And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:
When we were born again we were made all things in Christ positional, that means on the inside by faith we have the ability to walk in it, but most do not walk in it and many Christians do not know how to sit with Him. By positional we mean that, what we are IN CHRIST is a spiritual reality a spiritual fact that though it is more real than anything you can touch, it requires you to appropriate it in your walk. It is through faith that we take these spiritual facts and make them a natural reality. Messages like this one, by His grace will produce the hope to walk in these things; it will give you revelation knowledge of your inheritance in Christ Jesus until they are manifested in your life. Because you walk in faith. Some ministers will now jump in and start talking about the riches of this world, but I am referring to eternal ones like Paul had. We should hope for the manifestation of the maturity and rewards that Paul had and let me say there is not one reader of this message that God is not offering that to you and more. Our very motives must reflect the intents of Jesus. We are not a kingdom that charts its own course, but Jesus charts our course and the thing we can really count on is that the destination of our ship that He charts will end up in the Holy of Holies, in a mature body, a fully built temple - branches that bear fruit.
And all of this to culminate at the end of the last generation. But knowing that the price to pay is great, it is nothing less then a giving of ALL in absolute abandonment and expecting to be pressed down even to the point of physical death as a martyr for Jesus, yes even in America. For we are as grapes pressed so that the life of the vine can spill out onto the earth, even as the wine of our physical blood. This is quite evident of the saints described in the Book of Revelation, who are the saints of the last generation.
Bend your every effort
around knowing Him and being transformed into His likeness and you will be
in the Temple Builder Who is Christ.
And speak unto him, saying, Thus speaketh the LORD of hosts, saying, Behold the man whose name is The BRANCH; and he shall grow up out of his place, and he shall build the temple of the LORD:
is the BRANCH and He is the
Temple Builder. We are temple builders only when we are ministering in
Even he shall build the temple of the LORD; and he shall bear the glory, and shall sit and rule upon his throne; and he shall be a priest upon his throne: and the counsel of peace shall be between them both. And they that are far off shall come and build in the temple of the LORD, and ye shall know that the LORD of hosts hath sent me unto you. And this shall come to pass, if ye will diligently obey the voice of the LORD your God.
We who were far off, but
now brought nigh by the blood of Jesus - now build and edify the temple of
you also, as living stones, are being built up as a spiritual house for a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. (NAS)
We are living stones. In this building project we find our lives in God's quarry. Just as in the construction of Solomon's Temple, we can observe God's constructive purposes in our lives. The workers first made the PERFECT STONE Jesus is this stone. The purpose of this stone was to be used as a model or pattern for all the stones that would be formed afterward. Revelation tells us who these stones are.
These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb. And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God.
They are the 144,000 and they are a body of people that are patterned stones that are cut to the correct size and placed into the Temple of God.
But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ's at his coming.
In the feast of Israel in the book of Leviticus, we see at the feast of Pentecost, the Sheaf of the Firstfruits being presented as a wave offering. Firstfruits are always the foremost, choicest, first and the best of that which was to follow. This wave offering was a picture of Jesus as the fruit of Perfect Love that was offered for us in Perfect Sacrifice. Jesus the Sheaf represents a Fruit Harvest that will culminate at the end of the last generation. This is a "1 Corinthians chapter 13" harvest that represents a harvest of RIPE FRUIT.
For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.
We are predestined to be conformed, and God gives many different ways of teaching us this principle. We see Jesus as the Firstborn, Jesus as the Firstfruit and Jesus as the Pattern Stone. Right now we are in His quarry being shaped, chiseled, hewn, polished, and being measured and prepared to fit together on the ultimate day of the completion of His building. Now is the time to get ready for this GATHERING TOGETHER of stones, for there will be no unhewn, unsquared, and unpolished stones in His House. Accept His grace, which is sufficient for you today. It is by His grace that we can bear up under this chiseling. The grace of God is God's divine influence and ability upon your heart to do His will and it is by His grace that we stand. It is by His grace that we are saved and are being continually delivered from the sinfulness of our flesh. It is by His grace as we accept it through faith.
Jesus had the grace of God upon Him. Stephen was full of grace and it was by that grace which made him able to be a great testimony, even in his martyrdom. To carry out this plan we need to surrender to His grace. It is by grace that we can accomplish the building project. It is by grace in each one of our lives. Paul said it was by his grace that he was what he was, and we need to follow Paul's example. Romans 6:1 says that continuing in sin will STOP grace. It is our will to decide whether we will stand in His abundant grace and be dead to sin and its wages.
shall bring forth the headstone thereof with shoutings, crying, Grace, grace unto it.
The headstone is the
firstfruits and it will be set on the temple of living stones by the grace
of God. Jesus is that Headstone!
