Archive for the ‘Prophet’ Tag

The Importance of the Prophetic   14 comments

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“Head of a Prophet” by Mikhail Vrubel

This is an excerpt from a post published on the blog Grace and Truth:

The Importance of the Prophetic

The prophet represents God. He goes forth from the presence of God and speaks what God has given him to speak. The prophet speaks the Word of God in the power of the Holy Spirit. It is not just speaking the Word, it is speaking it forth in the power of an anointing borne out of intimacy with Jesus Himself. The prophet is the ambassador of Christ in this world, and so the prophet and his message are inextricably linked. A true prophet cannot be separated from the message he brings.

We see this with Ezekiel. God had a message for Israel and He had His prophet to act out what he was proclaiming to Israel. He had to lie down for a certain number of days as a sign against rebellious Israel. (Ezekiel 4)

One cannot receive the prophet himself, whilst rejecting the message he brings. And vice versa is true.

Neither can the true prophet be separated from God. When God sends someone to speak forth His Word, then he/she is speaking it on God’s behalf. Rejection of the prophet and his message therefore is rejection of God and His Word.

He who receives you receives me, and He who receives Me receives Him who sent Me.” Matthew 10:40

The Way of the Flesh

The rejection of the Word of God is normal. What I mean by that is that it is the way of human flesh.   The flesh always resists the Spirit. It always has and it always will. The flesh has its eyes blinded and its heart hardened.

But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.” 1 Corinthians 2:14

I don’t know about you, but since I was born again I left behind “normal”. I don’t want the way of the flesh anymore, I am desperate for the way of the Spirit. As followers of Christ, we who are now living by the Spirit should be able to receive and hear what the Spirit is saying to the Church regardless of whether it is a message of encouragement/edification or whether it is a message of correction/reproof. You see, the Holy Spirit wants to work in us to conform us to the image of Christ and sometimes the old needs to be torn down first before the new can be built.

Rejection of the Prophetic Word

The consequence of the rejection of the prophetic Word is judgment and death.

This may sound harsh, but there is a spiritual principle at work here.

For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life” Galations 6:8

Because the Word of God is alive (Hebrews 4:12) when it is received it takes root in order to bring forth life, just like a little seed.

However when the Word of God is rejected, that place where life was meant to dwell becomes a vacuum. Nature abhors a vacuum and something has to take that place.   What enters in is corruption.  When Christ is actively rejected after the Word has been preached, a new level of corruption enters into that individual/church/city.

Jesus told the disciples what action to take with those who reject them and their words:

And whoever will not receive you nor hear your words, when you depart from that house or city, shake off the dust from your feet. Assuredly I say to you, it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorra in the day of judgment than for that city!” Matthew 10:14, 15

The action of the shaking of dust from one’s feet is an act of judgment against that place.

“The Jews thought the land of Israel so peculiarly holy, that when they came home from any heathen country, they stopped at the borders and shook or wiped off the dust of it from their feet, that the holy land might not be polluted with it. Therefore the action here enjoined was a lively intimation, that those Jews who had rejected the Gospel were holy no longer, but were on a level with heathens and idolaters.”

–John Wesley

Jesus brings Sodom and Gomorrah into the picture as a picture of God’s judgment.  It was an awful judgment of fire and brimstone against awful sin. Yet they were judged apart from the gospel of Jesus Christ—it had not been preached to them. How much more severely will God judge the place to which the gospel has been sent and rejected?

__________

Here is my comment to the above post:

Excellent post. Sometimes it is not merely the words of a prophet that are rejected by certain people, but the prophet’s lifestyle of obedience.

But here is some more on a prophet’s words being rejected: Back in 1989 [or 1990] I was attending an Assembly of God in Ames, Iowa. I stood up and gave a testimony on how I was delivered from many demons (I think it is one of the most beautiful and powerful testimonies that I have ever given—it really glorifies God). After I gave my testimony, the pastor (Gary Pilcher) jumped out of his seat, threw the assistant pastor out of the pulpit and told me in no uncertain terms that he did not like my testimony and that I should leave the teaching to him. (I didn’t think I was doing any teaching, I was just giving a testimony of the Holy Spirit’s powerful working in my life.)

