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How nice of you to drop in and visit my page. It's actually not really about myself, but about the Lord Jesus Christ. This is a place you can come, should you find time, and find encouragement and free resources for spiritual growth. I pray you will be blessed and provoked to follow on to know the Lord intimately yourself. Seek HIM and HIS Face for HE alone is WORTHY!! He alone is lovely! Most of what is written on this blog is written by myself, during my study time with the Lord unless otherwise stated. If it's otherwise, the author's name will be included.

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Thursday, August 14, 2008

By His Own Power

1Co 6:14 And God hath both raised up the Lord, and will also raise up us by his own power.

That word ‘raised up’ in the original Greek, means to waken, rouse, literally from disease, death, lying down, or sitting. Figuratively, from obscurity, inactivity, ruins, non-existence. To awake, lift up, raise again, or up, rear up, stand, take up. He’s not just talking about the resurrection or the rapture here. I think he’s also talking about raising us up from our failures, and despair over them. Remember, he’s addressing a people who had failed here. They could have been afraid of offending this one who was in sin, so they didn’t confront him. Or perhaps there was something of the world still holding their hearts and they thought nothing much about what he was doing-taking it lightly. But sin is sin, and if you condone it, you are guilty too by association. But he can raise us up from the dust of our failures, he can wake us up and lift us up and stand us on our feet and say “now, this is the way, walk ye in it!” Isa 30:21. He will also raise up us by his own power. Yes, he raised the Lord Jesus from the death of the grave. His flesh had to die. If we will let him through his Spirit help us die to our own ways, own wants and thoughts and take up his, and put on Jesus, let us take our self life to the cross and crucify it with Jesus, consider it dead, then he will raise us up in his power, to do his will. But we can’t lead and be in charge. Only the Head is in charge. He will do this by his own power. It will be a miracle, his force, his ability, his might, and he has an abundance of power and strength to do this.

Rom 13:14 But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfill the lusts thereof.

Zec 4:6 Then he answered and spoke unto me, saying, This is the word of the LORD unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts.

We aren’t to with forethought provide care or supply to please our flesh. We are not to do this because if we please our flesh we can’t please God. Our flesh doesn’t and can’t be agreeable to God. It’s two contrary natures. The one sinful and rebellious, the One Holy and pure. By “flesh” that word means (aside from the obvious) the body, human nature, with its frailties, and passions, and carnal thinking of self. In the world it’s “self first, self now, self always.”

Col 2:6 As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him:

To “walk” in him means to tread, walk , figuratively to live, follow, go and be occupied with. As I’ve already learned there are two ways he is received. One, is to associate with, know about, hear and learn about. Then there’s the other meaning-when you’ve heard it and reached out eagerly with force and laid hold on him, and drew him to you, embraced him, and took him in and made him welcome, and committed yourself to him and whatever he says is right. Oh, he is truly priceless. Matchless. He is more than a Masterpiece, more than a Treasure, he is EVERYTHING.

1Co 6:17 But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit.

One. United completely. Joined, as in marriage. In the Greek, that word ‘joined’ means to glue, to stick like glue, cleave, keep company. By implication this type of joining is very intimate, it’s the joining of spirits-two becoming one. United, fastened together. United in purpose, and all other ways. The only comparison I can think of is the joining of a man and his wife together in intimacy. Their two bodies become as one flesh. Joined. In complete agreement.

Eph 2:22 In whom ye also are builded together for a habitation of God through the Spirit.

Imagine-he’s not just content for me to walk with him, he comes to dwell IN me. There’s no greater intimacy, he knows me better than I do. Nothing is hidden from him. Yet, he still loves me. He doesn’t get fed up and walk out the door. He knows my anguished heart recognizes its own shortcomings and yearns in a way I can’t describe for his purity and holiness. When I looked up the word “holiness” I did not find anything that mentioned how I dress or look. There was nothing mentioned about how much I had or didn’t have. It said “pure, without mixture.” Pure. Without mixture at all. Can’t have God and the world. You’ll love one and hate the other. You’re either all his, or not. He won’t take half-way. He knows for new believers it’s a growing process and you don’t grow up into that or into him overnight. But there comes a time in our lives, when we have to make a decision. Am I going to sell out to God and give him everything I am or am I going to hold out on him? Am I going to give him part of me? No, I want to give it all to him. Anything I would hold back would be corrupted because he wouldn’t have no part in it. What good would that be? It has to be HIM.

1Co 6:19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?

1Co 6:20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.

