We must be genuine in our witness to people.
This requires that we must first be honest in our relationship with the Lord.
In other words, we must stop trying to impress the Lord or stop trying to fake Him out as far as what we really think and want. Because He knows us better than we know ourselves.
And without this honesty before God, we will not be able to genuinely manifest His life to those around us.
One of the greatest truths I have ever discovered, has been this wonderful knowledge of the indwelling Spirit of God.
A.W. Tozer, in his book, When He is Come, said that the the Holy Spirit is “all that Jesus would be“. Meaning, that the Spirit is everything that Jesus is as He dwells within us. Just as if He were visibly standing in front of us.
This means that He wants to do the work that He has commanded us to do. Yes, He wants to do that work in and through us. He wants to do this.
Who is Really Working Here?
This is such a profound yet subtle truth. It is so easy to miss or misunderstand.
Because, most all believers are bound up into trying to work for God.
This is a bondage just as real as any addiction to drugs, or alcohol, or porn, or any other commonly-understood sensual sin.
Christians pray; they read the Bible; they try to live a good life; they try to be a good testimony to others.
But it is they who are trying. It is they who are doing the work.
It doesn’t matter who we are talking about here. This is an across-the-board problem for all Christians.
We simply do not believe nor understand the supernatural quotient in our lives. We live in the power of the flesh instead of the power of the Spirit.
Even if we acknowledge the Lord’s presence and try to honor Him in all that we do.
Nevertheless, His actual working in our lives is mostly absent. What we see and what the world actually sees is the work of the Christian. Not the work of the Spirit of God
Because, we practically live our lives to duplicate, by our own Christian dedication, the life of Christ. All the while thinking that we are able to do this with God’s help and the proper discipline in our lives.
Totally missing the point of His indwelling. Like a car trying to drive itself. Or a lamp trying to light itself.
Forgetting that a car must have a driver. And a lamp must have electricity.
Because, without that indwelling control, both are worthless pieces of metal and glass. Without any real value at all.
God Copy Centers
When Jesus stood up in the boat, in the midst of the storm on Galilee, the boat was already in the process of sinking. The disciples, some of them fishermen and used to the sea, were preparing to die in the raging waters. (Matthew 8:24-27)
But the Lord spoke and all was still.
This is one of my favorite passages in scripture. Because it clearly demonstrates that Jesus Christ is the Lord of all Creation. That He controls all things, both spiritual and physical.
Praise God, that we have the Lord of all Creation dwelling in us and around us. Beneath us and above us. Behind us and before us. (Psalm 139)
Yet, we think that our lives are to be lived out in a kind of Christian duplication process. Where we try to do the work of the Lord of Creation by our own strength.
As if our lives were meant to be a demonstration of how well we can be little Jesuses in the world. Copy cats, as it were.
As if life is a contest of how well we can imitate the Lord of Glory!
We think there is value in this. And so we proceed with our church planning, our church planting, our missionary efforts, our community outreaches, and our million-and-one efforts to reach the culture for Christ.
Believing that this is so important that we should use whatever method is practical to do this. That we can compromise with the world to reach the world for Christ.
But this is, tragically, mostly done in the flesh of Christian dedication. Instead of by “demonstration of the Spirit and of power“. (I Corinthians 2:4)
Be Still and Know
This is not a judgment against anyone. It is meant as a warning. An alert.
It is a courtesy made out of love and a desire for our churches, Evangelical or Fundamental, to stop what they are doing and go back to the word of God.
To quit latching on to the Evangelical or Fundamental leaders that keep pushing the programs of social justice or missional thinking or all the other faddish ideas that have so captivated the thinking of our church leadership today.
What we need is to get back to the words of God. And to be still before the Lord. To sit at His feet again. To learn of Him again.
We think that this is already done. That we’ve got this. And that we can move on to bigger things.
We must build churches so saturated in the word of God that our lives naturally, or rather supernaturally, simply speak to others.
So that the Lord may begin to work a work in us that the world can truly benefit from. The work of His life being made manifest to others.
This is ultimately an individual and local church spiritual thing. It cannot be measured. It cannot be done by a strategy or program. It is not part of some national coalition of Evangelicals.
It comes by faithfulness and in-depth teaching and preaching of the word.
And by waiting on Him to lead us through the stormy waters of this life and culture.
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