Six months later I gave a similar testimony about how I was delivered from many demons (in the mouth of two or three witnesses let every word be established). In my spirit, half of the congregation received my testimony, but the same pastor replied somewhat negatively—I don’t remember exactly what he said. Immediately, the Lord told me to take the shoes off of my feet, shake the dust off of my shoes and walk out of that church. I didn’t do it because I felt sorry for Pastor Pilcher. After the church service, I walked out the door and Pastor Pilcher followed me outside and spoke to me privately. Basically, what he said is that my testimony glorified Satan. When Gary Pilcher said that, he blasphemed the Holy Ghost; he will never get saved. A few years later, Gary Pilcher’s son died of cancer.

The last I heard, Gary Pilcher was the assistant supervisor of the Assemblies of God in central Iowa: when you reject Christ for a living, you can really be promoted up the ladder in the world system of churchianity. The wages of sin (rejecting a prophet’s testimony) is death—spiritual death and physical death. Touch not my anointed, do my prophets no harm.

_____

“Nothing in this world is harder than speaking the truth, nothing easier than flattery.”

–Fyodor Dostoyevsky

This is Sodom! This is Sodom!
Behold, I Send Unto You Prophets
Jackson, Wyoming Fire, 2012

The Prophet’s Call   7 comments

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Prophet Amos

This is from the blog Susanne Schuberth’s Poetry:

The Prophet’s Call
By Susanne Schuberth

Those who are aliens here on earth
Endure tormenting pangs of birth
They make the call to share their pains
Alas, the whore is bound in chains
She’s looking for applause of crowds
The prophets though are His ‘all-outs’

They call the stout to leave the wall
So they can hear the desert’s call
That calls for you and me, my friend
To leave that church which is a blend
Of truth and lies we might not see
And if we stay, we won’t get free

God calls us to the narrow path
So that we may escape His wrath
That is to come so very soon
When sun is darkened, and the moon
Where you can hear the weak one say
“He strengthened me, I’m on His way”

Don’t we reject the voice we hear
Through prophets’ words and by our ear
They urge us that we make our choice
And listen to His longing voice
The Lord’s still speaking to our heart
Because He wills that we take part

In joining them wholeheartedly
Who prayed to Him for eyes to see
The wickedness down to the core
Of Satan’s wife, his bride, his whore
See, all the years she took from Him
The fat, the wool, the sheep at whim

Still there is time for us to come
Unto the Lord before it’s done
The prophets who stand in the breach
Were called for us to pray and preach
Don’t we despise their words that hurt
Since Christ now wants to sift from dirt

A Prophet’s Eyes
The Prophetic Voice
Josephus on John the Baptist

Posted June 21, 2015 by Tim Shey in Uncategorized

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The Prophetic Voice   12 comments

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This is from the blog Grace and Truth:

I have a Word from God.  Judge it, accept or reject it.  Whatever, but this is it:

What this generation needs more than ever is the Prophetic Voice.

A prophetic voice under the anointing of the Spirit to cut through the clouded numbness that has settled over the Church.

A prophetic voice to divide truth from confusion.  But even more than that: the prophetic voice to speak forth the oracles of God.

Don’t you see? We are now so bogged down with questions and confusion.  What to do about/with homosexuals, how to deal with transgenders, how to appeal to the youth, how to stop people leaving our churches.

To hell with all that!  What we really need is prophetic voices raised up.

Don’t you see? We are now in a period the church has never seen before.  A time of such manifest wickedness and gross darkness.  The things we’ve been busy with in church over the last few decades ain’t cutting it anymore.  How are we to answer these things? With endless discussions, conversations and conferences?  There’s no time anymore to mess around.  If you’ve been waiting for God to do something then I am here to tell you what it is:

He is telling you to lift up your voice now, and be not afraid.

Now more than ever we need those who are unafraid to stand in the midnight hour. We need men and women with the courage of their convictions to speak forth the Word of truth.  Once again we need WATCHMEN TO STAND ON THE WALLS.  To take up the Sword of the Spirit in the power of the Spirit.  To cut through the crap! I’m sorry but that is the least offensive word I can use for what I see.

I see the Church bowed down under a weight of confusion.  I see a Church struggling to cope and turning to the wisdom of the world.  I see a Church in its sad desire to be pleasing to this world ultimately conforming to this world and losing its witness.  I see a Church in the depths of horrendous spiritual adultery.

