Post 109 / The Next Language
September 27, 2022
All or Nothing
Something I have pondered most of my life is how to stay in the place of blessing after being blessed. How to remain a seeker after finding. I remember the bumper sticker in the 60’s proudly stating, “I found it.”
This is not a trivial matter. When you study the Sermon on the Mount you find Jesus clearly giving preference to bless those that are poor, and meek, and mourning, and the hungry and the thirsty and persecuted. Do we ever graduate from those needs and hence from the position of blessing?
Matt 5:3-6, 10-11 KJV – “Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted. Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth. Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled. … Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.”
What about the promises repeated during Jesus’ ministry to give water?
John 4:13-14 KJV – “Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.”
John 7:38 KJV – “He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.”
Perhaps here we have a clue. We are inclined to think of blessings from an egocentric posture but apparently God’s blessings are meant to only tangentially bless the receiver but to reach beyond. It is the outflow of blessing that creates the ongoing need for more blessing and seeking. As soon as the initial person who has been blessed becomes a hoarder instead of a channel for the overflow, he loses his status as needy. God’s blessings are intended for immediate needs for ourselves and for those around us. We were instructed to pray only for our “daily bread.” The manna in the desert became putrid for those who tried to hoard it for a second day (except for the Sabbath).
This principle is repeated in many different forms. If we don’t use it we lose it. If the kernel of corn doesn’t fall into the ground and die it remains alone.
If we are not seeking and waiting at the source of all blessing we will be frustrated. One reason the scribes and Pharisees missed being blessed was because they oriented themselves against Jesus. He sarcastically referred to them as “righteous” but in fact they were just as needy as the sinners- likely more so.
Matt 9:11, 13 KJV – “And when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto his disciples, Why eateth your Master with publicans and sinners? … But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”
Mark 2:17 KJV – “When Jesus heard it, he saith unto them, They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”
Luke 5:30, 32 KJV – “But their scribes and Pharisees murmured against his disciples, saying, Why do ye eat and drink with publicans and sinners? … I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”
Another spoiler in the channeling of blessing is pride.
1Peter 5:5 KJV – “Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble.”
This week I saw a third world assessment of the situation in missions. They said very frankly that the problem with world missions today is not any of the major religious alternatives but the nominal Christian Church. A nominal church is one that hoards its resources for internal needs and gives a comfortable platform for nominal “Christians” to enjoy polished respectability while sacrificing nothing. And, this applies to not just churches but to mission agencies that care more about retirement benefits and member comforts, about operating on interest income and corporate-type foundation giving rather than emptying everything into the unfinished task. I can’t help wondering whether when the final hour comes to this age of grace and the heavens are rent how many 401k retirement benefits and long term investments schemes in the control of the church and mission work will be consumed in the smoke that will go up from destruction of Babylon.
Rev 18:2 KJV – “And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird.”
How many of those “talents” given to individuals and corporations to be used in the service of the kingdom and in reaching out to the lost, will be like the talent that was buried- and the servant judged. In the following passage you can’t help seeing the first century equivalents to the stock market indexes of today.
Rev 18:4-8, 10-19 KJV – “And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. For her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities. Reward her even as she rewarded you, and double unto her double according to her works: in the cup which she hath filled fill to her double. How much she hath glorified herself, and lived deliciously, so much torment and sorrow give her: for she saith in her heart, I sit a queen, and am no widow, and shall see no sorrow. Therefore shall her plagues come in one day, death, and mourning, and famine; and she shall be utterly burned with fire: for strong is the Lord God who judgeth her. … Standing afar off for the fear of her torment, saying, Alas, alas, that great city Babylon, that mighty city! for in one hour is thy judgment come. And the merchants of the earth shall weep and mourn over her; for no man buyeth their merchandise any more: The merchandise of gold, and silver, and precious stones, and of pearls, and fine linen, and purple, and silk, and scarlet, and all [precious] wood, and all manner vessels of ivory, and all manner vessels of most precious wood, and of brass, and iron, and marble, And cinnamon, and odours, and ointments, and frankincense, and wine, and oil, and fine flour, and wheat, and beasts, and sheep, and horses, and chariots, and slaves, and souls of men. And the fruits that thy soul lusted after are departed from thee, and all things which were dainty and goodly are departed from thee, and thou shalt find them no more at all. The merchants of these things, which were made rich by her, shall stand afar off for the fear of her torment, weeping and wailing, And saying, Alas, alas, that great city, that was clothed in fine linen, and purple, and scarlet, and decked with gold, and precious stones, and pearls! For in one hour so great riches is come to nought. And every shipmaster, and all the company in ships, and sailors, and as many as trade by sea, stood afar off, And cried when they saw the smoke of her burning, saying, What city is like unto this great city! And they cast dust on their heads, and cried, weeping and wailing, saying, Alas, alas, that great city, wherein were made rich all that had ships in the sea by reason of her costliness! for in one hour is she made desolate.”
My prayer: “Lord Jesus bless me in my search for more of You. Thank You for Your daily provision- always enough. Spare me from pride or privilege. Overflow from me to bless others. Make me sincere about giving all to You — not just myself but my resources — toward the completion of Your Kingdom — Your domain and dominion still waiting to be delivered to many nations. Please help me to never outgrow my need of Your provision. Pour me out to the nations for Your glory. And give me, as leader of this mission, men and women and supporters that will do the same. Give me a team that will unitedly empty our assets to reach every language. Give us churches and individuals that agree. Thank You, God, that though this prayer is given in faith it is not without promise and without disclosure of the final glory.”
Larry DeVilbiss | Executive Director
Global Recordings Network USA
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