Month: July 2012

The Surpassing Knowledge of His Love – W.E. Smith

….and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. (Eph 3:19)

Dear Ones –

Thank you all for you prayers and encouragement in this barren valley. I am hearing that many are being tested, drawn out, laid low at this time, in so many ways, causing our very faith and resolve to be stretched and pulled and tested in so many ways, over such a long time.

So what do we do, when we have His sure and perfect Word, and yet our present circumstances appear in almost every way to defy that very word?

This is no small matter, and I fear He is dealing deeply with us in this late hour. We want Him to speak, to rise up, to reveal Himself, to explain Himself, to give meaning to the terrible trials and losses we are experiencing. I know dear saints. I know how very real this is, believe me I know.

We want to know so very much what is happening. We want reasons, explanations, clarity, purpose; yet the heavens are silent. It is one thing when He withdraws His blessings, but quite another when He seemingly withdraws Himself, to test us whether we truly do trust Him, whether our love for Him will remain steadfast.

Yet the verse above, from a one-time Pharisee no less, one committed to knowing God through learning, teaching, training, education, etc – suggests that there is one thing that can be known that trumps everything else, that leads to the fullness of God within us – and that is to know the love of Christ. (Interestingly, this word for “know” (ginóskó) is the same word used when Mary said she had not “known” a man, when confronted about her situation with child).

It seems there is much He chooses not to reveal to us for whatever reason. His responses to Job are indicative of this certainly. He never directly responded to Job’s questions and demands for reasons for all that befell him. He revealed His creative majesty, He lifted Himself above the creation to remind Job that His care and concern and stewardship of all life on this planet is in His hands. When reading these last chapters of Job the other day, the Spirit reminded me that this is none other than Jesus Christ responding to Job, the every same One that came into this world and rarely if ever responded to the questions of men in certain matters. “I am that I am” He declared, echoing the tone in Job, where He puts Job on the other side of the “Where were you….?” line.

So brethren, pray with me if you will, especially if you are confused, perplexed, tired, ready to surrender to the circumstances of your life, to the fatigue of this narrow path –

Lord, by Your grace allow us to know Your great Love, beyond anything else, doctrine, prophecy, the purpose for all that is happening to so many of your little ones in this hour. Oh Lord, help us to set these things aside, so that we might know Your great love for Your children. Let it be enough Lord, to know Your love, even when we know little else, and everything is unclear. Fill us with Your fullness Lord, through this very real and intimate and unifying knowledge of Your love, not just knowing that we are loved, but knowing all there is to know of your love – how it moves, how it responds, how it is never satisfied with superficial things, but is always going deeper.

Lord Jesus, remind us afresh in our spirits that You came down into this cesspool of a world to save it, to save us out of it, to bring us home with so great a salvation, so steadfast and enduring a love. Oh Lord, we feel so very much like the disciples after You left them, and we are very much at risk in this moment, for we sense in our spirits that You have abandoned us, in this we speak honestly Lord for You already know our hearts. Now more than ever we need to know that Your love, especially when we don’t know what is happening, just like the disciples who did not grasp all that was being done while You left them behind on this earth. Lord, love is so much greater than faith, for faith will end, but Your love never will – we do ask for greater faith but we ask for so much more than that – we ask that we would know the love of Christ that passes all knowledge. Amen.

Dear brothers, let us lift up our precious brother Kenneth, who so much needs encouragement and life as the Lord withholds suitable employment for him for so long (28 months now). And his dear wife Bia who is also sharing in this terrible ordeal. Lord please shower your love down upon them both. Reach down to them Lord, with such great compassion and mercy and kindness.

Let us lift up our dear brother David that the Lord would grant such grace and peace in the uncertainty of his spirit. Lord please remember David. Help him Lord, please.

Let us lift up Dominic and Susanna that the Lord would bring them to peace in the place He has put them, and that perhaps there would be some real, spirit touching bone fellowship locally where they reside. Pray also for their health, for Susanna’s hearing problem, that the Lord would show great mercy in this impossible situation. Lord touch them. Smile on them Lord.

Let us pray for one another, and share with one another and let the very love of Christ animate our being, and move through our lives to touch one another in this hour, as so much around us is failing. It was love and love alone, freely flowing, that marked the ecclesia in Acts, not doctrine, not teaching, not this or that characteristic (however important these may be in their proper place). Many say they hope to see the church restored to this, and yet it never will if we know not the love of Christ, the love that empties itself that others may be made full, the love that spills itself out, blood and all for the life of others.

Pray yes, for one another, but then let us get off our knees and share, give, listen, write the message or the check, open our homes, put ourselves at risk, give one to another, not through the big organization, but where we can look into the eyes and the heart of the other and be joined together in the body. Hold all things in common. Stop gripping  so tightly to our little earthly treasures for they are not ours and never were. Weep with each other, and rejoice such as the Lord has you. Be quick to love, and slow to preach, for the Lord teaches through His love, through His giving, through His very life. We will all know enough in time, but meat in due season first gives life, not just an explanation. The Lord never reveals His mysteries to those apart from His love – Oh how important it is we remember this.