I see a Church turned in on itself.  I hear more messages about Self than about Christ.  I hear the psycho-babble of heathens infiltrating the pulpit.  I hear calls to “find yourself” from ministers of the gospel.  The Spirit is grieved and my heart breaks.

But there is a cry from His heart that is breaking forth amongst the remnant.  That cry is for the Sword to be picked up again.  To be wielded in the courage, power and strength of the Holy Spirit.

I have seen it I tell you.  When the Word of God goes forth in power a cry rises up from the Church.  She recognizes her Master’s voice and she is desperate and hungry to hear it again.  I’ll tell you something else: the world also recognizes it.  They may reject it, but when there’s an anointing they know it and they respect it.

Redeeming-The-TimeThat is the only way forward now O People of the Cross.  The only thing that can cut through now is the Sword of the prophetic voice.  There is no time left for anything else.

“Lift it up your voice with strength

Lift it up, be not afraid” Isaiah 40:8

Lift it up! Lift it up in your homes.  Lift it up in your work place, lift it up in your church, lift it up on Facebook, lift it up on Twitter, lift it up in the streets. Lift it up be not afraid, lift it up!

Holy Spirit bless this word to go forth, in Jesus’ Name Amen

A Prophet’s Eyes
Scribes and Prophets
A Harlot, an Emergent and a Pope Walked into a Bar . . .

Posted June 11, 2015 by Tim Shey in Uncategorized

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Enoch: The Seventh from Adam   4 comments

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Genesis 5: 21-24:  “And Enoch lived sixty and five years, and begat Methuselah:  And Enoch walked with God after he begat Methuselah three hundred years, and begat sons and daughters:  And all the days of Enoch were three hundred sixty and five years:  And Enoch walked with God:  and he was not, for God took him.”

Hebrews 11: 5:  “By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found, because God had translated him:  for before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased God.”

Jude 14 & 15:  “And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold the Lord cometh with ten thousand of his saints, To execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against him.”

How did Enoch walk with God?  How can someone be spiritually intimate with the Lord before the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ?

Very little is written about Enoch.  According to the Bible, Enoch lived 365 years; the last 300 years of his life Enoch walked with God.  The number 365 is significant.  There are 365 days in a complete year.  Enoch living 365 years is a foreshadowing of the complete man of God (man of faith or man of obedience).

Recently I have heard of a pastor who preached that Adam and Eve were banished from the Garden of Eden, not because they sinned against God, but because they did not repent of their sin.  Scripture never tells us that Adam repented of his sin or that Adam walked with God after he and Eve were kicked out of the Garden of Eden.  So why was Enoch different?  Enoch was born with Adamic Sin.  How did Enoch walk with God?

Enoch, no doubt, offered the required blood sacrifices unto the Lord for his sins and the sins of his family.  This was before the Law, the Prophets and the New Testament.  Not only did Enoch, by faith, offer an excellent sacrifice unto the Lord, but I believe, that Enoch truly repented of his sin and believed on the finished work of the cross before the fact.

Faith in God transcends time and space.  The Lamb of God was slain before the foundation of the world (Revelation 13: 8):  somehow Enoch knew this truth from oral tradition or from revealed knowledge.  He put his faith in the coming Messiah, died to self-will and was able to walk with God.

Enoch, by faith, was translated and did not experience death.  Before he was translated, his testimony was that he had pleased God.  It is only by faith (obedience) that we are able to please God.

Enoch 1:9:  “And behold! He cometh with ten thousands of His holy ones To execute judgement upon all, And to destroy all the ungodly: And to convict all flesh Of all the works of their ungodliness which they have ungodly committed, And of all the hard things which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him.”

Time, Timelessness and Jesus Christ

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Enoch

Posted April 28, 2015 by Tim Shey in Uncategorized

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Therefore Deliver up their Children to the Famine   7 comments

Famine in Ukraine

Jeremiah 18: 21:  “Therefore deliver up their children to the famine, and pour out their blood by the force of the sword; and let their wives be bereaved of their children, and be widows; and let their men be put to death; let their young men be slain by the sword in battle.”

