THESE ARE THEY ...
By now, we all know this is a new Day in the purposes of God! In the natural, the literal heavens or the heavens of this earth, are continually being changed by the shining of the sun in the sky. This initiates the beginning or the dawn of all the new, literal days in this earthly realm. So also are the spiritual Heavens being changed by the shining of Christ, “the Sun of righteousness,” bringing forth a new Day in God’s purposes. When the spiritual Heavens are changed by the shining or the out-raying of “the Sun of righteousness,” the earth is changed also. Changes have taken place in the earth, especially in the lives of Father’s elect and chosen ones, to show that “the Sun of righteousness” has appeared to begin the process of change, reform and transformation. Everything everywhere will continue to change until the Kingdom of God is fully established in all the earth and every person has received of His Kingdom blessings and benefits. He Who is “the Sun of righteousness” is changing us! As the Lord’s firstfruits, we have experienced many changes in preparation for that new Kingdom Life! We are becoming a new creation in God, prepared to live with the Lord that new and greater Life of the Kingdom of God on earth! And we shall also change the whole earth by our spiritual example and our new, Kingdom ability!
To become a new creation, we will go through the tests and trials, which will make of us all that our Father has planned for us. Many of us have already experienced those tests and trials, and there may be more to come. But we are beginning to realize anew that Christ has appeared in the Spirit and will continue to appear spiritually, as “the Sun of righteousness,” to do a further work of cleansing, healing and restoration in our lives. God’s promise to us is, “But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you” (1 Pet. 5:10). And, “For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise. For yet a little while, and he that shall come will come, and will not tarry” (Heb. 10:36-37). The prophet foretold of the appearing of Christ to begin that process of renewal and change in the world in general, and also to cleanse, heal and restore His chosen ones, who fear His Name. He said: “For, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the LORD of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch. But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall” (Mal. 4:1-2).
Two groups of people are mentioned in this prophecy. The first group are “all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly.” The first group may include the Christians in the religious systems of man who do not fear His Name and who are not led by His Spirit. And the second group are Father’s chosen ones, the elect of the Lord, those “that fear my name.” Of the first group, the Lord said, “the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the LORD of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch.” The day that cometh is the present Day! It is the Day of the Lord; it also is the beginning of the new Day of the Kingdom of God on earth! And one of Father’s purposes for this great Day is to gather together all the “tares,” including the dross and the stubble of the carnal, sinful nature of the Adamic man, or the man of the flesh, and burn it all in the “oven” of God, which is His fiery, burning, consuming Presence (Heb. 12:29). The Lord will first separate the “tares” (Mt. 13:30), or the carnal nature within His people, from the Christ man, or the man of the Spirit, which is also within us (as in Mt. 24:40-41). Then God will consume those “tares,” in the holy “oven” of His fiery, burning and consuming Presence!
The “tares” also represent the false wheat, or those who do not fear His name and who are not led by His Spirit, while those who fear His name are the elect! And because we fear the Name of the Lord and all He means to us, we are found in absolute and total obedience to the Lord, our God, and His pure, anointed Word. The “tares,” on the other hand, are not guided by the pure Word of the Lord. They do not have ears to hear what the Spirit is saying, so they wander from one carnal mind-set to the next, doing what they think is the right thing to do. They think nothing of listening to the voices of man and eating at the tables of man, as they continue the same old wearisome succession of the religious meetings and gatherings of man. But the Lord, in His mercy, will bring judgment upon them, that they might be delivered of the sinful, Adamic nature and mind that is obviously guiding them. The Lord will burn up the “stubble” of their carnal minds, leaving them neither root nor branch of their former selves.
The anointed Word of the Lord for the second group, or for those who fear the Name of the Lord, continues with these promises: “But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall. And ye shall tread down the wicked; for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet in the day that I shall do this, saith the LORD of hosts” (Mal. 4:2-3). Christ has appeared many times in the past, but He must appear or “arise” now, during the beginning hours of this new Kingdom Day, as “the Sun of righteousness with healing in his wings.” Then we shall “go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall.” Our spiritual growth unto full maturity, resulting in the manifestation of the sons of God, is the next event in the unfolding purposes of our Father! Only by His appearing, as Christ arises with healing in His wings, can we go forth and grow up as calves of the stall! Everything else, both in this world and in the heavens of Spirit, are “on hold;” it is all awaiting our transformation, which also is the manifestation of the sons of God (Ro. 8:22-23)! And the tests and trials of this “life” are preparing us for that magnificent event!
