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The Logos and the Rhema

December 15, 2002
Mahomet, Illinois

(For printable version click here.)

I appreciated the children’s word this morning.  As our sister was sharing this morning, there were a lot of different scriptures that were coming to me concerning the Body of Christ and the place that we are in.  Principally, I believe the Lord is going to be talking out of II Samuel.  I’m not going to take the time to read the whole story.  You can do that in your private time.  That thought on my part could very well be an exercise of faith.  But, I’m going to be talking from the 2nd book of Samuel.  I’m going to be talking about one of the situations that happened to David.  We know that David was in a position of ruling and reigning.  I think that that is somewhat apropos to you and I and I’ll see if I can’t tie it in here with what Sister Katie was sharing with the children and with us.  David was the king and we know he had a son called Absalom.  His son desired a place of preeminence that wasn’t rightfully his.  He wanted that position of being king.  The correlation I see in that with regard to some of what Sister Katie was saying is that God has set in the Body certain administrations and, unfortunately with regard to some of us, those administrations have been given to other people than ourselves.  Unfortunately for us, some of those people’s personalities just don’t jive, meld or mesh with the particular personality that we might have.  To put it mildly, there seems to be something of a clash, there seems to be something of a confrontation with regard to those personalities and ours.

Now, the question I would want to ask you this morning is, “Does that change the mind of God concerning those ministries?”  Now, I’ve also found that in certain relationships between husbands and wives you have this personality difference, this position of personality conflict.  Now, if in the relationship that you have as a husband or a wife you find yourself in that position, my first question would be, “Do you believe it is the will of God that you are married to one another?”  And if you are married to one another, and you are a Christian and you are seeking the Lord, I think that that question is kind of moot point, but I am asking the question to prove a point.  There’s a word for it and it is called rhetorical.  The question is rhetorical because in that aspect of that marriage relationship, God was very much aware of where it would be at any given point in time from the beginning, because God is Alpha and Omega.  Now, what does that mean?  That means that God is not only at the beginning and not only at the end, but He’s also in between.  He is very much aware of any kind of personality difficulty that you are going to have in our particular marriage relationship.  Now, I’m using that particular relationship, but you could just about use any type of relationship in the Body of Christ.  Do you understand what I am saying? All relationships under the covering of God, that have as their covering a particular Word, have the means programmed within the Word to bring forth a particular thing.  Did you follow me on that or did I lose you?  If I am going to build a house I want a blueprint, because I don’t want the architect to tell me what’s in his mind because if he tells me what’s in his mind, what I hear may not be what he’s telling me.  I want to see it down on paper and I want to have all the dimensions and all the things that pertain to the thing that he is wanting me to build in front of me, so that I might be able to consult with it at any given time.  Hallelujah.  Now, in the marriage relationship or the relationships that we have in the Body with the ministry, we are not necessarily the one who has the diagram of the whole thing.  But we know somebody who does and any time that we run into a place of difficulty in that relationship, it is a transgression that goes against us if we do not utilize the data bank that is available to us by virtue of the Holy Ghost.  Did you catch that?  It is a transgression that goes against us because God has given us the means by which we might inquire of Him.  Hallelujah.  Most of the time we take the difficulty on ourselves, and it becomes personality differences and personality conflicts. Unfortunately, we have in that type of a situation, stress, strain and sometimes resentment and bitterness which, in turn, causes us to lose the Word of ministry that would come to us.  If we have resentment and bitterness… May I share with you something here?  Your resentment, your bitterness, or that position of stress or strain may be justified on the basis of the other individual’s transgression but that does not have any bearing on how God grades your paper.  Hello?  It makes no difference on how God grades your paper because God has given you something by which you might access the totality of wisdom that is in God.  You know, God put me under an employer one time that was very ungodly, and yet I knew that I was in that position of employment by the hand of God.  You know, where I should have been right, I was always wrong, and where he should have been wrong, he was always right.  I mean, God just turned the tables on me to teach me a lesson with regard to the things that have to do with authority.  He kept me there for a very long time.  I’m a very slow learner or I have a very thick head, and it took a lot of driving of the 2×4 to get the point across that God is the Alpha and He is the Omega and He is everything in between.  Hallelujah.  If you are in any type of situation in any given time by the hand of God, or by the Word of God, you have a responsibility to perform and act in accordance with the Word that you got.  Did I lose you on that one?  I mean, there is something in the Word of God.  I believe, now you may not think that this has anything to do with David and Absalom, but I believe that it has a lot to do, in the aspect of the Word of God and in the framework of the commission and the position that God gave David.  If you would take the aspect of humanity under the auspices of Satan, you could just as well put the name “Absalom” on it because Absalom wanted the position and place of authority that was rightly another’s.  Now this works on two different levels.  This works on an individual level pertaining to your own personal private environment, your soul: your mind, your emotions, and your desires.  Paul is very eloquent about it in Romans.  If you want to go there, I believe it is Romans 7:21-25.  You can read of the position of warfare that goes on.  My mother had a saying.  I don’t know if you heard it as much as I did, Barak, when you were living with her.  But she often said to me, “Burt, you are your own worst enemy.”  You are your own worst enemy.  I never really understood what she was saying until a time down the road when I began to find out how my self rises up in the midst of thedisciplining of God and begins to be presumptuous and sometimes intellectualizes, which means mentally thinking out in a reasonable manner and in a reasonable way how to begin to work against this position or this place of being uncomfortable.