California Drought
This is Sodom!  This is Sodom!
Brian’s Dream about the United States and Africa
Dimitru Duduman—America Will Burn
Ukraine Famine
The Drought in the United States is Because of Sin
Coming Famine . . . A Second Dream
A Sword

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Posted August 4, 2014 by Tim Shey in Uncategorized

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Whatever Happened To Worship? by A.W. Tozer   1 comment

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Hebrews 11: 21:  “By faith Jacob, when he was a dying, blessed both the sons of Joseph; and worshipped, leaning upon the top of his staff.”

Excerpts from Tozer’s Whatever Happened To Worship?:

“Did you know that the often-quoted Jean-Paul Sartre describes his turning to philosophy and hopelessness as a turning away from a secularistic church?  He says, ‘I did not recognize in the fashionable God who was taught me, Him who was waiting for my soul.  I needed a Creator; I was given a businessman!'”

“The strange and wonderful thing about it is that truly winsome and loving saints do not even know about their attractiveness.  The great saints of past eras did not know they were great saints.  If someone had told them, they would not have believed it, but those around them knew that Jesus was living His life in them.”

“Any untrained, unprepared, unspiritual empty rattletrap of a person can start something religious and find plenty of followers who will listen and pay and promote it.  It may become very evident that he or she had never heard from God in the first place.”

“True worship is to be so personally and hopelessly in love with God that the idea of a transfer of affection never even remotely exists.”

“Another kind of unacceptable worship is symbolized by the attitude of the Samaritans in the Bible.  The Old Testament history reveals that Jeroboam, the first king of Israel after it became the Northern Kingdom, set up two places of worship.  He wanted to be sure his people were weaned from their habit of worshiping at Jerusalem.  He installed golden calves to be worshiped at Jerusalem.  He installed golden calves to be worshiped in convenient places, Bethel and Dan.

“The heresy of Samaritanism—the practice of picking out what we like to worship and rejecting what we do not like—is widespread.

“Actually, it has opened up a whole new field for applied psychology and humanism under a variety of religious disguises.  In this context, men and women set themselves as judges of what the Lord has said.  Instead of getting down on their knees and letting the Lord judge them, they stand with pride and judge the Lord.”

“The stark, tragic fact is that the efforts of many people to worship are unacceptable to God.  Without an infusion of the Holy Spirit there can be no true worship.  This is serious.  It is hard for me to rest peacefully at night knowing that millions of cultured, religious people are merely carrying on church traditions and religious customs and they are not actually reaching God at all.”

“In Europe many generations ago, the dear old saint of God, Brother Lawrence, was on his deathbed.  Rapidly losing his physical strength, he witnessed to those gathered around him:  ‘I am not dying.  I am just doing what I have been doing for the past 40 years, and doing what I expect to be doing for all eternity?’

“‘What is that?’ he was asked.  He replied quickly, ‘I am worshiping the God I love!'”

“The man whom God will use must be undone.  He must be a man who has seen the King in His beauty.”

“How long do you think it will be, if Jesus tarries, before some of the amazing new churches like those in the primitive Baliem Valley of Irian Jaya, Indonesia, will be sending gospel missionaries to Canada and the United States?”

“Through that encounter I realized that unless we arouse ourselves spiritually, unless we are brought back to genuine love and adoration and worship, our candlestick could be removed.  We may need missionaries coming to us indeed.  We may need them to show us what genuine and vital Christianity is!”

“I am going to say something to you which will sound strange.  It even sounds strange to me as I say it, because we are not used to hearing it within our Christian fellowships.  We are saved to worship God.  All that Christ had done for us in the past and all that He is doing now leads to this one end.”

“Why should the church of Jesus Christ be a spiritual school where hardly anyone ever graduates from the first grade?”

“The sum total of the deep and eternal wisdom of the age lies in Jesus Christ as a treasure hidden away.  There is no kind of true wisdom that cannot be found within Him.  All the deep eternal purposes of God reside in Him because His perfect wisdom enables Him to plan far ahead.  All history becomes the slow development of His eternal purposes.”

“In relation to Jesus Christ, it has been the uniqueness and the perfection of His moral beauty that has charmed even those who claimed to be His enemies throughout the centuries of history.  We do not have any record of Hitler saying anything against the moral perfections of Jesus.  One of the great philosophers, Nietzsche, himself an instrument of antichristian forces in this world, died finally beating his forehead on the floor and moaning, ‘That man Jesus I love.  I don’t like Paul.’

