From Psalm 100:4 (NKJV)…
Enter into His gates with thanksgiving,
And into His courts with praise.
Be thankful to Him, and bless His name.
What a privilege we have to know who our God is and what He has done for us. What a pleasure He has given us to bless us with His presence when we bless Him with our praise. We often attribute the gates and courts with church attendance, but if we see His gate as the narrow gate of salvation, we find even more opportunities to enter with thanksgiving and praise.
In today’s Infinite Supply newsletter, the author speaks of what we find beyond the gate.
“Till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.”
It is the FULLNESS of Christ that we are after, the revelation of Christ as He IN FACT IS. For too many Christians the Lord Jesus is “merely” their Savior. Thank God He is our Savior, but there is a depth and a richness bound up into the personage of Christ that goes far, far beyond “mere” salvation. Salvation is the narrow gate – coming into the fullness of Christ is the narrow path. The gate is only the entrance to something larger.
Source: Lord of All by Chip Brogden
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Something larger; something bigger; something more. Most of us want bigger and more, and it is God’s desire to give us bigger and more. If we were satisfied with only a little, we may not desire or pursue a heavenly reward.
I remember some years ago trying to work with a nephew on the idea of the rewards of sobriety. I presented all the great possibilities a sober life could bring, but none of them worked. For every good thing I presented, my nephew told me he was satisfied with something less. Sleeping on a couch in someone else’s home, getting a ride in someone else’s car, never having anything of his own: All of these were acceptable to him. How can anyone argue with that?
Salvation is so much more than just a ticket out of Hell. Being saved is a gate we should all want to walk through, but there is so much more on the other side–both here and in Heaven. I’ve tried to use food as an example, comparing dog food to a steak dinner, but those who simply do not hunger or thirst for righteousness will often reject that too. They want to be saved because they don’t want to go to Hell, but the idea of filling their life with more and more of The Lord holds no appeal. I don’t get that.
The idea of having more of Yeshua and less of me gives me a reason to press on in this life. In his message called Drawing Near, John Bevere talks about Enoch as walking closer and closer to The Lord until he got so close that he just couldn’t stay attached to this earth any longer. I believe that statement is on the audio CD, but I recommend at least reading about the interaction between Adam and Enoch from pages 11-13 which you can read for free at Google Books. (The link will show you 11-12, but keep reading.)
I’ll close with the lyrics to verse three of song Draw Me Nearer by Fanny J. Crosby. It seems to perfectly capture the heart of longing to be in The Lord’s presence. May you find yourself longing to draw nearer to the fullness of Christ each day you dwell on this earth.Oh, the pure delight of a single hour
That before Thy throne I spend,
When I kneel in prayer, and with Thee, my God
I commune as friend with friend!
Today’s reading is from Genesis 5:1-24. Somehow, I knew I might have some trouble writing in those chapters that deal with genealogies. This one is the genealogy of Adam. I know that bloodlines can tell us marvelous facts if we understand their study, and there will be some later on that I can comment on, but this one is not bringing me something easy of myself, so I’m going to borrow from a message I have on CD by John Bevere.
In the message, and in his book called “Drawing Near,” John Bevere brings up a point I doubt I would ever have noticed. The long lifespans at that point in history allowed many to hear Adam’s story of the days in the garden when he walked with God. Like a grandpa telling about the good ‘ol days, Enoch must have been the one that listened most intently. In John’s words:
Adam wept as he relayed his heart-wrenching account. “Enoch, I walked with Him….in His glory. The Creator of the universe, the Maker of all you see, walked beside me! He shared the infinite wisdom of His master plan, how He placed and arranged the stars of the universe with His fingers. Those very fingers created me as well as held my hand.*
He goes on to tell more about creation secrets that Yahveh likely shared with Adam, and it is powerful as well as sad because Adam gave up all that intimacy for the desires of flesh. John continues and talks about the effect these words likely had on Enoch:
The more Adam spoke, the hungrier Enoch became, until the passion overwhelmed him. He must walk with God as Adam had. He would not be denied.
And we know from verse 24 that Enoch walked so closely to God that one day he was there on the earth and then suddenly, he wasn’t. Scripture tells us that God took him. It’s like, one moment he was walking on the dirt and then suddenly, the dirt turned to gold.
I try to share my testimonies of both my successes in my service to God and my failures to Him. But this makes me want to focus just that much more on sharing my relationship with Him. I want to share Him in such a profound way that others will be like Enoch and become hungry to have an even deeper relationship. I, myself, want to feel that passion that overwhelmed Enoch and press in until I am walking so close to God that there will be little difference when He brings me to join Him at His throne. What a glorious way to live life whether it lasts 900 plus years or 90 plus years.
*Excerpt from book, Drawing Near, by John Bevere found at Google Books in the preview. Read the entire preview, or just the beautiful section about Adam and Enoch (on pages 11-13) yourself and let me know what you think. I would recommend the book and/or study set for anyone who wants to deepen his or her relationship with Yahveh Almighty.
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