THESE ARE THEY ...
More important and significant words were never spoken than those uttered by Jesus to His disciples. The elect of the Lord, who are earnestly and seriously seeking for the Life of Christ and the greater Glory of the Kingdom of God, must truly HEAR the words of Jesus and then DO them. We should HEAR all that Jesus had to say, not merely with our external, fleshly ears, but with those greater and more meaningful “ears” of the Spirit! And if Father has given us “hearing ears,” or spiritual ears, to hear all our Lord would say to us, we will indeed hear Him and will then DO all His will! We will Hear our Lord Jesus Christ, for He too was walking the path to Life during His earthly experiences in history, just as we are today! Therefore, His messages to us are very important, for they will lead us to the very fullness of that Life, which He is!
Because He saw the multitudes and their many needs, Jesus took His disciples up a mountain to teach them the principles of the Kingdom of God. After blessing them with several “blessed” promises (as in Mt. 5:3-11), and giving them a few other truths, Jesus then said to them, “Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but TO FULFIL. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven” (Mt. 5:17-20). Jesus declared plainly and clearly that He did not come to destroy, but TO FULFILL! And that is our calling as well! Yet, while we fulfill the prophetic Word, the old will be destroyed in the process!
Both the law and the prophets must be fulfilled! And they shall all be fulfilled in fullness and with great glory by Father’s faithful elect who are becoming one with Him! When Father is finished with us, we shall be perfect, even as He is perfect! Jesus Himself said, “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect” (Mt. 5:48). To be perfect as our Father is perfect is the goal before us! And it is an attainable goal. Otherwise, our blessed Lord would not have called us to be perfect! Since we are called to be perfect as He is perfect, it is up to Him to get us “there!” Our perfection must equal that of our Father in Heaven, and it shall, when our Father has completed His work in our lives. To be perfect as our Father is perfect means we will do and teach the commandments of the Lord, which are the principles that make up the constitution of the Kingdom of God! Whoever breaks the least of the commandments of the Lord shall be called the least in the Kingdom of God. But to do all the law of the Lord requires of us and teach others that obedience will place us among the greatest in the Kingdom of our Father. To be perfect as our Father in Heaven is perfect will make us the greatest in His Kingdom! And, if we truly love the Lord and His pure Word, we need not concern ourselves with our obedience to the strict letter of the law. If Father wills us to both do and teach the principles of the Kingdom of God, He will write that “law” upon the tables of our hearts, making it possible for us to fulfill the law of the Lord and do all His will. Our obedience will fulfill all the law and the prophets!
At this point, I would like to quote from the “Wisdom of Solomon,” which is one of the books of “The Apocrypha.” Some of the books of The Apocrypha form an historical link between the Old Testament and the New, and are usually found in some Bibles between those two Testaments. It is believed they were written in the last three centuries B.C. We quote the following regarding wisdom, the keeping of the law, incorruption and the Kingdom of God: “Wisdom is glorious, and never fadeth away: yea, she is easily seen of them that love her, and found of such as seek her. She preventeth them that desire her, in making herself first known unto them. Whoso seeketh her early shall have no great travail: for he shall find her sitting at his doors. To think therefore upon her is perfection of wisdom: and whoso watcheth for her shall quickly be without care. For she goeth about seeking such as are worthy of her, sheweth herself favourably unto them in the ways, and meeteth them in every thought. For the very true beginning of her is the desire of discipline; and the care of discipline is love; And love is the keeping of her laws; and the giving heed unto her laws is the assurance of incorruption; and incorruption maketh us near unto God. Therefore the desire of wisdom bringeth to a kingdom. If your delight be then in thrones and sceptres, O ye kings of the people, honour wisdom that ye may reign for evermore.”
