A Call To The Remnant

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Archive for February 21st, 2020

Will you bow down to the gods of this world?

Posted by appolus on February 21, 2020

The photograph that you see is of a shipyard worker who refused to give the Nazi salute. Never underestimate the courage that it took for this man to refuse to salute evil. There was a devilishly simple yet brilliant strategy that compelled all of German society to give each other the Nazi salute. Fail once to return the salute would arouse suspicion, fail a second time and you would more than likely have the Gestapo knocking at your door and looking into your background. And so the Nazi salute had become a kind of social litmus test to see if you were loyal to the state. I want you to ask yourself this question. If you, as a born again Christian, were alive in Germany during the war, would you give the salute or not? Would you have the courage of your convictions? Would you simply rationalize it away with thoughts like ” well I know it does not really mean anything so why cause a stir?” Wrong, it does mean something. It is symbolic and it was an issue of conformity. This is how evil rises. The inability to stand apart from the crowd. Do not be fooled, we are already in the midst of a society that is compelling us to conform. Will you conform, will you bow to the gods of this world?

At a church I attended for about ten years, early on the Holy Spirit convicted me not to stand and applaud for any man. God alone deserved me standing to my feet and He alone deserved my applause. You may not agree with my conviction, but it was just that, my conviction. It never got easy. Every single time I was aware that I was the only one seated in a room full of people standing and applauding, sometimes wildly. I felt the eyes of those around me on me. I could almost read the thoughts. “Who does he think he is?” “Look, he is too good to stand.” I could actually “feel,” the pressure to conform. My own nature working against my spirit along with the spirit of man. We identify this in teenagers and call it peer pressure. We know that it is powerful. This thing called peer pressure never leaves us. There is something in us a men and women that wants to fit in, to be popular or at the very least, not to be hated. No one really wants to stand out in a hostile crowd. Yet is that not exactly what we are called to as born again Christians?

In 250 AD the Roman emperor Decius issued an edict to the Roman world. The edict demanded upon pain of death that everyone in the Roman empire must perform a sacrifice to the Roman Gods and call for the well being of the emperor. Typically burning incense would be good enough but here is the kicker, it had to be performed before a Roman magistrate who would then issue a signed certificate. You might think this was a disaster for the Christian community and would totally decimate it. Yet, in Carthage, so many “Christians,” showed up on the particular day to perform the sacrifice that it had to be extended for two days. This caused a serious rift in the Christian community that never healed. Those who sold out to the state were seen by the minority or remnant as traitors who had committed monstrous tyranny by denying the Lord Jesus while acknowledging the gods of the Roman world. This would not be the last time events of this magnitude occurred and the sifting would continue.

I would like to put it to you that we are seeing similar events taking place now which will only increase in intensity. Litmus tests and the gods of this world are, as we speak, demanding that those who hold to the name of Jesus bow down to them. Denominations of varying sizes are falling and many are falling over themselves, just as in Carthage, to join in and be identified with the world so as to have their favor and avoid any of the consequences of standing up to they tyranny of conformity. Yet, in every village and in every town and the great cities of the world wherever the name of Jesus is named, there will always be a witness that refuses to be identified with the world, who refuses to give the salute, to bow the knee, to burn incense to the gods of this world. Daniel threw open his window and prayed openly in defiance of the world and its edicts as did the Hebrew children. What say you saint? Will you refuse to stand, will you refuse to bow down to the gods of this world? It may cost you everything in this world but you will certainly gain the next.

Posted in Christian, christian living, Christianity, church of scotland, end times, Jesus, pentecostal, revival, the crucified life, the deeper life, the persectuted church, the remnant, the state of the church, theology, Uncategorized | 4 Comments »

Enter in to the joy of the Lord

Posted by appolus on February 21, 2020

Mat 25:21 His lord said to him, Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful over a few things; I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.

The seasons of God are good. One of those seasons is a time for weeping and mourning. Yet, if that is all that we have, if we live forever in a perpetual winter of weeping and mourning then nothing will ever grow. We will not grow and neither will our effectiveness for His kingdom. Neither will we grow in the knowledge of God. There is a time to rent our clothes and throw dust on our heads, yet if this one season becomes the whole then we render ourselves weak and ineffectual. Our real strength comes in the Joy of the Lord. If we cannot put on a garment of praise for a spirit of heaviness then we will not be able stand in the evil day. We will be overcome by trial and tribulation and persecution.

When the Israelites were captured and taken from Jerusalem, their captors sat them down by the river of Babylon and taunted them. They said to them, “let’s hear your songs of Zion, let us hear your songs of victory now.” And the Israelites who were famous for their songs of praise to God, hung their harps on the willow tree, unable to sing, overcome in spirit in their defeat. The enemy had not only robbed them of their earthly freedom, they had robbed them of their joy, their essential core. They no longer had a song in their heart or on their lips. The willow tree upon which they hung their harps represented weeping. Their praise was silenced and only their weeping could now be heard.

Can I ask you something? Have you hung your harp on the willow tree? Have you suffered a loss or a defeat that has robbed you of your song? Do you find it impossible to praise the Living God? Has your mourning went on too long? When our mourning and weeping goes beyond what is natural we will find ourselves in trouble. Now, our hearts will be filled with something. If we have lost out song or our joy then our heart will be filled with some level of anger or bitterness or cynicism, perhaps all three.

The Apostle Paul and Silas shows us the way when we see them praising God in the midnight hour. They had been whipped and scourged and found themselves in stocks in the lower reaches of the dungeon. When they seemingly have nothing to praise God for they begins to sing His praises. And we see something very spectacular happen. The whole building shakes as the power of God falls upon that prison. The doors are supernaturally opened. What God done for Paul and Silas he can do for you. Will you praise Him today? Despite your circumstances will you praise Him today? If you do, you will see the doors of darkness open before you and you will be able to step out into His marvelous light.

You see brothers and sisters, we have been called not only to be a witness to the world but we also testify against principalities and powers. In the opening chapter of Job we see God boasting about His faithful servant, and right away the accuser of the brethren fires back that Job is only faithful because God has blessed him and protects him. The accuser tells God that if the circumstances were different Job would curse Him to His face. Right there brothers and sisters, can you see it? Can you see why it is so important to praise the Lord our God even in the depths of out trials and difficulties?

When we do that we shake the universe for we not only prove by our actions that no matter what, our God is worthy to be praised and we will praise Him. We also prove, surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses, that the enemy of our soul is a liar and that our love for God is unconditional. There is something really big playing out in your lives brothers and sisters even if you cannot see it or you think your life is insignificant, it is not. Join the hosts of heaven as a witness against the enemy this day and praise the Lord your God.

Posted in Christian, christian living, Christianity, church of scotland, Daily devotional, Devotions, end times, Jesus, pentecostal, revival, the crucified life, the deeper life, the remnant, the state of the church, theology, Uncategorized | 2 Comments »