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Edition 208. May 21st 2014
The normal and abnormal:
The normal and abnormal:
This is for a very small, limited group of believers. Most will not receive this – the Bible tells me so!
Watchman Nee, A.W Tozer and Charles Finny inspired some of these principles. “The Normal Christian Life” contains the central theme, but I’ve interpreted Nee’s work through my own applications and experiences and related them to today.
In this edition I will compare the Godly, true, normal Christian life, with today’s abnormal Christian life and the end of each as revealed in Bible prophecy.
Identity of the normal and abnormal Christian:
The normal Christian life is, “Not I but Messiah.”
Normal is, “I must decrease so that He can increase.”
Normal is, “I die daily, death works in me.”
Normal is, “come out from among them and be separate.”
It is normal to say, “I can of my own self do nothing.”
It is normal to “fall on this rock and be broken.” Brokenness opens us fully to God. Nothing in life remains hidden.
The normal Christian sees that “Messiah is the very essence of his life” (Colossians 3:4). Because He lives in me, I am delivered from the tiresome effort of trying to live right. (Philippians 1:21)
Deliverance from the slavery of sin becomes effortless when you see that Messiah is your life!
The old law tells you that you must be perfect, so you try, but you can’t so you carry on and carry on failing. The new law of life in Messiah tells you that you are perfect! You now rest in this wonderful knowledge as it works from inside your heart to the outside of your life.
Trying to be holy is a terrible, heavy burden. A tree doesn’t need to strive to produce fruit – it just does!
The normal Christian is one who is dead to self, the world and the demonic. Being dead to self delivers you from pride, from the fear of failure, from the fear of being rejected, from trying to be right. It delivers you from feelings of inferiority and superiority.
The normal Christian is extremely concerned about truth and walking in it. He will not dilute the truth to make it relevant to the world. His truth will be alive. He loves the truth and the truth loves him – finding its permanent home in his heart. He sees that truth is love and love is truth. He will be led by the Spirit of truth, and this will be the spark that ignites the fire of God’s love in his heart.
The normal Christian will be on the right path led by the light and love of the living God.
Psalm 16:11 “You will show me the path of life; in your presence is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.”
The normal Christian will have the power of the cross working in him. He will be fiery, loving, uncompromising, sensitive to God, and callous to the devil. He will have a strange attraction about him that will draw people to God.
The abnormal Christian believes in Messiah, but lives for himself. He increases in self- importance and pride, trying to be right with God. He doesn’t take up his cross daily, thinking that the Lord has done it for him.
The power and energy of the flesh works in him. He is not separate from the world, blurring the boundaries between the kingdom of God and the world. He has contempt for the message of brokenness and as a result doesn’t have the supernatural power of the cross in his life.
He believes in Messiah, as long as He remains in the background as a “sponsor” and doesn’t interfere.
He has no idea of the power of demonic forces in his life. He can’t see areas of demonic activity around and about him, because he has no spiritual gifts showing him. He walks spiritually unarmed, blind and unprotected, straight into havens of demons.
His “revelation” and spiritual wisdom is polluted with pride and ego. He is no different from the world and talks the talk of the world.
Malachi 2:17 “You have wearied the Lord with your words...in that you say everyone who does evil is good in the sight of the Lord and He delights in them.”
He is very light on personal discipline and knows nothing of deep repentance and sorrow for sin.
He has no interest in Bible prophecy, believing “no one knows the time”. He is and will be unprepared for the coming end-time events. He will not have the discernment to see that the coming antichrist is not the Messiah!
He is filled with the sin of the world and supports the world’s ways, its heroes, celebrities, politicians and entertainers. He loves Hollywood, computer games and the like. He is materialistically orientated.
He is shallow in faith, ignorant of the major doctrines of the Bible. He believes that all people have a legitimate right to salvation. He believes in multi-faith.
He lives entirely for self- indulgence and gratification. He is amusement-mad, pagan-filled, and Spirit-less. He has no restraint within him.
The abnormal believer tries to be better and tries to apply one stupid self-motivational sermon after the next, about being loving and good. He has given himself to equally shallow shepherds and put his trust in these wolves.
He is attracted to the superficial preacher whose “anointing” is the power of manipulation and persuasion, but it’s all the energy of the flesh.
The abnormal Christian says, “It’s not love to come against modern corrupt values”! He believes that truth is relative and must be twisted to be relevant to the present world.
He applies truth wrongly so it becomes error, and walks hand in hand with prince of error. His truth is produced and sourced in his mind, lacking spiritual power.
The abnormal Christian has a hidden, secret life of sin, which he secretly loves.
John 3:19 “This is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world and men loved darkness rather than light because their deeds were evil.”