How important and valuable wisdom is in the life of Father’s chosen and elect sons! Wisdom is shown in scripture to be of the feminine gender, for it is written, “Wisdom crieth without; SHE uttereth her voice in the streets: SHE crieth in the chief place of concourse, in the openings of the gates: in the city. SHE uttereth her words, saying, How long, ye simple ones, will ye love simplicity? and the scorners delight in their scorning, and fools hate knowledge? Turn you at my reproof: behold, I will pour out my spirit unto you, I will make known my words unto you” (Pro. 1:20-23). We see wisdom as being feminine in the sense that Wisdom is a companion to God. Our Father God is generally seen as being male, for the male designation in scripture expresses spiritual maturity rather than fleshly, earthly, sexual orientation. Just as a man and a woman are united in marriage, so God and Wisdom are inseparably linked together in the manifestation of our Father’s Word and Will! Wisdom also asks God’s people, “How long, ye simple ones, will ye love simplicity?” Or, how long, you simple, shallow Christians, will you love the simple way, or the spiritually shallow way, where most “babes” in Christ are walking? But the elect of the Lord are not simple ones; we desire to walk the utmost heights with the Lord, to become all that He is!
After Jesus said what He did about fulfilling the law and the prophets, He then said, “For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven” (Mt. 5:20). This walk unto sonship is not about “making it by the skin of our teeth!” Nor is it about doing what our carnal minds would like to do! This walk is all about PERFECTION, FULLNESS AND RIGHTEOUSNESS! It is all about fulfilling the law and the prophets, which is the prophetic Word of the Lord! For this reason, our processing must be intense, thorough and complete, involving every aspect of the triune being, which we are! To enter into the fullness of the Kingdom of Heaven and reign with Christ, our righteousness must exceed that of the scribes and Pharisees, which today represents the best of the Christians in the church system. If we should ever wonder why our processing must be as intense as it is now, it is because our Father is making us perfect, as He is perfect! And if we should ever question whether or not we will make it, let us be assured: WE ARE MAKING IT! We will indeed be perfect as our Father in Heaven is perfect, not by our own strength or our own faith, but by the strength and the faith of the Son of God, who is within us!
In the next verse, Jesus said, “Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment: But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca (or, you worthless one), shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool (or, you dull or stupid one), shall be in danger of hell fire” (Mt. 5:21-22). With these words, Jesus took the law to higher levels, elevating anger with a brother and making it equal to murder. In other words, He raised the bar of righteousness! To commit murder is a serious crime! It is especially wrong with respect to the constitution of the Kingdom of God. But then, Jesus raised the bar of righteousness, making anger against a brother a more serious sin, possibly equal to murder.
To further illustrate the greater law of righteousness in the Kingdom of God, Jesus said, “Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart” (Mt. 5:27-28). He then said that if our right eye offends us, pluck it out; or if our right hand offends us, cut it off, for it is better if one of the members of our bodies should perish, rather than have our entire bodies, along with our souls, go through the fires of the Lord’s judgment. In every instance given in this chapter, Jesus raised the bar of righteousness! To be perfect as our Father in Heaven is perfect requires us to always walk in the Spirit, keep His law and His word, and do all His will! It all sounds impossible, and it is in and by the flesh! But by the Spirit and with His help, we are making it!
Jesus raised the bar on a few more commandments, and then He said, “Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye may be the children (or the sons) of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same? And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so? Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect” (Mt. 5:43-48). Every law, commandment, or word of the Lord, given to us by our Lord, is given for this reason: “That ye may be the children (or sons) of your Father which is in heaven!” The Divine purpose for the law of the Lord is to make of us sons of the living God!
The Christians of this world may get by living a relatively loose and half-hearted “Christian” life during the ages of man in this world, but we have a higher calling in God! The righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, which most Christians would agree with, is not good enough for those “living” in the higher, spiritual realm of the Kingdom of God. It is not good enough for us to love only those who love us! It is not good enough for us to greet our brethren only! We must become a friend to all, including those of the world, who may not have the same spiritual understanding we do! Instead of attacking and accusing some of the sinners of this world, as most “Christians” do, especially those who may have different life styles, we should love them with the redemptive Love of Christ! And it is certainly wrong for “Christians” to tell the rest of the world that they are all going to a “hell,” where they shall burn forever in unquenchable fires! Such an un-Christ-like message and meanspirited behavior is the standard of the church system today, but it will not do for those who are called to become sons of the living God! The one, prevailing principle of the Kingdom of God is: “Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy” (Matt. 5:7). And Luke said, “Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful” (Lu. 6:36). Our Father in Heaven is the standard of righteousness for all His sons!
