Listening to the Spirit by John David Harwood
To have our ears opened is essential to God leading us into ways of righteousness. Without righteousness what do we have? We have the desires of our own fleshly mind at hand, which lead into ways of wickedness and into darkness.
Walking without listening to God is the same as walking blind (key note: even having eyes that can see the worldly realm…sometimes those that appear to be blind from a worldly standpoint can grasp the existence of Heaven…they can see what the world cannot…they can also feel what the masses cannot…) God is in control of what we see and what we hear if we sincerely trust in Him. But He also knows every man’s heart and cannot be fooled. He is all knowing. By knowing that his love is poured out onto us who seek Him, we are able to have closure to each and every problem that may arise. His patient love endures forever. To know that He loves you and that He has so much love that He sent His only Son as a living sacrifice in order that man could understand is enough.
After the death and resurrection of Christ, there is no other need of any sacrifice. We have been forgiven. Why would anyone choose not to acknowledge this truth? To understand Christ is to understand that each person has an equal opportunity and choice to obtain full comprehension of the scriptures. Why would anyone go to the length as to say that there is any agenda or false truth behind the Bible. Why was religion created?
Religion was created in order to rationalize behavior. It is a simple answer, and no matter what anyone ever says, it is the everlasting truth. For ages, people have created their own sets of standards in regards to their lifestyle, all cultures.
What does the resurrection mean in the Bible? To me, it refers to the resurrection of those who have been lost to sin. Those whose lives are lost and have no direction. What is the reason for having no meaning or direction? I believe that it is not knowing who Christ is or was. Not understanding what living is all about. Living in self-ambition versus living as a humble servant. Not having understanding of the truth of the Spirit.
Also, being aware of theories and ideas of ways to destroy and tear down the Bible is important. Throughout history, people have attempted to make up excuses or come up with explanations for things they cannot understand. One point to remember is that we cannot understand God completely because we were created by Him. He is so big that we cannot ever fully grasp the extent of His power.
We are his prize and He is our reward. Remember that those who attempt to destroy the truth are lost and without God. They have made a choice to not seek Him because I can assure you that if you truly give it time, your eyes will be opened.
In the blink of an eye a new world will be revealed to you by spending just a little time attempting getting to know Him. I have never felt like God asks for much but to seek and discover the treasures of his creation. He wants us to be able to enjoy the world to the fullest and understand the magnitude of the kingdom of God.
It is a kingdom that is eternal, and one simple fact is that our life here on earth is not the end. Make your treasures in heaven and not on earth.
But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons, by means of the hypocrisy of liars seared in their own conscience as with a branding iron, men who forbid marriage and advocate abstaining from foods, which God has created to be gratefully shared by those who believe and know the truth. For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected, if it is received with gratitude; for it is sanctified by means of the word of God and prayer.
1 Timothy 4:1–5
Now I say this, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable. Behold, I tell you a mystery; we shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet; for the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed. For this perishable must put on the imperishable, and this mortal must put on immortality. But when this perishable will have put on the imperishable, and this mortal will have put on immortality, then will come about the saying that is written, “Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?” The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law; but thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your toil is not in vain in the Lord.
1 Corinthians 15:50–58
Thus says the Lord, your Creator…And He who formed you…”Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are Mine! When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; And through the rivers, they will not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be scorched, Nor will the flame burn you. For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Saviour.
In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace…He made known to us the mystery of His will according to His kind intention which He purposed in Him with a view to an administration suitable to the fullness of the times, that is, the summing up of all things in Christ, things in the heavens and things upon the earth…In Him also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation— having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise…that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you a spirit of wisdom and a revelation
in the knowledge of Him.
Ephesians 1:7, 9–10, 13, 17
A jealous and avenging God is the Lord; The Lord is avenging and wrathful. The Lord takes vengeance on His adversaries, and He reserves wrath for His enemies. The Lord is slow to anger and great in power, And the Lord will by no means leave the guilty unpunished. In whirlwind and storm is His way, And clouds are the dust beneath His feet.
He who separates himself seeks his own desire, He quarrels against all sound wisdom. A fool does not delight in understanding, But only in revealing his own mind. When a wicked man comes, contempt also comes, And with dishonor comes reproach. The words of a man’s mouth are deep waters; The fountain of wisdom is a bubbling brook.
What is desirable in a man is his kindness, And it is better to be a poor man than a liar. The fear of the Lord leads to life, So that one may sleep satisfied, untouched by evil.
