The following was taught and prayed through during our 6 a.m. prayer time with Terry Nyenhuis
1 Tim 2:1-4
Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.
Holiness: The Final Frontier
Written by Gloria Copeland
Today the Church is standing at the edge of a great frontier. I believe it is the final frontier that stands between us and the fullness of God’s glory. On the other side lie the greatest manifestations of God’s power this earth has ever seen.
What is this last great, spiritual frontier?
That’s right. Holiness is the final frontier. And we will cross it before Jesus comes to catch us away. I know we will because the Bible says He is coming for a glorious Church without spot or wrinkle (Eph. 5:27). In other words, He is coming for a Church that is holy.
Holiness is what allows the glory of God to be manifest. So the more we walk in holiness, the more God will be able to pour forth His glory through us! Holiness is a formidable word to many. But it simply means separation to God for His use.
I’m Doing the Best I Can
Knowing that should make us hungry for holiness. It should make us more eager than ever to separate ourselves from the things of the world unto the things of the Spirit. It should give us an intense desire to obey Romans 12, which says:
“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God” (vv. 1-2).
“But, Gloria,” you may say, “I’m doing the best I can.” Oh, you won’t be able to use that cop-out after you hear about Max!
Max, our grandson, is the youngest in his family and is used to being pampered by his three big sisters. So, when he started kindergarten, he was very surprised to find out that in kindergarten, he wasn’t the center of attention. He was especially distressed to discover he was actually expected to sit still at times.
For the first few weeks, Max just didn’t seem to be able to do it. He got in trouble again and again. One day, his mother was talking to him about it and he threw up his hands in desperation. “I’m doing the best I can!”
“Well Max, that’s not good enough. You are going to have to do better,” his mother said.
In all exasperation with his mother, Max said, “I told you, I’m doing the best I can!”
Within the next few weeks, Max grew tired of having to stay on the sidewalk during recess (that’s the punishment for misbehaving in his class), and he discovered he could indeed do better.
I’ve thought about that many times in recent months when God was dealing with me about some area of dedication and consecration. Sometimes I’d say, “Lord, I’m doing the best I can!”
No, Gloria, you’re not doing the best you can, I said to myself, thinking of Max. You’re doing the best you want to do.
That’s the way it’s been with the Church in general. When it comes to laying “aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us” (Heb. 12:1), we haven’t done all we know to do. We’ve just done all we wanted to do.
We may have put away from us the major sins and even many minor sins, but there are some worldly hindrances we’ve held onto because our flesh enjoyed them. One example that immediately comes to my mind is secular television. Almost every situation comedy on television dishonors God and what God says is right. Almost every one is profane and unholy.
Yet many believers will sit there and watch those shows night after night. They’ll feed on the garbage of the world and not even realize that it is draining them of spiritual strength and compromising their own holiness.
Second Corinthians 6:14 says, “…what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?” What business do we have entertaining our flesh with the sin and garbage of this world when we’re indwelt by the very Spirit of God Himself?
I realize when you start thinking about laying aside that favorite television show – or anything else that feeds your carnal appetite – your flesh gets uncomfortable. But God hasn’t called us to make our flesh comfortable, He has called us to crucify it. He has called us to “mortify [or put to death] the deeds of the body” (Rom. 8:13).
He has called us to “…cleanse ourselves from everything that contaminates and defiles body and spirit, and bring [our] consecration to completeness in the (reverential) fear of God” (2 Cor. 7:1 AMP). Notice that verse doesn’t say we must ask God to cleanse us. He has already cleansed us on the inside, now it’s our responsibility to cleanse ourselves on the outside.
Your body is your responsibility. It’s not God’s responsibility. He has given you His Spirit to enable you to mortify the deeds of the body (Rom. 8:13-14). He has given you His Word and His Spirit to teach you what you need to do. Now it’s your responsibility to obey Him. It’s your job to sell out completely to God, to do everything He tells you to do.
Some people say, “Well, God hasn’t told me to do anything.”
That just means they haven’t been putting themselves in position to hear His voice. He is always telling us to come up higher. He is always saying, Step on up to another level of spiritual life. I have more for you!
Set Your Affection
I’ll warn you in advance, some of the things the Lord may ask you to lay down on this road to holiness may not necessarily be sinful. They may simply be the weights referred to in Hebrews 12:1.
What are weights? They are natural interests or pursuits that take up your time or energy and hold you down in this natural realm. They are earthly distractions that may not necessarily be bad in themselves, yet they keep you from going higher in spiritual pursuits.
