Sluggard vs. Saint

((From, My Utmost for His Highest))

Let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works; not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together.  Hebrews 10:24-25

The note struck in Hebrews 10 is that of provoking one another and of keeping together – both of which require initiative, the initiative of Christ-realization, not of self-realization.  … We want to use prayer and Bible reading for the purpose of retirement.  We utilize God for the sake of getting peace and joy, that is, we do not want to realize Jesus Christ, but only our enjoyment of Him.  This is the first step in the wrong direction.  All these things are effects and we try to make them causes.

“I think it meet,” said Peter, “…to stir you up by putting you in remembrance.”  It is a most disturbing thing to be smitten in the ribs by some provoker of God, by someone who is full of spiritual activity.  Active work and spiritual activity are not the same thing.  Active work may be the counterfeit of spiritual activity.  The danger… is that we do not wish to be stirred up,all we want to hear about is spiritual retirement.  Jesus Christ never encourages the idea…

The initiative of the saint is not towards self-realization, but towards knowing Jesus Christ.  The spiritual saint… sees everything he is dumped down in as the means of securing knowledge of Jesus Christ.  There is a reckless abandonment about him.

The aim of the spiritual saint is “that I may know Him”.  Do I know Him where I am today?  If not, I am failing Him.  I am here not to realize myself, but to know Jesus.  In Christian work the initiative too often is ther realization that something has to be done and I must do it.  That is never the attitude of the spiritual saint; his aim is to secure the realizion of Jesus Christ in every set of circumstances he is in.

aNNa’S NoTe:  I found this fascinating.  There are two kinds of christians – those who are obedience and seeing the world from God’s viewpoint, and those who THINK they are in obedience, but they are looking at the world from their own viewpoint.  Both are active – but the difference is the focus.  For example, how many sites do you read where the people say things like “I’m trying to be…” or “I’m trying to do better at”… with some scripture reference at the end of it?  Note the first word… the “I” at the start.  It’s what Oswald Chambers calls ‘self-realization’ – it’s about YOU becoming what YOU think YOU need to be, even if it is based on the NT letters.  And did you notice that the only thing said by Chambers about these people is in regard to the focus?  That wrong focus is like a dead end.

On the other hand, SO MUCH MORE is said about the characteristics of a Spiritual saint!  The Bible says theyprovoke others to love (NOT luvvv, which is a variant of self-realization) and good works.  Peter says they stir people up… smite people in the ribs.  Chambers says there’s a reckless abandonment about them, and a Christ-focus that centers all that they are and experience around Him.  I so sincerely hope that I reflect the characteristics of the saint. 

Because I see the opposite in the Pharisee – christians around me.  They are ‘meek’ (timid) and ‘mild’ (lukewarm) and ‘peaceful’ (unmoved by the sin around them)… they are very interested in keeping their spiritual life in ship-shape and not doing anything about others so as not to offend people… so much so that that process – that self-focus destroys their link to Christ.  What a sad, sad thing! 

May Christ be the focus here.  May you be provoked here to live that way, too
And may I smite your ribs regularly!  ((wink!))

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