June 4, 2021
(Edited by Brother Tim Pinson)
I want to share a reflection I had today.
Many of you must have become aware by now that we are currently engaging in some serious spiritual warfare and are breaking through major spiritual barriers at a very demanding level and with unprecedented intensity. We are in a head on collision with spiritual strongholds like the religious spirits and familiar spirits under the cruel ruler Babylon the Great Harlot.
In Rev. 12, it mentions that the devil’s flood of evil (accusations and hatred) is designed to destroy a company of sons. Many of us have been given revelations, or rather warnings, as to the realness and relevance of this heavenly event concerning our lives as well as the danger of entertaining naivety and a lack of genuine faith when facing such a challenge. We are warned that some false brothers could even become the instruments of accusations (the accuser of the brothers – a term here used to designate a company of sons of God in Christ Jesus).
This calls for keen discernment, high alertness and serious discipline. We must be humble and be wise, be strong and be courageous.
In the process of overcoming, a true son of God who is meant to enter into the Headship (mind or wisdom, authority and power) of Christ will have to learn His divine order or the spiritual formations according to God’s design and the spiritual operations of His living ways.
In essence, we will and must learn that spiritual covering, if this term can be used with its most decent and pure implications and applications, is NOT a theory or merely doctrine.
God’s sent sword and rod mean business, our flesh will be no excuse, our past mistakes will be no match. They will not be allowed as LEGAL reasons when being called unto such a warfare, and facing our accuser. The devil is not interested in our personal ideas or opinions and the fact that we might have them is a betrayal to the Lord’s goodness and righteousness. These actually invite assaults and accusations.
Let us use simple human experience to help clarify this simple yet profound spiritual principle that many prideful and foolish Christians ignorantly continue with, like playing with fire, even to the detriment of their own lives and the lives of those God has blessed them with. I am NOT particularly talking about anyone’s life in my lifetime, rather about a general principle and what has been a common experience throughout the history of mankind.
We all know, without a strong, godly and wise father in a family, the young ones will naturally suffer fear, confusion, rebellion and many other symptoms of spiritual or emotional deprivation. In the end, these young ones will either blame their parents, others, and, even worse, often themselves when they suffer the serious consequences of such a lack.
If these natural men and their natural relationships are severely damaged, from which the majority are never able to recover, what about our spiritual men and our spiritual relationships, especially when facing an aged, experienced, wise enemy like the great serpent, the devil? His sole purpose is to rob, kill and destroy.
Most believers are very uneducated and inexperienced in this regard. Therefore, they constantly live in spiritual disarray and powerlessness, often evidenced by their lives. Interestingly, this is the revelation God has given to some of us very clearly with serious terms. Of those who are thus warned, where are they now? Why can’t some of them simply hear and heed?
Now, the real question is: How are we to overcome? Well, I think it is high time for many of us to TRULY hear and practice the basics of spiritual life. We must learn to overcome, individually and as a body of Christ in God’s given way.
Let me now use the scriptures to illustrate this.
There is a good and proper reason that Jesus shared seemingly two totally controversial statements:
1. “If they are not against us, they are FOR (or with) us.” Simply put, these were people not included in His discipleship. For example in another place, Jesus said He had no business with such a flock. “What do I have to do with you?” When a young Jewish man approached him to judge his domestic affairs, He was obviously bothered and “irritated” by his perception of Him.
2. “Those who do not gather with me (to him as His sheep) will be scattered.” These were people that He called, yet they refused to rally with him and be discipled. About this, Jesus said something to this effect: “They would be better off if they had never heard the message.” In another place, He warned that such perverse people would suffer even more demonic attacks if they refused to put their spiritual house in order. He offered a very grim picture to those who treated lightly the power of the demonic and dire consequences when they refused to live out the new order of life issued from the Kingdom of God and embodied in His discipleship.
Let us now use a life AND scriptural example for this:
Is a shepherd called to chase after a lost sheep when His flock is under severe attack? No! I hope we get the real and practical picture here regardless of how many rosy and impractical religious teachings we have heard on this subject. Be sympathetic and be fair to a shepherd. We know by common sense that the shepherd, in real life, can’t afford to lay down his life, be it a choice of pain and sorrow, for an undisciplined and lost sheep when the whole flock is his stationed duty and in need of his urgent care. Good sheep are supposed to have gathered to the shepherd or at least run to him for direction and protection. And if this is not so, the reasons are simple: It is either because we have an irresponsible and incompetent shepherd, or because we have some bad sheep that have never learned to heed to the shepherd. Maybe they never wanted to be part of an orderly flock no matter how many shepherds have invited them. Even worse, maybe the sheep is actually a goat. In such cases, what would then we expect the poor shepherd to be or do? In the Bible, God, through prophets like Jeremiah and Ezekiel as well as through many other stories and prophetic warnings, emphasized to us as His chosen flock, that this is a very BASIC principle of shepherd and sheep relationship, which is obviously a very practical way of life.God our Father, being the Original Shepherd, has never deviated from this principle in the History dealing with His flocks. Would then He require and demand our Great Shepherd and His undershepherds otherwise? Be wise and be not deceived by the foolish and the lawless.
How are we to do that? Let’s start with the basics. Consider our own “opinions” and “ideas”, in the light of what we discussed above. Are they from God? Are they valid for the living occasion of our particular life? Are they helpful to anyone, especially to our own life? Are they conducive for us to love and support those we want to love and support? Are they in no danger becoming the very devices the Devil uses to deceive and destroy the unenlightened, the undisciplined and the unbelieving?
Recently our dear Brother Tim has been stressing the importance of having the fear of the Lord and of practicing and enjoying the Lordship of Christ in our lives. Today, let us also review, have we heeded the spirit-sent word of God? Have we learned in our everyday life what is true obedience and the solid practice of faith in light of such an instruction and warning? If not, why?
God rebukes certain characters in the Bible, saying their faith or commitment is like a morning mist; when the sun comes out, it is nowhere to be found. Such a person in God’s sight is basically worth nothing. Not to be ugly, but I have gone through some hard times with a few such characters in my life. It is sad to witness the trauma and the drama in their lives. But it seems that almost all of these characters never learned to say “I am sorry” when a sincere apology is truly needed, never be solid with their commitment when unity or love requires it and never think there are universal truths for our spiritual progress. For example: no pain, no gain. It seems they all wanted an easy life and would always cower back into their comfort zone when the time for serious commitment and real courage comes. How distressed and miserable they become at the feet of Cross, yet they are so excited with new revelations and power over demons! Death with Jesus, the Son of Man, is pain, but after it, what a great gain we have in the life of Christ, the Son of God!
Yes, only when we have moved away from and beyond the childish and worthless popular Christianity we have today will God have us as His NEW people, and into His New Adventures! “Do away with you, you filthy rags of death and defilement!” Such a people have not only overcome, but also began to “reign”.
They will go about the Father’s business as His established sons.