Personality Complexes

Posted July 8, 2015 by SandreS
Categories: Identification

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When we launch out into the characteristics at Corinth, we come almost immediately on this: personality complexes.

I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ (I Corinthians 1:12).

You tell me that we are not capable of that – making even a servant of God, a greatly used servant of God – making him the focal point, the pivot around whom we circle – his way of teaching that appeals to me, his interpretation, his personality.

Oh, do not talk about personalities; they may have been used to your help; you may owe a lot to the Lord because of them, but do not be constantly bringing them into view. Paul will argue back and say,

Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed (3:5).

Let the instrument recede into the background, and let Christ come to the fore; be occupied with Him. We must drop all that personality complex business which in the development only means division in the Body of Christ. We must restrain from this sort of thing, for this is moving along the wrong line.

Dear friends, the Church of Jesus Christ is not an “it.” It is not a system of teaching. It is not something ecclesiastical. It is not an institution. (Oh, I thank God for the day when He showed me this.)

T Austin SparksT. Austin-Sparks (1888-1971)
The Great Transition

Nevertheless

Posted July 7, 2015 by SandreS
Categories: Identification

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Father, if You are willing, remove this cup from Me: nevertheless not My will, but Yours be done (Luke 22:42).

Often, we don’t know what’s really best. What seems to us like a great heartache and devastating loss, God has in His love and wisdom determined to be to our advantage.

As our Lord Jesus Christ faced the agonizing prospects of Calvary, it caused Him tremendous trepidation. His entire being recoiled at the thoughts of what He was about to face and experience. It produced deep agony in His heart and soul.

And being in an agony He prayed more earnestly: and His sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground (Luke 22:44).

His prayer to Father was for deliverance, that the cup of Calvary would pass from Him; but this would not be Father’s will. Father had a grander plan that included a journey up Golgotha’s shameful hill – and Father always knows best.

All of us who know the result of the story are thankful that God did not allow this cup to pass from our Lord. Indeed, this cup was at the center of Father’s purpose for the ages. We are thankful that our Lord Jesus Christ didn’t resist Father’s will, but rather learned obedience to His all-knowing, all-wise and all-loving destiny.

Though He was a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things which He suffered (Hebrews 5:8).

He humbled Himself, and became obedient to death, even the death of the stake (Philippians 2:8).

We, too, as sons of God, are being fashioned into the image of Christ, for this is our divine destiny (Romans 8:29; I Corinthians 15:49; Philippians 3:21; I John 3:2); and we, like Christ, must learn obedience through suffering. This is Father’s path to glory, for us as well as it was for Christ.

C2Pilkington-4Clyde L. Pilkington, Jr.

Seeing Him Who Is Invisible

Posted June 20, 2015 by SandreS
Categories: Identification

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Every man in the Bible who saw “Him Who is invisible” (Hebrews 11:24-27) was a man of heartache. He was a man of loneliness. He was a man who bore reproach. These three things accompanied those in the Bible who saw Him Who is invisible.

Jack HylesJack Hyles (1926-2001)
Seeing Him Who Is Invisible, page 7

The Exact Same “All”

Posted June 3, 2015 by SandreS
Categories: Identification

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For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive (I Corinthians 15:22).

This is another of the early verses that captured my heart and attention to the fact that God would be victorious in bringing His entire creation back to Himself. I saw that the “all” who die in Adam are the EXACT SAME “all” who will be made alive in Christ Jesus. I realized that the passage did not say what I thought it meant, that “all who are ‘in Christ’ shall be made alive.” I saw that it said, “even so in Christ shall all be made alive.” I found my heart rejoicing! Paul was teaching that God will have the ultimate victory in winning His whole creation back to Himself.

I slowly began to realize that what Paul was teaching was that the redemptive work of our Lord Jesus Christ was for every man – not potentially, but effectually.

C2Pilkington-4Clyde L. Pilkington, Jr.
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Christ Is Greater than Adam

Posted June 3, 2015 by SandreS
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Therefore as by the offense of one judgment came on all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of One the free gift came on all men to justification of life (Romans 5:18.)