You will know them by their fruits, clothing, cars, homes and lifestyles. The abnormal says, “Materialism is godliness.”
A “me, myself, I” universe is a tragic curse, and the world’s media has made it the desire of many.
Living for self is always stressful. You have to continuously prove yourself right, elevate and protect self. Believers who live for self always get trapped in a descending demonic spiral, because they’re not aware that they’re in a spiritual world.
The tragedy of the abnormal Christian:
●The abnormal will grow cold in love (Matthew 24:12) and will be spat out (Revelation 3:16). ●They are self-sufficient and lovers of self (2Timothy 3:1). ●They will not endure sound doctrine (2 Timothy 4:3) and will embrace doctrines of demons. ●They will have a form of godliness, denying its power. ●They will fall away from the faith giving heed to seducing spirits and lying signs and wonders (1Timothy 4:1). ●They will scoff at the end-time message, saying all things will continue as normal (2Peter3:3). ●Their lamps will go out (Matthew 25:3). ●They will be mockers and cause division (Jude18). ●They will betray the true believer (Matthew 24:10). ●They will carry on life as normal, getting married, buying, selling etc. (Matthew 24:37-38). ●They will not be watchful for the coming of the Lord. ●They will be ignorant of the full gospel, knowing only the well used verses that suit themselves. ●Their lives will be essentially no different from the unbeliever.
The tragedy of the abnormal Christian is that he is on-track and on course! He is on course with the world.
Ephesians 2:2 “You once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience.”
The tragedy is that he will think he can save himself without the application of the cross – by his own effort. The tragedy is that he will accept the world offered to him by Satan, instead of rebuking the devil.
Mark 15:30 “Save yourself and come down from the cross.”
Examples of failure:
Many ministries today encourage self-motivation. It is one motivational story after the next. They are a perfect example of the power and energy of the flesh at work, opposed to the energy of the Spirit. I think a good slogan for these ministries would be Obama’s “Yes you can.” The truth is “yes you can’t” in the energy of the cross-less flesh.
I have a friend with a powerful testimony of being abnormal. At first she was a strong believer. She married a lukewarm compromiser and her spiritual life fell apart, although she held on. She became dependant on prescription drugs. She brought up her kids in the ways of the world without any physical discipline. Her husband then committed suicide and my friend tried to get her life together again. She had no depth of experience with and of our Lord and is still battling today. Her children have attempted suicide, are on drugs and a wreck.
I won’t bore you with many other similar testimonies. The point is that if you try to live life your way, you will end up with an empty, wrecked life.
You will also fail as a believer if you try to live under the law and grace at the same time.
You must understand the great and powerful New Covenant principle that one law overcomes the other. Living under the old law will defeat you every time...God designed it that way!
The old law can never allow you the grace of victory over sin – never. Only the new law of the Spirit of Messiah in our hearts can say, “It is not I but Messiah who lives in me; and with that comes glorious victory!” We can then say, “I am delivered from sin and delivered from trying to live this Christian life.”
How to know if you are on the right track:
Colossians 1:27 “...Messiah in you, the hope of glory.”
Is your life becoming more and more like our Messiah, or are you one of the crowd? Are you comfortable going with the flow? Do you desire to keep up with the Christian Joneses? – You fool!
1 John 5:4 “Whoever is born of God overcomes the world, and this is the victory that has overcome the world – our faith.”
What do you talk about? Are you consumed with worldly talk? It may not be sinful talk- just the continuing world.
Colossians 4:6 “Let your speech always be with grace, and seasoned with salt...”
Salt is a type of God’s word, which brings flavour, it preserves and judges. It also has all the fruits of the Spirit associated with it.
●How long ago was it since you apologised to someone? ●How thankful are you for small mercies? ●How sensitive are you to God’s natural creation (environment, animals etc.) ●How quick are you to repent when you fall? ●Do you really love holiness? ●Are you really prepared to expel the demons in your life acquired through Hollywood, computer games and the entertainment world? ●When last did you give sacrificially without murmuring? (Murmuring shuts you into a prison of self.) ●When last did you go the extra distance for someone? ●Do you get mad in defence of God’s truth (right) and do you get mad when self is offended (wrong)?
Coming to the end of self is God’s new beginning in you. Many are too strong. They are not weak enough for God to use them.
Isaiah 57:15 “...I dwell in the high and holy place with him who has a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble.”
►In Messiah we have died, yet are more alive than ever. We are seated in heavenly places even now, by faith. I lose my life to save it. I am full of wisdom when my own reasoning is defeated. I empty myself to be full. I make myself wrong in the world’s eyes to be right in Gods sight.
