The Word and Sonship
October 19, 2002
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I pray that what the Lord has laid on my heart will bless and encourage you. I was recently reading an article that was sent to me that we are going to print in the Bulletin. The word that Brother Craig brought here in Sterling about the sons of God was a blessing to me to read it, and we decided that we were going to put it in the Bulletin. Along that line there are some thoughts that I have that I would like to share with you this evening concerning the calling and the election of God.
I don’t know how it is in your situation, but I know how it is in my own personal circumstances. Oftentimes the set of circumstances that we find ourselves in overrides our spiritual sensitivity, if not eliminates or obliterates it over the amount of time that it may be. For some people it is a longer time, for others it is a shorter time, depending on the destination for which we have been chosen.
We all have ambitions and desires. When I started out as a young person I certainly didn’t desire to do what I am doing today, as far as preaching the Word of God is concerned, but because there was an overriding destiny that the Lord had for me, He began to work my set of circumstances to change me in the direction He wanted me to go. As difficult as they were, all of the workings, troubles, tribulations and all of the pressures that were coming into my life during that time were pressures that were channeling me or pressing me in a particular way that I particularly did not want to go. When I was a sinner, I enjoyed those things that I was doing to some extent, or I probably would not have been doing them. But the fact of the matter is, as I became aware of God, God began to reveal unto me the aspect of His own personage, and in light of that revelation, the things that I was involved in became less and less tasteful to me. I find that if we lose focus, and it doesn’t take too much to make us lose focus, if we lose focus, then it seems like those old things begin to rise up again within the framework of our flesh. I think Paul, when he was preaching to one of the churches there, he was talking about his own position of being under subjection. He said he was continually, and I am glad that he said continually, because it tells me that Paul, although as much revelation that he was getting, as much of a personal relationship and experience that he was having, he was still having difficulty with his flesh. His flesh was still trying to assert itself, to bring itself into preeminence, and if nothing else, to dominate his position of life and his way of thinking. He had to say that he was having to continually… That means that you do it, and you do it, and you do it, and you do it, and you do it, and you do it, and you keep doing it, and you do it, and you do it, and you do it. Sometimes, you get sick of doing it, but you still do it. You have to continually do it to bring yourself to that place in the plan of God where God wants you to be. It takes a lot of work. It takes a lot of effort. It takes a lot of work. It takes a lot of sacrifice on your part and my part with regard to the calling and the election of God.
I don’t know where the church got the “easy street” message with regard to Christianity. They told me when I was a young man in the church, “Well, you get saved, and all your troubles are over.” I found out that when I got saved, it seemed like my troubles just began. The more I got saved, the more trouble it seemed like I was having, and all those things that go with the realm of the Spirit. The more of God we have, the more confrontation we have with that aspect of our own flesh, our own place, our own environment, with regard to personalities and circumstances.
Here, sometime back, someone sent an article, a short little article to us to put in the K.I.T. Bulletin. It was a little parable of a man who was pushing the rock. I don’t know if any of you read that parable, but if you didn’t, I will just reiterate it for you so you will know what I am talking about. There was this man who had a job, and it was a job that God gave to him. And his job was to go out the front door of his house everyday and there he was confronted with this humongous rock that just came up right out of the ground. His job was just to push against the rock, to put his shoulder to it. So, from daylight to dark, he would go out there and he would put his shoulder to the rock and begin to push. He did it day in and day out, month after month, year after year, and many years down the road, he began to think about the futility of his actions, the futility of his life. Maybe he was thinking about the closed-in-ness of his circumstance. You know, from bed, to door, to rock; from rock, to door, to bed. Or maybe the repetition of it all.