It is by the rising or the appearing of Christ as “the Sun of righteousness,” that we shall be healed and released from this fleshly bondage, to “go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall.” And then, when we do grow up to the full measure of the stature of Christ, we shall “tread down the wicked, for they shall be ashes under the soles of (our) feet.” We shall not “tread down”individuals or people; it is old sinful Adam, the wicked “man” of sin within all mankind that we shall “tread down.” The Adamic nature and mind will no longer be within us, when we have been transformed into the image and likeness of Christ! Then, we will be just like Him, Who is the Lord of Glory and Life! And when we have truly become a new creation in Christ, bearing His full image and likeness, the sinful, Adamic nature in all mankind “shall be ashes under the soles of our feet!” No longer will we be identified with sinful Adam, for we shall be born again of the Spirit to become spirit (Jo. 3:3, 6). The most important thing we can do now to fulfill our Father’s high and holy Kingdom purposes, is to grow up spiritually and be clothed upon with our house from Heaven! Then we will be released from this bondage to serve the Lord in the full glory of His Life, bringing deliverance to the entire, vast, groaning creation! What a wonderful plan He has! And what a blessed privileged it is for us to be a part of it all! Amen and amen!
We have quoted the Phillips translation of Romans chapter eight, verses eighteen to twenty-five, several times in the past, but it should be repeated again at this point: “In my opinion whatever we may have to go through now is less than nothing compared with the magnificent future God has planned for us. The whole creation is on tiptoe to see the wonderful sight of the sons of God coming into their own. The world of creation cannot as yet see reality, not because it chooses to be blind, but because in God’s purpose it has been so limited - yet it has been given hope. And the hope is that in the end the whole of created life will be rescued from the tyranny of change and decay, and have its share in that magnificent liberty which can only belong to the children (or, sons) of God! It is plain to anyone with eyes to see that at the present time all created life groans in a sort of universal travail. And it is plain, too, that we who have a foretaste of the Spirit are in a state of painful tension, while we WAIT for that redemption of our bodies which will mean that at last we have realized our full sonship in him. We were saved by this hope, but in our moments of impatience let us remember that hope always means WAITING FOR SOMETHING WE DO NOT YET POSSESS. But if we hope for something we cannot see, then we must settle down to WAIT for it in patience.”
If we could only see in the Spirit, through the facade of the flesh, as it really is in this world, we would then see every created thing standing on tiptoe waiting to see the sons of God coming into their own inheritance. Then, our manifestation, which shall take place when we see Him, will change everything in the world just as we have been changed, “in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump” (1 Cor. 15:52). What a wonderful hope we have! What a glorious Day this is! And what a more glorious Day this shall yet become, when we are transformed into the wonderful image and Heavenly likeness of the Lord of Glory!
Father’s Promises to Him that Overcometh
The Lord gave a further Word to His elect, or to those who are in the process of becoming His overcomers. He said to them, “But that which ye have already hold fast till I come. And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations: And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father. And I will give him the morning star. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches” (Rev. 2:25-29). The ”morning star” is that specific star that appears to initiate the dawn of the new morning! It is the “matutinal” star, which is a special, unique star that pertains only to the morning. The “morning star” does not appear at any other time; it is the appearing of Christ in the morning! It is that Heavenly, Spiritual Star that shall appear at the end of this long night of tests and trials! And that “morning star” shall be given to “he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end.”
The terminology used here has special significance for all the elect. The word “overcometh,” means to subdue, a conquest, or the means of success. The original Greek word is also translated conquer, overcome, prevail and get the victory. All this is signified and intended in the word “overcometh.” As a result of our many tests and trials, we shall indeed subdue our flesh; we shall conquer our flesh and its vices, overcoming it all, prevailing over that other “man” within us, to get the victory over the flesh and everything else that is of this world. To become an overcomer is not an easy life! Many of Father’s precious elect ones are now going through difficult and sometimes severe trials, which may include physical problems and many problems in other areas as well. Paul told the Corinthians, “though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day. For our light affliction,” (I don’t know about you, but sometimes we are not convinced that this should be called “light affliction”), “which is but for a moment,” (nor does it seem like only a moment of trials), “worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal” (2 Cor. 4:16-18). If we, by the Spirit, will look only at the things which are not seen, or at that which is spiritual and Heavenly, we will then “see” and understand something of “the glory which shall be revealed IN US.”
