Are You Ready?
So, I thought that I was a nice clean Christian "washed in the Blood" and
all that jazz until receiving a spiritual wake-up call a couple of months
ago that resulted in a fair bit of soul searching, and with the help of
the Comforter the last few articles were written starting with "The Truth
of the Spirit". This present one seems to be the last in the series and
because another article on the web site covers most of the following subject
rather comprehensively, this was almost not written until the Ephesians
passage of Scripture hereunder was read aloud in the quietness of my closet
and the reality of God's promise was revealed.
It's recommended that you read the first two chapters of "One Flesh" before
carrying on as this will fill in a lot of blanks that are not repeated
Coming to a new environment in a new town without a Christian brother or
sister to share in God's doings, I was concerned that that the "coal that
is separated from the fire will go out" remembering the exhortation in
Hebrews 10:25. This did happen to a degree due to Darryl's absence as well
as the six month period of "moving in".
However, when it was realised that the coal was indeed in danger of going
out, the Lord God was searched for and found once again and on looking
up the Hebrews passage the following was noted:
Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for
he is faithful that promised;) And let us consider one another to
provoke unto love and to good works: Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves
together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another:
and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.
It just shows how dangerous it is to presume certain beliefs that others
burden one with. Remember that great Chinese Christian, Watchman Nee -
he spent twenty years in solitary confinement - with the Holy Spirit as
- So, if you are isolated from other believers by physical circumstances except for an Internet connection, you can still assemble in the spirit with someone where time and distance are not a consideration.
Anyway, it all started with pondering the difference between "believing"
and believing unto righteousness as written in "The Truth of the Spirit."
Lastly it came through the Holy Spirit once again that Christianity is
in fact a spiritual betrothal and all the pointers in the old and new Covenants
are there to guide us into acceptable works so that on that day
we shall be part of the marriage of the Lamb.
And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice
of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Alleluia:
for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth. Let us be glad and rejoice, and give
honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath
made herself ready. And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in
fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of
Ephesians is known as Paul's letter to the Christian Church, and here we
can know what our Living, Loving heavenly Father expects of us, the prospective
bride of His only begotten Son.
This is rather a long passage, so take your time to meditate over it:
Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given,
that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ;
And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery,
which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created
all things by Jesus Christ: To the intent that now unto the principalities
and powers in heavenly places might be known by the church the manifold
wisdom of God, According to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ
Jesus our Lord: In whom we have boldness and access with confidence by
the faith of him. I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that
ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, With all lowliness
and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; Endeavouring
to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one
body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;
One Lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father of all, who is
above all, and through all, and in you all. But unto every one of us is
given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ. Wherefore he
saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave
gifts unto men. (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended
first into the lower parts of the earth? He that descended is the same
also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.)
And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists;
and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the
work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all
come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God,
unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:
That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried
about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning
craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; But speaking the truth
in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even
Christ: From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by
that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in
the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying
of itself in love. This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that
ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind,
Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God
through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their
heart: Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness,
to work all uncleanness with greediness. But ye have not so learned Christ;
If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth
is in Jesus: That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old
man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; And be renewed
in the spirit of your mind; And that ye put on the new man, which after
God is created in righteousness and true holiness. Wherefore putting away
lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one
of another. Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your
wrath: Neither give place to the devil. Let him that stole steal no more:
but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which
is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth. Let no corrupt communication
proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying,
that it may minister grace unto the hearers. And grieve not the holy Spirit
of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. Let all bitterness,
and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from
you, with all malice: And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving
one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you. Be ye therefore
followers of God, as dear children; And walk in love, as Christ also hath
loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to
God for a sweetsmelling savour. But fornication, and all uncleanness, or
covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; Neither
filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient:
but rather giving of thanks. For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor
unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance
in the kingdom of Christ and of God. Let no man deceive you with vain words:
for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of
disobedience. Be not ye therefore partakers with them. For ye were sometimes
darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of
light: (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness
and truth;) Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord. And have no fellowship
with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.
For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them
in secret. But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light:
for whatsoever doth make manifest is light. Wherefore he saith, Awake thou
that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light.
See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, Redeeming
the time, because the days are evil. Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding
what the will of the Lord is. And be not drunk with wine, wherein
is excess; but be filled with the Spirit; Speaking to yourselves in psalms
and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart
to the Lord; Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father
in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; Submitting yourselves one to another
in the fear of God. Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as
unto the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ
is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. Therefore
as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be
to their own husbands in every thing. Husbands, love your wives, even as
Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; That he might sanctify
and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, That he might present
it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such
thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. So ought men to
love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.