We have been in many different places in the last three weeks.  We went to Colorado after going to Schuyler.  I want to tell you, those meetings in Schuyler were very good meetings.  For me personally, very difficult, but nevertheless they were very good meetings.  Hallelujah!  I heard a testimony everywhere we went from many different people as to how much they were ministered to by God in the midst of them.  We went from Schuyler to Colorado.  In Colorado, the Lord gave me a Word.  Now, I don’t go to every place with the same sermon because it doesn’t work that way.  God works with me by giving me the Word, usually when I come in the door.  As I get up, He begins to develop it, and it is always a Word that is pertinent to the circumstance and the situation of the place that I am in.  Well, one of the themes that has been in the midst of the Words that God has given to me is that theme of tribulation.  You can either call me a tribulating preacher or a man that brings a word about tribulation.  Maybe I do both.  Maybe my capacity in the Body is to do both.  But I want to say something to you that there is no Word that God gives to me that there is not some sort of tribulation that comes on the tail end of the word that my wife, much to her chagrin sometimes, and I have to walk through.  It’s true with everyone that has the Word of God and has the courage and the tenacity to share that Word with someone else.  You don’t have to get up here to share it.  You can share it on the phone, you can share it at work, you can share it at the grocery store, wherever you go there should be something of the Word that you have that is in you.