Paul also wrote the Romans to say, “The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children (or sons) of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us” (Ro. 8:16-18). And Peter also wrote a most comforting word, which we also quoted on page one, when by the Spirit he declared: “But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you” (1 Pet. 5:10). First comes the sufferings, then the eternal glory of the Lord, which shall be revealed TO US, IN US AND THROUGH US!
The Word of the Lord to us is, “And he that overcometh,
and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations.”
The phrase, “and keepeth my works unto the end,” means to guard
the work or toil of the Lord from loss or injury, which is an effort or an occupation;
it is that work of the Lord in our lives that is like a full-time job. That
occupation, or job, or work of the Lord, will keep us busy, spiritually speaking,
until we have reached the end, or the intended goal. The term, “the end,”
means to set out for a definite point, or goal, and includes our arriving or
attaining to the point aimed at as a limit, which is our appointed end. Perfection
is our ultimate goal, and perfection is what we shall receive! And of course,
the “end” or the goal for us is to be transformed into the image
and likeness of Christ, the Lord of glory!
Our Lord Jesus Christ also said of the overcomers, “to him will I give power over the nations.” The word “power,” means the privilege, force, capacity, competency, freedom and mastery over the nations; it is the ability to reign as kings in the Kingdom of God. All this shall be given to the overcomers, to those who shall prevail over the flesh and all its carnal, worldly desires, conquering it all and getting the victory over all within us that is not of the Spirit of God! And all these Kingdom attributes and graces shall not be received by listening to man preach and teach, but every one of them shall be imparted to each of the overcomers by our blessed Lord Himself! Only by the Spirit are these wondrous Kingdom attributes to be received by the elect of the Lord, who are the tried, tested, proven and found worthy, “overcomers!”
That Heavenly, bright and morning Star shall be given by the Lord, and by no other, to “he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end.” And that “morning star” within us will cause or initiate the dawn of the new, spiritual morning, thus beginning the manifestation of the sons of God, which also is the manifestation of the Kingdom of God in all the earth. The “morning Star” is not a thing or an it; He is the Lord of glory; He is Christ, Who is appearing as the “Sun of righteousness!” The Lord Himself said, “I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I AM the root and the offspring of David, and THE BRIGHT AND MORNING STAR” (Rev. 22:16).
He Who is the bright and morning Star will impart more of Himself to us, making us stars just like He is in the spiritual Heavens. By the power and brilliance of the Lord of Glory, we shall shine throughout the earth, turning this long night of gross, spiritual darkness into the bright, new morning of the Kingdom of God! Then the whole earth shall shine with the brilliance and radiance of Christ, Who is the bright and morning Star! And when His brightness and brilliance shines throughout the earth, everything in this old world shall be changed, to reveal the Glory of the Lord! “These are they...” who are the overcomers; they are receiving “the morning star” from Him Who is the chief Star in the spiritual Heavens. They shall change the world by the brilliant radiance and the Kingdom glory of the Lord, Who is within them in glorious fullness and heavenly completeness!
The Old Promised Land typical of the New Kingdom Land
The old promised lands in history were but types and shadows of the New Promised Land, which is the glorious, Heavenly Land of the Kingdom of God on earth. Since they are only types and shadows, those old promised lands of earth and of the carnal works of man could scarcely foretell the grandeur and the wonder, which would be revealed when all the might and majesty of Heaven, including the new Jerusalem, has fully descended to the earth. This will bring the Glory of the Lord to the earth and to all mankind. Imagine if you can how beautiful and glorious Heaven is! And that Heaven of Father’s Glory is coming down from God to the earth, to transform this old earth into the New Earth of Father’s Love, Life, Righteousness, Joy and Salvation. The glory and beauty of Heaven is described in scripture, using, for the most part, earthly, worldly terms. Therefore, unless the Spirit has revealed the great Glory of Heaven to us, our concept of Heaven lacks much of the true wonder, glory and grandeur, which adorns those beautiful and abundantly radiant Heavens of God’s Spirit!