“Nietzsche objected to Paul’s theology of justification and salvation by faith, but he was strangely moved within by the perfections of moral beauty found in the life and character of Jesus, the Christ, the Lord of all beauty.”

“If you do not know Him and worship Him, if you do not long to reside where He is, if you have never known wonder and ecstasy in your soul because of His crucifixion and resurrection, your claim of Christianity is unfounded.  It cannot be related to the true Christian life and experience at all.

“Meanwhile, I believe that we as Christians must become willing to allow every ugly thing in our lives to be crucified.  We must indeed worship the Lord of all beauty in spirit and in truth.  This is not a popular thing, for so many Christians insist that they must be entertained while they are being edified.”

“We have such smooth, almost secularized ways of talking people into the kingdom of God that we can no longer find men and women willing to seek God through the crisis of encounter.  When we bring them into our churches, they have no idea of what it means to love and worship God because, in the route through which we have brought them, there has been no personal encounter, no personal crisis, no need of repentance—only a Bible verse with a promise of forgiveness.”

“I think the prophets of God saw farther into the centuries and into the mysteries of God than we can with our great modern telescopes and electronic means of measuring lights years and planets and galaxies.

“The prophets saw the Lord our God.  They saw Him in His beauty, and they tried to describe Him.

“They described Him as radiantly beautiful and fair, a winsome being.  They said that he was royal and that He was gracious.  They described Him as a majestic being; and yet they noted his meekness.  They saw Him as righteous and filled with truth.  They tried to describe the manner of His love, with its gladness and joy and fragrance.

“When the prophets try to describe for me the attributes, the graces, the worthiness of the God who appeared to them and dealt with them, I feel that I can kneel down and follow their admonition:  ‘He is thy Lord—worship thou Him.'”

“Two of Spurgeon’s greatest sermons were ‘God in The Silence’ and ‘God in The Storm.’  The heart that knows God can find God anywhere.  I surely join with Spurgeon in the truth that a person filled with the Spirit of God, a person who has met God in a living encounter can know the joy of worshiping Him, whether in the silences of life or in the storms of life.”

Josephus on John the Baptist   11 comments

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“The Beheading of John the Baptist” by Massimo Stanzione, 1634

Psalm 105: 15:  “Touch not mine anointed, and do my prophets no harm.”

This is from Wikipedia:

An account of John the Baptist is found in all extant manuscripts of the Jewish Antiquities (book 18, chapter 5, 2) by Flavius Josephus (37–100):[26]

“Now some of the Jews thought that the destruction of Herod’s army came from God, and that very justly, as a punishment of what he did against John, that was called the Baptist: for Herod slew him, who was a good man, and commanded the Jews to exercise virtue, both as to righteousness towards one another, and piety towards God, and so to come to baptism; for that the washing [with water] would be acceptable to him, if they made use of it, not in order to the putting away [or the remission] of some sins [only], but for the purification of the body; supposing still that the soul was thoroughly purified beforehand by righteousness. Now when [many] others came in crowds about him, for they were very greatly moved [or pleased] by hearing his words, Herod, who feared lest the great influence John had over the people might put it into his power and inclination to raise a rebellion, (for they seemed ready to do any thing he should advise,) thought it best, by putting him to death, to prevent any mischief he might cause, and not bring himself into difficulties, by sparing a man who might make him repent of it when it would be too late. Accordingly he was sent a prisoner, out of Herod’s suspicious temper, to Macherus*, the castle I before mentioned, and was there put to death. Now the Jews had an opinion that the destruction of this army was sent as a punishment upon Herod, and a mark of God’s displeasure to him.”[27]

Refusing to Hear
Who was Flavius Josephus?
The Archko Volume—Historical Evidence of Jesus Christ
Pilate’s Report on the Arrest, Trial and Crucifixion of Jesus
The Spirit of a Prophet
Wearing a Rough Garment

“Preachers make pulpits famous; prophets make prisons famous.”

–Leonard Ravenhill

*The Fortress of Machaerus
Reject God’s Prophets At Your Own Peril
Of John the Baptist, and the Baptism of Our Lord (Book of the Bee)
Truth breedeth hatred

Behold, I Send Unto You Prophets   5 comments

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Matthew 23: 27-31:  “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness.   Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.   Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because ye build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous,   And say, If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets.   Wherefore ye be witnesses unto yourselves, that ye are the children of them which killed the prophets.”