THE TEACHER TOOK me inside one of the tent camps of the desert dwellers. No one seemed to mind. We sat down beside a woman who was working on a loom made of sticks and strings. Into the loom she wove threads of red, black, purple, and yellow into a pattern that appeared both ancient and elaborate.
“Notice how carefully she goes about her weaving,” he said, “how meticulously she works . . . how intricate the pattern.”
We continued to watch as more and more of the pattern emerged.
“When judgment came on Israel in 586 BC, it seemed as if the plans God had for the Jewish people were finished. The Promised Land was in ruins and God’s people in exile. It was then that God gave this word to His fallen and broken people: ‘I know the plans I have for you, plans of shalom and not of calamity, to give you a future and a hope.’”
“A beautiful word,” I said. “After everything, after all their failures and sins, and after all their calamities, it must have been a beautiful thing for them to hear.”
“Yes,” said the teacher. “Even though He should have been finished with them, He was not finished. His love was greater.”
“Is there a reason,” I asked, “that you’re telling me this as we watch the woman weave?”
“There is,” he said. “You wouldn’t see it in the translation, but in the original language is a Hebrew word that appears in one form or another no less than three times in that promise. The word is makhashabah. It’s translated as plan. But it means much more than plan. Makhashabah speaks of the careful, skillful, intricate weaving of a fabric. Thus it could be translated as, ‘I know the meticulously woven purposes that I am skillfully, carefully, and intricately weaving together for your future.’
You see, God is the Master Weaver, not only of the cosmos but of the lives of His children. And the plans He has for your life are not only good and beautiful, but intricately woven plans, already worked out. And He will take every thread of your life . . . every joy, every mistake, every failing, every victory, every defeat, every gain, every loss, every regret, every wound, and every question—every thread—and will knit them all together carefully, skillfully, and meticulously to become a perfect tapestry of woven love.”
The Mission: Consider how God has woven the threads of your life together for good. Take confidence that with the present threads, He will do the same.
Jeremiah 29:11; Ephesians 1:4; 2 Timothy 1:9
I Know the Plans
THE ANGELIC MEASURING ROD
HE BROUGHT ME into the Chamber of Measures and to a tall wooden cabinet attached to the wall in front of which we both stood. It had to be at least eight feet high.
“Open it,” said the teacher. So I did. Inside the cabinet, leaning against its back wall, were several rod-like objects almost as tall as the cabinet itself. At the bottom of the cabinet were cords and ropes of various lengths.
“Measuring rods,” he said, “and measuring lines. They were used as rulers and tape measures are used today.”
He removed one of them and gave it to me to hold.
“But they weren’t only used by men,” he said. “They were used by angels. The prophets Ezekiel and Zechariah each saw an angel holding a measuring rod or line in his hand. In each case, the angel with the measuring vessel was a sign concerning God’s future prophetic purposes, namely, the rebuilding of Jerusalem and the Temple. But God’s prophetic purposes not only require building materials but events of human history. For Jerusalem to be rebuilt, human events had to conform to the measurements of angels.”
“And in modern times,” I said, “Israel was restored again, according to the biblical prophecy.”
“Yes,” said the teacher. “And in order for those prophecies to come true, world history and the lives and actions of individuals around the world had to all work together—acting, reacting, and interacting one upon the other at the exact place and time—for the plans of God and the measurements of angels to be fulfilled. You see, there exists a plan of precise measurements not only for the construction of temples but for human history and for your life. And even a world that wars against His purposes will, in the end, conform to the angelic measurements. He will use all things of this world and of its history—the good, the bad, the godly, and the ungodly—to bring about the fulfillment of His purposes.
So whenever things appear out of control and you’re tempted to fear, be at peace. Just remember this rod. It is a sign to you that, in the end, every evil will be overcome, every purpose of God will be fulfilled, the good will prevail, and the history of this world, and of our lives, will conform to the plans of heaven . . . and to the precise dimensions set forth by the angelic measuring rod.”
The Mission: Take the Word of God today and follow its exact measurements and specifications and you will walk into the exact dimensions of God’s will for your life.
Isaiah 46:10–13; Jeremiah 21:11; Ezekiel 40:1–5; Revelation 11:1; 21:15
Excerpt From: Jonathan Cahn. “The Book of Mysteries.” iBooks. https://itun.es/us/v7hZdb.l
Excerpt From: Jonathan Cahn. “The Book of Mysteries.” iBooks. https://itun.es/us/v7hZdb.l