“These are they whom the LORD commanded to divide the inheritance unto the children of Israel in the land of Canaan” (Num. 34:29). The Lord spoke to Moses, giving him the borders of Israel’s new promised land, which was the land of Canaan. The Lord also told Moses to appoint some princes of Israel, who were to divide the land of Canaan with the people, according to their tribes. “These are they,” who were to divide the land of Canaan to the entire nation, for it was their inheritance. The Lord said of that new land: “For the land, whither thou goest in to possess it, is not as the land of Egypt, from whence ye came out, where thou sowedst thy seed, and wateredst it with thy foot, as a garden of herbs: But the land, whither ye go to possess it, is a land of hills and valleys, and drinketh water of the rain of heaven: A land which the LORD thy God careth for: the eyes of the LORD thy God are always upon it, from the beginning of the year even unto the end of the year” (Deut. 11:10-12).
How wonderful it must have been for Israel to live in a land which the Lord cared for! Their promised land of Canaan was not like the land of Egypt, where they planted their crops and then watered those crops with their feet. To water their crops “with thy foot,” tells us that the Israelites had to tread large water wheels, which turned by the power of their feet, to convey water from a lake, a river or a pond, emptying the water into pipes or channels, so that the water flowed out to the crops in the fields. In Egypt such irrigation was necessary, for rain was scarce; in Canaan’s fair land irrigation was never needed. The Lord Himself gave the rain, the sun and the necessary increase at the proper time for each, so that the people of Israel, and their flocks, herds and cattle, never had a shortage of food at any time.
In Canaan, God cared for the land! Think what that means! The rain came in due season, or at a time when the crops needed rain to grow and mature and bring forth a bountiful harvest. The sun always shined on the land at the proper time, providing all that was necessary for the crops to grow. Both the sunshine and the rain came at the most beneficial time. There were no devastating storms, floods or pestilences of any kind to damage the crops and destroy the harvest. It did not rain when the crops needed to be harvested, nor did the sun shine when rain was needed. The Lord God of Israel CARED FOR THE LAND! And when God cares for the land, perfect harmony exists between the earth and the powers of the literal heavens, such as the sun, moon and stars, as well as the weather patterns, which sustain and nourish the earth!
In my early years, when I farmed in Michigan, I once planted a crop of oats only to have it rain for days without end. The crop was destroyed and I had to replant the field. Obviously, the Lord was not caring for my land as He was for Israel’s land, the land of Canaan. Many farmers can tell a similar story! We can plow, disk, harrow and plant a field, working tirelessly and doing the very best we can, but unless God gives both the rain and the sunshine at the proper times, as well as His blessing to provide the necessary increase, all our efforts will be futile. I have never known my Father’s care for the land, as Israel did in the promised land of Canaan. Yet, I can say that I enjoyed a measure of God’s blessings! And all that God did for Israel in Canaan’s fair land is but a foretaste of what He will do for His people when we inherit the new and greater Promised Land of the Kingdom of God on earth! And He has made abundant provision for our sustenance, to make sure that we get “there.” Our Father will care for our personal “lands,” or the “land” which we are, and He will also care for that greater Land, which is this earth governed by the Kingdom of God. Let us then press our way into His fullness, for in doing so, we will inherit that new and greater Promised Land, which is the fullness of the Kingdom of God, including all that He is!
The Lord our God cares for the literal lands of this earth, especially Israel’s promised land in history, the land of Canaan. Although the curse is on this earth, the Lord still cares for our literal lands. Despite man’s greed, lust and lack of wisdom to distribute it, God provides food for the people, as the prophet of the Lord foretold: "For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it. For ye shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace: the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands” (Is. 55:10-12).
