The Pilgrim’s Practice

Dear Ones:

When Abraham “…was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, (he) obeyed; and went out, NOT KNOWING WHITHER HE WENT.” (Heb. 11:8) We know that Abraham went as far as Haran, where he stayed until his father died.  And then, either by remembering the substance of his calling by God, or a renewed revelation from God (God speaking to him…), he pulls up stakes, and moves with this promise in his heart:  “…Get thee…unto a land that I WILL SHEW THEE.” (Gen. 12:1) What is the key to Abraham’s life, for he certainly is not walking by sight, but by faith? As a further example,  we know that in the progression of things he is even able to believe God to lead his most trusted servant to find a wife for his son…IN A VERY DISTANT LAND, among his own people.  What is the key to this man’s, this pilgrim’s, life?

Perhaps it is best in answering this question about the key by speaking first of the reward of his obedient faith. Then we shall go to the practice of his faith, which puts him in a position to receive the reward.  After “… (he) departed, as the Lord had spoken to him….,” (Gen. 12;4) we find that, “…the Lord appeared unto Abram, and spoke to him.” (v.7)  The great reward of obedient faith is always the revelation of God to the heart, when communion with Christ becomes so precious, the most important thing of all.  In John’s gospel, the Lord Jesus said, “…He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and WILL MANIFEST MYSELF TO HIM.” (Jn. 14:21)  It was a godly missionary to China, whose name was Burns, who said that the only thing that distinguished one place from another was the MANIFEST presence of God.  And so it was for Abraham, and through the centuries for all believers to this present time…our great reward is Christ, to know Him, to commune with Him.

Central to Abraham being able to obey, and know God, is the fact that he lived by two principles…the tent, and the altar.  The tent speaks of mobility, and even as Jesus had “nowhere to lay his head,” so Abraham “…looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God.”  He, like so many others to follow, would confess that he was a stranger and pilgrim on the earth.” (Heb. 11:10,13)  The altar speaks of worship.  Basic to all else is the remembrance, and the refinement, of his vision of God, resulting in giving to Him His place, position, and the highest praise and adoration of His person.  Such a vision would keep Abraham in his place of being the Lord’s servant, dependent upon Him for all, and obedient to His highest authority.  As he lived by the tent and the altar, his heart was kept free and full…a very fertile soil for faith.

So, today, let us embrace the concept of the tent, for we ARE pilgrims whether we believe it or not.  And let us use well the altar, that approach to God which He has provided in Christ, that we should worship Him in truth, by the Spirit.  Then, He will reveal Himself to the heart, and we shall know Him…and commune with Him.  What a wonderful and high calling for us all!!

Love, Dad

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Anticipatory Faith

Dear Ones:

The psalmist, in Psalm 42, writes concerning his thirst for God, and this in the context of his tears and just simply being overwhelmed by life, “…all thy billows are gone over me.” (v.7)  It sounds a bit like the experience of Jonah when he declared from the belly of the fish, “… and the floods compassed me about: all Thy billows and Thy waves passed over me.” (Jonah 2:3)  One thing that the Word of God does for us, among many others, is to unveil to us the true experiences of the heart and mind, in the good and difficult times.  But with that revelation,  the God of Hope, comes to our aid, and reveals to us His way in the storm…and how He will meet us, and does meet us.

The faith of the psalmist, though being tried, is provided with “…the way of escape,” and that begins with REMEMBERING.  He remembers what it was to know the fellowship with God and with other believers.  He remembers that God is always, regardless of our circumstances, worthy of praise, “…yet I will praise Him.” (42:5)  He then remembers that God is his help, “…a very present help in time of trouble.” (Ps. 46:1)  Indeed, the Psalmist will declare, “I WILL REMEMBER THEE.” (v.6)  Because of the remembrance of God, and what He is, there is the taking of his stand upon the rock of His faithfulness, and he will declare, “…Yet the Lord WILL command His loving kindness in the daytime, and in the night HIS song shall be with me, and my prayer unto the GOD OF MY LIFE.”  What a declaration!  What an anticipating faith, based on the nature and character of God!  In the storm, overwhelmed by the waves, there rises the singular voice of faith in an unfailing God, “I REMEMBER THEE…HE WILL COMMAND HIS LOVINGKINDNESS .”