Whatever the set of circumstance was, I think it somewhat correlates to you and I with regard to life, because there is a mundane-ness to life with regard to responsibility and living. I mean, you know, raising children. Year in, year out, day after day. You tell them no, you tell them no, you tell them no. You tell them this, you tell them that, you tell them this. You tell them this repetitiously over and over and over again, and sometimes you wonder, “Will it ever sink in? Will it ever come or take root or come to a position or place of fruitfulness?” Well, I can tell you, it does, sometimes take root, and it sometimes does bear good fruit. The Bible says that the husbandman waits with patience for the fruit to come (James 5:7). But, whatever his set of circumstances were, or whatever his thoughts were about his circumstances, it evidently opened the door for the devil to come and begin to talk to him about the futility of what he was doing. The devil began to capitalize upon the man’s frustration. Have you ever noticed how the devil capitalizes on your position of weakness, or on your position of frustration? HAVE YOU EVER NOTICED THAT THERE SEEMS TO BE A VAST HORDE OF “JOB’S FRIENDS” OUT THERE WHO ARE MORE THAN WILLING TO SUBSTANTIATE, VALIDATE, AND TO VOTE IN FAVOR OF THE MALADY OF YOUR FLESH? Now, if you don’t have Job’s friends in the natural sense, your own mind is sometimes your very worst enemy, because it will begin to work contrary to the calling and the election of God with regard to whatever rock it is that God is giving you to push. Now, it is not so much that the rock is the epitome of everything, except for that the rock is a means to an end, and there seems to be some necessity for you and I to have some sort of understanding of the eternalness of our temporal, short life span of experience that we are experiencing. Hallelujah! Sometimes the eternalness gets lost in the actuality of our living and the experience that we are having. Hallelujah. We can get very bogged down in the midst of that. So, I think most of us can probably relate to the man in his condition in the place that he was in when the devil came. The devil began to point out to him, “Where are you moving the rock? Where is the rock going? Has the rock moved at all?” Have you ever had your mind or someone say, “What are you doing it for?”, or, “What is the sense in it?” Or, if you have done it and it all falls through, and the accusation comes with regard to all of that. So, the man goes out and he looks at the rock and sure enough, to his visible eye, the rock hasn’t moved one iota! You can imagine the man and the way he felt when he comes to the actual visual proof of his life being nothing but frustration and futility and failure. Hallelujah.
I think the devil sometimes likes to capitalize, as it were, on the aspect of our failures. I don’t know how it is with you, but you know, I have been a Christian for a very long time. Well, I say a very long time. As far as I am concerned, it seems like a very long time. I am a whole lot older now than I was when I began. What I have found out is that the devil doesn’t forget. It doesn’t make any difference how long of a time has passed, the devil always goes back to your sin and begins to bring up things that have no credence or validity as far as the Spirit of God and the Blood is concerned. But, somehow, my mind has to wrestle with it. I have to deal with the aspect of whatever feeling or emotion or thought that that thought would bring to me and the MOOD that comes over me. Hallelujah. You know, the bad thing about a mood is that it just doesn’t affect me, it affects everybody. It is like a cold, you know. Nobody wants a cold, but everybody shares a cold. That is the way moods work. It is like the cold wants everybody miserable. Well, the mood that we get in sometimes, I should use the word, not affect, but INFECTS those that are round about us. Oftentimes, we are not aware of what is going on. Sometimes, if we are more spiritually perceptive than other times, we can sense the onslaught of the MOOD that comes against us.
Anyway, we can again identify with the place that this man was in with regard to the job that God had given him to do and the thing that the devil was pointing out to him; a revelation of his own position of frustration, a revelation of his own humanity, a revelation of his own failure. The good news is, he just didn’t leave it lying there, he took it to God, and God came back to him with what I thought was a very good answer. The first thing that He said was, “You don’t know the totality of the situation. You’re just looking at the rock.” He said, “You are not looking at the totality of the situation.” He said, “Go look at yourself in the mirror.” So, the man goes. We know that the Word is the mirror. We know that a man can take the Word and he can look into the Word and it can reflect something of the business of God or the aspect of God that is within that particular individual. He said, “Go to the mirror.” So, the man went to the mirror. But, it took more than just the mirror to begin to reveal to the man the thing that was going on unnoticed all the while that he was pushing the rock. God began to point out his attributes. He showed him how he had gained strength and vitality. He showed him how he had aged in wisdom with regard to how to push, as it were, in the aspect of moving the rock. Then God said, “I never told you that the rock would move.” I think that sometimes is part of our problem with regard to the will of God. We presume to know what Z is. We want to know where A is, and we want to know where Z is. But those things are not necessarily pertinent to you and I in the plan or in the scope of God. It is therefore necessary, I believe, for us to understand that the position, the place that God has put us in is for the express purpose of bringing forth something that He, God, desires. Amen.
