, Reuniting us with God
A – Salvation is Accepted by God’s love, Available to All, Accessible thru faith
C – Salvation Comes thru Christ Crucified Who paid the Cost at the Cross
E – Salvation Ends in Eternal life and is an Everlasting gift – and an Escape
Sonnets and songs have been written to rejoice in God wonderful saving grace. Talks and testimonies reminding us that it is all about God’s unmerited favourread more