Statement of Faith Current Teaching Teaching Index
The Christian Progression
Part Two

April 2011

          Our lesson this month continues from you place in the “Throne Room” of God where you and your heavenly father have spent an untold amount of time in intimate fellowship.  Your heart at this point does not want to leave this blessed peace and security.  It is however at this point that the Lord stands and asks you to follow Him and He leads you to another room.  Where you notice all around on every wall and table are Jewels – it is His “Jewel room.”

 The Jewel Room (Ephesians 4)

           It is here you are given your badges of holiness; the banner which represents the King and emblems representing your allegiance and standing “Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love” (4:2) “one Lord, one faith, one baptism one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.” (4:5). Here are the brilliant gems of His graces “But to each one of us grace was given according to the measure of Christ's gift” (4:7). You must “put off” your old life as you would an old garment and “put on” a new life like a new garment you are told (4:22-25).

          The Lord of Glory tells you that His children must be different; “but how; in what respect; what are the things that I should be careful concerning,” you ask?  He replies; “you must put away lying because your speech shows your spirit. You must put away all bitterness, anger, harsh words, and be kind to each other.  You must not have anything to do with deeds of darkness for you are a child of the light (4:31-32).  You must walk in unity of spirit (4:4,).”

          Then the Lord places upon you the robe of righteousness (Verse 22-24) which is given by His grace alone.  You are told that you can not make one for yourself it is offered freely to you by the Lord of all Grace.  As He places it on you discover how perfectly it fits, as if it were tailor made for you.  You are told that God is the Tailor and He makes your cloths to conform to your position and purpose in life. God wants His children to wear suitable and magnificent garments.  Therefore you must “live a life worthy of the calling you have received” (4:1). A heavenly calling demands a heavenly conduct.  What is a “walk;” If it is not a path or a way of life?  A Christian’s walk includes conduct, attitudes and consecration; it is, in short, “a way of living before men” (4:1-3).  You are then told that you must walk

 

Humbly – “with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering” (Verse 2a)

Lovingly – “Be patient, bearing with one another in love” (Verse 2b)

Peacefully – “Keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace” (Verse 3).

          We know that our spiritual lives affect our social lives. When we are in right relation to God, we will be in proper relation to people.

          When God puts upon us His jewels of grace, He seals us by His Spirit. It is like a young man putting a diamond upon the engagement finger of one whom he has promised to marry. The Lord knows them that are His and we are sealed unto the day of redemption. The seal is the mark of ownership; which proclaims loudly and clearly “This one is mine!” A seal is set for security. We are sealed for the day of redemption (4:30).  The Lord then places upon your lapel a pure white stone with a new name written on it and with the most sincere, loving and touching voice you have ever heard He calls you by that name and God Himself escorts you into the Music and Oratory room.

 The Music and Oratory Room (Ephesians 5)

           In the “Jewel Room,’ you were adorned as children of God and directed to walk worthy of your calling. You were sealed with the seal of ownership. Now you enter a room filled with songs of praise, beautiful harmonic music surrounds you as a host of angelic beings and others like yourself worship continually day and night.  As you enjoy the melody of praise the Lord gives you a set of instructions if you are to follow Him.   The Lord tells you that a Christian is the “I” that follows Christ in Christ-“I”-an. You are then told that the walk of a Christian is a:

Walk in love (Verse l-2)

Walk in light (Verse 8)

Walk carefully (Verse l5)

Walk redeeming the time (Verse 16)

Walk soberly (Verse 18)

Walk being filled with the Spirit (Verse 18)

Walk in submission (Verse 21)

Walk spotlessly and blamelessly before the world (Verse 27)

 

          That the body mind and spirit cannot function without outside stimulants. No one will think clearly or feel deeply unless something from without excites them. But there is a catch; one that brings tragedy if you are not careful! The world has plenty of powerful stimulants that give quick and joy filled reactions. But the results are devastating. Our bodies and minds are not made for such ruinous flames and are destroyed. Our bodies are God’s altars. “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service;” (Romans 12:1) this is God’s plea. The Holy Spirit fires our bodies and spirits and sets them aglow, but never destroys them. That is why God commands, ‘Be ye not drunk with wine…but be filled [set aflame] with the Spirit” (Verse 18, KJV). We can burn and never be consumed. We may live dangerously for God and never be in danger. God’s Spirit is waiting that He might fill you, for you are His temple. 

          He then instructs you to “Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord” (Verses l9-20). A singing heart guarantees a transformed life. When the Spirit fills the heart, the lips overflow with praise. Just as you hear, so do, He says.  You can walk the Christian life as long as you sing and speak about Christ.  When you are simply going about your everyday life or when you are in a battle of any kind, send Judah (praise) first (Judges 20:18), for Judah means “the praise of the Lord!”

          Singing is the most natural joyous expression of the Christian life. There is always music in God’s house. God does not delight in sighing and groaning or weeping, but in songs of praise hymns and spiritual songs of adoration, in rejoicing and thanksgiving. He is the One who inspires the poet, the hymn writer, and the artists of the world. There is social life in this great music room of God’s temple. We find it in our relationship to everyone.

