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People of the Ark
June 17, 1992
God has called us to become People of the Ark—those who bear the presence of God ahead of the camp to light the way for it. These are they who first touch the “river of death” (Jordan means “descender”) with their feet, causing it to be backed up to the city of Adam (the flesh man). As the people of the ark overcome the river of death, it is their stand that enables the rest to pass through.
God has not called us to live in monasteries to secure his Presence, but to carry His Presence to the front edge of society. This is a difficult critical challenge. We must learn how to draw to Him while we stand in the midst [river] of a flesh-driven [dead] society.
This does not mean it is sufficient to try to abide in Him while we go throughout our activities without ever drawing away to Him for definite secret quiet time. Communion with God is like communications on a war front. There is walkie-talkie communication while on the front line. But there is always a beginning from and returning to a base to receive face-to-face orders.
So we must have an established daily time of aloneness with God by which all other activity may be governed. For everyone the amount of time will be different—but it must be there. There must be a foundation, and it must be diligently maintained or else it will have cracks. This requires discipline. The life of Jesus consistently demonstrates the phrase “Come ye apart and rest awhile.”
There are two meanings of worship. The root meaning of an “activated worshipper” is one who consistently brings all other awarenesses under subjection to his awareness of Christ within. This is a moment-by-moment lifestyle. The secondary meaning refers to the peculiar mediums of expression through music and dance given us to express and expand this government.
It is possible, however, to go through mediums of expression without securing spiritual release unto the government of God’s presence. This is because the flesh can mimic anything given to the spirit for securing deeper communion with God. When this happens, “worship” according to the secondary level of meaning (i.e., the level of visible bodily expression) becomes “perfunctory.”
It is because this can happen that we must have times where we are able to draw away from this as well to be quiet before God. Such drawing away gives expressive-level worship renewed meaning and effect when we re-enter it after rest.
We have been called into His rest. This rest is also our anchor beyond the veil in the Holiest of All where Christ has entered before us (Heb. 4 and 7). Its essence is our deliverance from bondage to the burden and obligation of decision-making under the knowledge of good and evil. God is laying the ax to the root of this tree in our lives, delivering us from having to make the right choice in all situations and respond to the urgencies of family and ministry that demand us to make right decision concerning them.
This laying of the ax is the same as our being drained of our natural energies as living sacrifices. God wishes to re-infuse us with His restful resurrection power, restoring us to live according to his sovereign flow through the tree of life, a flow that takes the responsibility for our decisions as we submit to it.
Today there is much talk about “taking the kingdom,” “taking the land,” and “spiritual warfare”—all referring to overcoming outward situations, principalities over cities and nations, casting out demons, etc.
But the root meaning of “taking the promised land” is the conquering of our own emotional state and mental framework under the dominion of the knowledge and Presence of God. This is the core theater of spiritual warfare as we move from a beach head of worship to expanding the government of God’s rest through every area of life, especially family life (for those of us with families.)
If we are successful in taking this land and fighting this war, then all outward meanings of taking the land and spiritual warfare will take care of themselves. But if we are not engaged in the core theater and conquering our own lives through expansion of God’s indwelling, all outward efforts of spiritual war and Kingdom taking are worthless—a waste of time, and a work of the flesh.
written from Merrimack, New Hampshire
First Love Ministry
- a ministry of Anglemar Fellowship
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