The power of the cross at work in us empowers us to die to self and the world. It gives us power to reign in the Kingdom and it gives us power to destroy the enemies we face.
Daniel 12:10 “Many shall be purified, made white and refined, but the wicked shall do wickedly, and the wicked shall not understand, but the wise will understand.”
Mixing truth and error:
The fruit of error is always erroneous actions and unholiness.
Satan’s method of bringing people into his will is entrapment. In the believer’s life he uses a mix of truth and error to nullify the truth. It’s not good enough to be half a Christian and half in the world!
Psalm 66:18 “If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me.” God does not reveal Himself or His will to the wicked!
Isaiah 59:2 “Your iniquities have separated you from your God; and your sins have hidden His face from you, so that He will not hear.”
Jeremiah 14:10-11 “They have loved to wander and have not restrained their feet, therefore the Lord does not accept them...Do not pray for this people, for their good.”
Thoughts on spiritual maturity:
God’s way of deliverance into maturity is not by making us stronger and stronger but by making self weaker and weaker.
The secret of moving into the deeper knowledge of God is not by your own effort but by revelation light which shines into our hearts as the cross breaks us open. Without revelation light you are in grave danger of remaining abnormal.
There is a present danger today in that many really want to move on with the things of God but they have not gone far enough with God and fall back as a result. They have gone too far to be effective for the world and not far enough for to be effective for God.
The most spiritual cry you can make is “O wretched man that I am.” As we become gloriously weaker and weaker all the way to death to self, we become gloriously stronger in Him. Please understand that the true Christian life is not a changed, better life, but an exchanged life – life out of death. The cross has borne me, now I must bear it to become a fruitful spiritual giant.
The glorious answer:
The one who has entered and touched the reality of these deep things of God will automatically identify with another who has touched the same. In this deep experience of spiritual reality, you are delivered from law, legalism and in fact doctrine, into the essence of life. You can’t manufacture it. You are there or you aren’t.
The power of the cross at work daily in us removes us from this present place to a new secret place beyond the cross, beyond Passover, Pentecost and into Tabernacles - dwelling with our Lord.
Do you know what freedom is and do you know what slavery is? Freedom is being free to fulfil God’s calling on your life and to move forward in obedience to Him. Slavery is being free and independent to follow the world and its god Satan.
Many are not prepared to battle the devil. We are in a spiritual world of conflict – always. If you ignore the spiritual conflict don’t think the devil is ignoring you. Do you want to backslide – do nothing! The real spiritual life is an unending engagement with the enemy on the battlefield, but from rest to rest. The concept of the army / bride is appropriate.
Being separated to God and His word necessitates being separated from the world and its word.
It’s a great and powerful thing when we as believers discover that we are not our own anymore but His, and He begins to work His wonders in us!
Love for God and others develops out of cross-death. Godly love flows from denial of the self -life.
By way of testimony, I can share that these things are real and alive. I have experienced on-going and ever increasing peace, calmness and deep joy. I’ve learnt the grace of yielding when self is offended, and using a verbal whip in defending attacks on my God’s truth.
The normal Christian and the abnormal in Bible prophecy:
God’s call is for us to fly effortlessly now above the ways of the world, like a true Kingdom saint.
You were made for a purpose with a glorious plan behind you and you can and will find it by faith. Be careful who you give your life to in terms of spiritual leadership.
Don’t for one moment think that you will be raptured as an abnormal Christian. You will not!
If you are a worldly, abnormal Christian you will join up with other like-minded Christians and the multi-faith crowd and try to save the world. You will try to save what God has judged. You will find like-minded and like-spirited people. You will end up walking with the antichrist as he signs doomed peace treaties and makes deceptive doomed peace.
You will find the “peace”-maker ...the antichrist himself!
Matthew 5:13 “You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt loses its flavour, how then shall it be seasoned? It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled under the foot of men.” Mark’s account of the same verses say that they will be “salted with fire.”
Hebrews 10:29 “How much more punishment do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, counted the blood of the covenant by which he was sacrificed a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace?”
2 Peter 2:20-21 “If after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Yeshua Messiah, they are again entangled in them and overcome, the latter end for them is worse than the beginning. It would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness...”
Understand that there will be a huge counterfeit multi-faith church in operation during the tribulation period.
The end for the abnormal Christian is revealed in Revelation 3:16. He will be vomited out of God’s mouth!
Some may be truly saved, but will have no reward in heaven.
The end for the normal Christian is revealed in more verses than I can think of and they are all consistent in that they show eternal glory.
I took this picture in a nearby game reserve. It represents twisting yourself around the truth!
Matthew 8:31-32 “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed and you shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free.”
Shalom and grow in grace!