For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth
it, even as the Lord the church: For we are members of his body, of his
flesh, and of his bones. For this cause shall a man leave his father and
mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.
This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.
Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as
himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband.
Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right. Honour thy
father and mother; (which is the first commandment with promise;) That
it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth. And,
ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the
nurture and admonition of the Lord. Servants, be obedient to them that
are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling,
in singleness of your heart, as unto Christ; Not with eyeservice, as menpleasers;
but as the servants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart; With
good will doing service, as to the Lord, and not to men: Knowing that whatsoever
good thing any man doeth, the same shall he receive of the Lord, whether
he be bond or free. And, ye masters, do the same things unto them,
forbearing threatening: knowing that your Master also is in heaven; neither
is there respect of persons with him. Finally, my brethren, be strong in
the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God,
that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle
not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers,
against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness
in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God,
that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all,
to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and
having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the
preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith,
wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.
And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is
the word of God: Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the
Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for
(Ephesians 3:8 to 6:18)
Ephesians chapter five is probably the most illuminating chapter of the
New Covenant for the spiritual walk of reborn Christians.
It starts off as follows:
Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; And walk in love, as
Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and
a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour.
This can be explained as "walk in the footsteps of God", or "what would
Jesus have done?"
It means walking as close to God as one can.
Two old Covenant passages explain this very well:
So Abijah slept with his fathers, and they buried him in the city of David:
and Asa his son reigned in his stead. In his days the land was quiet ten
years. And Asa did that which was good and right in the eyes of
the LORD his God: For he took away the altars of the strange gods,
and the high places, and brake down the images, and cut down the groves:
And commanded Judah to seek the LORD God of their fathers, and to do the
law and the commandment. Also he took away out of all the cities of Judah
the high places and the images: and the kingdom was quiet before him. And
he built fenced cities in Judah: for the land had rest, and he had no war
in those years; because the LORD had given him rest. Therefore he said
unto Judah, Let us build these cities, and make about them walls,
and towers, gates, and bars, while the land is yet before
us; because we have sought the LORD our God, we have sought him,
and he hath given us rest on every side. So they built and prospered. And
Asa had an army of men that bare targets and spears, out of Judah
three hundred thousand; and out of Benjamin, that bare shields and drew
bows, two hundred and fourscore thousand: all these were mighty
men of valour. And there came out against them Zerah the Ethiopian with
an host of a thousand thousand, and three hundred chariots; and came unto
Mareshah. Then Asa went out against him, and they set the battle in array
in the valley of Zephathah at Mareshah. And Asa cried unto the LORD his
God, and said, LORD, it is nothing with thee to help, whether with
many, or with them that have no power: help us, O LORD our God; for we
rest on thee, and in thy name we go against this multitude. O LORD, thou
art our God; let not man prevail against thee. So the LORD smote
the Ethiopians before Asa, and before Judah; and the Ethiopians fled. And
Asa and the people that were with him pursued them unto Gerar: and
the Ethiopians were overthrown, that they could not recover themselves;
for they were destroyed before the LORD, and before his host; and they
carried away very much spoil. And they smote all the cities round about
Gerar; for the fear of the LORD came upon them: and they spoiled all the
cities; for there was exceeding much spoil in them. They smote also the
tents of cattle, and carried away sheep and camels in abundance, and returned
to Jerusalem. And the Spirit of God came upon Azariah the son of Oded:
And he went out to meet Asa, and said unto him, Hear ye me, Asa, and all
Judah and Benjamin; The LORD is with you, while ye be with him;
and if ye seek him, he will be found of you; but if ye forsake him, he
will forsake you. Now for a long season Israel hath been without
the true God, and without a teaching priest, and without law. But when
they in their trouble did turn unto the LORD God of Israel, and sought
him, he was found of them. And in those times there was no peace
to him that went out, nor to him that came in, but great vexations were
upon all the inhabitants of the countries. And nation was destroyed of
nation, and city of city: for God did vex them with all adversity. Be ye
strong therefore, and let not your hands be weak: for your work shall be
rewarded. And when Asa heard these words, and the prophecy of Oded the
prophet, he took courage, and put away the abominable idols out of all
the land of Judah and Benjamin, and out of the cities which he had taken
from mount Ephraim, and renewed the altar of the LORD, that was
before the porch of the LORD. And he gathered all Judah and Benjamin, and
the strangers with them out of Ephraim and Manasseh, and out of Simeon:
for they fell to him out of Israel in abundance, when they saw that the
LORD his God was with him. So they gathered themselves together
at Jerusalem in the third month, in the fifteenth year of the reign of
Asa. And they offered unto the LORD the same time, of the spoil which
they had brought, seven hundred oxen and seven thousand sheep. And they
entered into a covenant to seek the LORD God of their fathers with all
their heart and with all their soul; That whosoever would not seek the
LORD God of Israel should be put to death, whether small or great, whether
man or woman. And they sware unto the LORD with a loud voice, and with
shouting, and with trumpets, and with cornets. And all Judah rejoiced at
the oath: for they had sworn with all their heart, and sought him with
their whole desire; and he was found of them: and the LORD gave them rest
round about. And also concerning Maachah the mother of Asa the king,
he removed her from being queen, because she had made an idol in
a grove: and Asa cut down her idol, and stamped it, and burnt it
at the brook Kidron. But the high places were not taken away out of Israel:
nevertheless the heart of Asa was perfect all his days. And he brought
into the house of God the things that his father had dedicated, and that
he himself had dedicated, silver, and gold, and vessels. And there was
no more war unto the five and thirtieth year of the reign of Asa.
