PAULFROMNYS

Bible talk

Hosted by PAULFROMNYS|Malachi 3:16-18/Bible talk

Based on Malachi 3:16-18 I believe the Lord will harken to us as we consider his word together.

  • 1697
    MEMBERS
  • 51560
    MESSAGES
  • 14
    POSTS TODAY

Discussions

The Testimony of the Christ #14   T. Austin Sparks

Started Oct-28 by PAULFROMNYS; 40 views.
PAULFROMNYS

From: PAULFROMNYS

Oct-28

   

National Existence Based on Death and Resurrection

Now let us get to this. This nation had come into being as a nation upon a basis, a great basic truth, the great basic truth of death and resurrection. You know all about the exodus. There is no doubt about it that it was a question of death and resurrection; that emancipation from Egypt. Their very national existence had been placed upon the great basic truth of death and resurrection. Now that truth was being worked into them. They had got it objectively, positionally, but they had not got it intrinsically, and that is the focal point of everything. It was being worked into them and they were being worked into the testimony, so that the testimony was not a matter of truth, of doctrine in the Bible, in the Scriptures; it was a matter of Life in themselves which conquered death.

That truth was that death is the common lot of all, not only all Israelites, but all the others, the Egyptians as well. The Israelites did not escape death because they were different from the Egyptians. They got their escape through the blood of Another. It was Another's life that got them out. They did not stand on any other ground naturally than that of the Egyptians. Death was the common lot of all, but when it comes to God's people a new situation is set up. They come into experience and that experience has two aspects.

In reply toRe: msg 1
PAULFROMNYS

From: PAULFROMNYS

Oct-28

   

They come into experience and that experience has two aspects.

Firstly, the fact that death is the common lot of all is brought home to them. You know that those who are not the Lord's people are not alive to the fact that they are dead. Death is not the great reality to them until they come to their body dying. But in their ordinary life when things are going on and there is health and provision, death is no reality to them. But death is brought home to the child of God. Immediately we get into God's hands this thing begins to be brought home to us - that we are not much good, we cannot stand up to things, we cannot go through. Our natural life and resources do not count here. The course of a true Christian life in the hands of God is that of being more and more brought to the experience of helplessness. Is that not true? Yes, of helplessness, of the impossibility of everything. Do not think things have gone wrong if that is becoming your consciousness. You may take it that you are in an immature spiritual stage if you have not come to that realisation that in the realm into which you have been introduced in your relationship with God, you have no resource. You are as a dead man. The death fact is brought home to you, is made real.

In reply toRe: msg 2
PAULFROMNYS

From: PAULFROMNYS

Oct-28

   

The death fact is brought home to you, is made real.

Ah, but on the other side, resurrection is taking a certain form over against that. With that background and with that basis, more and more the child of God is being brought to the position where he or she has to say: 'That was the Lord, it is the Lord; I cannot account for that, I am not the one who accounts for that, it is all of God', and you know quite well that resurrection is all of God. You can go a long way in many clever things and inventions, but you have not got as far as raising the dead yet. That is God's prerogative. That is only God. And so in the hands of God the child of God is being brought progressively more and more, and still more, to the place where they have to say, 'It is of God, it is all of God' and that is the testimony coming out. The Lord did that, the Lord is doing this. Is that not in Israel's history in the wilderness? See how again and again they were brought to an end, which did seem to be an end... nothing beyond this, and then they had to come out with a new song - "The Lord did it!" It is victory over death, it is the power of resurrection Life.

In reply toRe: msg 3
PAULFROMNYS

From: PAULFROMNYS

Oct-28

    

"The Lord did it!" It is victory over death, it is the power of resurrection Life.

Have you noticed one thing, that the two lines of men in those early chapters of the Bible, the divine line, the God line, and the line of the godless, the ungodly, do you notice how often the line of the ungodly, the men of the ungodly line, are set forth as very capable men in their realm? Yes, Cain was a very capable man in his realm of cultivating the ground and producing fruit. Esau was a very capable man, and these godless men built great cities and constituted a wonderful civilisation. The other line - well, nothing is said about their natural qualifications and greatness. Very often you might despise them and think they were the weaklings, that sort of thing that has so often, even in our day, been said - 'The Christians are the poorest type of people; the men of the world - that is where you will find capable, efficient and fine men'. I say that with a certain amount of reservation. That does not mean that no child of God can be efficient, but I am saying that God has taken pains all the way along to have a setting for His own glory. He takes pains for that, and the pains that God takes have in view this one thing - that man's ability can explain nothing, it is by the ability of God alone. You may be this or that, as I have said earlier, you may have qualified in the institutions of learning, you may have taken the very best degrees and honours; you come into the realm of the things of God, and you have to say, 'Well, I have been trained for this, but I cannot cope with it, it is beyond me; I have got all that men can give me of counsel, advice and knowledge about this, but I cannot cope with it, it is beyond me, I am beaten.' There are spiritual factors that account for that.