What is Father telling us here? He is not merely speaking of the literal earth and our literal or natural need for food, shelter and clothing; the Lord is telling His people of His constant and continuing care for each one of us. God cares for the “land,” which we are! He cares about our whole, complete being! Our Father God cares about out spirit; He cares about our soul, and He cares also about our bodies. Just as the Lord sends the rain and the snow from heaven to water the earth and cause it to bring forth and bud, giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater, so also does He send forth His Word to His elect and chosen ones, to raise us to the fullness of His glorious and age-abiding Life. And His Word of Kingdom Power, Authority and Life, shall not return to Him void, but shall accomplish that which He has purposed. His Word shall prosper in the thing whereto He has sent it! And when we have received His anointed Word of Life to the full, we “shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace: the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.” Amen! This promise shall be fulfilled for us, in our new “promised land,” which for us is the Kingdom of God on earth! And when this Word is fulfilled, we shall know the abundant fullness of our God, as well as the abundant fullness of His glorious and righteous Kingdom!
To know that Father cares for us and watches over us, above
and beyond His loving care for the creation, should encourage us in our walk
with Him. Our blessed Lord said, “Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought
for your life, what ye shall eat; neither for the body, what ye shall put on.
The life is more than meat, and the body is more than raiment. Consider the ravens: for they neither sow nor reap; which neither have storehouse nor barn; and God feedeth them: how much more are ye better than the fowls? And which of you with taking thought can add to his stature one cubit? If ye then be not able to do that thing which is least, why take ye thought for the rest?” (Lu. 12:22-26). Jesus was telling us that we should not be anxious about our lives, considering what we will eat and what we will wear. This present “psuche” life, or our soulish life in this world, is more than meat. We need more nourishment than that which literal meat supplies. And our body is more than raiment. Our bodies are temples of the holy Spirit, and require much more than mere outer garments. Then Jesus told us to consider the ravens; they neither sow nor reap. They do not have storehouses or barns, but God feeds them. And then He says, “how much more are ye better than the fowls?” If we are anxious and concerned about our growth, we must certainly know we cannot add one inch to our own stature (Mt. 6:27). Therefore, since we cannot do that which is least for our own welfare, why should we take thought for other, more difficult and more important aspects of our lives, such as our own spiritual welfare?
Then, Jesus said, “Consider the lillies how they grow: they toil not, they spin not; and yet I say unto you, that Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. If then God so clothe the grass, which is to day in the field, and to morrow is cast into the oven; how much more will he clothe you, O ye of little faith?” (Lu. 12:27-28). Can you “HEAR” this wonderful Word of hope and promise? And in hearing His anointed Word, can you believe that its wondrous Truth shall be fulfilled IN YOU? It is God Who arrays, dresses and clothes the lilies of the field! It is also God Who clothes the grass, which today is in the field, but tomorrow may be cast into an oven. Both the lilies and the grass of the field toil not, neither do they spin. Yet Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of those. And then our Lord caps, or crowns, this anointed Word with a very direct and pointed remark, saying to each one of us: “how much more WILL HE CLOTHE YOU, O ye of little faith?” Indeed, our loving Father clothes the grass and the lillies of the field, how much more then will He clothe His elect ones, who are His own brethren, with those royal garments of the Life and Glory of Christ?
Do you know that God cares for the “land” which you are? Do you fully understand that your Father in Heaven is causing you to grow and come to maturity in Him? It is by Him and from Him that we grow to full maturity and become all that He is! Do you understand that your Father in Heaven is clothing you with those royal garments of His Life, which are garments that are not of this world? Do you fully understand that just as Christ is within you, so also is there an abundant supply of spiritual food that is being made available to you, in the Spirit and by the Spirit? If we would only learn to trust Him more completely for all our needs, we would fully understand and realize that God cares for us far beyond the limited scope of our own faith. Our Father wants us to trust Him fully for all our needs and all our sustenance - especially does He want us to trust Him for all our spiritual food! When God’s people, who have been called out of the church system, go to meetings to hear man, they are showing a lack of trust in their Father! They are showing clearly that they are dissatisfied with their Father’s spiritual provisions for them, and they want to hear more from the mind of man! They are among those who are, according to the words of Jesus, “O ye of little faith!”
Contrary to the way of the flesh and the ways of man, the elect are content with their Father’s spiritual provisions for them! They know He is clothing them with those spiritual garments of the Life of Christ! They are not looking to man for perfection; they are trusting only in their Heavenly Father, for He alone is perfect! And they shall come forth in the beauty of holiness, bearing His glorious image and Heavenly likeness! They are partaking of Him, knowing full well that their loving and merciful Father is caring for their “land.” They are groaning within, “earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven: If so be that being clothed we shall not be found naked. For we that are in this tabernacle do groan, being burdened: not for that we would be unclothed, but clothed upon, that mortality might be swallowed up of life” (2 Cor. 5:2-4). Who else can clothe us with our house from Heaven - with those royal, Heavenly garments of the Life of Christ - but our loving and merciful Father?