There’s something else of a theme that God has given me over the past several months and that is a theme that has to do with what the Word calls Word, as it is used in John, the first chapter.  There John begins to explain the existence and sustenance and the substance of what God is with regard to the Word being what it is.  Now, you and I can never come to an intellectual understanding or an interpretation of what John is really saying, but we can come to a place of understanding if, in the midst of the Logos, we are waiting upon God.  I could just say it very simply that, in the midst of the Logos, the Rhema speaks.  But you wouldn’t really know what I mean by Rhema if you haven’t really gotten into the Word and began to study and to dissect it and to ask God to make it a reality to your soul.  Hallelujah.  I believe that we who have a relationship with the Word become a part and a piece of that Word to the degree that we believe the Word. That’s why you have some people who are very much interested in saving people.  Have you ever noticed people who are interested in saving people?  Why?  Because something of a Word has been spoken to them and in the speaking of the Word to them, something happened to them that they thought was really incredible.  And in thinking about the incredibleness of the Word, and meditating and praying upon it, there is something of that Word that begins to work and interweave itself within the fabric of what we call soul.  Salvation became a part of their emotions; salvation became a part of their desires; salvation became a part of their mind.  So, whenever you meet them, what comes out of them is salvation.  Isn’t that tremendous?  Now, some of us have Word, and it’s like Word that is in the pantry.  It’s like Word that has been stored.  I should say, it’s even worse than being in the pantry.  It’s canned.  It’s been pressure canned.  It’s been put into a can and had a lid put down on it and put in a pan and boiled and vacuum-sealed, so that it is preserved.  Someday, someplace, sometime, usually in the event of crisis, we want to pull it out.  But there’s one problem with that.  It seems like, when it comes time to clean house, those things that sit on a shelf for a time always get thrown out or given away.   Because, “When will I ever use it?  When have I ever used it?”  It’s just on the shelf taking up space.  Hallelujah.  You know, while I’m talking to you I’m talking to you in the Spirit and there should be a multitude of verses that are coming to your mind.  Not just because you know the Bible, but because the Holy Ghost is speaking to you with regard to what I’m saying, but He’s giving you some different perspective of the Word or the reality of it.  So, I’m sharing with you what Rhema is in me.  Do you understand?  I believe what I’m saying.  Hallelujah!  What I’m saying to you is coming forth from the Logos in me.  Hello.  As I’m speaking, as I’m meditating on the Logos, and as I yield myself to the Holy Ghost, that Holy Ghost takes that Logos that is in me, brings it out and when I speak it, it becomes Rhema.  Now, that Rhema has a power and an ability that the church has not comprehended.  It has the ability to create within you something that is called Logos.  There is a deposit of something that God takes out of that supernatural realm of what we call Spirit and He brings it down and He moves it within the fabric and the framework of your soul.  When it goes into your soul, it’s a thought or an intent that comes from outside of your personal consciousness.  In that form, the Bible calls it the Logos.  Now, we as human beings try to make the Logos, Rhema.  But it doesn’t work because it takes something other than flesh or intellect, it takes something other than mental gyrations to bring forth the vitality that is in the Word.  That’s why the scripture says, “The Word killeth and the Spirit maketh life” (II Corinthians 3:6).  You can’t take just the Logos in you.  That Logos has to be assimilated.  It’s no different than you eating a piece of steak.  If you eat a piece of steak, that steak is in trouble.  From the moment that it’s on your plate, if you like steak, it’s in trouble.  I like steak and my steak can disappear pretty quickly.  First of all, you have the knife and the fork to work over the steak.  Well, even before that you have the fire.  Now just imagine you as that piece of meat.  I want you to put yourself in the place of the piece of meat in the aspect that when the Word comes to you, it comes to you in the fashion of rawness.  But it has the power to impregnate you.  It has the power to penetrate through the consciousness of your being, of your humanity and get down into the nitty gritty and it becomes, as it were, entrenched in the womb of your soul.  Now, I don’t want to offend you this morning but I don’t know how else to describe to you the way that the Word works in you in order for you to really comprehend.  Hallelujah!  But, as the Word comes into you, now, God has a problem.  He’s got to make that Logos something that is not alien to your environment.  He’s got to bring something of the realness of that Word to your position, your place of experience.  So what does He have to do?  He has to put you in tribulation.  He has to push you to where you are beyond your ability as a human being to cope.  He has to put you in to the midst of the fire.  You know, Texas Roadhouse, when we go there to eat, I always like to stand over there by that big window where they are cooking the steaks and I watch those people as they put those steaks on the grill.  They slap that steak down on the grill and they don’t kind of tenderly lay it on there, you know.  They kind of walk around it and move it around.  They got those tongs and they got those forks and they got those tweezers and they pick that piece of meat up and they slap it down.  They take something and press the juice out of it and those flames, they roar up out of there and all the smoke goes up and the meat turns from red to brown and from brown to black.  Boy, and then it comes out on my plate.  Oh boy, does it smell succulent.  We are supposed to be a sweet smelling savor before the Lord.  Hallelujah.  Only by fire can you get that flavor and get that savor whereby others, when they smell us, their mouth begins to water.  I think it was you that prayed this morning, wasn’t it?  “Drink my Blood and eat my flesh.”  Hallelujah!  There is something in all of that that God is working on with regard to you and I.  It is the Word that we have received, brethren, and I believe that we are living in the end time.

Now, brethren, listen to me, I want you to keep in mind where we started.  I don’t want you to lose track of the thought of the position of David in his rightful position, his position and his place of ruling by the authority and by the hand of God.  I don’t want you to forget that there was someone who was related to him by blood that rose up without thought and without compassion to move against him, to usurp his position and to take that authority unto himself.  Hallelujah.  This is what I am talking about with regard to you and I on an individual basis and also on a collective level.  Brethren, I believe that you and I are living in the last days.  I believe that there are troubles, trials and tribulations coming to us that we can’t even fathom. We can talk about it, and we can say we believe it, but I don’t believe that we really believe it.  It’s amazing.