Here is a man who is living in anticipation of God’s intervention in his heart and life, and this by faith in His faithfulness, and His unchanging character of mercy, and loving kindness.  God has not changed…He is the same “…yesterday, today, and forever.”  So, let us believe Him, remember Him, and take our stand believing that He will again, today, in our lives,  command HIS loving kindness in the daytime, and in the night HIS song shall be with me.

Love, Dad

 

He Gave Gifts Unto Men

Dear Ones:

The importance of the Ascension of Christ cannot be underestimated.  However, even though the early church put more emphasis on the Ascension than the birth of Christ, I’m afraid that we have missed, even lost, the life-changing significance of this singular event.

In Daniel 7:13-14, we find that, “…there was given to Him (the Son of Man…Christ) dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, and that all people, nations, and languages, should serve Him…”   Jesus would relate this “giving of power” to the Son of Man by declaring to the disciples, “…all authority in heaven, and on the earth was given to Me.” (Matt. 28:18)  Now we  know that ALL authority was given to Christ from before the world was, but there was a moment when He received it specifically in the matter of redemption, and in the creation and growth of the church, His body.  The power of God is revealed in the resurrection…however, for the effect of that resurrection to be felt and known in the hearts of men, it was imperative that He ascend to His Father.  For Pentecost to come, and the consequent outpouring of the Spirit upon All men, Christ had to ascend to the Father.  “…But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceeds from the Father, He shall testify of Me.” (Jn. 15:26) And with that outpouring, Paul writes, “…When He ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.” (Eph. 4:8)  Not only was the kingdom His, and all power, authority, and dominion, but He receives from the Father also the Gift of the Holy Spirit, and specific gifts of the Spirit to be given unto men.  What does this mean for us who believe?

First of all, to be Christ’s, is to bear His name…and that Name declares that He has spoiled all “…principalities and powers, and made an open show of them, triumphing over them…” (Col. 2:16)  That victory is ours IN Him.  His authority is supreme, and absolute, and this is why nothing can separate us from the love of God.  We are forever one with Him.  Secondly, when Pentecost came, and the prophecy of Joel was realized, Christ poured out the Spirit of truth, the Spirit of the Father, into the hearts of men and women…there to testify by His Life and power of the greatness and goodness of God, to the intent that all men should be saved.  And lastly, but certainly not conclusively, from heaven He deliberately, and decisively chose to give gifts of the Spirit to men and women.  These are those God-given capacities to fulfill certain callings in the body of Christ.  They are unique and personal, and correspond to the specific calling of the believer.  And, they are irrevocable…”…for the gifts and the calling of God are without repentance.” (Rom. 11:28)

On this Memorial Day, we remember those who have sacrificed for our nation, for us, that we might know the freedom of conscience and conduct. The Ascension is a Memorial Day, as it declares the certain effect of the sacrifice of Christ, the realized promise of His resurrection, but also, the promise of His Spirit, His indwelling, His calling and gifts, …all couched in the absolute authority of God.

So, we ask the question:  What should I be if I am IN Him, raised with Him, seated with Him in heavenly places, having been given a specific calling, and corresponding gifts, realizing that Christ is in the heart by the Spirit?  May we ever pray in the spirit of the hymn-writer’s words:

“…Less than thyself, O do not give.  In might, Thyself, within us live; Come ALL Thou hast and art.”

Love, Dad

Hope Without Shame

Dear Ones:

Hope is very powerful thing.  A blessed, anticipated result at a future time can carry one over some very rocky and dangerous roads.  I heard of a brother in Christ who was very close to death, but just the cleaar picture he had in his mind of him walking out of the hospital, accompanied by his wife, enabled him to persevere when medical “hope” was slim.

What is hope?  And why is it so powerful?  Biblical hope is more than just a “possible” expectation.  It is a resolved and settled attitude concerning the blessing of God at a future time, whether it be near or far away.  In a different context than that of hope, Habakkuk writes clearly of similarities concerning the dynamics of true hope:  “The vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.”  (Hab. 2:3)  Though Habakkuk is speaking of an event of judgement, there are similar principles revealed as they apply to true hope.