Jesus raised the bar of righteousness concerning the law of the Lord, which are the principles of the Kingdom of God! He also made provision for us to keep the higher standards of those Kingdom principles. By the power of the Christ within, we shall walk the high places of the Spirit with our blessed Lord! And the multitudes who will follow us into the Kingdom, including the nominal Christians of this world, will find that it will be easier to keep and do all that Father requires of them, because of what we have accomplished on our spiritual walk unto righteousness and perfection. When we have reached our spiritual goal in Christ, which is sonship, Life and perfection, those in the church system, as well as those of the world and its sin and corruption, shall all be gloriously delivered and triumphantly set free in Christ!
In this present world the standard is, love your friends but hate (detest or love less) your enemies. That is also the present standard in the church system, as well all other man-oriented and carnal systems of this world. But it is not good enough for those of us who are called to live the fullness of the Life of Christ in the Kingdom of God! God is calling us to a higher standard! And to reach that higher standard, we must forsake the low life of the church system and submit ourselves to the higher standard of Life in the Kingdom of our Father! This will bring us into judgment before the Lord, to be cleansed, corrected and prepared spiritually for our new Life in the Kingdom of God! In the Kingdom of our Father, the Divine standard is “Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you.” And Jesus gave us the reason for this higher standard, when He said, “That ye may be the children (or, THE SONS) of your Father which is in heaven.”
To be a son of God requires the best of us that our Father can bring forth! Only the best will do in the Kingdom of our Father! And only the best is what He requires of us! How blessed we are in knowing, by the prophetic Word of the Lord, that we are making it; we are the over-comers, who are coming forth in triumphant victory. And to prove that we are making it to the fullness of Christ, it is written of us: “THESE ARE THEY which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb” (Rev. 7:14).
On one occasion, Jesus spoke about the scribes and Pharisees, which, no doubt, is what He would say about the Christians of today. Thus, we read, “And with all the people listening, He said to His disciples, Beware of the scribes, who like to walk about in long robes and love to be saluted [with honor] in places where people congregate and love the front and best seats in the (churches and) synagogues and places of distinction at feasts, Who make away with and devour widows' houses, and [to cover it up] with pretense make long prayers. They will receive the greater condemnation (the heavier sentence, the severer punishment)” (Lu. 20:45-47, AMP.) If Jesus was walking among us today, as He once was with a body of flesh and blood, He would say the same thing of Christendom today! And He is walking among us now, not as Jesus in the flesh, but as Christ, the Spirit! Jesus must certainly have known that all the people there were listening when He denounced the scribes and Pharisees that day for their useless, carnal, religious practices, but He said it anyway! It was an important lesson the disciples needed to learn, and it is one we must learn also!
Most Christians today, especially their leaders, pastors and evangelists, love to parade before the people in long, religious robes, and to sit in places of distinction at their religious ceremonies. And to add to their false and fraudulent religious pretense and cover up their deception, most leaders, as well as other Christians, will make long prayers. They will pray over meals in restaurants, which they think to be a good show of faith to the people around them, but their prayers at such times are repetitious and religious and have nothing whatever to do with communion with God! And while they pray long, ceremonious prayers in public and appear to be spiritual, they are, in fact, only being religious. Their religious practices are done only to deceive, and to cover up the truth that they are really at work taking widow’s houses as well as anything else they can get their hands on, in order to advance their carnal, fraudulent, ill-conceived, religious programs, which are created to proselyte and convert others to their religious persuasion!
Much of what most Christian leaders do today only appears to be spiritual, but all of it is totally religious. It is all done to cover up their hidden agenda, which is to deceive their unsuspecting followers and take from them! Our blessed Lord said of them, “They will receive the greater condemnation (the heavier sentence, the severer punishment)!” Because of their sinful, rebellious behavior, the holy Spirit calls the whole realm of Christendom, “MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH” (Rev. 17:5). As a result of mystery Babylon’s many sins and iniquities, God’s Word to all His elect now is: “Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues” (Rev. 18:4).