I was listening to the preachers on the radio who seem to be getting the message.  I was listening to this man, this preacher, and I understand that he is a genuine article.  I don’t know him personally, but I’ve listened to him a time or two, and I really like what he had to say on this particular tape that I was listening to.  Praise the Lord.  His name is Dr. Kennedy.  He’s out of Pensacola, Florida.  I don’t know what his denominational affiliation is, I don’t care.  But he was bringing a word talking about the invisible hand of God.  What I enjoy about some of these preachers is they really do their research.  They really do their research.  This man was talking about the invisible hand of God.  And he was going back into the scripture from Genesis all the way up to Jesus’ day.  He was reiterating the prophecies of destruction that God had prophesied against the various nations, not only to the land of Israel but He also prophesied against the Babylonians, and He prophesied against the Medes and the Persians.  He also spoke about Jesus when he prophesied about the destruction of the temple.  As he was going over these accounts, He said, “Did you see God in actuality coming down and moving into a set of circumstances and doing what He said He was going to do?  He always used an implement.”  Now, I’m paraphrasing the man’s word.  But if you want to know what it is literally you can probably go on the internet and find him, and you can get his tape.  It was a very good word.  It was talking about the invisible hand of God.  He showed time and time and time and time again, how God used natural things, such as kings and nations to fulfill the Word of God and bring to pass the judgment of God that God had said would come to a nation that had forsaken Him.  He went right from that time of the Old Testament into the mid-time and into our time.  He used the example of September the 11th as an aspect of the hand of God’s judgment.  Now, this is not my word, this is his word.  He’s in the nominal church.  Very much involved in all that.  He’s got Dr. in front of his name.  But, nevertheless, there is something that he is showing us regarding history and the current events that are coming to pass fulfilling God’s Word.  He was saying that it is giving him an awareness and a fear.  He then he went into the scripture, II Chronicles 7:14, If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.  He then went into the geo-political arena of the United States.  He says, since the bombing, since the destruction of the two towers, since that time, California has adopted a ten-point program in the public schools to indoctrinate children from the age of kindergarten up through the age of high school about the benefits of an alternate lifestyle.  He then told us of the ACLU suing in various states, to remove the phrase “Under God.”  There were several other points that he was making with regard to the aspect of what was in diametric opposition to the thought of the invisible hand as it has moved in judgment against us.

Now I would like to ask you a question.  Given the response on a geo-political arena as well as a geo-humanic level, do you think that the judgment that God administered on September the 11th is all that we will see or experience?  If that judgment obtains the desired response that it was supposed to do, what do you think God will allow to happen next?  Well, I can tell you some of what I’m aware of by dreams and visions.  I have had dreams, as well as others around me who have had dreams, of desolation, of cars without gas, of houses without electricity, of cupboards that had no food in them.  What are you and I going to do?  The people of Hiroshima went to bed thinking that they were victorious.  Their government was not telling them that they were on the run.  Their government was not telling them that the United States and the Allied forces were closing in on their borders.  They went to bed thinking that everything was the same as it was the day before, and it would be the same tomorrow.  Some of them never woke up.  They were the ones that were blessed because some of them that woke up, and to this day, those that were remaining have suffered horribly in the catastrophic thing that had happened.  It’s not so much what tragedy happens, or the physical position of trouble, but what really, really concerns me about my position, in lieu of the Word that God has spoken to me, is that I will have to stand before God.  I am going to be judged in accordance with what He has given me to do and how I have done it.  I am going to stand next to other people who have done more than I have done with less than what I’ve been given.

You know we can’t all be Reese Howells.  I’ve had to struggle with this for a very long time.  You understand?  Because I read about this man, I read about his story, and what a man of God he was.  I read about C.T. Studd, what a man of God!  What suffering that they endured.  If I put it in comparison with my own life, I’m way down here.  I’m not even talking about Jesus Christ, now, I’m talking about saints.  Hallelujah!  What am I next to Hudson Taylor?  If you really want something, really, really want something, what am I next to a man that was 28 years old?  David Brainerd.  Hallelujah!  What am I in comparison to that place of his sacrifice?  If that isn’t enough for you, if that doesn’t suit your fancy, go into the Word and read the description of the persecution and the suffering that Jesus allocated for Himself.  It is the same position and the place of suffering that He allocated for those that were called by His name and were given the Word of sonship.  You go into John 17.  I’m telling you something, I’m telling you that we’re going to bed tonight thinking that tomorrow is going to be the same and when tomorrow is the same it’s going to lull you into a position of lethargy and passivity because you say, “Well, nothing happened today.”  And tomorrow, nothing will happen tomorrow.  But, I’m telling you something.  One day, one place, one time there’s going to be a happening and when it happens, you and I, if we haven’t done what God has commanded us to do, what God has delegated us to do, what God has legislated us to do, we are going to be the ones who suffer the most.  Hallelujah.

