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Monday, December 7, 2015

The Cross and the Eternal Glory # 13

It Is An Understanding of What We Have Come Into When We Have Come Into Christ (continued)

A Spirit of Rebelliousness (continued)

Unbelief: Unbelief, I am not going to dwell long on that, but we know it only too well. It has come from somewhere and we know it has not come from God. And we know that as a new creation in Christ, we hate it. There is that in us which hates unbelief: that sets up an antagonism to it. We now are afraid of unbelief. We dislike unbelief. We will fight unbelief. We know unbelief in our ruin. What has made us feel like that about it? We were not always like that, not always like that! Now there is a revolt in us against unbelief. Where does it come from? Well, that comes from God; but it shows that there is something wrong about us where there is unbelief, and the Word of God tells us where it came from. Now I am going to stay much longer with the next thing that I mention.

Possessiveness: Possessiveness, you see that started in heaven, did it not? The actual words which are  recorded as coming from satan in that hour of unlawful aspiration are these, "Thou saidst, 'I will be equal with the Most High.' " Possessiveness. Now it is strange and interesting and impressive that the Bible from beginning to end is full of a paradox on that matter. Along one line the Bible urges us to be possessive. You take one book of the Bible only, or two books of the Bible, the Book of Deuteronomy, the last book of the first section, or the next book of the next section, the Book of Joshua, and the urge is: 'Go in and possess, go in and possess, thou shalt go in and possess' (Joshua 1:14-15). Again and again and again it is possess, possess, possess, and you must possess. You must take possession.

And yet, along another line, possessiveness is the most pernicious thing in God's universe. It is utterly satanic. Strange this paradox, is it not that the same thing can be good and evil? You see, that is what satan has done, he has  got things so mixed up and confused and distorted that you do not know where you are. You say, 'I am told that I have got to possess, I have got to lay hold, and yet in the same breath you tell me that you have got to let go.' And yet the great lesson of the Christian life is how to let go: 'What do you mean?' But there it is, that is where the Cross comes in - this possessiveness.

I want to say to you, as I have had to say to my own heart many times and very strongly, a large amount of  the disciplining through which we have to go under the hand of God is because of our possessiveness. Shall we put that the other way: a very large amount of our disciplining under the hand of God is to bring us to the place where we know how to let go, and do let go. And a whole lifetime can be lost, and a whole life's work can be forfeited if we do not learn that lesson. The basic lesson the the Lord Jesus as Redeemer of this universe was letting go the Glory. Letting go His former possession, letting go! You and I would not have been redeemed if He had not let go. And there are many lives who are not being helped because you and I do not let go. Our lives are passing on, many are passing on, and a lot of time is being lost because this lesson has not been learned. The ability to let go this inborn possessiveness to have, to hold, to possess, it is tremendous. It is terrific. It is terrible. The Lord would call us to some piece of valuable service, and oh, God only knows how much we are needed, and how great the need is, but He has to put us aside, either entirely shut us up from it or put us into some other school of disciplining to wait until we have learned how to let go in the right way.

~T. Austin-Sparks~

(continued with # 14)

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