With that in mind, I want to turn over into John, because I believe that the sons of God. I believe that the sons of God message is a pertinent message, not only for the sake of the end time, but because of the time element that you and I are living in. Hallelujah, hallelujah. When I first came into the Word many years ago, we didn’t have the expression “kingdom people.” We didn’t have the expression “overcomers.” We just had the expression, or terminology, that was used with regard to this particular word, “Sons of God.” Hallelujah, and I can remember very clearly different ones that were coming on the scene at that particular time. They were talking about the sons of God. Now, I believe in the kingdom word, and I believe that the kingdom word is a distinct revelation of what it means to be a son of God. I believe in the overcoming word. I believe that the sons of God not only are they kingdom people, but they are also overcomers. Hallelujah. Now, that terminology, in itself, by definition, gives you the necessity of having to have something to overcome. Each and every one of us has a unique set of circumstances, a unique set of tribulations that are designed to confront us with our own nature and give us an opportunity to exercise the Word of God that John talks about in John 1. In the very beginning he talks about the Word. He says, In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. I don’t know that I am going to be able to necessarily impart to you what I am personally feeling about that, but I don’t believe that The Word is this thing that we have written in betwixt these two covers. I believe that the Word is a personality. I believe that the Word is an entity of life. I believe that the Word has a virtue and substance and that it has the ability to transform you and me. Hallelujah. Now, you know, we quote a lot of scriptures about a lot of different things. I don’t know that quoting scriptures will necessarily do too much for you, although it does give you some ability to resist the devil. However, quoting scriptures, or the memorization of scriptures, is not the epitome of what God desires with regard to what He calls the Word, because in the Greek, when the word “word” is used… I am sure you probably have heard about it before, but there are two words that are used. One is “logos” and the other is “rhema.” Now, “logos” is something of the expression of thought as in “the written word.” It is as an expression of thought, hallelujah, that is shared or that is transmitted. “Rhema” is the vehicle by which it is administered. Are you following what I am saying? When it talks about Jesus Christ becoming flesh, what it is actually saying is that the logos, hello, the logos that was with God became, as it were, the rhema or the visible, viable, expressed transmittal of the thought and intent of God. It says here, verse 2 of chapter 1 of John, The same was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made by him; Now, remember, we are talking about The Word. You can just as well take “him” out of there, and put “Word” in there. It says, without him, or, without the Word, was not any thing made that was made. 4 In him, or The Word,was life; and the life was the light of men. So, now we see a transition of a Word that is another word that is given to us that is synonymous with the word that is called the logos. Hallelujah. I am wanting you to understand the significance of what you have in your hand or have at home lying on your table. Maybe it is just in your car. There is something very significant about this word that God says is the Word. So, let’s look at the transition. First, the “Word” became a “Him.” Hallelujah, then the Word became an it, or life. Hallelujah, and that life became man, or as the Bible says, was the light of men (verse 4). Now, “men,” “light,” “Word” all come together. Hallelujah. It’s like it was all thrown into one pot. And all it’s fullness being in Jesus Christ.
Now, put your finger there and go with me over into Luke. You know, the church and the world have so subverted and perverted this portion of scripture that it really has lost a great deal of its power. Hallelujah, but the thought that we were talking about here in John, keep this in your mind with regard to this scripture in Luke. Luke 1, the angel comes to Mary. Now, I think it is very significant that God used an angel for the reason that an angel is a messenger. That’s what the definition of angel is. It means “messenger.” One who is sent with a message. Thus, to have a message, you must have what? You must have a word. Hallelujah. Now, it was this message or this word that the angel was carrying that brought to Mary a particular desire of God. Luke 1:30, And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. Now, you know, I want you to personalize this scripture. I want you to personalize it. Now, I will help you, if I may, if you can think of Mary as the church, and if you can think of the church as you and those of you who are fellowshipping together with a particular Word. Hallelujah. The aspect of the Word is very important. We don’t want apart of the Word. We don’t want to fellowship with apiece of the Word. Do you understand what I am saying? Now, the Baptists have taken a piece of The Word and have made it a doctrine. The Full Gospels have taken another piece of The Word and added it with the Baptist piece of The Word, and they have made it a doctrine, and the epitome of all that God is. Well, my Bible tells me that God is more than just you and I being saved, which is the Baptist position, or the Evangelical position is probably what I should say. Being saved and being filled with the Holy Ghost is the Full Gospel’s position of religion or the position or the place of service that they have. To them, that’s the epitome of God. Now, if they think and they feel that that is the epitome of God and you are in fellowship with that piece of The Word, how far in that piece of The Word are you going to go? Now, remember, the power and the belief that you have with regard to the Word brings you to a position or a place of the fullness of the Word. That is what we were talking about in John. Right?
Go back over into John 1and read from verse 8. He was not that Light…John the baptist was not that light..,but was sent to bear witness of that Light. 9That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world. 10 He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. Now, there is something here that you have to look at and come to grips with with regard to the Word that you are following. If you are in fellowship with the world, the world has an ability to transmit or to bring ignorance into your being with regard to the awareness or the magnitude of who and what God is. Now, verses 1 through 7, John has been illustrating and demonstrating by vocabulary as to what the significance and the magnificence and marvelousness of this oneness of the Word and God. Amen.