I want you, just for a moment, to turn over to John 17.  I want you to look at something here.  I challenge you to get into your scripture and prove me wrong.  Hallelujah.  If you don’t like what I preach, then you get into the Word and you find something in the Word and you come to me and let us compare doctrine.  John 17.  I want you to look at it.  You know something?  Sometimes, the only word that I can describe humanity in it’s position of smug intellectual reasoning is “stupid.”  Now I’m not applying that to anyone in particular, so don’t go out of here saying that I called you stupid.  I didn’t say that.  What I said is that we give humanity the right and the ability to dictate to us a human response to a divine situation.  It’s nothing but stupid.  Not only is it stupid, it’s suicide.  Do you know we shake our heads when we read the paper.  “Oh my, how stupid, the guy shot himself in the head.  How stupid.”  And yet there is spiritual suicide.  There is an act that we commit against ourselves that is spiritual suicide.  If you tell me, “Burt, 25 feet up ahead of you there is a cavern, it is 200 feet deep and there is no way that you can walk across it.  There is no way that you can avoid it.  Don’t go that way.”  Hallelujah.  If I run helter-skelter down that path, ignoring your voice and your warning, what’s going to happen to me?  Was I taken by surprise?  What did I do?  I committed suicide.  There’s something that terrifies me in regard to that.  You don’t have to believe this way, but I believe it, because I believe it’s scriptural that a man who commits suicide eliminates a possibility of regeneration.  He ignores the hand of God, he ignores the help of God.  He rejects Jesus Christ as the epitome of his salvation, and he goes out of life into hell.  Now, if that is true in that scenario, how much more true is it in a spiritual sense and a spiritual position if God is working with me in regard to the end time and the Word that has been given to me and I ignore the attributes of that Word, or the dictate, or the demand of that Word and I get involved in some mitigated position of self-pity and I begin to lament the fact of the matter of the tribulation and the trouble that I’m in?  Hallelujah.  I appreciated the attitude of David, although David was reaping what he had sown, you know.  But I appreciated his position of submitting to the humiliation.  When the man came out, who was it?  Shimei came out and cursed David.  And the sons of Zeruiah rose up and said, “Let me go over and take off the head of the fool.”  David said, “Leave him alone!  Lest God has provoked him to curse me.”  You know, at that point, you might think that it was a finished matter.  But you know, God is the Alpha and Omega.  David had the final say-so.   He told his son, Solomon, “Let his gray hair not go down to the grave in peace” (II Kings 2:6).  And Solomon, in his wisdom, let the man write his own epitaph.  A foolish and unwise man.  He lost his life for the sake of what he thought was his possession.  You know, if he had one servant he probably had half a dozen.  And yet he risked the entirety of his being.  How much more for you and I?

Let’s go into John 17 and look at verse 12, While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: that those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled.  Oh boy.  That brings up a whole new level, a whole new position.  “The son of perdition.”  There is a spirit that works in the heart of man.  It’s called, well, I can’t really call it human because it’s kind of a melding and a merging of demonic and human.  It’s where they meld and merge together and they become as one flesh so that you can’t tell the demon from the man or the man from the demon.  Hallelujah.  The Bible calls it the son of perdition.  As you all are aware, the son of perdition was in the midst of the twelve.  Now, if you could look at that twelve, if you would, as a whole, with Jesus Christ as the head.  Some were the hands, some were the arms, some were the feet, some were the legs.  Yet in the midst of that framework, in the midst of that body there was the spirit of perdition that was working in the midst of the different members to bring about a rebellion, to bring about a position of resistance, to bring desolation and destruction.  And to bring, as it were, the whole of the body down to a place to where it would not be able to fulfill or accomplish the Word of God.  Can you see it in that light?  Am I losing you?  I’m not putting you to sleep am I?  All right.  He says, “I’ve given them, I’ve kept them all, except the son of perdition, that the scriptures might be fulfilled.”  Boy!

You know, if I am aware that there is this particular spirit in the midst of the Body, in this Body in particular, if there is a will, if there is a mind set, if there is an emotion, or if there is a desire that is contrary to the will of God, it would seem to me that I would be doing whatever I could do to resist that manifestation.  If I want to curse, I don’t curse.  If I want to slough off, I don’t slough off.  If I don’t want to meet together, I meet together.  I do anything and everything that is in opposition.  But there is something of a passivity about our humanness that likes things to come to us instead of our going to them.  Hallelujah!  All of those people at that table, every one of them were looking and saying, “Is it I?  Is it I?  Is it I?”  There is something of that malady which exists in the Body today.  We are sitting and submitting, as it were, to the spirit of the son of perdition, the spirit that wants to make us diabolical, that wants to move the framework and the government of self into our soul so that we become a manifestation of hell itself!  It is as though we are looking for some kind of wand to be waved over us, “Abracadabra, magical, magical.”  POOF!  That’s fairy tale.  That’s demons for little children, by the way.  He says, “I have given them thy Word.”  Word.  That “word,” look it up, that word means Logos.  I want to read to you what it says about the Logos.  John 1:1, In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.  It says that all things were made and you could just take out “Him” and say “Logos.”  Now turn the page.  Or at least in my Bible you have to turn the page.  And the Logos was in the world, and the world, or the cosmos that was made by the Logos refused, REFUSED! Refused!  The refused to accept Him as their creator!  They refused!  Oh!  Bad people.  Bad people.  Bad people.  They were.  They were bad people.  Jesus said, “I have given them…”  What?  My Logos!  My Logos!  I’m back in John17, by the way.  The cosmos, same word, same position, same experience, hath what?  Hated them.  Have you ever been in the presence of someone who really didn’t like you?  Was it a comfortable place to be?  Was there a camaraderie and a place of fellowship with them?  Was there something of companionship that was moving between the two of you in the midst of that situation?  No.  Absolutely not.  Doesn’t work that way.  The Logos, now, verse 14, I have given them thy word (Logos); and the world (cosmos) hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.  I am using these words because they are the words in which they are written.  You go in and look them up.  Study to show yourself approved.