Our Father is making us to be “the children (or, the sons) of (our) your Father which is in heaven!” He is also changing us, restoring us and recreating us, so we shall be “perfect, even as (our) your Father which is in heaven is perfect!” And as we all know, this is turning out to be a long, drawn-out process! But it will be worth it all when we come forth in His glorious image and heavenly likeness! To be the sons of our Father and be perfect even as He is perfect requires that our Father give us a thorough inspection, to see where we fall short. And, let us not be deceived, for the truth is, we all “come short of the glory of God” (Rom. 3:23). Therefore, we need to be changed, restored and recreated into His glorious image and heavenly likeness! We need the cleansing, burning fires of the presence of the Lord to burn out all the dross of our lives and make us what He wants us to be! We need the presence of the Lord within us, Who is as a consuming fire, to cleanse us, restore us and give us a new relationship with our Father in the greater Glory of His holy and righteous Kingdom!
To be a son of God and be perfect as He is perfect, requires that we hear the Word of the Lord and then DO it! After Jesus raised the bar of righteousness, He then dealt with prayer! And this is what He said about giving and about prayer: “Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven. Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the (churches and) synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth: That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly. AND WHEN THOU PRAYEST, THOU SHALT NOT BE AS THE HYPOCRITES ARE: for they love to pray standing in the (churches, restaurants and) synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. BUT THOU, WHEN THOU PRAYEST ENTER INTO THY CLOSET, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly. But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, AS THE HEATHEN DO: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking. BE NOT YE THEREFORE LIKE UNTO THEM: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, BEFORE YE ASK HIM” (Matt. 6:1-8).
This is the way we will pray when our spirits and souls are in harmony with the principles of the Kingdom of God! Then, we will not pray empty, repetitious prayers, like the heathen do, but we will pray WITHOUT CEASING! And we will also pray IN SECRET, as Jesus told us to do! It is no longer acceptable for us to pray to be seen of men! It is no longer acceptable for us to pray before every meal! All such ceremonial prayers are no longer acceptable! It is no longer acceptable just to do something traditional, something that has always been done in the past. But Spirit-born prayer is always acceptable and will always bring forth a spiritual reward! To pray religiously and publically is nothing more than vain repetition! It is to pray “as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking.”
About thirty-five years ago, when we were still having meetings, we were at what we called then, a “retreat.” At that retreat was an Episcopal priest who had just received the baptism of the holy Spirit. As a newly filled believer, that priest was full of new ideas, as a result of new truth and a new anointing. He was truly refreshing to be around! When we were ready to eat, I asked him to pray. But instead of praying, his only response was, “the food is blessed by the fellowship of His presence!” And indeed it was! But as blessed as we were when he said that, I was just a little shocked! However, I soon grew spiritually to understand, by the Spirit, what that priest meant when he said that. The Spirit ultimately revealed the truth of it to me, and I came to agree with what he said that day. Instead of praying before a meal, let us KNOW that we are blessed and our food is also blessed. And then we may receive with thanksgiving all that the Lord has set before us! And we should believe also that our Father would never lead us to eat something that is harmful for us!
Prayer, whether over a meal or at other times, is not something we should do as a ritual, a ceremony, or as the result of some religious tradition or custom! Sons of God are to be led by the Spirit at all times! Therefore prayer, as well as all other things spiritual, should take place only as the holy Spirit leads! If we will be led by the Spirit, we can never go wrong! One of the shortest verses in the Bible admonishes us to “Pray without ceasing” (1 Thess 5:17). I am firmly convinced that if we are all led by the same Spirit, we will all pray without ceasing, by the leading of the same Spirit! And there is a vast difference between praying ceremoniously and religiously, as the heathen do, and praying without ceasing, as we are led to do by the holy Spirit!
Father is leading us onward and upward spiritually, from the
low lands of Christendom’s infantile experiences, to the more mature high
places with the Lord on Mount Zion, by the Spirit! Here, on Zion’s spiritual
heights, we are growing spiritually, line upon line and from glory to glory.
And in that process of growth, our Father is delivering us of the dead traditions
and the lifeless doctrines of the past. Christendom today is awash in dead rituals,
useless traditions, lifeless dogmas and false doctrines! And Father must do
a very strong and sure work of cleansing us within to deliver us, once and for
all time, of all the traditions, rituals, dogmas and doctrines of man’s
carnal and corrupt, religious systems.