10 He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. 11 He came unto his own, and his own received him not. 12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name. Now, that is very important. To many of them that believe. Now, that word “believe” doesn’t mean that at some point in time, some position, some place, you said, “I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.” It entails that. But it’s like, if you’re going to get in your car and you go somewhere, and you go out in your driveway, you get into your car and you start the motor and you leave it in park. You are going to go nowhere. The car is of no value. If it’s a cold day and the heater is running, it might keep you warm. Or if it’s a hot day and the cooler is running, it might keep you cool. But as far as getting you from point A to point B, it is not fulfilling the task for which it was designed. You are not utilizing or using it in the fashion in which it should be used. Now, there is something also very significant about all of that, in that, you have to know how to drive. You have to know what that little R means. And you have to know what that little D means. They don’t have stick shifts anymore, I don’t think too much, but they do have automatics. And you have to know, because if you are parked frontways in your driveway and your garage is in front of you and you put it in drive, you are certainly not going to wind up in the street. You are going to wind up in the back of the garage, or through the garage door, and very possibly, through the back garage wall. And you know something? As funny as that may seem, there are a lot in Christianity that do just exactly that. They put it in drive when they should be going in reverse. They put it in reverse when they should be going forward. Hello? And sometimes they shouldn’t be going at all, they should be in park, waiting upon the Lord.
Now, this is to them that believe, to them gave He power. That word power, another Greek word for you is dunamus. Dunamus is where we get the word dynamite from. The word dynamite comes from the word dunamus, which we translate into “power.” Power is so blah. It doesn’t really illustrate or explain to us the awesomeness of dunamus power.
Now, I am going to go back over into Luke. I am going to take up where I left off there. The angel said unto her (Luke 1:30) Fear not, Mary. How many of you have found how the Word of God brings peace to your soul? In the midst of tragedy it brings help and sustenance and a soothing, comforting feeling. Or in a position or a place of loneliness, it brings you the sense of company and consolation that someone might have or has for you. 30...for thou hast found favour with God. I think that it is very important for us. Now, remember, I am using Mary as the church. I am using the church as you, as individuals. So, I believe that the Word that was spoken to Mary is not just something for the sake of Mary, because there was a particular word, there was a particular message that this angel was bringing. He wasn’t going to tell her what she was suppose to eat for dinner that night. He wasn’t going to tell her even who she was going to marry. Hallelujah. He was going to tell her the intent and the desire of God that God had for her. I often think sometimes that the favor of God is a very fearful thing. God favored Job. God bragged on Job and look what it got Job into. It was for the benefit and for the working of righteousness in the midst of Job’s soul as well as a demonstration to the principalities and the powers!
You know, sometimes we think that because of our set of circumstances, that’s the epitome of everything. All things are what we are involved in, because we can get so wrapped up in it. We really do not fully comprehend the totality of the demonstration or the point that God is making with regard to principalities and powers. Hallelujah, hallelujah, hallelujah. One of the things that is spoken or the commendations that was given to Jesus Christ is that He made an open show…I believe it says (Colossians 2:15) of His position of godliness, in the midst of His humanity. Come on! He was the firstborn. Romans 8:29 says He was the firstborn, of what? Many brethren. Who are the many? They are the Mary company. They are the Mary company. They are the Church. They are the called-out individuals. Hallelujah. Now, there was something very significant about the fact that of all Israel, all the humanity that was on the face of the earth, God chose one woman in one place at a particular time to do a particular thing. Hallelujah, at the cost of the woman’s reputation. Peace of mind, maybe? I don’t know what it would feel like to be in her shoes, but I can imagine. You know, nowadays, it probably wouldn’t be so bad, but back then and there I know what it was or what it could have been. The condition she found herself in was a stoneable offence. They did not mess around in those days. If a woman was caught in the condition of being with child and out of marriage, the elders or the ones that were responsible for her had the say-so as to whether she lived or died. Hallelujah, hallelujah! And yet, God chose to show favor on her. Hallelujah. Well, I believe that because of The Word that you and I have heard, or are hearing and the position that we are in, that there is something of a favor that God is extending to you and I. Now, I have been accused of being an elitist, that I preach an elitist gospel. Well, quite frankly, I think that I am an elitist and I think I do preach an elite gospel, but I don’t preach it just for a select few, because the Bible tells me that whosoever will has the potentiality. To everyone that believes, to them gave he power to become the sons of God. Now, if you are not aware of that power or you’re ignorant of the potentiality of the power, or maybe you just don’t want to mess with the power. Maybe you just want to get into heaven, I don’t know, whatever it may be. You want to get your foot in the door and be saved from hell. Hallelujah. Well, that is all well and good. But, the fact of the matter is, there is something about the fullness of the Word that is spoken of in John 1:1-7 that is very significant, very personal, and very applicable to you and I if we really want it, because in verses 8, 9, and 10, He talks about coming to His own and His own receiving Him not. Now, look, brethren, you can’t take one piece of scripture and say that it applies to me, and take another piece of scripture and say that it doesn’t have any affect or value as far as you are concerned if you’re talking about the particular subject of Sonship. Hallelujah! If you have received The Word, if you hear a Word, if to some degree you believe in the word, you then therefore come into a position of being one of His own. That means that you and I are in a somewhat precarious and trepidatious position in that we have the potential of rejecting Him. Why? “Well, I’ll never reject Jesus, I will never reject God.” But what about Jesus or God that is in The Word that you are hearing, and you are not believing or grasping onto, or running after, and asking God for an explanation or an expansion of? Hallelujah!