First of all, there is a vision.  There is the revealed will of God as it pertains to true blessing.  Secondly, there is a time frame…a present declaration, but a future realization promised.  Then there is the command to “wait for it.”  This is the attitude of expectation.  There remains the promise of its realization, as to its coming, but also with regard to the certainty of its coming….”… it will SURELY come; it will NOT tarry.”

When the Apostle Paul penned the phrase, “…And hope maketh not ashamed,”…he tied it to the love of God…”Because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit which is given unto us.” (Romans 5:5)  This love of God is the expression of a covenant, the seal of God upon the life, the presence of the Holy Spirit.  Indeed, all that pertains to the issue of “hope,” that certain expectation based on the purpose and will of God, is confirmed by the presence of the Holy Spirit in the life, and the expression of His presence, the love of God.  He goes on to speak of God commending to all men everywhere that He loves us. He speaks of justification, reconciliation, the atonement…the free gift of God in Christ.  And if that were not enough, he declares, “…MUCH MORE,” they which receive abundance of grace, and of the gift of righteousness, SHALL REIGN in life by one, Jesus Christ.” (v. 17)

Hope clings to Christ, and His work so complete and sufficient.  It is a hope that lives in the expectation of the blessing of God TODAY, as well as that which shall appear at His coming, or at the moment when we shall go to be with Him.  This HOPE, certain expectation, lives upon the Living Word, and looks beyond the present time to His intervention in all things future.  The “blessed hope” is the resolved expectation in a Person, the Lord Jesus,  to meet us today, and in every day to come.  There is absolutely NO shame in that.  The prayer of the Psalmist was:  “O Lord…let none that wait on Thee be ashamed…let me not be ashamed, for I put my trust in Thee.” (Ps. 25:1,3,20)

So, today, let us live in the expectancy of His blessing, guidance, provision, keeping…and much more.  And let us look down the corridor of time to future blessing beyond our capacity to grasp it fully, because, “…the love of God IS shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit which is given to us.”

Love, Dad

Not By Sight

Dear Ones:

If ever there was a reality that we must come to grips with, it is our limitations.  How much of the spectrum of light do we see?  A very small portion.  Can we SEE a thought or an intention of the heart.   Without the use of modern technology, can we see into the inside of the human body, to see a problem?  When we analyze the matter, our limitations concerning our knowledge of what is around us, and in us, is limited to an extraordinary degree.  Now comes the question of capability.  How limited are we in terms of being able to meet the needs of others, and to respond to the great demands and needs of our generation?  Again, the mountain of limitations rises up to cast a very long and dark shadow over us.  We are SO limited.

This is one reason for which we are instructed in Scripture to “…not lean unto our own understanding.” (Prov. 3:5)  Only God sees and knows all.  It is the wise and meek man who is willing to understand his limitations, and the limitless knowledge and possibilities of God.  God would tell Samuel, when it was a question of choosing a king among the sons of Jesse, “…for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.” (1 Sam. 16:7)  What foolishness it is not to inquire of God concerning that which cannot be seen with the eye.  Even Isaiah writes of the Lord Jesus, and the imperative of the work of the Holy Spirit:   “…And (the Holy Spirit) shall make Him of quick understanding in the fear of the Lord: AND SHALL NOT JUDGE AFTER THE SIGHT OF HIS EYES, NEITHER REPROVE AFTER THE HEARING OF HIS EARS…” (Is. 11:3)

The great point in all of this is that, if we are to walk by faith, we must give Christ access to every circumstance and consideration.   We are called to abide in Him, “…for without Him we can do nothing.”  Relating all to Him is a choice and a process.  It is never perfectly done this side of heaven, but there are great possibilities by the power of the Spirit.

So, today, let us give access to the King of Glory…let us let Him come into all the aspects of our lives, and lead  us by His Spirit, confirming to us the knowledge of His will by the peace that passes understanding.  He (the Spirit) witnesses to our hearts, in accordance with the Scriptures, of the will of God.  Let us not lean unto our own understanding, but believe Him who sees all, loves us all, and is faithful to us all.

Love, Dad

The Quest Above All Others

Dear Ones:

Yesterday we began with the question, “Who is God?”  There is in that question another one embedded:  “Can we truly KNOW God?”  Or, do we just know facts, and some truths about Him?  I venture to say, from the testimony of those who have gone before, that our greatest quest is not to just know about God, but to experience Him, and in essence to truly KNOW Him.