Matthew 23:  34-35:  “Wherefore, behold, I send unto you prophets, and wise men, and scribes: and some of them ye shall kill and crucify; and some of them shall ye scourge in your synagogues, and persecute them from city to city:   That upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel unto the blood of Zacharias son of Barachias, whom ye slew between the temple and the altar.”

I have always been curious about this scripture:  “. . . because ye build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous.”  And also this scripture:  “Wherefore ye be witnesses unto yourselves, that ye are the children of them which killed the prophets.”  That is quite a leap from someone who builds a tomb to someone who kills a prophet—especially when they are separated by hundreds of years.  How can a tomb-builder and a prophet-killer be related?

False Christians are overly concerned about external things like man-made organizations, rituals and the traditions of men.  A man-made building (e.g. tomb of a prophet) is not the temple of the Holy Ghost.  The human body is the temple of the Holy Ghost.  So if someone is unduly concerned about man-made things, then how can they truly be concerned about the things of God?  We are not here to serve two masters.

If we are about our Father’s business, we can only be full of the Light and Life of Christ.  If we are about external things, appearances, self-righteousness, we can only lead people toward spiritual death—and we would be just as guilty as those who killed the prophets.  We worship the Lord in Spirit and in truth.

Matthew 23: 37:  “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem [American churchianity], thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!”

A Prophet’s Eyes
A Disciple of Christ
Refusing to Hear
A Warning to America by Dimitru Duduman
Shiloh
The Spirit of a Prophet
Eagles over America
John MacArthur Rebuked by a Prophet

The Trial of a Prophet   Leave a comment

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This is from the blog Daily Meditation:

Jeremiah 20:2: Then Pashhur beat Jeremiah the prophet, and put him in the stocks that were in the upper Benjamin Gate of the house of the LORD.

The prophetic ministry of Jeremiah was dotted with various painful experiences. He once accused God of deceiving him (Jeremiah 20:7-8), because, when he called him into the ministry he was not presented with the full picture of the hardship he would face, for it.

Jesus, did not mince words, but came out from the onset to say that in the kingdom of God, great blessing accrues to those persecuted for righteousness’ sake (Matthew 5:10).

Times of persecution were rife in the time of the first century church and also in many places across the world even now. Persecution may not be regional but personal, in your own particular situation, even in a place that seems tolerant to Christianity.

Why people persecute you, even if they claim to be Christians is because your changed lifestyle is a judgment against them, just as the words of Jeremiah was judgment against his persecutors.

Trials are not convenient. You don’t choose them but they are inevitable as Paul said that he that would live godly in this world WILL suffer persecution (2Timothy 3:10-15). Your righteous lifestyle means that people cannot influence you into their wrong ways just because you are present.

They get pricked in their conscience; because, whether you like it or understand it or not, you are the light of this world (Matthew 5:14). Nevertheless the people of this world do not want to come to the light because their deeds are evil (John 3:18-21). They may even call you evil (2Timothy 2:8-9, 1Peter 2:12, 3:16) for their own conscience sake, mislabelling you to justify their persecution of you.

They want to repress you to not have your voice heard. They want to remain comfortable in their sins and the best they think they could do, is to do away with you. By your presence, you present the alternative to their rule, so they fight you because they want to maintain a sway of influence on the people.

People resist change and your mere presence as a Christian is a passive force of change (Matthew 13:33). In the full pride of their heart they want to remain the way they are. Also they don’t have an explanation for you; as Jesus said, those who are born of the Spirit are like the wind (John 3:7-8) beyond their control. Therefore the unbelievers are afraid of you, you make them uncomfortable because they cannot unravel you; they don’t know what makes you tick. They are amazed that you are not running around with them in the riotous living (1Peter 4:3-4); and they hate because in a way, you are better than them; you are not bound by the sin which binds them.

They see a light in you but their minds are so warped that the only reaction that they have for you is rejection. That was the same response that the Jews have for Jesus. He came to his own and his own received him not (John 1:9-11), they rejected him and condemned to the death on the cross.