You know, there was a dream that came forth here not to long ago of what was happening to the Logos.  Can you imagine?  Can you really imagine?  You would think that we would treat it as something precious.  You would think that we would listen to it.  You would think that we would dissect it.  Do you know what the Lord said we were doing with it?  Dumping it on the ground.  Dumping it on the ground!  Spewing it out on the ground, on the earth to be trodden upon, to be defiled, that the birds would come and have a feast.  Hallelujah!  “I have given them thy Logos.”  Turn with me back into John 1:11.  He came, the Logos, unto His own and His own received Him, the Logos, not.  Oh yes.  Go down to verse14, And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.  Full, full, full, full, full of grace and glory.  We go around groaning about this, mumbling about that, talking bad about this, talking bad about that.  We take out this dirty underwear and put it upon the shelf, put it upon the table and cut it up with a knife and serve it out!  To one another!  God said that we had been given, as it were, a ministry of reconciliation whereby the Logos reconciles the cosmos unto God through His divine sacrifice of the issuance of His blood.  The issuance of His life, He gave forth so that ministry has been given unto us.  Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah.

Well, we have the story of David and Absalom.  Now, David, how can I say it?  It was a piece of David.  It was a part of David.  It was his blood, it was his son.  David evidently had some sort of affection for this son, because in his instruction he went diametrically against the will of God.  He said, “Spare, spare, spare my son, Absalom, spare him.  Spare him!”  And so it is with you and I.  We want self to be pampered, we want it to be petted!  We want people to feel sorry for us.  We want to have people to commiserate with us.   Now listen to me, brethren, if the shoe don’t fit, don’t wear it and don’t get mad at me for putting it out on the floor for you to try it on.  Hallelujah!  Come on.  Come on, come on, come on.

There is a scripture in the Word that talks about your and my relationship with the world.  It says, “If a man does not forsake all, if he does not forsake all.”  Shall we get a little more specific?  He says, “Forsake your father, forsake your mother, forsake your husband” (Luke 14:26).  Now, that doesn’t mean you go out and get divorces.  It means that you commit yourself, your soul, and your position of experience totally, totally, absolutely, unto God!  We become, as it were, one nation under God!  There was something of a prophetic desire of God in the writing of the U.S. Constitution!  Glory to God!  But it’s not our constitution as sons of God.  The cosmos constitution says that everyone is endowed with certain inalienable rights and we have the right to maintain our position of rightness with regard to those rights.  “Don’t tread on me.”  History, as far as we are concerned, has again and again and again validated our position of strength and defiance in the eyes of God.  The shaking of our fist.  The church is supposed to have power!

I was blessed in how the church rose up against that thing that was happening on the East Coast.  It wasn’t the smartness of the police that captured that man.  It wasn’t even his dumbness that caused him to be captured.  It was the moving of prayer and the intercession of God to move in the midst of that devastation, yet many of us can sit and watch it and we’re not moved!  It really does not take very many to start a revival.  Did you know that the 1906 revival started with 4 or 5 elderly women down in a basement praying for a revival and for fire to fall from heaven?  Wasn’t no great preacher, wasn’t no healer, wasn’t no great prophet, wasn’t no apostle.  Four elderly women who, down deep in their soul were desiring for a manifestation, a touch from God.  They got down on their knees day after day after day after day.  I don’t know how long they travailed in prayer, but what I do know is that the fire fell!  Hallelujah!  Hallelujah!  We have the story of Elijah!  There he was, sitting on the hill and they sent a captain and his fifty (II Kings 1:9-15).  “Oh man of God, come down!  Right now!  You come down here!  The king doth demand your presence!  You come down!”  I don’t read that he got very excited about it.  He said: “If I be a man of God, let fire come down from heaven and consume this captain and his fifty.”  Do you know that it took one more time of burned ashes and stinking human flesh to get the idea across to the man that came crawling up there?  “Oh man of God, oh man of God, oh man of God, oh man of God, please, please, please spare my life.”  You’re talking about power in the church!  You’re talking about a place of righteousness!  You cannot do it if you’re minding your own business.  You cannot do it if you’re involved in your career.  You cannot do it if you’re involved in the establishment and the position of your kingdom.  You’re going to get a little piece of God and a whole lot of other things.  A little piece of God and a whole magnitude of other things.  By the time you’re finished, you’ve got a little bit of God down here and all these other things.