Moses had quite a history with God, being saved as a child in Egypt, elevated to sonship to the Pharoah’s daughter, and then exiled.  He had seen the burning bush, and responded to the call of God.  He was instrumental in the salvation of Israel, by the parting of the Red Sea.  And then, he had seen God’s direction and provision for Israel in the desert.  But, then we discover a remarkable thing…Moses clearly declares what is most upon his heart, that which he desires more than all else in the world:  “…show me NOW Thy way, that I may know Thee.” (Ex. 33:13)  It is one thing to see the works of God.  It is quite another to know Him personally and experimentally.

David would declare in Psalm 27:4:  “…One thing I have desired of the Lord, and this will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord and to enquire in His temple.”  Why would He want this “one thing?”  It is simply for the same reason that Moses carefully, and thoughtfully, uttered his prayer.  It is one thing to know about God, another thing to KNOW Him experientially.

Though the calling of the Apostle Paul was wrought with responsibility of an eternal significance, yet his deep passion, and that which dominated all else was this, “…that I might KNOW Him, and the power of His resurrection…” (Phil. 3:10)  The evidence is so clear as we look at these men, and at believers through the centuries, that our highest calling, and most noble and blessed quest, is to KNOW GOD

When I was in college in South Carolina, I went to a weekend conference at a Christian school up in the mountains.  Over one of the buildings was written the whole purpose of the school:   “To KNOW Him, and to make Him known.”  What a tremendous declaration of a most blessed reality!!

And how shall we know Him?  First of all, “…as we follow on to know the Lord.”   It is essential that we not only know that this is our first and highest calling, but that it is to be embarked upon, embraced, pursued.  Eternal Life is to “…KNOW Thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom Thou hast sent.” (Jn. 17:3)

If we ever need to be encouraged that this is possible, we need to remember, and heed the words of the Lord Jesus:  “The Comforter…the Spirit of truth…ye know Him; for He dwelleth with you, and shall be in you…I WILL COME TO YOU…ye shall KNOW that I am in my Father, and ye in Me, and I in you.”  (John 14:16,17,18,20) This is true Christianity…Christ dwelling in the heart by faith.  This is the true knowledge of God in Christ.  What a wonderful and blessed objective and calling…that is ours TODAY.  Let us pursue it.

Love, Dad

Who Is God

Dear Ones:

And how shall we know God, His character, His attributes?  How IS He?  How is it that so many have known Him, and this revealed by the mosaic of truths concerning Him, and yet, we have grasped so little?

You would not think that Psalm 51 would reveal to us essential aspects of the character of God, but it does.  The context of the psalm reveals to us the awfulness of the nature of men, all men, except Christ.  That “nature” is demonstrated here by the adultery that David committed, and the killing of the husband of Bathsheba.  It is in the prayer of David that the character of God is revealed in stark contrast to that of David.  “Have mercy upon me, O God…” (v.1)  The only appeal David is not that for the unmerited favor of God (His grace), but for the action of God to look beyond the heart of a rebel, and enemy of righteous, one who has flaunted the glory of God…i.e. deliberately went 100% in the opposite direction of all that was noble and true, and then to respond in His lovingkindess.  David had no merit before God, only his declared sin.  His only appeal was to the benevolent lovingkindness, and tender of mercies of God.  The same attitude was true for the Publican who stood up and beat his breast, crying unto God, “O God, be merciful to me a sinner.”  The only way a guilty, rebellious, unrighteous enemy of God can be forgiven, is first in knowing that there is a benevolent and merciful God who acts for His own name’s sake.  And this He will do when He hears the heart’s cry of the sinner.

Once when David was faced with three choices of punishment from God because of sin, he chose the only one that did not involve “falling into the hands of men.”  Why?  Because He knew the nature of man was unmerciful.  There would be no basis for appealing to any favor whatsoever, if he fell into the hands of sinful men.  Not so with God.  The truth of the knowledge of God, as it pertains to His mercy, is liberating, life-giving, for it gives us hope, and that, not because of anything in and of ourselves, but for His name’s sake.