Christ’s work on Calvary is greater than Adam’s “fall.” All of God’s creation will be gloriously saved by the successful work of “the Savior of the world” (John 4:42).

Salvation is not dependent on us at all. Salvation is ALL about Christ and His work alone. Paul taught that the exact same “all” who are condemned in Adam are the exact same “all” who are justified in Christ (Romans 5:18); and that the exact same “all” who die in Adam are the exact same “all” who are “made alive” in Christ (I Corinthians 15:22). What a victorious Savior we have!

Christianity has an Adam that is greater than Christ; however, it is Christ who is greater than Adam.

C2Pilkington-4Clyde L. Pilkington, Jr.
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Holding the Head

Posted May 30, 2015 by SandreS
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Holding the Head” [Colossians 2:19] is a succinct expression of our duty as members of the Body of Christ. A conscious connection and subjection to Him as our Head will sever us from the things of the world, whether it be its religion (however divine its origin) or its philosophy. Any attempt to improve our position before God by physical means, whether it be an appeal to the senses or a curbing of its normal needs, denies our completeness in Christ.

KnochA.E.Knoch (1874-1965)
Concordant Commentary on the New Testament (page 305)

All in Father’s Design

Posted May 28, 2015 by SandreS
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Father’s purpose in us is to awaken and enlighten us to the truth that this world and life are not our reality. It is His way of reminding us of who we really are, and what we really are, in Christ as part of His grand design for the ages, that He has a wondrous plan, purpose and place for us against which the things of this life pale in comparison, about which Paul said that all of this life is really nothing compared to the “far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory …” (II Corinthians 4:15-18) which one day will be “revealed in us” (Romans 8:18).

Just think: One day Dad will use what the world sees as our pitiful imperfections – our brokenness, our divinely implanted flaws – as the display of His “abundant grace” (II Corinthians 4:15). Even in this life the outworking of death (“the dying of the Lord Jesus,” :10) in us has a glorious purpose: that the “life of Jesus might be manifested in our mortal bodies” which will eventually (and even now in some measure) “through the thanksgiving of many super-abound to the glory of God” (:15).

We read in :6 that God “commanded the light to shine out of darkness,” taking us back to Genesis, and in the same way God’s light “has shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of His glory …” Imagine that! The same creative power of God that brought all of creation into existence is at work in us for the purpose of revealing “the light of the knowledge” of His Glory to the world around us, illuminating, as it were, “the face of Jesus Christ” to others!

When we read in :7 about “treasure in earthen vessels,” we are taken back to when God used just a very few of His people to defeat a huge army arrayed against Israel. These few had a light in earthen vessels, and then when the vessels were broken the light shone forth to reveal God’s awesome work. In the same way, God is working in His “not many” (I Corinthians 1:26) vessels of service; and it is in our brokenness that His light, “the light of the glorious gospel of Christ” (II Corinthians 4:4), shines forth to the world to reveal God’s awesome work!

This ministry spoken of in :1 is in the continuing context of chapter 3, and is a ministry of our being living, walking “epistles” (3:3), the purpose of which is to give “life” (:6). Our wonderful Father uses the troubles, perplexities, persecutions – all of the trials and tribulations of this life (4:8-9) – to deliver us to death, for the marvelous breaking of His vessels. Thus, while the world is busy attempting to show off their supposed superiority of supremacy, God ultimately reveals the futility of the “darkness” of their “blinded minds,” demonstrating the “excellency” of His power through us.

What a wonderful and glorious privilege and benefit it is for us that our Awesome Father has chosen us to use as weak, flawed, broken vessels in His service, so that ultimately the whole creation will see and understand the amazing knowledge and wisdom in all that He has done and said He will do.

Oh! the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments, and His ways past finding out! For who has known the mind of the Lord? Or who has been His counselor? Or who has first given to Him, and it shall be repaid to him again? For of Him, and through Him, and to Him, are all things: to Whom be glory throughout the ages. Amen! (Romans 11:33-36).

AndréAndré Sneidar


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