When Jesus spoke to His disciples that day, after leading them up that mountain (as in Mt. 5:1), He seemed to be very critical of the religious prayers that are prayed by some, who presume to be following the Lord. What was once a Spirit-conceived prayer prayed by sincere believers soon became a lifeless, dead tradition. Carnal-minded Christians will generally take some event or practice that began in the Spirit and turn it into a lifeless tradition, by copying what the Spirit did on some former occasion! This is how tradition had its beginning! It all began with something spiritual, which carnal-minded people used and then made into something dead and traditional. May the Lord deliver us of all our tradition, for it is the enemy of truth! Dead, lifeless tradition, or the traditions of man, are always in direct opposition to the Life of the Spirit! God must deliver us of all our traditions, so we may be free to worship Him in Spirit and Truth, and serve His Kingdom purposes, without the bondages of man to hinder and restrict us!
If Jesus was critical of the scribes and Pharisees, and of their long-winded, public prayers, which He most assuredly was, then He was critical for a good reason! The reason our blessed Lord said what He did about prayer, and the tradition it had become, was because He wanted to show us a better way! He was about to teach us a prayer that we would pray, which expressed every need of mankind! And that prayer must be prayed in Truth and in Spirit for it to become Life and be received of our Father in Heaven! Jesus was prepared to teach us how to pray, but first we must rid ourselves of all the false doctrines, the old-order, traditional prayers, and the dead, lifeless rituals and empty, meaningless ceremonies with which we have become encumbered! Then, we may commune with our Father, in the Spirit and by the Spirit!
True, Spirit-Begotten Prayer From Within The Secret Place
To teach us how to pray, this is what Jesus said: “After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen” (Matt. 6:9-13). This is the prayer we are to pray in SECRET, after we have entered into our closets and have shut the door to our closet! Our Lord then said, “But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.”
By the Spirit, I sense that Jesus was referring to something other than a literal closet in our homes. If we will consider the words in the scripture above, we will soon discover that Jesus was speaking about another “closet,” other than a literal one! We all have a “closet” to enter into, and a “door,” which we should shut when we pray “in secret.” Even a homeless person can enter into his or her “closet” and pray in “secret!” The word “closet,” refers to “a chamber on the ground floor or interior of an Oriental house” (From Strong’s Concordance). The “door,” we are to shut is “a portal or entrance (the opening or the closure, literally or figuratively)” (also from Strong’s). And the word “secret,” as to pray in secret, suggests a concealed, private place or realm. All this terminology can and should be interpreted figuratively and spiritually, to show that the words spoken by Jesus refer to the “closet” that is within us, to the “door” of our spirits that we are to “shut,” and to the “secret” place of our spirits, or to the temple of the Spirit, that is within us!
Within us is a closet, a secret place, or a temple, where we may commune with our Father, in the Spirit and by the Spirit (see 1 Cor. 3:16, 17, 6:19)! And there, in that secret place, which is the temple of our spirit, we may enter in with nothing and no one else to interfere, and commune with God in the Spirit. The door we are to “shut” is the opening or the entrance into the temple of our spirits. If we will shut that door to our inner temple, then all other noises, disturbances and worldly activity will be shut out, allowing us to pray to our Father IN SECRET! The word “pray,” or “prayer,” as Jesus used it here, means to worship as well as to pray! It is worshipful prayer taking place within us, in the secret temple of our spirits, where there are no other interfering voices and no other confusing and interrupting sounds to be heard! And when we find that SECRET PLACE, and go there often to pray, commune and worship our Father, we will then have found the “place,” or “realm,” which is the true “closet,” that Jesus referred to! And when we enter into our own individual “closet,” or into the secret place of the temple of our spirits, we will know that there in that “secret place,” we may freely and with great peace, pray to our Father in secret, without ceasing!
Further, when we enter into that secret place, which represents the temple of the spirit within us, we will also discover that we never need to leave it! The temple within, when at peace by the Spirit, is a permanent home for the Spirit! No matter what our outer body is doing, whether working at a job, mowing the lawn or washing clothes, we can “remain” in the secret place of our inner temple, praying without ceasing and worshiping our Father, Who is deserving of any and all worship we might offer Him! And when the tests and trials continue and deepen, when pain and suffering torment our bodies, and when negative thoughts and even depression trouble us, we will find peace, rest and help, if we will just remain in that secret place, in the temple of our spirit with our blessed Lord, who loves us all with an abiding and everlasting Love!