We sing the song time and again, “I want to be like You.”  “Let me hear Your small voice through all the worldly noise.”  Jesus said, “I have given them thy word and the world…”  We like to say, “World! You’re world, that’s world, over there is world…”  What about world here in the soul realm?  Let me read a scripture for you.  Romans 8.  Turn with me if you would.  Let us read what Jesus Christ has to say about that position.  It says, verse 5, For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh;but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.   For the carnally minded…  Could I say those that have the cosmos implanted in their consciousness?  Cosmos of them, cosmos of politics, cosmos of financial success, cosmos of self-importance.  Come on!  Cosmos of pre-eminence, wanting to be in a position of being pre-eminent!  And you know, some of us manifest, I’m not saying us here, but us collectively, manifest our position of pre-eminence in ways that we don’t really consider wanting to be pre-eminent.  Hallelujah.  Some of us manifest our position of pre-eminence in the self-induced ignorance that we maintain with regard to the Word.  Jesus is knocking on the door and we turn the blender up.  “Knocking?  Who’s knocking?  I don’t hear a knocking.”  Turn the radio on.  Blast it out because we don’t want to hear something that might make us convicted.  Hallelujah!

He says to be carnally minded is death (Romans 8:6).  You know I think the terminology “carnal” is the Christian malady.  I don’t think it’s a heathen malady.  I think carnality is the mixture of religion and God. It becomes something religious, but it’s not God.  Do you know you can take a little bit of truth that’s true truth and mix it with a little bit of world that is not true and that the truth becomes untruth?  Do you know what the Bible calls it?  Deception.  For to be worldly, carnally, worldly minded, to have cosmos and Logos thrown in the pot together, mixed up all together is death.  Now, brethren, let me tell you something.  Death is not just the expiring of one’s breath.  Death is a spirit and it’s working not just to kill you in a physical way.  It’s working to kill you in a spiritual manner.  Satan wants to change your position, your destiny.  He knows that he has the potentiality to do it, do you know that?  Because he is aware of what the scripture says.  It says in my Bible in one of the gospels that Jesus Christ said that in that day when Jesus comes many are going to say, “Well, did we not prophecy in your name?  Did we not cast out devils in your name?  Did we not heal the sick in your name?”  What did Jesus say?  “I don’t know you.  I have not had that intimate relationship.  You did not allow me to enter into your soul.  You did not give me your emotions.  You did not give me your mind, you did not give me your ambition, you did not give me your will.  You just gave me lip service.  I don’t know you.”  Lest there’s any doubt, you go read that portion of scripture (Matthew 7:21-23).  They thought they were OK.  The Bible says, Romans 8:6, For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.  Now listen to what happens when you have both of those entities in a small environment.  Verse 7, Because the carnal mind is enmity against God.  Does that sound like a war?  Enmity?  Do you know what aggravated animosity is?  Aggravated animosity.  You know, you can have animosity and nobody really knows that you have animosity.  But if you have aggravated animosity, your animosity becomes an entity or a provoking thought that motivates you to aggravate and irritate and to hurt that which you have animosity against. Verse 7, …for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.  Do you think Absalom was subject?  We always like to say “husbands and wives,” right?  “Wives, submit yourselves to your husbands.”  But you know, get outside of that way of thinking because God does not lead you by one avenue by which to reach Him.

I am reminded this morning of a vision that came forth in one of the services that was here in this room.  The vision was that of a young child riding in the backseat of a car.  And in the midst of the traveling, there was some sort of altercation and the boy got mad.  In his temper tantrum, Hello?  In his self-interest, when he was not getting his way, he said, “I’m going to show you I don’t have to take this, I don’t have to submit to this type of an environment.”  He moved in anger to move out of the door.  He opened the door, got out and slammed the door, with every intention of going back into the door after he felt like everybody had suffered enough.  Problem was, he couldn’t get the door open and the car moved on without him.  I think collectively, as well as individually, if the shoe fits, we better start examining the foot.