The expression of your gift has the potential of drawing the ire of Satan and his cohorts. They hate your feeling of being special to God as to become used by him. They hate your confidence and your obvious air of sufficiency (2Corinthians 2:5, 9:8) and liberty in Christ (Galatians 2:4).

The impact of your spirit is what they reject or refuse to recognise because it is a threat, especially to the falsely religious, or those with religion that deny the power of God in Christ Jesus (2Timothy 3:4-5). You are a threat to their sphere of influence; you are an alternative influence, a judgment on the continuation of their power. Their pride, security in their position rather than in God, and resistance to change conspire to make them bent on persecuting you.

Stephen gave the reason such people instinctively persecute the true servants of God as their resistance to the Spirit of God. He called such people stick-necked (Acts 7:51-54), rigid in their pride and rejection of the will of God. That conclusion does not make sense to such people and their position also does not make sense to you, as it is written, what concord does light have with darkness (2Corinthians 6:14)?

Paul told Timothy to endure hardness as a good soldier of Jesus Christ (2Timothy 2:3, 11-12). This includes experiencing contradictions and confrontations from sinners (Hebrews 12:3-4).

Persecution is treated in the scriptures as the natural course of things for Christians. The apostles, after they were flogged for the course of Christ rejoiced for being counted worthy to suffer shame for Christ (Acts 5:40-42). They knew their own trial was small compared to the monumental pain Jesus endured at his own trial.

What we see from the persecution of Jeremiah is that there is always judgment on the persecutors (e.g. Jeremiah 20:3-4).

Jesus, while on the cross overflows with love for his persecutors and asked that they be forgiven for persecuting him (Luke 23:33-34). We should be careful to not harbour any seed of bitterness against our persecutors in us. This has the potential of growing a root of bitterness in us (Hebrews 12:14-15) that would starve the good seed of God in us from being expressed and that is what the devil wants.

The persecution he throws at us is not just to cause us to change our mind about God but to have us harbour un-forgiveness as we hold onto that pain rather than continue to look unto Jesus (Hebrews 12: 1-3).

When we look at the pain rather than looking unto Jesus, we become distracted from our journey with God and that is a plus to the kingdom of Satan. If he can’t cause you to turn back, he’ll be contented to slow you down. That is a good achievement for him if he can’t pressure into capitulating, to reject the truth you once embraced.

The writer to the book of Hebrews advised the believers to maintain the confession of their faith, in the face of persecution (Hebrews 3:6, 14, 4:14-16, 10:23, 32-39).

In trial, don’t shift but dig deep in the understanding of the truth of your position. Don’t back down. Jesus said that in the world, we would suffer persecution but we should be of good cheer because he has overcome the world (John 16:33).

With that, Jesus is now saying He is one with you in that persecution and trial. When Paul was persecuting the church, Jesus had to tell him that it was Him that he is persecuting (Acts 22: 6-8). Therefore, you are not alone, Christ is with you in the trial, you are his body, and the same overcoming spirit that was in Him, is in you; darkness will not conquer light but light darkness (John 1:5).

Peter has a word of assurance. He said after you have suffered a while, God would perfect, establish and settle you (1Peter 5:8-10). The final answer is not with your persecutor but with God who has promised you a crown (James 1:12).

WordFromGod: depend on my inspiration in the time of your persecution.

Locusts and Wild Honey

Posted May 12, 2014 by Tim Shey in Uncategorized

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The Old Cross and the New   2 comments

the-cross

The Old Cross and the New

“The new cross does not slay the sinner, it redirects him. It gears him into a cleaner and jollier way of living and saves his self-respect. To the self-assertive it says, ‘Come and assert yourself for Christ.’ To the egotist it says, ‘Come and do your boasting in the Lord.’ To the thrill seeker it says, ‘Come and enjoy the thrill of Christian fellowship.’ The Christian message is slanted in the direction of the current vogue in order to make it acceptable to the public.”

“The old cross is a symbol of death. It stands for the abrupt, violent end of a human being. The man in Roman times who took up his cross and started down the road had already said good-by to his friends. He was not coming back. He was going out to have it ended. The cross made no compromise, modified nothing, spared nothing; it slew all of the man, completely and for good. It did not try to keep on good terms with its victim. It struck cruel and hard, and when it had finished its work, the man was no more.”

–A.W. Tozer

taste, and actually see
Religious Boredom