for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of lightEphesians 5:8(ESV)
I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.(2 Corinthians 11:3)
Deception is not something out there that is put upon us willy-nilly, or in spite of ourselves. All deception has its own ground in man. What is that ground? It is the fact that man is now a psychical being. Now if you can get to the bottom of that, if you can apprehend that, you will understand the whole thing. The ground of all this is in the fact that man is a psychical being, and when Satan interfered with man at the beginning and man consented along the line of his own soul-life, Satan made man suitable to his own government. It was not that he came and set himself up as man’s ruler and subjected man by sheer force to his own government. How did he do it? By breaking into that realm in man’s being where man was linked with God, and that was in the realm of man’s spirit. “He that is joined to the Lord is one spirit,” and man was in fellowship and communion with God by means of his spirit, not his soul, not his body. These two were under the government of his spirit. The enemy, the Deceiver came to man’s soul, and instead of man reacting by his spirit-fellowship with, and knowledge of, God, he dropped down on to his soul, came out of his spirit and reacted in his soul.
What is soul? It is reason, emotion, feeling, desire, and then, of course, choice, or will. And the enemy reasoned through the desires and captured the will by deception. You see what happened when man violated the very organ of his union with God, his spirit.... So the enemy governs man, and the whole of the race now through the nature of the soul-life. What is the basis of deception? It is just that! How do you get a counterfeit Holy Ghost operating? By reason of your psychical nature. You can become mediumistic in your very psychical nature and open all the avenues of your being to supernatural guidance and come under the power, the sway, dominion, of deceiving spirits operating in a multitude of ways. You can so suspend your soul and come into a state of utter passivity that you are open to everything to play upon you. You can have your quiet hour in your soul, which is the most perilous hour of your life. That happens by suspending all spiritual activity and becoming utterly passive and opening your psychical being, which is a most dangerous thing. God never asks you to become spiritually passive. Waiting upon God is not being spiritually passive. God wants us active in spirit even when waiting on Him in silence.
Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. § Let us know, let us pursue the knowledge of the Lord.
Then the righteous will shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. § We all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord. § When that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away. § For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known. § Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure.
The one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out. § “Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom.” And Jesus said to him, “Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.” § “What do you want Me to do for you?” They said to Him, “Lord, that our eyes may be opened.” So Jesus had compassion and touched their eyes. And immediately their eyes received sight, and they followed Him.
If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him! § I will put My Spirit within you … Thus says the Lord God: “I will also let the house of Israel inquire of Me to do this.”
This is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.
He shall be a vessel unto honor, sanctified, and fit for the master's use, and prepared unto every good work" (2 Tim. 2:21).
"Prepared unto every good work" - especially prayer.
"It does not follow that because a thing is the will of God, He will necessarily lead you to pray for it. He may have other burdens for you. We must get our prayers from God, and pray to know His will. God was dealing with Hudson Taylor for fifteen years before He laid upon him the burden of definite prayer for the foundation of the China Inland Mission (now the Overseas Missionary Fellowship).
"Our Father is not in a hurry. He cannot do things with us until we are trained and ready for them. We may be certain He has further service, further burdens of faith and prayer to give us when we are ready for them." -J.O.F.
"In the true prayer of faith' the intercessor must spend time with the Father to appropriate the promises of His Word, and must permit himself to be taught by the Holy Spirit, whether the promises can be applied to this particular case. He remains in the presence of God, till He, by His Spirit, awakens the faith that in this particular matter the prayer has been heard." -A.M.
"In praying there are two alternatives set before us. The one, prayer as a means by which we get from heaven what we need. The other, prayer as infinite grace of God, lifting us up into His fellowship and love, and then when He has thus brought us to Himself, bestowing upon us the blessing we need. In the former case, the gifts that I can receive through prayer are the chief things. In the latter, God and His love, and fellowship with Him, and the surrender of the suppliant to His glory and His will is the supreme objective." -A.M.
"Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving" (Col. 4:2).
