What Have We Come To (continued)
And finally in this letter, strangely enough, these people are not universally liked. You would think they ought to be, a wonderful people like this about whom all these things are so true, well, they ought to be the most liked people in the world, but somehow or other no one likes them. They are all disliked by other people and somehow whenever, whenever they are present or mentioned, the very atmosphere seems to get thick. That is exactly where this letter to the Ephesians finishes. Here is this people right at the center of this letter,l and then it says, "Principalities and powers, world rulers of this darkness, hosts of evil spirits," all against them (Ephesians 6:12). They are involved in a great spiritual conflict. You are involved in that when you come amongst them.
Yes, I do not want to tell you otherwise, you are involved in that. You are probably going to be very much disliked if you become a Christian. You are going to find that your very presence sets up a complex, an antagonistic complex, and if it does not come from men, it will come from the unseen, you will know it.
Ah, but then, I will be quite frank about it, what it means to come to the people whom "thou knewest not heretofore." There is the other side, there is the other side: "thou art come unto the God of Israel, under Whose wings thou art come to take refuge" (Ruth 2:12). Under Whose wings refuge, refuge! The wings of the Lord are over the people of the Lord.
I want to point out here that the Lord's wings are to be found over His people. You want His wings over you? You will not get them out of Moab, you will get them in the midst of His people. Somehow or rather, the Lord has appointed that all the blessings, that He will give are to be found amongst His people and not to be had apart. You have got to come in with the Lord's people to get the wings of the Lord. Whatever it is that the Lord would have for us: we are going to find it relatively,, and not independently, corporally, and not in a detached way.
Now this is very true to the letter from which I have read, and keeping true to the Scripture. But, you see, here is the protection of the wings: "Under whose wings thou art come to take refuge." You want that to be proved from this very little book? Very well, Naomi, with her husband, left the place of the covenant elect people and went into Moab, and what happened? They lost everything. And they lost the protection of God. Calamity upon calamity befell them, and Naomi put it this way: "
And I went out full, I am come back empty" (Ruth 1:21). Why? She deserted the place where the wings were.
(continued with # 43)