Weights are also anything that takes God’s place in your heart. God is supposed to have the first and supreme place in your affections. He is not meant to be one of many treasures in your life. He is meant to be the treasure of your life – even your first love.
Colossians 3:1-2 says, “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.”
Once again, notice that verse doesn’t say the Lord will set your affection for you. It says you must set your affection. It’s your responsibility.
Actually, your affection follows your attention. So when your affection toward some earthly pursuit or hobby grows too strong, the Lord will often prompt you to set it aside and turn your attention completely away from it for a time, so you can once again set your affection firmly where it should be – on Him.
If you haven’t been devoting much time to the Lord, you may find it very difficult to overcome your fleshly desires. You may find yourself laying them down one day…and picking them back up the next, because spiritually you’re just not strong enough to do what you know you should do.
When you find yourself in that condition, immediately begin to spend more time reading and meditating on the Word of God. Start spending more time in prayer and fellowship with Him. Your union with the Lord is what makes your spirit strong, so focus on maintaining that union.
You’ll soon find you have more than enough strength to overcome that stubborn sin, or turn off that television program, or set aside that golf game, or cancel that trip to the mall when the Lord prompts you.
Remember this: The Lord can change anything about you. He can take care of any situation in your life if you’ll give Him enough of your time. As you spend time with Him in the Word and in prayer, you’ll begin to get victory on the inside of you. And once you get victory on the inside, victory on the outside is a sure thing!
For the Sake of the Glory
Granted, walking this road of holiness isn’t easy. It isn’t something you can do without any effort or fleshly discomfort. If you’re going to grow in holiness, if you’re going to mortify the deeds of the body, you will experience some suffering – the denying of your flesh.
But I say with the Apostle Paul, “[But what of that?] For I consider that the sufferings of this present time…are not worth being compared with the glory that is about to be revealed to us and in us and for us and conferred on us!” (Rom. 8:18, AMP).
God wants to pour out His glory in us and upon us. He wants us to lay hands on the sick and see them recover. He wants us to cast out demons and raise the dead. He wants us to have so much of His power flowing through our mortal flesh that He can do signs and wonders through us. That is our destiny as sons and daughters of God.
But He cannot fully do what He desires until we are living sanctified, holy lives before Him. He cannot do it until He has our whole heart-until we surrender everything in our lives to Him and yield ourselves in total obedience to the promptings of His Spirit.
He cannot pour out upon us the full measure of His glory until we so submit ourselves to Him that we can say as Jesus did, “I come to do thy will, O God” (Heb. 10:9).
I’m telling you, God is going to have a people who say that to Him before Jesus returns. He is going to have people who so hunger after Him and His glory that they are willing to set aside anything in their lives that might hinder it. He is going to have people who have heard and heeded the words Jesus spoke to His first disciples:
“Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel’s, the same shall save it” (Mark 8:34-35).
I have determined in my heart once and for all that I am going to be one of those people. I have determined that I will walk this road of holiness day by day so that the glory of God can rest increasingly upon me. I have made up my mind that when I stand before the Lord Jesus, I will hear Him say, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant.”
It seems I see that day continually with the eyes of my heart. I know it’s coming, and because of that, I cannot give up. I cannot quit. I must keep on becoming progressively more and more separated unto the Lord.
I urge you to make that same commitment today. Don’t put it off another moment, for the time is very short. Jesus is surely coming soon. So bow your heart before the Lord today and say:
Lord Jesus, I yield everything I have and everything I am to You today. I determine in my heart to set my affection on things above, and by the energizing power of Your Spirit to keep my flesh crucified, laying aside every sin and weight that would hinder me in my walk with You. I set myself from this day on to do Your will, O God. I’m asking You, Lord, to enlighten my heart, to speak to me and tell me what changes I need to make in my life. I set myself now to hear and obey Your voice. In Jesus’ Name, amen.
Heb 12:11-14 AMPC
For the time being no discipline brings joy, but seems grievous and painful; but afterwards it yields a peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it [a harvest of fruit which consists in righteousness—in conformity to God’s will in purpose, thought, and action, resulting in right living and right standing with God].
12 So then, brace up and reinvigorate and set right your slackened and weakened and drooping hands and strengthen your feeble and palsied and tottering knees,
13 And cut through and make firm and plain and smooth, straight paths for your feet [yes, make them safe and upright and happy paths that go in the right direction], so that the lame and halting [limbs] may not be put out of joint, but rather may be cured.
14 Strive to live in peace with everybody and pursue that consecration and holiness without which no one will [ever] see the Lord.
We are praying for the Body of Christ – that we would recognize we’re in the FINAL FRONTIER – HOLINESS.