Member # 35
May 7, 2008
Tempted to quit? Ready to give up? Discouraged by your circumstances? Intimidated by what others are saying and thinking? If so I encourage you to stand firm according to the truth of Christ. Never, ever, ever compromise the testimony of Jesus for your personal comfort or security or reputation among men. Let's agree in prayer togther for God's Purpose in Christ to be fulfilled!
"He Could Not Be Hidden"
by Chip Brogden
"And [Jesus] entered a house and wanted no one to know it, but He could not be hidden" (Mark 7:24b).
The ultimate purpose and intention of God is to increase Christ and decrease everything else so that Christ may be ALL IN ALL. John the Baptist stated this quite succinctly when he summed up God's Eternal Purpose with those seven simple words: "He must increase, but I must decrease" (John 3:30).
We must see that everything God has done, everything God is doing, and everything God will do is for the purpose of INCREASING Jesus and DECREASING everything that is not of Him.
This principle is so powerful that it makes no difference if you agree with it, understand it, believe it, or like it. He MUST increase; therefore, He WILL increase and HE IS increasing. At the same time, I MUST decrease, therefore I WILL decrease, and I AM decreasing.
This is a spiritual law, and it is working as we speak. For the Christian who is seeking first the Kingdom of God and His Righteousness this is wonderful news. For selfish, carnal Christians it is a frightening thing, this talk of losing your life and taking up your Cross and denying yourself. That is why you hear so much about spiritual power and so little about spiritual brokenness.
"He must increase." When we look at the earthly ministry of Jesus we see that He did not seek to increase Himself. He actually humbled Himself and tried to be inconspicuous. Even so, when He tried to hide Himself, He could not be hidden. I want you to think about that. When God was ready to reveal Him then He could not be hidden. He could not even hide Himself.
I tell you, this idea of Christ increasing is the most powerful reality in this universe! Nothing can stand before it, nothing can resist it, nothing can stop it.
Here is an amazing fact: the Bible says that we carry this Treasure (Jesus) within earthen vessels. In other words, the Living Christ indwells us now. We are His House, His Temple, His Dwelling Place, His Body. I doubt if we really comprehend that. Do we really know that we are in Him, and He is in us?
And this Jesus, Who lives in us, Who is ever increasing, cannot be hidden. Think about what that means.
Friend, I don't know how you first came to the Lord. It may have been a very solemn and peaceful event. It may have been a quiet, personal thing. A lot of preachers will say, "With every head bowed and every eye closed, if you want to give your heart to Jesus, quickly slip your hand up and put it right back down. Praise God, I see your hand! Yes! Yes! Way in the back, I see your hand. Anyone else? Let's all pray this prayer out loud together." It may have happened to you like that, and if it did, I am not demeaning or minimizing that at all.
Here is my point: you might have invited Jesus in through the back door of your house while everyone had their eyes closed, and He certainly accepted your invitation to come in. But dear brother, dear sister! He cannot be hidden! He must increase! He is increasing, He is expanding, He is enlarging Himself and stretching you, pushing you, making you more and more uncomfortable. What do I mean? I mean that His Kingdom has established itself within you, and the borders of that Kingdom are ever increasing. He cannot be hidden!
The subtitle of a book I read once is called, "The Illusion of A Manageable Deity." It comes against the idea of being able to control God, to manipulate Him with a certain way of praying or singing. It challenges the notion that God is an all-powerful good luck charm that we can put in our back pocket. It is an illusion, yes, and more than an illusion - it is a deception and a fantasy. He cannot be managed, He cannot be controlled, He cannot be contained, He cannot be hidden!
I am thinking of pastors who see the truth but are afraid to speak out because it will upset their congregation and cost them a paycheck.
I am thinking of those in leadership positions who see the truth but are afraid to speak out because it will cost them their place on the worship team, the youth group, the Sunday school, or the deacon board.
I am thinking of precious brothers and sisters sitting in church who see the truth but are afraid to speak out because they might be asked to leave and they think they have nowhere else to go.
I am thinking of apostles, prophets, and evangelists who see the truth but are afraid to speak out because no one will ask them to come minister anymore and no one will send them their offerings.
How long are you going to deny the truth and be in bondage to the fear of man? How long are you going to resist the Lord and His inevitable increasing? Deny the truth long enough and you start losing your ability to tell the truth.
There is only one thing to do: stop wrestling with God like Jacob and start cooperating with God like Daniel. If it means the lion's den then so be it. If it means the fiery furnace then so be it. "Our God is able to deliver us... but even if He does not, we will never bow down to your idol. Never! Never! Never!"
Nicodemus came to see Jesus at night. He probably thought that would be the wisest, safest thing to do. What if his colleagues back in the Sanhedrin found out? No need to risk being seen with Jesus during the day! Well Jesus, I know you're from God, and I know you're speaking the truth, but can we please keep our meeting a secret?
And then there was Joseph of Arimathea, who was a disciple of Jesus, but "secretly, for fear of the Jews". He and Nicodemus (that other secret disciple we just talked about) came to get the Lord's body after He was crucified. Later we find all the disciples assembled behind closed doors "for fear of the Jews". Midnight meetings with secret disciples behind locked doors! That is how the Church started out. It doesn't sound very promising, does it?
I want you to know that Jesus just appeared right there in the midst of them. Had He knocked on the door they would have been too afraid to open it. So He just walked right through the wall. He cannot be stopped, He cannot be killed, He cannot be hidden!
"Peace be with you! Stop being afraid. Stop doubting. Believe! Do you understand that I cannot be hidden? I have not called you to be secret disciples. I did not give you Light to see you try and hide it under a basket. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. My Father's Kingdom is expanding, and I need you to go disciple the nations and prepare them for Heaven on Earth, a world where Righteousness dwells. Now go into all the world and bring them this message: I am coming soon!"
And so, a few weeks later, when Peter and John were told not to speak anymore in this Wonderful Name, they said, "We cannot HELP but speak the things we have seen and heard" (Acts 4:20). Isn't that a miracle? What a powerful testimony. He cannot be hidden!
If God can find a man or a woman who will give Him the preeminence and will give Him the freedom to increase then there is no limit to what God can do through that yielded vessel. And if He can find a handful of people like that then He will use them to turn the world upside down. It has happened once before and I am positive that it can happen again.
The Father is seeking those who will worship Him in Spirit and in TRUTH. Has He found what He is looking for in you? Will you be the one? Will you be the chosen?
Jesus is Truth, and Truth is living, breathing, expanding, and growing. Once you open the door and Jesus enters your house it is only a matter of time before He is discovered. He could not be hidden then, and He cannot be hidden now.
I am your brother,
The HEART of the issue is truly the issue of the HEART!
John 3:3;Mark 8:34-38;James 1:27
Posts: 3529 | From: Orange, Texas | Registered: Jun 2002
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