Oh Lord let it be so…

….and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. (Eph 3:19)

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The Touch of Life – W.E. Smith

And He stretched out His hand and touched him, saying, “I am willing; be cleansed.” And immediately the leprosy left him. (Luke 5:13)

And a woman who had a hemorrhage for twelve years, and could not be healed by anyone, came up behind Him and touched the fringe of His cloak, and immediately her hemorrhage stopped. And Jesus said, “Who is the one who touched Me?” (Luke 8:43)

When they came to the crowd, a man approached Jesus and knelt before him. “Lord, have mercy on my son,” he said. “He has seizures and is suffering greatly. He often falls into the fire or into the water. I brought him to your disciples, but they could not heal him.”

“O unbelieving and perverse generation,” Jesus replied, “how long shall I stay with you? How long shall I put up with you? Bring the boy here to me.” Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of the boy, and he was healed from that moment. (Matt 17)

Dear saints – leprosy, cancer, disease, demonism – it is all death. It is this fallen world dying. It is the life of Adam that remains – the grim legacy of sin and curse and death. It is in the very cells and molecules of all of us. We pass it on to our precious children, all the while the god of death wrings his hands and smiles.

Yet there is one, and only one who touches death. He reaches out and touches it, for He is willing and He alone is able. He touched death in the leper and His life flowed out of Him. The woman with internal bleeding touched Him and the life flowed out of Him. He rebuked the demons and they came out.

Rejoice Ye His saints – for Life has come amongst us in this cursed graveyard we call this world.

Where, where I say is the power and the life in His people? Why are we so dead and listless. Why do we not send the demons and death running by the very life that is in us? His life!

“O unbelieving and perverse generation,”

Spoken to his own, dear saints – spoken to His own – to you and to me.

Has He changed? Does He not want to manifest His power and life in the darkness and death of this world?

Where is the light and power and life in His people while all the world sinks into even greater death and depravity. Did He not say after He ascended that we would do greater things than He did? Then where, I submit, are they? What on earth happened? He changes not and remains faithful, so it must be us. IT MUST BE US!

Let me declare ever-so plainly that if so many of us did not actually love this putrid and death-filled world more than we love the Lord then things might not be so deplorable. We embrace death rather than life. We shrink back from, and even enjoy the darkness. We are riddled with unbelief, and our puny lives are merely evidence of our puny faith. All we have is a wispy religion propped up with programs and strings.

Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. (2 Cor. 3:17)

It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh is no help at all. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life. (John 6:63)

Oh dear ones, where then is the spirit and the life; where is this freedom promised?

Let us repent dear saints and pray for a quickening of our hearts unto the Lord. Let us turn to the Living One who holds the keys to death and Hades –

I turned around to see the voice that was speaking to me. And when I turned I saw seven golden lampstands, and among the lampstands was someone like a son of man, dressed in a robe reaching down to his feet and with a golden sash around his chest. The hair on his head was white like wool, as white as snow, and his eyes were like blazing fire. His feet were like bronze glowing in a furnace, and his voice was like the sound of rushing waters.  In his right hand he held seven stars, and coming out of his mouth was a sharp, double-edged sword. His face was like the sun shining in all its brilliance.

When I saw him, I fell at his feet as though dead. Then he placed his right hand on me and said: “Do not be afraid. I am the First and the Last. I am the Living One; I was dead, and now look, I am alive for ever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and Hades. (Rev 1)

… and so how great is our God? – Oh that we would see Him personally, and be forever changed by what we see. John fell to the ground as though dead, yet today we seem not to have any fear of Him at all. We sings love songs to Him but we don’t tremble in His presence. We don’t seem to care that these same eyes of fire are now measuring each and every one of us.

Dear saints – I will start with myself, and end with myself – pray that I would fear this Lord, and tremble in His presence, and walk only in the life that He gives. Pray that all that resists Him in me will be burned away, by whatever it takes, whatever loss or pain or affliction. For I am the least and the last, and He deserves so much better than I.

Oh Lord – touch us with Your Life Oh Lord – touch us like you touched so many things that are dead or dying. Reach out and touch us that we will never be the same again. And show us Thyself Oh King! Show us Thy majesty and glory, and may we shudder in Your Holy Presence! Show us Thyself lifted up above this dying realm, above all that the stink and filth and rot of men and devils and this cursed world.

Oh Lord, we are dirty, so dirty Lord, so much in need of Thy cleansing blood. Purge us Oh Lord of all that isn’t Thee Oh Lord, all that is less than Thee.

Show us Thy need Oh Lord, how utterly empty we are without Thee. Whatever it takes Oh Lord – let us lay down our lives unto death, even the death and mortification of Thy cross oh Lord. Shake this world out of us, Shake it all Lord, shake it with Thy mighty thunders Oh Lord so that our only ground is Thee!

Saints of the Lord – hear me please – if you are not willing to go all the way with Jesus the Christ, then go back now. If you have never been taught what the cost is for following Him, that it is in fact your very life – then now you know. Count the cost then decide. Just decide deep in the very bowels of your being – make a decision. And then never turn back. never even look back – at all that you will lose for Him.

For dear ones – to gain this Christ is everything. He is everything! The pearl, the treasure, the gold and the glory.

Oh we believe Oh Lord, help our unbelief. Yes we are a perverse and unbelieving generation, but help us Oh Lord.

Go out saints of God, for the bread is on the ground – He is waiting. He is new every morning! Take Him into your mouth and live. Drink deep from the fountain that is our Savior and our King!

For to live is Christ and to die is gain!