I personally, now listen, you don’t have to believe this way if you don’t want to, it won’t hurt my feelings at all. I believe that we are living in a very critical time of the church with regard to the manifestation of the Sons of God. I believe that there are many that have heard The Word and for one reason or another are rejecting that Word that they are hearing. Not saying it necessarily with their mouths but, saying it in the aspect of how they are living their lives in the midst of their troubles, tribulations, and adversarial conflict with humanity or the devil. Hallelujah. Hallelujah.
I believe that we can all be, as it were, like Mary. This is all imagination, I suppose, but I would like to think it’s spiritual imagination. I would like to think that when I meet some of these people in the time of the coming together of all the heavenly things with the earthly things, that I will have time or maybe I will just intuitively know, you know, to sit down and talk to these people about things. I have some very serious things, questions that I would like to ask Adam, I’d like to ask Eve. I would like to ask this young lady here, as to what went through her mind at the onslaught and visitation of the word. “Well, how can this thing be, Lord? How can this thing be, seeing that I know not a man?” Our first response is always on a natural plane, a natural level. We don’t seem to be able to extend ourselves, as it were, beyond that realm of our humanity. It takes a divine intervention. In Mary’s case, it was “Another Word.” Hello? It was another word. She said, in Luke 1:34, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? Verse 37 says, For with God nothing shall be impossible. Now, that particular verse is not a direct quote. But, what would you call it? A kind of a translated or transliterated word that comes out of Isaiah 55:11. You might just want to turn over to that verse for a moment. I will read it to you here. I will start at verse 8, because 8 is always new beginnings. 8For my thoughts (that’s God’s thoughts, Yahweh’s thoughts) are not your thoughts… Oh, sometimes we like to think that we think like God. Hallelujah. …Neither are your ways my ways. Well, I thought that doing it my way was God’s way. Hallelujah. Some of us are very bent on and prone to thinking that our ways are God’s ways, but I am constantly and continually finding out that God’s ways are always confrontational to my ways. The thing that I would want to do, He doesn’t want me to do. The thing that I don’t want to do, that is the thing that He wants me to do. Hallelujah, and when I think that I’m thinking that that’s the way that I am thinking, I find out it’s just the reverse, that I’m all wrong, you understand? There is a necessity to continue to be in a position of recognizing and giving Him preeminence in all things. Hallelujah.
I will give you a little illustration of that that just happened to me. I had two jobs that I could do this morning when I got up. I was kind of perplexed when I went to bed last night because both of them were pressing on me to be done. You understand? I needed to do both of them. So, I said, “Lord, I really want Your will with regard to what needs to be done and everything, and where I am most supposed to be tomorrow, and I am just asking for Your direction.” Well, it rained last night, quite a bit. It got pretty wet. One of the things that I couldn’t do, I couldn’t do because it was too wet to do, but I thought that, because it was too wet to do that one thing, it would also be too wet for me to do the other thing because both of them had to do with dirt. I was going to be in the dirt in both places. You understand? One place I was going to be walking around in it and doing whatever I had to do, and the other place I was going to have to be driving up and down with a plow, plowing it up. But the rain was sufficient enough to keep me out of the field. Of course, I remember praying and all that last night, and knowing that I would just run over and take a look at it. And though it was wet and kind of soggy and muddy, you know how this Illinois dirt piles up on you and you get taller and taller. The farther you walk, the taller you get. Quite frankly, the mud, it wasn’t all mud, but it was very damp and very wet and very sticky. It made the one job a little easier because it involved some digging. The digging went very well and very easy and I was able to do it. So, there is some aspect of ways here, because I would not have thought that either job would have been able to be done because of what the rain did with regard to the dirt. But anyway, it says that our ways are not His ways, that is just a little for what it’s worth. 8 For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord. I like “saith the Lord.” There is something about The Word of God. Hallelujah.
I trust that when we get finished tonight, you will think a little differently with regard to some of the cliché-ish repetition of what the Bible says with regard to the Word. Verse 9, For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. Now, you can see this being demonstrated in Luke with regard to Mary when the word of the Lord comes to her about her destiny in God.