If you look at this complete chapter in context, of 1 Cor 6, you know that the Apostle Paul was dealing with a certain body of believers in the Corinthian Church who had tolerated sin in their midst, for one of their members was indulging in sexual immorality. He was having an affair with his stepmother, and people knew it, and accepted it, and still fellowshipped with him. Paul was explaining how that as believers we are placed in the Body of Christ, and as such we need to realize we are members-parts of the Body of Christ Jesus, the Lord of glory. He is the Head of the Body. The Body is to follow the Head, and should not defile the vessel of the Lord. If it does it cannot long remain joined to the Lord. Light has no fellowship with darkness. But then he gives a glorious word of hope, that God can by his own power raise us up, just as he raised Christ from the dead. Where there is repentance, and forsaking of sin, He can raise us up out of our failures, flaws, fears, and raise us above the drawing power of the world, he can fill us with himself as we are joined to him, as we determine to cleave to him. And the world will have no attraction to us any longer. We can see the world as it really is-a dark and desperate place-not a place to run to when the Christian life gets a little hard. Walking with God is a supernatural life full of wonder and excitement for those who will yield and let God have control of their lives. It’s a life of peace, and rest, and contentment. He can thrill my soul like no one ever has, or could. He brings joy-for as I realize and begin to understand his wonderful love for me and how far he’s went to secure me in himself, and the price he paid for me, it’s humbling, mind-numbing. Yes, there will be suffering, yes there will be hard times, but knowing we are in his hands at all times and nothing comes that he doesn’t allow, and knowing and trusting his love for us sustains us when we have to face trials. Knowing he goes through it with us and never leaves us strengthens us. God doesn’t have spoiled brats. He suffered greatly, and I should not listen to anyone who tells me being a Christian means I won’t have to. That is a false gospel. Am I better than the Son of God? No. The Bible even tells us that all who live godly in Christ will suffer. (1 Peter 2:21)

Eph 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:

I found out something interesting in this verse. The first word “blessed” means “adorable, blessed” (bless-ed) . But the second word “blessed” means to speak well of, to bless, thank, or invoke a benediction upon, to prosper, or praise. This is from the Greek word “eulogeo” where we get our word “eulogy”. Let that settle in for a moment. This is saying when God blessed us with these spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ, he has eulogized us. A eulogy, according to Webster’s is “praise; a speech or writing in commendation of a person, on account of his valuable qualities or services.” Now pause a moment and let THAT settle in before we go on here. A eulogy is given only of someone who has died!!! Remember when Jesus said he that follows me must deny himself and take up his cross?

You are not your own, you’ve been bought with a price, we’ve already read that. We need to understand and believe and accept it and begin to live and walk accordingly if we are not already. We need to take our plans, our ambitions, our desires, our thoughts, ways, and attitudes, and bring them to the cross and leave them there-reckoning ourselves, as Paul said, dead to the ways and wants of this world and our flesh. This is a hard saying. I know that. If you are not in love with Christ this will make you recoil in horror. But if you can hear what the Word is saying here, with those spiritual ears, and see it through the eyes of God-what Glory is waiting for those who do this! Oh, I’m not there yet, but I’m coming, Lord. He’s leading. And this time, by his grace, I’m not backing up or down. I’m going through. I’m going in. I’m going up!

Joh 12:26 If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me, him will my Father honor.

If we serve him, we are to wait on him, minister to his need. What on earth could the Lord who is ruler of all, owns the universe, all of them, and all in them, need? And let me tell you, my mind has had so much difficulty wrapping itself around this truth-while my heart cries out for it. He died to reconcile us to the Father. Why? Because he loves us. Because he wants a personal, intimate relationship with us. Fellowship. This breaks me up. This God who is so holy he told Israel, don’t you bring me a sacrifice with a spot or blemish. Don’t you bring me your weak and sick and lame. Bring me your best. And I look at me, and the more I read his word, the more I see in his mirror everything I want but am not yet. The trials he has allowed in my life have revealed things in my heart I didn’t know were there and left me feeling ill. Sickened. Like a hypocrite. All I have to offer him is me. A human being with too much carnality, who despite her best intentions gets provoked to wrath at times, whose heart is not perfect, but rife with unclean things of bitterness and resentment. And fear. Insecurity. In short, polluted. And that is the best I can bring the God I love so much. Why does that make me cry? Why does that break me up inside? There is nothing good I can bring him in me, and I have finally began to see this in the Light of His Truth, and I feel broken. Desperate for him, but afraid to approach such pure Holiness with such a pathetic offering. But I can’t stay here. It’s not what I think that matters, it’s not what I see, it’s what HE SAYS that counts.

Eph 1:6 To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.

