Friday, September 25, 2015

Behind Enemy Lines – Part 1 – God’s Call

This week, Michael proclaims us that God calls his people to stand firm in order to advance in the midst of the spiritual battle – Ephesians 6:14. The Lord says that apart from me you can do nothing – John 15:5.  According to Psalm 46:1, God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in time of trouble. In John 17 is the account of our Lord's high priestly prayer. This prayer reveals the heart of our Lord Jesus Christ as our high priest. The High Priest is the one who is ordained to speak directly to God on behalf of God's people. Jesus' high priestly prayer is His prayer of intercession on behalf of those whom God elected in His foreknowledge to be “Disciples of Christ”.

John 17:1-23 Jesus spoke these words, lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said: “Father, the hour has come. Glorify Your Son, that Your Son also may glorify You, as You have given Him authority over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as You have given Him. And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent. I have glorified You on the earth. I have finished the work which You have given Me to do. And now, O Father, glorify Me together with Yourself, with the glory which I had with You before the world was. “I have manifested Your name to the men whom You have given Me out of the world. They were Yours, You gave them to Me, and they have kept Your word. Now they have known that all things which You have given Me are from You. For I have given to them the words which You have given Me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came forth from You; and they have believed that You sent Me. “I pray for them. I do not pray for the world but for those whom You have given Me, for they are Yours.  And all Mine are Yours, and Yours are Mine, and I am glorified in them. Now I am no longer in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to You. Holy Father, keep through Your name those whom You have given Me, that they may be one as We are. While I was with them in the world, I kept them in Your name. Those whom You gave Me I have kept; and none of them is lost except the son of perdition, that the Scripture might be fulfilled. But now I come to You, and these things I speak in the world, that they may have My joy fulfilled in themselves. I have given them Your word; and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world.  I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one. They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth. As You sent Me into the world, I also have sent them into the world. And for their sakes I sanctify Myself, that they also may be sanctified by the truth. “I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word; that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me. And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one: I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me.

God sent his only begotten son, so that God's elect could witness the truth of the word of God made flesh. He came as the rose of heaven, trampled underfoot.  He came into the devil's enemy territory to show the world that “He who knew no sin” may be made the sacrifice for sinful man. He came to show that in our flesh dwells no good thingRomans 7:18.  We know what it means to declare our independence from God's will for our lives. There is none good, no not oneRomans 3:10-12. Jesus came behind enemy lines to substitute His life for our sins ... to deliver us from the power of the Evil One - Satan. Jesus was resolute in this mission and was not to be dissuaded. He chose twelve ordinary men and called them to a mysterious mission to be “fishers of men”. They followed Him because of His calling. They were not the “cream of the crop”. He chose them not because they were accomplished, but because of what He could accomplish in them and through them. He called them not to deliver the mission, but to be the mission. God calls the world's rejects to become the righteousness of God in Him. 

Let's continue this excellent message "Behind Enemy Lines" by Michael tomorrow.
In Christ, Brian

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