Bible talk


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

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Looking for that City #2   Bible discussions/belief

Started Aug-24 by PAULFROMNYS; 91 views.





So we come to the third feature of this pioneering. All pioneering is fraught with great cost and suffering, and, this being a spiritual course or way, the cost of this pioneering is mainly inward.

Perplexity; yes, perplexity. I have been reading a translation of a message by our brother Watchman Nee. In it he says, in effect, 'There was a time when I had such a high idea of the Christian life that I thought for a Christian to be perplexed was all wrong; a Christian to be cast down - that is all wrong; a Christian to despair - that must be all wrong; what kind of Christian is that? And when I read Paul saying he was perplexed and in distress and in despair it constituted a real problem for me, in the light of what I had taught myself a Christian ought to be; but I had to see there was nothing wrong with it, after all.' Yes: a Christian, and such a Christian as the Apostle Paul, perplexed, and cast down, and in despair. That is the way of pioneers.

Perplexed. What does perplexity imply? It implies a need for capacity or comprehension in some realm in which at present there is none. There is a realm that is beyond you. It does not mean that you will always be perplexed in the same measure over the same thing. You will grow out of your perplexity on this matter, and you will understand; but there will be to the end perplexity, in some measure, simply because heaven is bigger than this world, vaster than this natural life, and we have to grow and grow. Perplexity is the lot of pioneers.

Weakness. Brother Nee asks, 'A Christian in weakness and confessing to being weak? What kind of a Christian is that?' Paul speaks much about weakness, and about his own weakness - meaning, of course, that there is another kind of strength which is not our own, which has to be discovered; something that we do not know naturally. It is the way of pioneers: to come to a wisdom which is beyond us and which for the time being means perplexity; to a strength which is beyond us and which for the time being means weakness in ourselves. We are learning, that is all. It is the way of the pioneer, but it is costly. The cost is inward, like that, in so many ways.

In reply toRe: msg 1




But while it is inward, it is also outward. This letter to the Hebrews is just full of these two aspects of the pilgrimage. "These all... confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth" (Heb. 11:13). It was a spiritual journey, a transition from the earthly to the heavenly, that the Apostle was writing about. There was an inward aspect. But there was the outward aspect for them, and it is the same for us. The whole trend of nature, if left to itself, is downward. Leave things to themselves, and down they go, in all nature. Is that not true? A beautiful garden will become a wild desolation, a riot and a chaos, in no time, if you take the upward-ordering hand from it. And that is true of us in a spiritual way - gravitation earthward, always wanting to settle down, always wanting to end the conflict and the fight, always wanting to get out of the atmosphere of stress in the spiritual life. The whole history of the Church is one long story of this tendency to settle down on this earth and to become conformed to this world, to find acceptance and popularity here and to eliminate the element of conflict and of pilgrimage. That is the trend and the tendency of everything. Therefore outwardly, as well as inwardly, the pioneering is a costly thing.

You are up against the trend of things religiously. See again this letter to the Hebrews. The trend was backward and downward to the earth, to make of Christianity an earthly religious system, with all its externalities, its forms, its rites, its ritual, its vestments; something here to be seen and to answer to the senses. It was a great pull on these Christians; it made a great appeal to their souls, to their natures, and the letter is written to say, 'Let us leave these things and go on'. We are pilgrims, we are strangers, it is the heavenly that matters - you recall that great paragraph about our coming to the heavenly Jerusalem (chapter 12:18-24).

But it is a costly and a suffering thing to come up against the religious system that has 'settled down' here. It is, I sometimes feel, far more costly than coming up against the naked world itself. The religious system can be more ruthless and cruel and bitter; it can be actuated by all those mean things, contemptible things, prejudices and suspicions, that you will not even find in decent people in the world. It is costly to go on to the heavenlies, it is painful; but it is the way of the pioneer, and it has to be settled that that is how it is. The phrase in this letter is, "Let us therefore go forth unto him without the camp" (Heb. 13:13) - and I leave you to decide what is the camp referred to there; it is not the world. "Unto him without the camp" means ostracism, suspicion.

Fred (fnorthrup)

From: Fred (fnorthrup)


TAS said:

he phrase in this letter is, "Let us therefore go forth unto him without the camp" (Heb. 13:13) - and I leave you to decide what is the camp referred to there; it is not the world. "Unto him without the camp" means ostracism, suspicion

Amen! Our cry should be "through the veil, and outside the camp!"

Hebrews 10:20 By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh;

This is to remain in our spirit, and have nothing to do with the camp of religion. This is the normal Christian life.




   I'm seeing TAS increasingly as a foremost Teacher to the family of faith.  He is solid, concise, and edifying into the truth.