Whenever you enter into the temple of your spirit, always remember
to shut the “door!” You will want and need no company in that secret
place! No stranger can enter there! And neither will any unclean spirit enter
there either! There, in that secret place, which is the temple of the Spirit
within us, we are completely alone, with no distractions, no interruptions,
and no contrary thoughts. And then the Lord will be there also to comfort, to
bless and to minister to us! How do we know He will be there? Because that is
where HE LIVES! GOD LIVES IN THE TEMPLE OF OUR SPIRITS, where nothing else can
enter that may interfere, giving us contrary thoughts and doctrines! It is a
great mystery, but our Father, Who is Spirit, can live within all His elect
at the same time, and then within all the world of humanity in the fullness
of time, and still have enough of Himself left over to fill the whole universe
with the Glory that He is! And when we acknowledge His presence within and enter
into the secret place in the spirit that is within us, we will successfully
and properly worship the Lord, and pray without ceasing, that wonderful, liberating,
Kingdom prayer Jesus taught us to pray!
Many today have not yet found that SECRET PLACE, THAT PLACE OR REALM WHERE GOD LIVES! They run from one meeting to the next, looking for the Lord, looking for truth and looking for the anointing! But HE WHO IS THE LORD, HE WHO IS THE TRUTH AND HE WHO IS THE ANOINTING, DWELLS WITHIN THEM! Many “Christians” can repeat the scripture: “Christ in you the hope of glory,” but they know not the reality of that great Truth! Its as if they live in another world! Their world is comprised of what they can touch, feel, hear, smell and describe with the words of man. But their loving and merciful Father, Who lives within them, would like them to know that He is indeed within them! The Lord of all, Who established His Temple and His Kingdom within them, would like nothing better than to commune with them as from heart to heart and spirit to spirit! Yet, they are only doing what they know to do, and may be walking in paths set before them by the Father of all! And what else can anyone do but walk with the Lord, as the Spirit leads them?
But we have a higher calling in God! Therefore, we will enter into our “closet,” in that secret place, or the temple within us, and will shut that “door,” to worship our Father and pray in secret, the prayer Jesus told us to pray! And because of our obedience, we shall reign with Christ in that glorious Kingdom for which we have been praying! When His Kingdom has come to earth in blessed completeness and greater fullness, every prayer will be answered, for Christ will reign supreme over all!
“Our Father which art in heaven.”
The prayer Jesus told us to pray begins with this phrase! When we begin our prayer with “Our Father,” we are expressing our relationship with the great God of heaven and earth as our Father! He is our Father, and we are His sons, and we acknowledge that relationship when we begin our prayer. Not only is He our Father, He also is “Our Father in heaven.” When we acknowledge our Father as being IN HEAVEN, we are declaring plainly and clearly that although He dwells within us, there is a greater and more complete portion of Him dwelling in the greater Heavens of Spirit! There is more to God than the portion of Him we have within us! Our God is the God of increase! The prophet of the Lord declared, “Of the INCREASE of his government and peace there shall be no end” (Is. 9:7). Therefore, the increasing government and peace of the Kingdom of God, both within us and in the world at large, must continue increasing, and it will, until the whole earth, including our earth, is filled with all the fullness of God! If our Father dwelt within us in fullness, we would no longer be in this carnal, fleshly body! Therefore, He Who is within us is not yet within us IN BLESSED FULLNESS! But we are getting “there” by walking obediently and faithfully with the Lord, Who is growing within us to greater fullness and completeness! What joy and victory shall be ours, when He is within us in resplendent and consummate fullness! Then, in that moment of change, we shall come forth transformed and gloriously adorned with the wonderful image and likeness of Him Who died for us and was raised again, that we might Live as He Lives!
“Hallowed be thy name”
This is the next phrase of the Kingdom prayer we are to pray (Mt. 6:9). The word “Hallowed,” means holy or consecrated, and to venerate. And to “venerate,” means to regard with great respect. We address our Father in heaven with great respect! Our Father and the Father of all, is not to be disrespectfully addressed as “the man upstairs,” or as “hey you,” or by any other such demeaning terms! No doubt, many of us have heard our Father referred to as nothing more than a man of authority, such as an earthly priest, president or king. But He is much more than that! Our Father is the Hallowed One! He is the Creator of all! He is the God of the universe, and we respect Him as that! If God’s people everywhere would respect Him as He should be respected and venerated, they would never ever think of disregarding Him and His anointed Word of Truth, Power and Authority! To respect and venerate our Father in Heaven, is to respect also His every Word and Will! To refer to our Father in Heaven as the Hallowed One, is to regard and keep His Name holy; it is to give Him the highest regard, and to venerate Him and give Him the respect and reverence He truly deserves! And the God Whom we respect and venerate as the true God, is also the One we will always obey!