Eph 1:7 In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;

Oh, praise God for the blood! Hallelujah for the One who was willing to suffer and die so I could be free to love him and serve him and live with him forever! Without Fear! (Luk 1:74) I thank God our Pastor has been reminding us what God said to Joshua “Be strong and be of good courage, you’ve not been this way before. But God is going to bring you in to his promises!” Sheer faith in the God I love, in his desire to have me with him (as inconceivable as that is to my mind) is what I must have. Jesus Christ faced the death of his body on the cross. He had to trust that the love of God would not allow him to stay dead, that the power of God would raise him up again. He committed it all to his Father’s hands. He came not to do his own will, but the Father’s. As we was in the world, so must we be. The world we live in is a wilderness. We can’t do this ourselves. We can’t raise ourselves above it. But he can.

Son 8:5 Who is this that cometh up from the wilderness, leaning upon her beloved? I raised thee up under the apple tree: there thy mother brought thee forth: there she brought thee forth that bore thee.

Son 8:6 Set me as a seal upon thine heart, as a seal upon thine arm: for love is strong as death; jealousy is cruel as the grave: the coals thereof are coals of fire, which hath a most vehement flame.

Son 8:7 Many waters cannot quench love, neither can the floods drown it: if a man would give all the substance of his house for love, it would utterly be contemned.

My Beloved is the Lord. His love for me was strong enough that he faced and conquered death. Nothing has changed his love for me. Oh, Father, open thou mine eyes that I may see and know. And understand. Only you can help me not be afraid because in my heart I want to die so I can see you. You told Moses no man can see my face and live. So crucify this flesh, destroy the carnal mind, burn up the chaff, consume the flesh, and be glorified in me and through me. Take this pathetic little offering and break it, bless it and multiply it that others can see you in this dark world. All I want is you Lord. Your way, your word, your life. Your heart for those around me. Take me higher. Take me deeper. Bring me in to your fullness. Nothing else is going to satisfy.

It can seem like such an unattainable prize. But with God, nothing is impossible. I was thinking on these things today, and the Holy Spirit brought something to my remembrance that made me want to squeal with delight. It relieved me over something I’d been fretting about for weeks now.

Remember Abraham and Sarah? Remember how God had promised them new life? They waited on the promise, tried to help it along by their flesh and Ishmael was the result. But God did not let their failures stop the promise. They didn’t give up hope that God would fulfill his word. Sarah’s womb was dead. In Luke 1 Elisabeth’s womb was dead. But God put this wonderful new life there. They longed for life, and they loved God, and they could not do it themselves. God deliberately waited until they were unable to do it, until it was humanly impossible for them to do it. We can’t have the life of God except he put it in us. And it is such a precious thing, such a treasure, not to be taken lightly. In 1 Sam 1, Hannah was hungry for new life but was barren. She cried out to God, just like Abraham did, just like Zechariah and Elisabeth did. God heard their prayers. He answered with new life. He took people who were too old and unable to give birth to new life, renewed their youth and gave them new life. Children. Children who loved and served him. Isaac, and John the Baptist. Samuel. I had been looking at my flaws, and failures, and felt like I’d missed it, and I want the life of Christ flowing through me. I hunger for more of him. I know I’m not worthy, in myself, but he is willing to work in me and help me be what I could never be. He can make me be what I can’t. He can raise me up in heavenly places and I could never raise myself up there with him.

Rom 4:17 (As it is written, I have made thee a father of many nations,) before him whom he believed, even God, who quickeneth the dead, and calleth those things which be not as though they were.

Oh, that scripture gives me hope. He calls things which are not as though they are!!!!!!!!! He sees me as what I am in Christ, not in my own flesh.

Rom 4:19 And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about a hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sarah's womb:

Think about it, saints! I don’t have to consider that I can’t do it in my flesh, that I am incapable of doing or having this-because without Him, I can do nothing. That is how he set it up! It was deliberate on his part. With God nothing is impossible. Nothing is too hard for him. He wants me to have Himself. He said it’s his good pleasure to give his children the kingdom. I can’t do it, but he can! And what blows my mind is he’s giving me the assurance he WANTS TO DO THIS, not just for me, but for all his children who lack this. For those who will yield to him and believe him. When you start believing what you read in his Word and applying it to yourself, it gets so exciting!

Eph 2:6 And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:

Now, this is a little different meaning than in Eph 1:3. When he’s raised us up here, it means to rouse from death, to revive spiritually, rise with. (Christ). In order to attain this-and the seat has been saved for us, that is what it means when he says “he has made us sit together” literally in the Greek that means to give or take a seat in company with, make to sit down together. Oh, he’s given a seat to us in the heavenlies with Christ. He’s reserved us a seat. But in order to take that seat, we have to die to self. We have to fully surrender our selves to him. Nothing of flesh can inherit the kingdom of God. Nothing of flesh can stand in his presence. His presence would consume it. We have to be in the Spirit.

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