In the six and thirtieth year of the reign of Asa Baasha king of Israel
came up against Judah, and built Ramah, to the intent that he might let
none go out or come in to Asa king of Judah. Then Asa brought out silver
and gold out of the treasures of the house of the LORD and of the king's
house, and sent to Benhadad king of Syria, that dwelt at Damascus, saying,
There is a league between me and thee, as there was between
my father and thy father: behold, I have sent thee silver and gold; go,
break thy league with Baasha king of Israel, that he may depart from me.
And Benhadad hearkened unto king Asa, and sent the captains of his armies
against the cities of Israel; and they smote Ijon, and Dan, and Abelmaim,
and all the store cities of Naphtali. And it came to pass, when Baasha
heard it, that he left off building of Ramah, and let his work cease.
Then Asa the king took all Judah; and they carried away the stones of Ramah,
and the timber thereof, wherewith Baasha was building; and he built therewith
Geba and Mizpah. And at that time Hanani the seer came to Asa king of Judah,
and said unto him, Because thou hast relied on the king of Syria, and not
relied on the LORD thy God, therefore is the host of the king of Syria
escaped out of thine hand. Were not the Ethiopians and the Lubims a huge
host, with very many chariots and horsemen? yet, because thou didst rely
on the LORD, he delivered them into thine hand. For the eyes of the LORD
run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to shew himself strong in the
behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward him. Herein
thou hast done foolishly: therefore from henceforth thou shalt have wars.
(2 Chronicles 14; 15; and 16:1-9)
Now Jehoshaphat had riches and honour in abundance, and joined affinity
with Ahab. And after certain years he went down to Ahab to Samaria.
And Ahab killed sheep and oxen for him in abundance, and for the people
that he had with him, and persuaded him to go up with him
to Ramothgilead. And Ahab king of Israel said unto Jehoshaphat king of
Judah, Wilt thou go with me to Ramothgilead? And he answered him, I am
as thou art, and my people as thy people; and we will be
with thee in the war.
(2 Chronicles 18:1-3)
And Jehoshaphat the king of Judah returned to his house in peace to Jerusalem.
And Jehu the son of Hanani the seer went out to meet him, and said to king
Jehoshaphat, Shouldest thou help the ungodly, and love them that hate the
LORD? therefore is wrath upon thee from before the LORD. Nevertheless
there are good things found in thee, in that thou hast taken away the groves
out of the land, and hast prepared thine heart to seek God. And Jehoshaphat
dwelt at Jerusalem: and he went out again through the people from Beersheba
to mount Ephraim, and brought them back unto the LORD God of their fathers.
And he set judges in the land throughout all the fenced cities of Judah,
city by city, And said to the judges, Take heed what ye do: for ye judge
not for man, but for the LORD, who is with you in the judgment.
Wherefore now let the fear of the LORD be upon you; take heed and do it:
for there is no iniquity with the LORD our God, nor respect of persons,
nor taking of gifts. Moreover in Jerusalem did Jehoshaphat set of the Levites,
and of the priests, and of the chief of the fathers of Israel, for
the judgment of the LORD, and for controversies, when they returned to
Jerusalem. And he charged them, saying, Thus shall ye do in the fear of
the LORD, faithfully, and with a perfect heart. And what cause soever shall
come to you of your brethren that dwell in their cities, between blood
and blood, between law and commandment, statutes and judgments, ye shall
even warn them that they trespass not against the LORD, and so wrath
come upon you, and upon your brethren: this do, and ye shall not trespass.
(2 Chronicles 19:1-10)
I must ask myself
How willing am I to follow in God's footsteps?
Are You Ready (for this)
Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; And walk in love, as
Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and
a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour.
Take this slowly, and ponder over the implications.