After the stones were formed, they were placed in the temple. The wall was then overlaid with silver so that the stones are perfectly joined together as ONE. You could not see the joints for it resembled one complete stone. Silver represents redemption and as we saw earlier it is the redeemed from among men - the 144,000, a number that represents the great elect of God, that are the firstfruits. This is written about us, this is written about you! Some think that this passage in Revelation is written about someone else, but God's word is designed for you and His plan and His purpose is for YOU. God is after your heart and He gave His Son to reach it.
The stone is covered by silver and made as one stone and then we see cedar wood fastened to the walls. Cedar wood is incorruptible and able to resist decay and rot. Our life today is a result of a series of decisions we have made in the past. Decisions to seek Him, decisions to serve Him, decisions to obey Him, decisions to receive grace. The Perfect stone Who is the Hope of Glory is living on the inside of us, and it is the struggle of our natural man, the soulish man, whether we choose God or not. Deliverance of demons will free a man's will, but only temporarily till he makes his own decisions to stay free. We made our first choice for God when we received Him as our eternal Savior, but we must habitually walk with Him after that, knowing Him in all the wonders of His Person. Cedar wood is simply a life that chooses Jesus with every thought and every breath. Cedar wood resists decay and our lives resist the decay that sin can cause when we yield to that sin.
Lastly the stone is overlaid in Gold. The stone is seen no more, all that is seen is God's glory and nature represented by Gold. It is a stone that has been dealt with. In Romans chapter 7 we see Paul's struggle before he gained victory and then in chapter 8 we see Paul's victory. Chapter 7 and preceding chapters deals with the sin of our flesh and the struggle all of us go through daily in doing the word. Even though we desire to do His will, we fail to do it. The answer is, a life that operates in faith and it is counted to us as righteousness, a life that habitually walks in the Spirit, and therefore does not do the impulses of the flesh. Sometimes we feel so far from the reality of this Christian lifestyle. We say, I am not going to gossip anymore or I am going to read the scriptures more and yet we fail ourselves and the Lord. We fall into condemnation that we impose on ourselves and our situation seems a million miles away from deliverance and obedience. A seared conscience deals with this condemnation by pressing it under the guise of grace resulting in licentiousness. However our conscience is different, we simply seem to have a loss of energy, a loss of motivation to propel us forward. We condemn ourselves and ask forgiveness in hope of doing better next time. Paul taught that there is a place in God where there is no condemnation. It is a place in Christ where we can abide in Him, and we know WE ARE COMPLETELY SET FREE by the law of the Spirit of Life in Jesus. It is a place where we are walk and set our mind in the Spirit. Why do I struggle? Because I fail to see the solution to sin that has place in me. As we taught in the test of responses chapter it is all about seeing and hearing. What is it I must see? We must see the finished work of Jesus on the cross. We must see that every sin and disobedience in us right now was defeated there. It lost its power and we gained the grace of God in exchange. We gained the ability of God in us to overcome ANYTHING that has a disobedient place in us.
The overlaying of gold upon your stone is important. SEE that disobedience as a thing without life it is a dead thing. It was a weed plucked from the roots and has not life in itself EXCEPT WHAT YOU GIVE IT. God will not resurrect it, and the devil has no power to resurrect it, but you have the authority through unbelief and blindness to empower it. When you die to self, you are dying to the exercising of your authority - to empower disobedience in your life. The grace has been given, we must now simply SEE IT.
When the silver has wood
applied and is overlaid with Gold we see a picture of the three part man.
And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it.
God sees our Savior when He sees us. The silver, as seen in Christs redemption; the wood, as seen in Christs incorruptibility; and the Gold, as seen in Christs Divine nature - cover up all that we are by nature. As we pray in faith, the Father sees the Son. As we minister to the brokenhearted, the Holy Spirit sees Jesus and the Spirit of God will anoint you to heal and set free others. You will be full of grace, full of the Holy Spirit, full of wisdom, full of power, full of joy, full of faith, full of good fruits, and full of glory as was described of the early church.
And the glory at the
culmination of the temple shall exceed that early one.
When we talk about the glorious church we are like Joshua and Caleb that have went to the land and witnesses the land that flows with milk and honey. The devil has giants in the land to prevent our entrance but Caleb said, do not fear the people of the land, for they shall be our prey. Their protection has been removed from them, and the LORD is with us; do not fear them. We enter in with the marks that show the sentence of death within ourselves. We enter with bearing the sufferings of our Lord and loving not our lives unto death. BUT WE ENTER IN! Our enemies become our prey at the end of the book Revelation 19:18-21. Their protection has been removed and Jesus has become our protection. Are the giants big and naturally unconquerable? Sure but we serve an awesome God that is the Victor. As for us, we pay the price and receive the light affliction to enter in.
For our light affliction, which
is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal
weight of glory; While we look not at the things which are seen, but at
the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are
temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.
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