“That holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.” Luke 1:35
If the Son of God is born into my mortal flesh, is His holy innocence and simplicity and oneness with the Father getting a chance to manifest itself in me? What was true of the Virgin Mary in the historic introduction of God's Son into this earth is true in every saint. The Son of God is born into me by the direct act of God; then I as a child of God have to exercise the right of a child, the right of being always face to face with my Father. Am I continually saying with amazement to my common-sense life - why do you want to turn me off here? Don't you know that I must be about my Father's business? Whatever the circumstances may be, that Holy Innocent Eternal Child must be in contact with His Father.
Am I simple enough to identify myself with my Lord in this way? Is He getting his wonderful way in me? Is God realizing that His Son is formed in me, or have I carefully put Him on one side? Oh, the clamour of these days! Everyone is clamouring - for what? For the Son of God to be put to death. There is no room here for the Son of God just now, no room for quiet holy communion with the Father.
Is the Son of God praying in me or am I dictating to Him? Is He ministering in me as He did in the days of His flesh? Is the Son of God in me going through His passion for His own purposes? The more one knows of the inner life of God's ripest saints, the more one sees what God's purpose is - "filling up that which is behind of the affliction of Christ." There is always something to be done in the sense of "filling up."
Pray without ceasing.. Pray continually… Pray constantly… Pray..
1 Thessalonians 5:17
How important it is to have unbroken fellowship with the Father. How precious it is to have continuous communion with Christ. How glorious it is to have gracious intimacy with the Holy Spirit. Throughout Scripture we are encouraged to develop this tender affinity with God.
Praying is releasing the sigh of the heart into God’s presence. Praying is resting one's weary soul on the bosom of the Father. Praying is revealing a confidence in the power of the Spirit. Praying builds up our assurance of our righteous covering in Christ.
Praying aright causes the breath of man’s soul to touch the Father- heart of God. Prayer is also a vital and potent weapon in our complete spiritual armoury. How frequently and fervently we are encouraged in the Word to pray. Pray without ceasing.. Pray continually… Pray constantly… simply Pray.
Pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting 1 Timothy 2:8 Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer Romans 12:12 Build up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost Jude 1:20 Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit Ephesians 6:18 Night and day praying exceedingly.. 1 Thessalonians 3:10 Pray in spirit, and truth, John 4:24 Pray without ceasing.. 1 Thessalonians 5:17 Brothers, pray for us..2 Thessalonians 3:1
But sometimes as we read the many exhortations to pray it seems an impossible task! How can one pray everywhere? How can we be engaged in praying night and day? How can we be instant in prayer; always in prayer; continuously in prayer? – how can we pray without ceasing?
I heard once of a group of pastors who met to discuss the issue of prayer. One question that stumped this reverent group was how to “pray without ceasing” Comments were passed; questions raised and heads shook at the impractical ideas. Ideas were raised; proposals made, suggestions shared on this grand theological issueread more
1) BEHOLD, the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world
2) BEHOLD, the Lamb of God!
This was the first and most sublime gospel sermon ever preached: “Behold……” This magnificent proclamation, is the model for all teachers and ministries. “Behold……” This final forerunner of the Messiah pointed to the Lord Jesus and cried, “Behold……”
The greatest prophet born of woman declared his unworthiness before the Lord: “I am not worthy to unloose His shoe. He Who comes after me is preferred before me”. John 1:27 This same humility of spirit marked John’s entire earthly ministry, for it was John who said, He must increase, and I must decrease. John 3:30. This humbleness of heart is what is sorely needed today, in each of our lives, Like John we should in humility of heart cry, “I am nothing and He is everything.”
John was just a Voice:- a voice that announced the coming of the King. John was not the Light:- but a light-bearer, witnessing of the true Light. Throngs followed this charismatic character, who dressed in camel’s hair. Masses crowded this alluring man who ate locusts and wild honey and cried ”Repent!” But this man who was filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother’s womb.. pointed to Christ throughout his earthly ministry: “Behold, the Lamb of God“
This is what Christian preachers, teachers and ministries should do today. They should preach Christ and teach Christ and point to Christ and proclaim Christ. They should cry out as did John the Baptiser: “Behold, the Lamb of God!” But note: This prophet of old, in these simple words, told of Christ’s TWO appearances! First: Behold the Lamb of God Who taketh away the sin of the world. Worthy is the Lamb who was slain for our sins. Then simply: Behold the Lamb of God! – The Lamb Who sits upon the throne, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits upon the throne, and to theread more