          The Lord God demands a walk worthy of Him – every place and everywhere. How practical all of this is! How simple yet how spiritual! Only men and women who believe that the Christian life “is not “I” but Christ” could fulfill such demands. Christ is the key to a life of victory. He teaches that a child of God can and must, under all circumstances, be a living witness to the power, love and grace of Christ in his or her life.  Sing Christian sing you are told for there is victory in your singing. As you begin to sing aloud to the Lord, He escorts you out of the “Music Room” and brings you into a room that startles you for it is in utter contrast to all the beauty and magnificence you have seen thus far.  It is the “Armory.”

 The Armory (Ephesians 6)

           As you stand staring at the walls you notice that hanging on them is armor. You ask Him, “why am I here,” what is all this for?”  He replies; “All who belong to the kingdom of God have the forces of the kingdom of Satan against them.  That is why you need to be covered with the whole armor of God.  Your Christian’s walk will include warfare.”

          He turns and says this armor is His, not yours and you are to put all of it on, not to miss one piece if you wish to live above all circumstance (6:11-17). This armor is not for beauty or display!  It is designed for the battlefield and strengthened for war. Polished armor hanging up in the hall of your mind will not save you in the day of battle. Then He warns you not to be ignorant of the strength and wiles of the enemy! But more importantly, do not underestimate your abilities and strengths in Him! He then tells you “You can be strong! You must be strong! But remember this!” “Be strong in Me and in the power of My might” (Verse 10)!

          “As soon as you were brought into communion with Me, you needed to be fitted for the fight of faith. Therefore understanding the tactics of the forces you face! You have been raised to heavenly places for fellowship with Me. As good soldiers, stand and defend your interests. The crying need of our day is for strong Christian believers who know how to stand and will stand against the evils of the day (Verse 13).  Stand therefore (Verse 14)!”

          Then the Lord gathers the armor for you and places it at your feet.  You recall that when you were in the “Jewel Room” the Lord placed upon you the “Robe of Righteousness” and all the jewels.  But here, the Lord is placing the armor at your feet.  You turn and ask Him why?  “You must put it on yourself.  These are yours I freely give them to you for your protection and use.  I have won the war, but you must fight for yourself.”  You place them on and once you have finished He tells you that you must “Stand against the enemy. Stand, in the victory that I won for you on Calvary.”

          Then you notice the armor does not cover your back.  You ask Him if you have placed it on wrong?  The Lord says “NO, you have done nothing wrong; there is nothing for your back, you must never turn your back on the enemy and run, but stand face to face with him and fight the good fight of faith.  Then you are told that the full armor of God consists of seven parts – not six: “Where is the missing part;” you ask.  The Lord says that “the seventh part of the armor is a duty.”  A duty as powerful and important and even more so then the six parts you are wearing. What is it you ask?  It is “constant unending prayer.”  Without it the armor does no good, for you will not know how, when or against whom to use it!  You must “Pray always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints” (Verse 18).  You must “Pray without ceasing” (1st Thessalonians 5:17).  Therefore, every day you must place upon you the

Belt of truth                                                  Breastplate of righteousness

Shoes of readiness to bear the Gospel          Shield of faith

Helmet of salvation                                       Take up the Sword of My Word

And pray always – constant unending prayer

          Once you have put on the Armor and received your instructions, you see Him pointing at another door.  Only this time you notice that with all the love in His heart and with tears pouring from His eyes, He says; “Go! Leave here, for you are My ambassador to a lost world (6:20).  Open your mouth; boldly reveal the truth of the Gospel.  Know that the enemy will do all to stop you, but go anyway and I will be with you always and forever (Matthew 28:20).”            You hesitate letting Him know that you would rather stay with Him; and that you do not wish to leave.  But out of obedience, and love, you agree to go.  He then walks with you to the door and opens it.  What you see next startles you and causes you to step back.  It is the same landscape and the same conditions that you were under when you were brought into this Temple.  It is dark, cold, filled with dangers, howling animals and evil of all kinds. Jesus noticing your reaction tells you not to fear, for “I do not give you the spirit of fear, but of love, power and a sound mind” (2nd Timothy 1:7).  You once again ask Him if it would be possible for you to stay a while longer, but with the voice of woe He says NO; you must go for now!

          As you reluctantly step out the door, He tells you that “you must return to Him often, but only to stay for a short while, for your true purpose and calling is not inside with Him – but outside helping those who are lost.”  He then watches as you go forth and He slowly closes the door behind you.  As the door closes you notice that there is an extremely bright white light shining all around you and looking for its source you discover that you are the source.  Your mind then flashes back to the day you stood in this same darkness, frightened and alone, not knowing where to find safety; when suddenly a man appeared, clothed in white raiment glowing with a bright light.  He instructed you to follow him and he brought you to this very temple.  It is at this point that all of what has happened, all you have seen, all you have learned and experienced comes into focus and you now truly understand what your true purpose in Christ is; and His last command rings over and over, ever so clear in your mind “Go! Fight the good fight for you are My ambassador” (6:20).  “Open your mouth; boldly reveal the truth of the Gospel.  Know that the enemy will do all to stop you, but go anyway and I will be with you always and forever (Matthew 28:20). 


The pattern for this teaching was taken from “What the Bible is all About” by Henrietta C. Mears; Regal Press; Ventura California; 1963 
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