In addition to what He said about the lilies of the field, Jesus also said: “And seek not ye what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, neither be ye of doubtful mind. For all these things do the nations of the world seek after: and your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things. But rather seek ye the kingdom of God; and all these things shall be added unto you” (Lu. 12:29-31). This prophetic Word can be interpreted both literally and spiritually. How blessed we are to know that God cares about the literal food we eat and also about that which we drink and wear! But the spiritual interpretation of this verse is far more important, especially for those elect and chosen ones who are becoming manifest sons of God at this time. When we consider the words of Jesus in the greater, spiritual context, such as, “And seek not ye what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, neither be ye of doubtful mind,” we will see that He cares about our spiritual welfare! Our Father will do all in His power to supply us with that spiritual food and spiritual drink, which will bring us to maturity in Christ and make of us manifest sons of our Father! Then, we shall be “as the angels of God in heaven” (Mt. 22:30).
To attain to sonship, be transformed into His image and likeness and become fully manifest sons of our Father, we will pay close attention to these words of Jesus. Our spiritual lives will be governed by His anointed Word of Truth and Life. That means we will “seek not ye what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, neither be ye of doubtful mind.” Taken spiritually, this means we will refrain from looking for our spiritual food from any other source but our Heavenly Father. GOD WANTS TO BE THE ONLY SOURCE OF OUR SPIRITUAL FOOD! He is our El Shaddai; He is the Almighty One to us; He is our “Breasted” One; He is our all-sufficient One; He is our Source; He is the One who supplies all the spiritual food and drink we will ever need! The ministry of man may have been the word of the Lord, but it has taken us as far as it can! We must receive our spiritual food from Him Who has already experienced the resurrection power of the Lord! He Who is the Spirit of Truth shall guide us into all Truth! He shall not speak of Himself, but shall declare all He hears from the Father, that the Father alone may be glorified. And He shall also show us things to come! He shall reveal to us all He receives from the Father, for all that the Father has is His also (see Jo. 16:13-15)! With such rich and wonderful provisions leading to the abundant Life of Christ, why would we continue to look to man for our Spiritual treasures, such as Truth, Life and things to come?
The Apostle Paul tells us, “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory” (Col. 3:1-4). The secret key to Life - the way to “appear with him in glory” - is to “seek those things which are above,” or those things that are of the Spirit of God. Man’s day is over! No more will we seek the things of this world, including the preaching and the teaching of man! We are risen with Christ, and because we are in Christ, seated with Him in heavenly places, we will seek those things which are above, or those things which are the pure Word and the pure Spirit of the Lord.
To look to man for any of our spiritual food at this stage of our spiritual growth is a transgression of the principles of sonship! Only the carnal-minded will eat at the tables of man! Only those with a “doubtful mind” will look to man for spiritual food! Only those who are “of little faith” would supplement God’s food with man’s! Father’s elect shall eat and drink only at His table, where there is an abundance of spiritual, Kingdom food and spiritual, Kingdom drink! Only that pure Word, from the Almighty God Himself - from Him Who is our El Shaddai and our all-sufficient One - shall bring us to full maturity in Christ!
Then, Jesus said, “For all these things do the nations of the world seek after: and your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things. But rather seek ye the kingdom of God; and all these things shall be added unto you.” Here again, we will consider the spiritual interpretation of this scripture. The elect of the Lord are not to pattern their lives after the lives of most people in this world. The worldly minded, including the nominal Christians of this world, seek after, what they assume to be, spiritual food and spiritual drink. Carnal, worldly-minded Christians will go from meeting to meeting, from group to group, from preacher to preacher and from one church to another, looking for that spiritual food, which they think will provide for their spiritual welfare. Most Christians do not understand spiritual things! Because they are carnal-minded, they look for their spiritual food from other carnal sources. Our Lord knew this condition would exist among us, so He warned us, telling us to avoid doing what the people of the world are doing. Let other Christians seek for their spiritual food from carnal, worldly sources! We know our Father cares for us! Therefore, we will not seek for our spiritual food from other, worldly sources, for the Lord is our true and only Source of Spiritual Bread, Spiritual Wine and Spiritual Life!
