The World Dominion Gathered up In One Man (continued)
Oh, how deeply and wonderfully clear that principle is in Daniel, the first chapter. The whole history lies ahead and it is a history of the combat between heaven and hell as fought out here on the earth. The world rulers of this darkness, the principalities and powers on the one hand, heaven on the other, but the instrument by which the issue is decided is that small thing right in the heart of it, and whether it is the testimony's maintenance in victory and administration of victory, or whether so far as that instrument is concerned it is going to be defeat and the enemy getting the advantage, depends upon whether there is a link between us and the enemy system at any point. We have a way of saying: "Do not take it on." You understand what I mean. So often a very plausible thing can be offered by the enemy, so often the things seem so true, really above argument, beyond contention. Well, prove all things. Beware! The enemy is out all the time to form a link between you and has dominion. If he gets it the testimony will go. The vessel of the testimony must purpose in its heart that it will not defile itself. And the dainties from the kings' tale and the wine may speak to us, young men and women especially, of those advantages, advances, facilitations of progress and improvement which the enemy offers under cover of : "Well, do not be too extreme, do not be singular, do not be fanatical; just be perfectly level and balanced, do not be a stickler." Yes, you many have some dainties from the king's table if only you will lower your standard a little in business. But the testimony means that up to the hilt there must be no compromise on moral principles; you may stand, and in the end you will stand and the other things will have gone, but you will be there. Heaven is on your side; yo may lose for the time being, but heaven is on your side and the kingdoms of this world will pass, but the kingdom of the God of heavens is an everlasting kingdom to be given to you if you will stand. You see what this vessel begins? Just there, "Daniel purposed in his heart."
I would like to say this, just to round that off. It does not mean, beloved, that because you and I take a faithful, obedient, whole-hearted, consecrated stand for the Lord, that we are going to be delivered from the lion's den or the fiery furnace, and that the Lord is coming in to smooth our way and cause us to escape such. No, the sovereignty of the heavens does not always work by delivering us out of the trouble. It comes in through the trouble. It is through the trouble that the heavens come in. God gets more by it than by delivering us from it.
May the Lord draw us into His purpose, constitute us a part of that vessel for His testimony, show us how very much is bound up with the conflict in which we are; help us to see why it is that He is dealing with us as He is. It is to bring us to a place where there is nothing in ourselves. He may take up the weak things and by them through them, bring to nought the things that are, and bring us morally to govern, which shall fit us to govern literally later on.
(continued with # 48 - (They That Honor God, God Will Honor)