When all seems lost, and we certainly do not feel as if we can approach God, we must always remember…He is merciful.  Indeed, He meets us as He did those believers who sought Him in the Tent of Meeting, or the Tabernacle.  Also, as He met those who sought Him in the temple.  There was on the top of the ark of the covenant, a “mercy-seat.”  This is where He said, “And there I will meet with thee, and I will commune with thee from above the mercy-seat.” (Ex. 25:22)  The writer of the epistle to the Hebrews wrote, “…Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain MERCY, and find grace to help in time of need.”  The theme is consistent throughout Scripture.  This God we profess to serve is a God of mercy…and He meets us only on this basis.

So, let us use this blessed truth in this mosaic of the knowledge of God, and let us humbly come before Him, knowing that He receives “sinners such as we.”  Jesus said, “…him that cometh to me, I will in NO wise cast out.” (Jn. 6:37)  Why? Because He is merciful.  Let us  not forget this blessed reality, and let us use it well.  God the Father will receive us for Jesus’s sake…every day…and all through the day.  And let us grasp the import of the Psalmist’s wonderful words:  “…The Lord is gracious, and full of compassion: slow to anger, and of GREAT MERCY.”  (Psalm 145:9)

Love, Dad

The Everlasting Blessing

Dear Ones:

In Psalm 45, with the evident reference to the Lord Jesus, the psalmist writes: “…God hath blessed Thee forever.” (v.2)  We might look at that declaration and say, “Well, certainly that applies to the Lord Jesus, but how can that ever apply to me?”  If we go to the New Testament, to Ephesians 1:3, we read:  : “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who HATH blessed us with every spiritual blessing in heavenly places IN CHRIST.”  Now, what does this mean but that the everlasting blessing that is Christ’s is our own, not that we are Christ, but that we benefit today and eternally from the everlasting blessing of God upon and in Him.

One of the great aspects of the passion of the Apostle Paul was that Christ should be formed in his “little children.”  Indeed, he would say, “…My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you.” (Gal. 4:19)  There is no doubt that the everlasting blessing of God is in heaven, in Christ, where He is seated at the right hand of God.  But the Bible says, that we are to pray that His will be done in the earth, “…as it is in heaven.”  How can this be unless it be the will of God for the everlasting blessing of God be revealed to, and in, His church on this earth, in His children?  It is for this reason that Paul writes, “…Seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God.” (Col. 3:1)  With feet on this earth, and heaven our home, ours is to live in the reality of the certain blessing of God “…in this earth,” as it is in heaven.

In the Bible, there are many great, little phrases, words that are life-changing.  One of these little phrases is found in Haggai 2:19:  “…from THIS day I will bless you.”  If the rebuilding of the temple is to be accomplished, then there must be the blessing from heaven.  But the people must believe that the time has come, and that the Lord is for them, and on their side.  They have known defeat and discouragement in their pursuit of the rebuilt temple, and have settled down with the acceptance of a work not completed.  But now, there has come a point, a moment, when the Lord declares that the blessing of heaven is upon them, that He is on their side, and will meet them.  Theirs is to trust Him, obey Him, lay hold on the reality of His promise.  “From this day…”

The everlasting blessing of God is ours in Christ.  But we are to seek it at the right hand of God in Christ.  Ours is to seek and to find, and to hear His voice saying, “Today,”  “Now.”  Someone once said, “Truth is not mine until it becomes me.”  And so, it is with blessing…the unchanging blessing of God…It is not mine, until I make it mine by faith…it must needs become me…on earth, as it is in heaven.

Love, Dad

The Call To Arms

Dear Ones:

There comes a point in the course of life, and Christian experience (perhaps at different times…), when there is a specific “call to arms” by the Holy Spirit.  Often this pertains to a certain set of circumstances, or conviction, but primarily because the Spirit of God works in our hearts to persuade us that now is that time, and engagement of the enemy is inevitable.  Such is the time in which we live.  But what is the nature of this “engagement,” and what are the basic elements that comprise this act and attitude?

The nature of the engagement is primarily spiritual.  The psalmist declares:  “…GOD is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble…therefore, we will not fear.” (Ps. 46:1-2)  Unless we come to grips with taking God literally as our refuge and strength, we shall not be prepared for this battle.  We will fear.  When the disciples were caught in a storm, “..a great tempest in the sea…the ship being covered with the waves…,” they were FEARFUL.  When the Lord Jesus stilled the winds and the sea by a rebuke, the “men marvelled, saying, ‘What manner of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey Him?'” (Matt. 8:27) Why were they fearful?  They had not TAKEN Christ as their GOD, refuge and strength.  They did not see Him with His authority over all, hence, they were dominated by the very real, physical wind and the waves, and possibility of losing their lives.