May this great Truth be engraved upon the tables of our hearts: “your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things.” Our Father knows we need both spiritual Bread and spiritual Drink! And He has an abundant supply of spiritual food and drink, sufficient to provide for the spiritual growth unto full maturity of every one of His elect and chosen ones at this time, by the Spirit of the Lord! God cares for the “land,” which we are! Knowing this, we will “seek (ye) the kingdom of God; and all these things shall be added unto you.” This is the great principle of Life! Seek the Kingdom of God, and all the other necessary, spiritual attributes will be added unto us! To seek the Kingdom of God is to seek those things that pertain to the Spirit and the Life of the living God! When we seek His Kingdom first and foremost, above everything else in this world, we are seeking that Life of God, which also is the unique Life of the Kingdom of our Father. God is our source, and we are perfectly content with His abundant provisions for us! Because of this, we will never return to the ways of man, to sit and eat at man’s incomplete and imperfect table, as a dog might return to its vomit (2 Peter 2:21-22).
During the missionary journeys of Paul and Barnabas, much was learned about the ways of the Lord as they ministered to people of various nations. When many came to Christ and believed in Him, the record states: “And when they had appointed and ordained elders for them in each church with prayer and fasting, THEY COMMITTED THEM TO THE LORD in Whom they had come to believe [being full of joyful trust that He is the Christ, the Messiah]” (Acts 14:23, AMP). What a wonderful thing to do with new believers and new elders: commit them to the Lord in Whom they had come to believe! According to man’s carnal understanding, new believers must have the leadership of man to guide them, otherwise those new believers would not make it. The corrupt Babylonish church system, or the religious systems of this world, have trained Christians to do things in their system according to man’s carnal-minded understanding, and not according to the will and purpose of Him, Who is Truth and Life personified.
As a result of man’s carnal-minded opinion, many have lost their faith. Once they were “full of joyful trust that He is the Christ,” but now, as a result of man’s many errors and mis-leadership, they wander in the wilderness of doubts and unbelief. We now have men and women as pastors, elders and teachers, leading believers away from the Lord and His highest and best, and into gross error and deception. Man would have us look to him for leadership and headship; our Father would have us look to the Lord and trust Him only for all our needs! Following man and trusting in the leadership and headship of man will always lead to error and deception! Following the Lord and trusting Him in all things, will always lead us to His Kingdom, where there is His so-great salvation and His abundant Life, along with His Righteousness, His Love, His truth, His joy and His Peace!
We receive the resurrection Life of Christ by communing with Him in the Spirit. Christ is Life! He not only HAS the Life of His Father, but He also IS the Life-giver! Christ is the Source of our Life; we must receive the Life of the Father from the Son of God! Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, a time is coming and has now come when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God and those who hear will live. For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son to have life in himself. And he has given him authority to judge because he is the Son of Man” (Jo. 5:25-27, NIV). Both the Father and Christ, the Son of God, have Life within themselves! And Christ, the Son of God and the Son of man, has a special and unique Purpose in the Kingdom of God, which is to impart the Life of God to all other sons. To receive the Life of God and be changed into His glorious image and Heavenly likeness, we must maintain a living and ongoing relationship with Christ, the Son of God! The Life of God comes from Christ, not from any other source! Therefore, we must Hear the Word of the Lord, when He speaks to us, for He alone is the Source of God’s Life. To listen to man will not lead us to experience the Life of God! His Life comes to us only from Christ, the Son of God and the Son of man! To be transformed or translated, by the Spirit, we must go to the Source of that Life to receive it. And that Source of all Life is Christ, the Son of the living God!