10 For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: 11 So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: Now, when the angel said what he said to Mary, there in Luke, that nothing was impossible with God, what he was quoting was this section of scripture out of Isaiah. And it says, so shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it. Now, somewhere in my experience with religion, that is out in the church, I have found that they have taken some of these scriptures that are designed to do something eternal and used them in a temporal, carnal, natural arena to say that, well, you need to prosper; that prospering is an indication of your spiritual vitality, your spiritual position of awareness. Quite frankly, prospering or poverty has nothing to do with spirituality, or the word, for that matter, because I am told that in the fullness of the Word, I don’t need these things that are out here. Hallelujah! That there are things in the heavenly realm. It amazes me that when they were seeing Yeshua, Jesus, after the resurrection of Jesus Christ, He appeared, He was always clothed, but in a different type of raiment. He was living in a realm where those things did not inhibit Him. It was as though the realm He was in transcended the natural realm, and He could walk through the room, or He could just disappear out of sight. Mary thought that He was a gardener. This woman spent almost two years of following after this man and waiting on Him and serving Him and yet, did not know who He was in the garden after His resurrection. The disciples on the road to Emmaus spent three years of their lives in continuum with this man, day and night, and yet they did not know who He was. Why? Because there was something very significant and magnificent about the thing that the Bible calls Word. Hallelujah.
Anyway, it shall. Itshall. There is not doubt. There is no room for quivering, quavering, or wondering, or even imagination. It’s a settled fact. When God called you, when God put His hand upon you, when God began to expand unto you this Word that is called Sonship, overcoming, hallelujah, this Word that talks about being a son of God, it shall not return unto [God] void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it. That word that we are talking about is the Word that is resident within you and I. What did Psalms say? Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against Thee (Psalm 119:11). Now, is it because there is a knowledge of the Word? The hiding of the Word is not something that you take…We say, it’s memorization. We say, it’s getting familiar with the scriptures. I say, all of that is good. All of that is well, but it is not the aspect or the culmination of what it talks about in the scripture when it talks about hiding in the Lord! Hallelujah! He that dwelleth in the secret place of the Most High, he that abideth under the shadow of His wing (Psalm 91:1).
John, in one of his gospels, one of the little Johns, speaks of it in a different way. He says, this Word we have handled. That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life (1 John 1:1). This Word, you know? These men in this position, in this place. And so, we have this Word being offered unto you and I. Hallelujah, with regard to a position, a place.
So, we find this young lady as it were. There is something very similar to this scripture with the scripture found in Revelation. You could even put as a reference here in the margin of your Bible, if you wanted to, of the story that is found, I believe that it is in Revelation 12, where it talks about the woman standing on the church of the world and clothed with the sun and pregnant with the church. Hallelujah, there is something very significant that ties that Word into this Word. It is talking about the coming forth of the Christ within the realm of humanity. Hallelujah, hallelujah.
OK, back to Luke. The first message that the angel or the word begins to give to Mary is all the good points, all the positive things. He wants to build up her faith, wants to get her excited, wants to get her into a position or a place of acceptance. It is so much like you and I, you know, with regard to this Living Word. He tells her that He shall be great. He shall be called the Son of the Highest. The Lord God shall give unto Him the throne of David his father. (You know, I came to a little understanding about the women of the Old Testament. Would that we could have some of the enthusiasm or the desperation they exhibited in bringing forth seed.) You know, in the history of Israel, as a nation we are told of different stories. Like, we are told of Abraham and Sarah. We are told of Jacob and Rachel and Leah. All of these people had something in common. Now, in the Jewish culture and from their historical position they knew that someone, somewhere was going to have within their lineage the Messiah. This was a promise that was given to Abraham back in the very beginning when he told Abraham about Isaac coming forth (Genesis 17, 18). So, there was a competitiveness that was going on in the realm of humanity. Humanity trying to bring forth as it were this seed, hallelujah, that was designated as the ruler of the world and of the universe. Hallelujah. So, in the story of Jacob in particular, we find Leah and Rachel vying with each other to produce an offspring that would ensure for them a position of prominence in the records of history as being the one that came forth with the Christ. Hallelujah! Sometimes we see that competitiveness going on in the body of Christ, vying, as it were, to bring forth a word that has within it a power to somehow transform and translate everyone that hears it into a position and place of perfection. Well, it isn’t going to happen, because that power and that position has already been designated. The Bible said that the Word became flesh. That word is the only way that we will have that effect as ministers of God, I am talking about all of us collectively, is if we are embracing The Word that has within it the power, and the ability to do what needs to be done. Hallelujah.
You and I find ourselves in very much the same position and the same place where Mary found herself. After all of that, Luke 1:34, Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? 35 And the angel (the bearer of the word) answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power (the same word that is used in John 1 with regard to power to become sons) of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God. You could just as well put in parentheses, “called the Christ,” because that is the designation of what it means to be the Son of God. Hallelujah. So, we find ourselves there in that position and in that place. Hallelujah, hallelujah.