In reply toRe: msg 4
PAULFROMNYS

From: PAULFROMNYS

Oct-28

   

There are spiritual factors that account for that.

If you were not a child of God, you would cope, you would manage, you would do a fine job. You come into a realm where there are adverse spiritual forces and God is seeing to it that a testimony is going to be built up in your realm because you are a child of God, a testimony that you will have to say, 'The Lord enabled me to do that; with all my knowledge and my natural qualifications I could never have done it, the Lord is helping me at my job'. That is how we are called upon to face things. When you face a situation, a demand made, you say, 'I have no qualifications for that, I cannot do that.' You must not say that. Or, on the other hand, 'I can tackle that, I am qualified for that' - you are going to come up against a situation, if you are a child of God, where all that is going to be knocked out of you, all that self-sufficiency is going to be very hardly hit. We are going to come to this place, if we are really in God's hands and wanting to be there and related to God's interests, where God takes pains to see to it that the testimony is: 'It is the Lord, and it is impossible apart from the Lord; there is no explanation apart from the Lord'. It is important to recognize that, that when God is going to do His great thing, the thing that He is after, that is to bring out this age-long testimony of the conquest of death, spiritual death, by divine Life, He makes the situation impossible for all but Himself. We must recognize that. It will help us to turn right round again and face things in a different way altogether. 'This is impossible so we will give it up'. No! That is just the thing that the Lord wants it to be, to get glory to Himself.

In reply toRe: msg 5
PAULFROMNYS

From: PAULFROMNYS

Oct-28

   

No! That is just the thing that the Lord wants it to be, to get glory to Himself.

Well, I ask you to come back and look at the lives of these men again. They were the men who triumphed, they were the men who carried forward the testimony. But oh, the impossible situations, the helplessness of these men in positions into which they came and in which they found themselves! But the issue - yes, Abel "being dead yet speaks". He is still alive, he has triumphed, and the others. And Joseph, though plunged in such deep depths of utter helplessness, Joseph cannot turn a hand to get himself out of that predicament. If he had some slight hope that that butler would speak well for him when he was released, his hopes were disappointed. The butler was elated and he forgot about Joseph. He could not do anything, he could pull no strings to get his own release. He was left there. It had to be God, only God, but Joseph came to the throne and was second in the land. He preserved life... for the testimony of Life to be handed on to the family.

In reply toRe: msg 6
PAULFROMNYS

From: PAULFROMNYS

Oct-28

   

 for the testimony of Life to be handed on to the family.

That is a word of interpretation. Let me remind you of some little parts of it. God does not tell us what He is doing when taking us through dark experiences. If He did, it would be all right. If He said, 'I am going to lead you into a bad time, it is all going to be dark and strange and perplexing and bewildering and helpless, but it is all right, I am working a tremendous thing, this is what I am going to bring out of it', if He said that the faith element would fade out. If only He would tell us He is doing something, and what He is doing, instead of leaving us in the dark and seeming to be so far away and without any interest in us! If only! Ah yes, but He did not do that, and we know He does not do that, He does not explain. But here is the challenge. This is what is meant by Heb. 11 and the men of faith, that is what it means. And thank God we have the heritage, we have a great heritage, we have more than they had. These men did not have a Bible, it was not written when they were going through it. We have their story and so many more. We see the issue, we have the sequel, but is it really helping us? When you are having a bad, dark time and feel that all has gone wrong, read the story of Joseph again. As I said yesterday, starting on it you will not want to put it down. Take its great lessons. The God of Joseph is our God and He is doing the same thing, and we know that that is true to life. What I have been saying is so true to life. We have that evidence. That, at any rate, is very much like my experience, and therefore I have reason to think and believe that the same thing is involved. The God of resurrection is working this to glory.

 
TOP