The elect of the Lord are now walking a path in the Spirit, which leads to His Life! The preachers and teachers of this world are still living in death. They are all living the “life” of this world. They cannot minister the Life of God to anyone, for they have not yet received of that Life! Therefore, they cannot lead us to the Life of Christ! We must get that Life from the Source of all Life, which is Christ, the Son of God! The Father has given His only begotten Son the authority, as His Son, to be a dispenser of the Life that He is! And to receive His Life, we must hear the Word of the Lord, from Him Who alone is able to impart the Life of Christ to us all! Others have been translated or transformed, to receive His Life. We know Enoch was translated, according to the Word of the Lord (Heb. 11:5); but Enoch was not made a dispenser of that Life! He received from God for himself! And we shall receive the abundant Life of Christ the same way Enoch did: by pleasing God and walking obediently with Him! Also, “he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him” (Heb. 11:6). The key to true Life dwells only with the Father and the Son! Let us then hear His Word only, and in hearing Him, believe His Word and be transformed into His wonderful image and Heavenly likeness!
What a wonderful promise this is for everyone of us: “The dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and THEY THAT HEAR SHALL LIVE” (Jo. 5:25). Whose Voice must we, who are dead, hear, so that we may Live? No other voice, but the Voice of the Son of God! “For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself; And hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man” (Jo. 5:26-27). Through His death, burial and resurrection, our Lord Jesus Christ received the Life of God! He also has the authority, from the Father and as the Father’s Son, to execute judgment unto Life for all mankind! Christ is our Judge and our Life-giver! He also is our Head, our Lord, our King and our all-sufficient One! He will bring us to maturity and impart the Life that He is to every one of us, for He has the fullness of the Life of God within Himself, along with His Father’s authority to impart that Life to all other sons!
Simon Peter, one of the Lord’s first disciples, wrote the following: “to them that have obtained like precious faith with us through the righteousness of God and our Saviour Jesus Christ: Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord, According as his divine power HATH GIVEN UNTO US ALL THINGS THAT PERTAIN UNTO LIFE AND GODLINESS, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust” (2 Peter 1:1-4).
Peter also admonishes us to add to our faith virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, godliness, brotherly kindness and charity. And we surely need our Lord’s help in adding all these spiritual virtues to our nature and character! To add these virtues to our own lives is not something we can do of ourselves. We must have God’s help to become all that He is! And our Father will assist us in growing into the image and likeness of Christ, the Son of God. Then Peter adds these wonderful truths: “For if these things be in you, and abound, THEY MAKE YOU that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins. Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall: For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ” (2 Pet. 1:8-11).
These are the words of a man of God who would soon pass from this life into the next. The Lord had revealed to Peter that he must shortly put off his old, earthly tabernacle of this “life,” and enter into the realm of the next Life, so he left these words of truth and Life for the remembrance of those who would follow him, that we all may be established in the present truth (see vss. 12-15). The fullness of the Kingdom of God is our goal! The supreme purpose in the lives of all the elect must be to, “seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and ALL THESE THINGS shall be added unto you” (Mt. 6:33).
“FOR WE KNOW that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens” (2 Cor. 5:1). WE KNOW, that if this earthly house were dissolved, we have a new, spiritual house, which is a building of God not made with the hands of man, which is eternal in the Heavens, or in the realm of the Spirit! And one day soon we shall simply put that new spiritual house right over this old house, covering the old one completely and swallowing it up, so that the old house no longer exists! This is the Truth of God’s Word: “Here indeed, in this [present abode, body], we sigh and groan inwardly, because we yearn to be clothed over [we yearn to put on our celestial body like a garment, to be fitted out] with our heavenly dwelling” (2 Cor. 5:2, AMP).
Of all that we may strive to KNOW, as we continue on this spiritual,
yet earthly journey, let it be this: “THAT I MAY KNOW HIM, AND THE POWER
OF HIS RESURRECTION, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable
unto his death; IF BY ANY MEANS I MIGHT ATTAIN UNTO THE RESURRECTION OF THE
DEAD” (Phil. 3:10-11). To know Christ and see Him as He is, is to Live
the Life of Christ in glorious and blessed fullness! If we would see Him as
He is, we will “watch” and be ready for His appearing! In the days
of Noah before the flood, the people were eating, drinking, marrying and giving
in marriage; they were busy doing the normal, natural things of this world.
Jesus said the people of that day “knew not until the flood came, and
took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be” (Mt.
24:39). In all our getting, learning and knowing, let us KNOW the day and the
hour in which we now live! This is the great Day of the appearing of Christ
in resurrection power and glory!
Paul and Emily Mueller
P O BOX 25055, PORTLAND, OR 97298-0055