Paul writes to the Colossians, “For in Him (Christ) dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.  And ye are complete in Him, which is the head of ALL principality and power…having spoiled principalities, and powers, He made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it.” (Col. 2:9-10, 15)  Who is Christ to us?  Have we made up our minds concerning WHO He is?  Our appropriation of Christ as our refuge and strength will depend upon our vision of Him in truth.  So that, if we are to engage in this spiritual battle, and be victorious in it, we must understand that the conflict is spiritual in nature, that only in Christ by the Spirit the warfare can be waged, and it is only as we have a true vision of Christ, and us in Him, that we shall be able to appropriate Him, and take our stand.

“Soldiers of Christ, arise, and put your armour on.  Strong in the strength which God supplies through His Eternal Son.

“Stand then in His great might, with all HIS strength endued;  and take, to arm you for the fight, the panoply of God; that having all things done, and all your conflicts past, ye may o’ercome through Christ ALONE and stand complete at last.”

Charles Wesley

Love, Dad

Fullness and Expectations

Dear Ones:

There are certain very beautiful phrases in the Word of God which unveil to us, with stark and utter simplicity, the great concept of “fullness,” and what are to be our expectations in knowing this fullness.  In Psalm 65:9, we read: “…the river of God is FULL of water.”  What does David mean here?  The “river” is a flow of water, whether in full measure or less.  What is singularly important to grasp is the fact that it is the river OF GOD…or, God’s river, by creation, but also by velocity and fullness.  Another writer in the psalms wrote, “…there is a river, the streams whereof shall make glad the city of God, the holy place of the tabernacles of the Most High.  God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved.” (Ps. 46:4-5)  There is a definite effect of the flowing of this river.

Let us return to the “beautiful phrases” concerning fullness.  In Psalm 104:16, we read:  “…the trees of the Lord are FULL of sap.”  Again, we have a picture of fullness, but this time, in a plant, a tree….but note, “…the trees OF THE LORD.”  The point that arises out of the consideration of these two illustrations is this:  that which is the creation of God, belonging to God, sustained by God, has for its purpose to be filled, with water or the sap.  If this is so in God’s nature, how do we interpret the words:  “…be FILLED with the Spirit?”  What about the illustration of John 15, where we have the True Vine (Christ), and the believer, as a branch of that Vine?  Are we created like the river, and the trees of Lebanon, and ultimately as a branch in union with the Eternal Vine, to be less than FULL of water, sap, and primarily the Spirit?  Why do we not live a “filled” and “fulfilled” life? It is because of a “little vision” of the reality of our union, purpose, and the provision of God in Christ.  And secondly, it is because of “little faith,” faith which has not been adequately nourished on the truths of our Great Salvation, and strengthened by the Spirit.

When Jesus saw the paralytic lying before Him, after his friends had uncovered the roof of the house to let him down in front of Jesus, the Lord said to him, “Man, thy sins are forgiven thee.” (Luke 5:20)  Can ALL of this man’s sins be forgiven, and washed away, in one moment of time?  Do we grasp what the Lord is saying here?  This is not a “little stream” situation.  The Lord goes on to tell the man point-blank:  “I say unto you, Arise, and take up thy couch, and go in to thine house.” (v.24)  In order for this to occur, the power of God would need to go FULLY through that man’s body to heal him.  Otherwise, he will limp, and creep home.  He was FULLY healed.  The point is this:  God’s will is FULLNESS, the fullness of the Spirit, the fullness of the knowledge of His will…the fullness of blessing.

What are to be our expectations?  They will be in accordance with the vision that God gives, and the strength that God gives to believe. And yet, though we have feet of clay, and our faith is not perfect, nor our vision complete, let us rest and rejoice in the fact that, “…(He…God…) is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think according to the power that worketh in us…unto Him be the glory.” (Eph. 6:20)  Let us believe Him for His highest and best…for His glory.

Love, Dad