Do you accept from the above, in your mind, that God must love me very
much if He sent His Son to die for me. .........or .........I'm so honoured
to be a child of God and I feel His love so welling up in me that I cannot
help myself but do anything that He might ask of me.
Before we were reborn of God's Spirit we were self-centred. After, we are
Do I serve self, or God? Do I sing "christian" songs with a lot of "I"
in them or a lot of "Jesus" in them?
Is God glorified in the life that I live in this earthly body?
God determined to make each one of us, differently to our neighbour, each
with our own fingerprints.
God loves us.
Those of us who respond to that love with love He saves by His grace, His
Furthermore, God gives us a Training Guide and even supplies us with a
Tutor to help interpret the Training Guide and show how to apply it for
our eternal benefit.
Truly, our Creator loves us.
Just as we are individually different, even though we are all made up of
the same blood, tubes, organs and appendages, so we are all loved, the
same but individually.
Surely then, we cannot resist the pull of God's love for us, we have to
respond to our Master in love.
If He were to say "jump", we jump, knowing that He has set every
thing right so that our jump is in the right direction, the right height
and has performed the right purpose. Moreover we know that we shall
Sadly, many of us fail right here because for many reasons, mainly self-ish,
we do not jump at all.
Here is the litmus test of perceiving whether we, or anyone else in
our circle of acquaintances is reborn of God.
"Jerry speaks in tongues, which is a spiritual outpouring, therefore he
must be born again."
Is it done so that Jerry is exalted as really spiritual among his friends,
or as being a servant (to serve) of God?
Which spirit is being manifested?
Jerry is perhaps your minister and you may therefore think that he is serving
God. Does he or his denomination come first?
Does he preach the whole gospel of Christ?
Is his character Christlike?
Only God the Holy Spirit and the word of God can guide you.
Please read Philippians 3:13-21 AV.
Let's take the example of an ambassador. While he might have a certain
importance in his own right, the authority that he carries around with
him is that of his government.
He does what his leader tells him to, he protects the image of his country;
and he protects the citizens of his country who are visiting the country
of his tenure. He does it for loyalty, fame and money. It is a political
appointment and he protects, defends and propounds the policy of his government.
If he doesn't satisfy his country's king, he is "withdrawn".
Paul calls us ambassadors for Christ: are we obedient to our king, or do
we use our position of trust to build up our own egos?
If God is our Father, are we loving obedient children to the best
of our ability?
If the relationship is that of loving Master and servant, are we wholly
obedient in love?
If Christ Jesus is our heavenly husband to be, do we reverence Him?
Here's something rather deep that you may have puzzled over:
You've probably heard of the missionary family who landed on a pacific
island to tell of God's love to the heathen islanders. The leading men
of the island determined to kill the entire family one night and on hearing
about it, the family spent the time in prayer and survived the night. A
year or so later, the chief of the island was converted and one of the
first questions that he asked was "Who were those tall shining men with
long knives who patrolled your house the night that we wanted to kill you?"
We see here that God was able to protect the missionary family, and moreover
He determined to do so.
If you have never read "Fox's Book of Martyrs" it's recommended that you
do so to read what fiendishness man can do to man, to be prepared. The
story that I remember most vividly was that of a man having his arms being
torn from his body on the rack, in public. After every click of the wheel
the torture-master would ask the Christian "do you recant and renounce
the name of Jesus Christ as Lord?" After a time of excruciating pain the
Christian could stand it no more and recanted. As he was being carried
away a young girl of fourteen or so broke out in anguish and cried out
to him "Do you mean to say that for mere pain you have given up your birthright
in heaven?" The torture-master turned, looked at her and said "Are you
one of them too?"
As we know, our God was able to save that young girl: but chose not to.
Why was this?
There can only be one possible explanation that we can understand, not
In both instances God and His only begotten Son Jesus Christ were glorified.
When this great truth is realised we shall immediately be able to recognise
the true follower of our Lord Jesus and the "me first" christian.
This doesn't necessarily mean that he or she is a strong Christian yet,
but that we are both on the same road. All who are on that road are earnestly
trying to live for their Lord, realising that they have but a short time
to have the privilege of choice.
What came first, the chicken or the egg? The CHICKEN.
Who comes first, me or my God? If the answer is God, then surely I live
to please Him. He must be in my thoughts all the time, every day.
Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing
and making melody in your heart to the Lord; Giving thanks always for all
things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;
I must be ready.
Please read 2 Chronicles chapter twenty.
And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more
in knowledge and in all judgment; That ye may approve things that
are excellent; that ye may be sincere and without offence till the day
of Christ; Being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by
Jesus Christ, unto the glory and praise of God.