These all with one mind were continually devoting themselves to prayer, along with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with His brothers.Acts 1:14(NASB)
He shall see [the fruit] of the travail of His soul and be satisfied. (Isaiah 53:11 AMP)
Well, we know more than the Prophet Isaiah knew about that! We have been with Him in Gethsemane in the time of the travail of His soul, and we are with Him, on the other side of the travail. How many are the seed of Christ since then! Dear friends, if ever you are tempted to think that Christians are few, and that we are only a very small people in the millions of this world – open the windows! Look into the book of the Revelation: “A great multitude, which no man could number… ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands.” The number cannot be expressed in human language – and they have been gathered since the travail of the Lord Jesus. He is indeed seeing His seed! Gethsemane has been the most fruitful garden in all history – and you and I are of His seed! We are born out of His travail and are in the covenant made with the new Israel.
But do remember that the meaning and the value of the covenant depend upon our devotion to the Lord! This is a thing which is so evident: the greatest fruitfulness has always come from the lives most devoted to the Lord, the people of the undivided heart. This covenant has two sides.... The New Testament takes many warnings from the history of Israel, and we may fail of all that that covenant means if our hearts are divided and we try to live life in two worlds. We never lose anything when the Lord has everything, and that is what it means to have a circumcised heart. May that be true of everyone!
God … has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation. Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God. For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. § God is love. In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.
He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.” … Then those who heard it, being convicted by their conscience, went out one by one, beginning with the oldest.
Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you that you should not eat?
To him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin. § If our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and knows all things. Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence toward God.
All things indeed are pure, but it is evil for the man who eats with offense … Happy is he who does not condemn himself in what he approves.
Search me, O God, and know my heart; try me, and know my anxieties; and see if there is any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.
We will pass over armed before the Lord into the land of Canaan, that the possession of our inheritance . . . may be ours" (Num. 32:32).
If our Lord were to give rest from the processing required for spiritual growth, by what means would He accomplish His work in us? True, the war has been won at Calvary, but there are many "mopping up" battles to be fought. Victory is ours, but we must learn how to wear our armor and handle our weapons. We must also come to know and appreciate our Captain as we enter into what He has accomplished on our behalf.
"The Christian who imagines that life in the Promised Land is one of rest from temptation and conflict, is due for a surprise. There is not less temptation, but more strong and subtle temptation. There is no less conflict, but more constant conflict. The difference lies in the fact that in Canaan the battle is not fought under our own leadership, but under that of the Victorious Man with the drawn sword, who has never suffered defeat. It is not rest from conflict, but rest in conflict. In Canaan, Israel lost only one battle in seven years, and that was because of culpable disobedience and sin." -O.S.
"It has been well said that spiritual believers are honored with warfare in the front line areas. There the fiercest pressure of the enemy is known. But they are also privileged to witness the enemy's crushing defeat, so abundant is the power of God, and thus highly is the spiritual believer honored." -L.S.C.
"No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper.... This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness is of Me, saith the Lord" (Isa. 54:17).
“By this we believe … Jesus answered, Do ye now believe?” John 16:30-31
Now we believe. Jesus says - Do you? The time is coming when you will leave Me alone. Many a Christian worker has left Jesus Christ alone and gone into work from a sense of duty, or from a sense of need arising out of his own particular discernment. The reason for this is the absence of the resurrection life of Jesus. The soul has got out of intimate contact with God by leaning to its own religious understanding. There is no sin in it, and no punishment attached to it; but when the soul realizes how he has hindered his understanding of Jesus Christ, and produced for himself perplexities and sorrows and difficulties, it is with shame and contrition he has to come back.
We need to rely on the resurrection life of Jesus much deeper down than we do, to get into the habit of steadily referring everything back to Him; instead of this we make our common - sense decisions and ask God to bless them. He cannot, it is not in His domain, it is severed from reality. If we do a thing from a sense of duty, we are putting up a standard in competition with Jesus Christ. We become a "superior person," and say - "Now in this matter I must do this and that." We have put our sense of duty on the throne instead of the resurrection life of Jesus. We are not told to walk in the light of conscience or of a sense of duty, but to walk in the light as God is in the light. When we do anything from a sense of duty, we can back it up by argument; when we do anything in obedience to the Lord, there is no argument possible; that is why a saint can be easily ridiculed.
Come unto Me, all ye who are heavy laden and I will give you REST.
How we all greatly long for rest.. not merely a break in life’s routine, or a cessation from the round of daily toils, but a peace and harmony within. A calmness and tranquillity, deep in our inner being. I may be physically resting, but my soul may be ceaselessly in turmoil. I may be doing nothing.. but maintain an inward disorder of raging confusion. I may be sleeping on feather pillows, but be restless within and far from being at ease.
Thoughts and imaginations of what may be, can combine to tremblings and turmoil. Fears within and fancies without can amalgamate to demolish any semblance of rest. But amid the turmoil of life; the confusion of hearts; the agitations of living, we have an invitation from the God of Rest… to come aside and rest awhile… The Psalmist gently reminds us to, rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him.. and He shall give thee the desires of your heart.. Rest, I say.. Rest in the Lord. Psalm 37:7
“We all will be receiving a wonderful heavenly rest, one day,” I hear you say…“but I need rest from my restlessness and agitations, here and now…” But never forget that if God sees the last gasping breath of a tiny sparrow, fluttering helplessly to the ground – will He not much more care for you, and provide the rest He has promised you?
How seriously we need to take hold of the Lord’s personal invitation…Take my yoke upon you and learn of Me: for I am meek and lowly of heart – and you shall find rest for your soul, for My yoke is easy and My burden is light. A yoke is used for uniting two oxen to draw a heavy load.. but one bullock alone soon becomes exhausted, with the weight of responsibility. But Christ clearly tells us
Though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.
It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the LORD.
Your path is difficult, very difficult for you. Often you have to wait in life. No work in life is as hard as waiting. Wait – wait for God. Micah 7:7 tells us: I will wait for the God of my salvation: my God will hear me. Wait – Wait for the Father.
Like the disciples, we must wait God’s time. We must wait for the promise of the Father, they were told in Acts 1:4. Wait – Wait for Me. Just as Isaiah 49:3 reminded us: I am the LORD – they shall not be ashamed that wait for me.
Wait – wait on Me. Wait on the LORD: Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: Wait, I say, on the LORD. Again I say WAIT. All movement and motion is easier than still, calm waiting. Wait, and I will show you My will. I prove My love by setting you the task of waiting.. Waiting FOR Me and waiting ON Me. I am your Father – I will not overwhelm your spiritual strength, I will come to you – walking on the stormy waters of life’s confusion, as you paddle on your helpless raft, mid oceans tempestuous turbulence. I am your Saviour – I will uphold you with My righteous right hand, lest you sink beneath the squally waves of life’s uncertainties. Look, One comes to hold you up. One, like as unto the Son of Man. Oh, wait child of God.
Wait for God; Wait for the Father; Wait on Me – Wait I say on the Lord I said:- I will wait for the LORD, my soul doth wait, and in His word do I hope. Psalm 130:5