Not only will we address Him as being “Hallowed,” but we shall declare, prayerfully and worshipfully, “Hallowed by thy name!” The word, “name,” as used here, includes His authority and character! Therefore, when we pray this prayer, we are acknowledging that, not only is God our Father, hallowed, holy, respected and revered, but His Name is also highly respected, venerated and acknowledged as pure and holy as well! And because we respect and hallow His Name, we would never ever think of ascribing some religious work of our own to the Lord, thus taking His Name in vain! The same respect we show toward our Heavenly Father should be given also to anything and everything which has His Name attached to it! The Lord said to Moses: “in all places where I record my name I will come unto thee, and I will bless thee” (Ex. 20:24). The Name of the Lord was given to Israel that they might be blessed of Him (Num. 6:27). The Lord also placed His Name upon Solomon’s Temple and upon the true Church.
But to those who love Him and walk with Him, the Lord has declared: “Because thou hast made the LORD, which is my refuge, even the most High, thy habitation; There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling. For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone. Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet. Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver (YOU): I will set(YOU) on high, because (YOU) hath known my name. (YOU) shall call upon me, and I will answer (YOU): I will be with (YOU) in trouble; I will deliver (YOU), and honour (YOU). With long life will I satisfy (YOU), and shew (YOU) my salvation” (Ps. 91:9-16). The Lord is our habitation! We dwell in Him, and He dwells in us! And this relationship with our Father assures us of our greater, future inheritance in the Kingdom of our Father!
The Lord would also say to us, “Fear not: for I am with thee: I will bring thy seed from the east, and gather thee from the west; I will say to the north, Give up; and to the south, Keep not back: bring my sons from far, and my daughters from the ends of the earth; Even every one that is called by my name: for I have created him for my glory, I have formed him; yea, I have made him” (Is. 43:5-7). We are those who are called by the Name of the Lord! “These are they..” who are being formed and created for the Glory of the Lord! We are His creation, the work of His hands! The world of the present is surely in bondage, just as Israel was during their sojourn in Egypt. But the Name of the Lord is with us and upon us, to show that our Father will deliver us with a much greater and more glorious deliverance than that which Israel of old experienced.
Thus, we read, “Awake, awake; put on thy strength, O Zion; put on thy beautiful garments, O (new) Jerusalem, the holy city: for henceforth there shall no more come into thee the uncircumcised and the unclean. Shake thyself from the dust; arise, and sit down, O Jerusalem: loose thyself from the bands of thy neck, O captive daughter of Zion. For thus saith the LORD, Ye have sold yourselves for nought; and ye shall be redeemed without money. For thus saith the Lord GOD, My people went down aforetime into Egypt to sojourn there; and the Assyrian oppressed them without cause. Now therefore, what have I here, saith the LORD, that my people is taken away for nought? They that rule over them make them to howl (in this day), saith the LORD; and my name continually every day is blasphemed (or used in vain). Therefore MY PEOPLE SHALL KNOW MY NAME: therefore they shall know in that day (which is this new Day) that I am he that doth speak: behold, it is I” (Is. 52:1-6). How we need to know, understand and appreciate the Name of the Lord! Then, we will never blame Him for a work that is of our own making, which is the same as taking His Name in vain!
It is written of us in this new Day: “For, behold, the day cometh (it is here now), 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. 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. 4:1-3). What a Day! This Day is burning like an oven with the intense fires of the presence of the Lord. It also is the Day of the coming forth of a people in the likeness of Christ! By the holy fires of His consuming presence, all the stubble and chaff of our Adamic nature and mind is being burned and removed from us, leaving nothing of the old, carnal, sinful nature, which once was a part of us.