Now, I want to just touch on this a little bit, that there is a due process by which God brings us into this position and into this place. There are three designations for you and I as individual believers in Christ. When we come to Christ, we come in the form or fashion of what the Bible calls a handmaid. You talk about the handmaids or the ten virgins. Five were wise and five were foolish, but they were all handmaids. Hallelujah. It doesn’t make any difference if you’re male or female. When you come or are in a position or a place where the Blood of Jesus Christ touches your soul and your soul becomes a living entity, you move from nothingness into the realm of eternalness, hallelujah, as a handmaid of the Lord. Then you go from a handmaid to a bride, and from a bride you bring forth the son of God. Hallelujah. This is what we talk about when we talk about the word working mightily within you and I. Hallelujah, the Word working mightily within you and I. Working to transform us and to bring us into a position or a place, to a destiny that is in the mind of God.
Now, this all has to do with pushing your rock, whatever your rock may be. All of it has to do with your own set of personal tribulations, trials, frustrations, humanity, whatever they may be. All of that is pertinent to your eternal destiny. In the midst of that thing, God is working to bring forth the revelation of you being a son. Hallelujah. Now, Paul said it another way. He said it to the Galatian church that he was in travail again. Hallelujah, which means that there was a travail that was going on previously with regard to this set of people. Hallelujah, but he was in travail again that what? That Christ be formed within them (Galatians 4:19). Now, let me just try to give you a short explanation of what happens with regard to you and I in this arena. We are walking dead men without Christ. We may seem alive, but we are going to hell. We are destined, we are dead. But in the destiny of God, God plans and purposes that you and I should be sons. So, somewhere along the line there is something of the Blood that you come in contact with that regenerates and gives you a new identity. You are born again. But, you are really not, really not born again again. You are in the process of being born. Hallelujah. Now, remember, it’s a three stage process. You go through the process of being a handmaid. You go through the process of being the bride, and you come into the process of being the bride that is pregnant with the manchild. All one and the same as far as your own personal position of experience is concerned. God comes into the midst of your soul. He puts the Blood, hallelujah, upon your soul. And you know, it is usually by means of a word. Have you ever noticed? What is it that Romans says, …how shall they hear without a preacher (Romans 10:14)? Hallelujah, it means that there has to be a word that is given to someone who is able to speak in some fashion or form or manner. That word is spoken, and in the midst of the speaking of the word, the logos in the midst of the humanity comes forth as the rhema, and it strikes your soul, and brings a conviction upon you that you need the Blood of Jesus Christ. Amen. That conviction isn’t something that comes because you have a sense of wrongness. It comes by the direct and the absoluteness of the power of the entity of righteousness that is in theWord/God that reveals to you your position of lostness. Hallelujah! And you believe. It is not that you believe, it creates in you an ability to believe. It is so marvelous that everything that is done, that happens in that arena, is something that comes from outside of ourselves. It is an impartation that comes from God. As Mary believed and said, a little while later, she said, “So be it as unto me, I submit myself to the word” (Luke 1:38). “I submit myself to the position, the place,” and in that position, faith comes. Faith comes. Hallelujah! So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God (Romans 10:17).
So, we find ourselves in that position. I want just to turn over into Romans for just a minute. Hallelujah. When I was a new Christian, Romans and Proverbs were the books that the Lord had me in for a great length of time. Romans 6:1, What shall we say then? Six is the number of man, and we are dealing with man in the process of becoming non-man. Hallelujah. What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? 2 God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein? 3 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? 4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death… Now, as I was saying, when the Blood is applied to your soul, there is an initiation, there is a position, a place of experience that comes that brings with it something that is other than what you’ve ever known or have ever experienced, because it is some thing out of a different realm. Hallelujah. So, it is not as though you are saved, it is more like you are being saved. You have been saved, you are being saved and you shall be saved. Salvation is a process, hallelujah, that continues on through the whole experience of our earthly walk with the Lord. Hallelujah. Now, how many of you think that being buried with Him by baptism into death is just something that is spiritual? It’s not. It’s not something just spiritual. It is something that is very natural, because from the moment or from the time that you take the step and you allow yourself in the midst of your experience with God to be baptized, though that thing is momentary, though that thing becomes a historical fact, it initiates a set of circumstances that continues to grow and expand as far as death working in you, hallelujah, while life begins to come forth in the midst of your deadness. Hallelujah.