There’s some scriptures that I’ve been looking up these last few weeks that have the phrase, “Consider your way.”  “Consider your way.”  I’m glad that it’s God that has the reins.  I’m glad that it’s God that has His hand on the switch that controls the door locks.  Because only He knows when the cup of iniquity is full.  Only He knows; we don’t know and that’s why we should be, as it were, fearing God.  I see God move in certain individual’s situations and it puts a trepidation in my soul lest I should find myself in some similar set of circumstances.  I listen to what comes my direction.  Hello?  I listen to it, I go to God about it, I go to people about it, I have them pray with me as to whatever it is that could have some sort of disastrous affect on my position in the Lord!

You know, I was saying something earlier about the saints that have gone on before us, and I was saying something about the fact that we can’t all be like them.  I don’t really know if God expects us to be like them.  But He expects us to put our all into the Word that we have received with the same tenacity, the same sacrifice as they expended with the Word that they had received!  Hallelujah.  Hallelujah.

We are all given something of the gift of the measure of Christ.  Ephesians says that in the 4th chapter.  We all can’t be the same.  But we all have something that God has given us.  Some of us have tenacity and endurance.  You know, the person who gets the most praise in the building of a house is usually the guy that’s in there last.  Like the finish carpenter.  “Oh!  What a marvelous job he did!  Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful!”  You don’t hear anything about the studs under the drywall.  And yet, without the studs, all of the beauty of the finished carpentry could not exist. Some of those studs stand year after year after year after year after year with the pressure of the cosmos pressing, pressing, pressing.  And they give of their substance, they give of their being, they give of their energy, they give of their life!  No recognition on a natural plain, a natural level!  Yet, without them we could not have the beauty of the finished product.  Sometimes, we as Christian can become disoriented, or sometimes we become somewhat discouraged.  I’ve heard time and time again from some of these dear saints in the Body of 2×4’s, “I’m not doing anything.”  And yet in their doing and their abiding there is substance and strength that is pouring into the Body of Christ giving us the ability to continue and to complete.  My fear, my trepidation is, “My God, keep them, keep them, keep them, keep them, strengthen them!  Strengthen them!  There is something eternally, my God!”  I am praying, “God, give them a taste of eternity, not in that they go from here to there.  I am in need of their strength!  God, bless them!  Give them a revelation of the eternity of God and let them continue to pour their strength into the fabric of this house!”  I’ve seen some of them give up.  Give up!  Just give up!  I’m not condemning them.  But it was because the Body did not recognizing the value and the necessity of the integrity that they provided.  Pray!  We need to be people of prayer that pray!  Oh hallelujah.  Hallelujah.  Hallelujah.  Hallelujah.  My prayer for the body of Christ is, “God, give me a little more time.  I need just a little more time.  I need just a little more time.  I need something, God.  We need that time, there needs to be more of an awareness of the fact of the time we’re living in and the Word we have.  God, we’re so self-centered.  We’re so fragile!”  That’s one thing about eggs that I don’t want to be like.  We have this friend, and he likes his eggs cooked in a way that we call them “rubber eggs.”  You know, you fry them so hard that if you drop them on the floor, they bounce.  I don’t want to be an egg in the fact of being fragile, that somebody has to handle me with kid gloves and in such a manner, such a way for fear that I will break and mess them all up!  We need to be tough in the Lord, tough in the Lord, tough in the Lord! Tough!  In the Lord!  Thick skin!  That tabernacle was covered in badger skin, do you know, it’s not very pretty, but it’s tough.  It’s tough!  You could put sun on it, you could put wind on it, you could put rain on it, you could blow sand against it and it would still abide!  It would still tent, it would still protect!  Oh hallelujah!  Let us not be like Absalom who took the things of the Kingdom for granted and thought that he could possess it without due order.  The end result was the sin of fornication that was shouted from the housetop, an open place of defilement before the whole house of Israel.  Do you know, that’s what we do when we submit to the spirit of flesh?  That’s what we do when we submit to the spirit of individual personality.  Rights? They don’t have any rights, yes they do, they have a right if God releases them and the devil uses them against them, they have a right!  Submit to the dealings of God!  Submit to the Word of God that is inside of you!  Allow that Word to have the ability to do what it’s supposed to do.

One last scripture.  John 17:18,  As thou hast sent me, the Logos, into the world, the cosmos, even so have I also sent them into the world.19And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth.  Now listen, you need to print this verse out.  Put it on your door, put it on your mirror, put it in your car.  Verse 20, Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word.  What are you going to do with the Word that is in you?  What are you going to do with the Word that is in you?  We know in I John 1:1, what John said about the Word.  “We have touched it, we have handled it.”  God bless you. 

 

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