And as we continue to fear His Name, Christ, the Sun of righteousness shall arise with healing in His wings, causing us to go forth and grow up, bearing His glorious image and heavenly likeness! Then, with His image and likeness and in the power of His holy Name, we “shall tread down the wicked,” which is the carnal nature in all mankind! Then we will know in fullness, all that Jesus meant, when He said, “And whatsoever ye shall ask in MY NAME, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask any thing in MY NAME, I will do it” (Jo. 14:13-14). When we are transformed, we will have the mind of Christ in glorious fullness and completeness! Then, whatever we ask of the Father, He will do it! The promise is: “At that day ye shall ask in my name: and I say NOT unto you, that I will pray the Father for you: (we may pray directly to the Father): For the Father himself loveth you, because ye have loved me, and have believed that I came out from God” (Jo. 16:26-27). To be one with Christ in fullness is to have a new relationship with our Father, as fully matured, acknowledged and authorized sons of God! When Jesus grew spiritually and matured fully, the Father said of Him: “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him” (Matt. 17:5). And He will say the same of us!
Thy Kingdom Come
This is the next portion of the prayer Jesus taught us to pray. And what a drastic statement that is! When we pray in secret to our Father in Heaven, saying these words: “Thy Kingdom come,” I wonder if we really understand what we are asking of our Father. To pray, “Thy Kingdom come,” is to ask our Father for a new administration, a new government and a totally new order, to come to the earth! It is to ask that the prophetic Word be fulfilled, which is to bring His Kingdom to earth, thus eliminating or destroying the old order and all that it represents! And that new administration is so completely new and revolutionary, that its/His coming will totally remove and eradicate all the systems of man from the face of the earth! Then, the scripture shall be fulfilled, which says, “And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband” (Rev. 21:1-2).
Just as surely as there shall be a new heaven and a new earth, so surely is it that the first heaven and the first earth shall pass away! This first earth has literally been destroyed by man and man’s mismanaged and corrupt governments! There will be no great sorrow when this earth, with all its corruption, mismanagement, sin and unrighteousness, passes away. Rather, man, as well as the whole creation, shall rejoice with joy unspeakable to see the new and glorious handiwork of our Father, when He brings forth that NEW EARTH! It will be a new earth wherein dwells righteousness! The new earth will be adorned with His glory! The new earth will abound with blessed fruitfulness! The new earth will not be corrupted or defiled by man’s unrighteousness and mis-management! The new earth will no longer be under the curse; no longer will weeds, thorns, briars and thistles infest the ground (Gen. 3:17-18) and hinder the growth of life-bearing plants; but the new earth shall bring forth without such hindrances and bondages! The new earth will shine with the splendor and the glory of the Lord! The knowledge of the glory of the Lord will then cover the earth, as the waters cover the sea! It is my firm conviction that the new earth will not have the changing seasons, with the extremes of cold or hot, and the problems associated with snow and ice, rain and sleet, earthquakes and tornados, or wind storms and hail storms. But the new earth will be blessed of the Lord with His peace and rest, an even and acceptable temperature, moderate sunshine, and water that springs up as a mist from beneath the ground to water the face of the earth, as it did in Eden’s lovely Garden! Thus, it is written of the Garden of Eden, “But there went up a mist from the earth, and watered the whole face of the ground” (Gen. 2:6).
What beauty, glory and wonder yet awaits us in the fullness of time! The glory and wonder of the new earth is almost impossible for us to imagine, but we can dream, can’t we? When our spirits and our souls soar to new heights in God, there is no limit to the things we can see, by the Spirit! Combine our renewed minds and our anointed spirits with the quickened Word of God, and we may be able to see more clearly all the things our Father has prepared for those who love Him! Then, we will be able to see beyond the struggles and conflicts of this midnight hour, into the dawning of the new morning of this Kingdom age, all the things that God has prepared for His creation when His sons are fully manifest! And when we do see beyond this present, spiritual darkness, we will also see that our processing has been worth it all; all of it will then be as nothing when compared with the glory that shall be revealed IN US, WITH US AND FOR US, when the new Kingdom morning dawns in all His glorious fullness and completeness! Until that joyous moment, we will enter into our “closet” and will continue to pray IN SECRET to the great God of Heaven and Earth, saying: “OUR FATHER WHICH ART IN HEAVEN, HALLOWED BE THY NAME. THY KINGDOM COME.”
Paul and Emily Mueller
P O BOX 25055, Portland, OR 97298-0055