Have you ever watched a caterpillar trying to work out of its cocoon? My, I don’t know how they get out of it. Work, work, work, work, work, work. I’d be worn out. By the time they get out, worn out. There was a little story that we heard somewhere about someone who felt that they were going to have mercy and extend grace to the caterpillar that was turning into the butterfly, so he took a little sharp instrument and he slit the cocoon to make it easier for the butterfly. Well, he didn’t help the butterfly, he disabled the butterfly, because the butterfly needs the stress of working itself out of the cocoon to strengthen the wings of the butterfly so the butterfly can fly. Now, he had a very beautiful butterfly, but it could not fly. It was an earthbound butterfly. Now, what value is there in an earthbound butterfly? You might enjoy it for a time or a season, but it is not going to live very long, because it will not be able to flit around from flower to flower to do butterfly things. Hallelujah. So it is with us. I don’t know, maybe you don’t always look for the easy way out, or maybe you’ve never said, “Why does it have to be so hard?” It is because God wants eagles. He doesn’t want chickens. Hello? I am jumping from butterflies to eagles. God doesn’t want chickens. You know, a chicken is an earthbound bird. It pecks like a bird, it scratches like a bird, but it can’t fly like a bird. They are always pecking on each other. Eagles fly. Hallelujah. Sometime you need to look into how the mother eagle teaches her eaglets how to fly. Hallelujah. It is a hair raising experience! You know how high an eagle can fly? An eagle will get its eaglet up on the edge of a nest and get the eaglet up on her back and begin to take him up. When I was a young Christian, I used to dream about flying all the time. I was just flying around everywhere. Flying in the air and flying here, flying there, doing all sorts of things. You know, levitating in my dream, flying, flying, flying. I said, “My, wouldn’t this be wonderful if I could really do it in a natural way!” But I can just imagine what it must have been like with that little eaglet on the back of Mama, as Mama was taking him up and up and up and up and up. Going up and the wind was blowing, and the breezes and the horizon was expanding and all of the scenery down below was becoming smaller and smaller. Woo! Wow! Fun! And all of a sudden, Mama just jumps out from underneath him! And little eagle has never worked its wings. All of a sudden he is flapping, flapping, flapping, just as fast as he can go. He is doing whatever he can do, and the only thing that he is doing is going straight down! I mean, that is a lot like you and I, isn’t it? God gets us up on our little high. We’re feeling good in the Spirit, and things are really moving. The Word of God is so precious, and the presence of God is so sweet, and all of a sudden, the bottom falls out of everything and we’re in the midst of trouble, saying, “God, where are you?” And we’re falling, falling, and what was so pretty, now becomes so horrendous, because you can see yourself splattered all over the terrain! Right? Hallelujah! I don’t know how the eagle does it, I don’t know, but their timing is explicit. Just before that little eaglet plunges and becomes a grease spot, she comes swooping down and picks him up and gets him back up there again. I know, I would go, “Whew!”
Have you ever had, we used to call it in the Army, a foxhole experience? You’ve got the bullets going off over your head and the bombs exploding over here, and people falling there, and you’re just saying, “God, You get me out of this and I will serve You forever!” Oh, yeah, I’ll serve You forever! Hallelujah! That is the way this little eaglet must feel. “Whew!” I can just hear it, “Mamma, I will do better next time!” And up he goes, “Oh, thank you, Jesus!” Thank you, Jesus! Thank you, Jesus! Thank you, Jesus! And all of a sudden, you know, well, you are praying in the morning, you’re praying in the evening. One day goes by and the next day goes by, and the next day goes by, and all of a sudden you are praying less, and you are thinking about God less, and all of a sudden, you are just there, enjoying the ride. And then, all of a sudden, out he goes again and down he goes, but this time something is happening, because he is finding more of a coordination and his flight or his fall isn’t quite as fast as it was the first time, but falling it is, nevertheless. It could be called a similitude of flying, I suppose, but it is more down than up. Hallelujah.
We used to play this little game when we were kids. Mama says, take two steps forward. Mama says, take one step back. Mama says, take three steps forward. Mama says, take one step back. Hallelujah. It seems like that is the way it is in our Christian experience and I personally believe that it is because we do not know the reality of the destiny to which God has called us, or the potentiality of the power that He has invested. Do you know how much blood that has been shed over this book? Do you know how hard it would be to preserve anything for the length of time that this thing has been preserved, and to know who preserved it for so very long of a time? It took God in the midst of the darkness of the Catholic church to touch a priest to go down in the tombs, to get it out and to rescue it, so that you and I might have it in the fullness of time! Hallelujah. It was like putting it into a savings vault, I guess, and making sure that it would be preserved for the time. It says, in the fullness of time..(Galatians 4:4). Hallelujah!
So, I would want to encourage you this evening with regard to the Word that you are hearing, the trials and the tribulations that you find yourself in and the rock that you are having to push against. Hallelujah! There is a purpose, and there is a reason and it is the destiny to which you have been ascribed and called to. It hasn’t changed because you don’t sense or feel the reality of God in the midst of any of it. Hallelujah! If you have, the essence of what we call Bible, being inscribed or written in your heart, then it can be said of you what was said of Jesus Christ.
I will just finish it with these scriptures. In John 1, right after verse 12. It is very significant that verse 12, number 12, is the number of government. Hallelujah. It says, verse 13, Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but…now, it says “of God”, but “will” is not in there. It’s God’s will. So, God and will become one and the same thing. 14And 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. The Word says that you and I shall know the truth and the truth shall make us free (John 8:32). Amen. I trust that we will run to apprehend that truth. In Jesus’ name, thank you very much.