Posted by: tscottmorton | June 18, 2011

Evidence

Evidence

By the Cross, the power and the penalty of the law was broken. Discipline is a penalty of the law. Discipline was replaced with repentance followed by unmerited forgiveness. Discipline exacts a price but repentance is free. Now the only thing that remains is an imperfect people made perfect in relationship and love that results in (amongst many other beauties) this wonderful flow of repentance. Perfect love, the very act of Christ’s sacrifice casts out all fear. In this atmosphere, God moves in power. In His power, evidences of Him begin to manifest. Evidence becomes our testimony that overcomes the world.

The only validation of spiritual truth is the evidence of the Kingdom of God manifesting on earth. Where there are no evidences, there error resides.

God is not a God to withhold his loving manifesting Presence from those who earnestly seek him. He is a God to withhold his Presence from those who do not for whatever reason.

When we witness the manifestation of the Holy Spirit, we then can say that we have both the experience of Him and the evidence of the result. The result of the manifestation becomes our word of testimony. A testimony is far more than just a word based in what I have chosen. This is why today’s testimony is so week in today’s world.

The substance of any testimony is the word of truth backed up by evidence. Post Christ’s Cross, the demonstration of the power of the Spirit is the evidence that follows ones faith and which builds faith up. When evidences happen, now I have substance to my testimony.

1Co 2:1-5 When I came to you, brothers, I did not come with eloquence or superior wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God. For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. I came to you in weakness and fear, and with much trembling. My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, so that your faith might not rest on men’s wisdom, but on God’s power.

Jn 14:11 Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the miracles themselves.

The word alone is not always enough, though some have believed by hearing the word alone. However, evidence plus the word leads to the door called faith for many. John 14:11 would suggest this. Paul is talking about this very issue in 1 Co 2:5 above. In fact, it appears that he gives more attention to the demonstration of the Spirit’s power over the persuasive arguments based upon man’s word alone. Evidence manifests when the supernatural of God occurs. People see the Kingdom of God manifesting on earth as it is in heaven and they believe. Evidence is both proof of God moving in the church, and a tool to gain the lost. It is the very power of Christ’s cross at work on earth as it is in heaven.

Faith without seeing is the better way to believe God. Evidence alone is not always enough. Yet for some, like Peter who needed to see Jesus nailed scared wrists, evidence was enough to spark the flame of faith.

However many today, such as the Pharisees who witnessed the power of God through Jesus but were without faith, still do not receive the truth Whom the experience points to even if the proof is right before them.

Regardless, is it not the better way to minister with the word and the evidence? Evidences always follow real faith, whether evidences are sought after or not. Therefore:

Faith without the experience is dead.

Faith coupled with evidence validates my faith. Evidences solidify my faith and make me want to go in even deeper. Evidences make me hungry for more of God; they increase my hope for the joy of heaven. They make me hungry for more of Jesus in me and around me. Evidences draw me farther and farther away from lifeless ways of talk.

Faith leads to the experiences. When I have a faith for certain Kingdom truths, most certainly I will see them. And so experiences follow faith. This is why faith without experience is dead.

Every Christian walking in faith should consistently be experiencing the supernatural manifestation of the Kingdom of God on earth as it is in heaven. These experiences then become our substantive word of testimony.

If Jesus had not shown Thomas his scars, Thomas might not have been saved.

John 20: 25-29 So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord!” But he (Thomas) said to them, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.” A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.” Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God!” Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”

How can anyone argue that one has a solid faith that is not experiencing everything that Jesus did while on earth? Jesus healed the sick, cast out demons and raised the dead. He then said we would be doing even greater things than these. Now a sick person made well in my sight is a great experience indeed!

How can anyone argue that the manifestation of the Holy Spirit is only a ministry for some, when the Lord, through the apostles, told us all to wait for the Helper in Acts chapter 1 (Reference also John 14-16)?

John 14:12 Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.

God did not say that he gave some to be evangelists, pastors, teachers, prophets, apostles, and Spirit filled ministers. No, Jesus made clear in John 14-17 that all must be filled and flowing in the Holy Spirit. Every ministry requires the ongoing manifesting Presence of God. It’s part of what Christ died to gain. It’s why the apostles could not yet understand the deeper things of God. But when the Holy Spirit was poured out on that day, then they understood.

How can we ever reap the reward for Christ’s suffering, the very harvest of souls, lest we be flowing in manifest supernatural power, the very evidence of our faith?

Ac 1:4-8 On one occasion, while he was eating with them, he gave them this command: “Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.” So when they met together, they asked him, “Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?” He said to them: “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.

Notice that the prerequisite to reaping the harvest is to first receive the power of the Holy Spirit. Evidences occur not by the workings of man, but by the working of the Holy Spirit. The evidences God speaks of are supernatural evidences, not carnal… not cranial.

What does “power” look like? The answer is cancers healed, legs grown back, eyes opened, aids healed, lust and addictions fleeing, life from the dead, and thousands coming to Jesus in but an hours time… evidences, proof, and word of our testimony!

Every experience of God that is supernatural is a manifestation of the Holy Spirit. God is on his throne and Jesus is seated by his right side. Now the only part of God that manifests here on earth, post the Cross, is the person of the Holy Spirit. If we reject the Holy Spirit, we reject the Father’s will and the Son’s word. For God wills a thing, Jesus speaks the thing, but the Holy Spirit makes it happen.

God is not a God that he would withhold His Holy Spirit from those who have faith for his works. The Holy Spirit is not a ministry for a few but a principle of effectiveness for us all.

To reject or to limit the Holy Spirit’s actions on earth is to reject God and his desires for his harvest. This is a grievous sin, and which borders on blasphemy.

Webster’s defines blasphemy as the act of insulting or showing contempt or lack of reverence for God. Secondarily it defines blasphemy as irreverence towards something considered sacred or inviolable.

When we place our limited beliefs ahead of God, the very theologies that deny or limit the Holy Spirit’s purpose, do we not exalt our thinking above his thinking; ourselves above him? When we reject what God wants to do in our meetings or for the lost, is that not an act of insult to God? When the Lord desires to pour out his intimate love into the church, yet is stiff armed by a leadership who chooses to go a different way, is this not an irreverence to the Holy Spirit?

When someone has to preach a sermon when there are people in the “audience” on deaths door just waiting to be released from their torment, is this not placing the mind of man before the mind of Christ? And who is the deliverer of the mind of Christ into our churches today but the Holy Spirit of God?

These are very heavy words of warning. What does the word of God say to those who blaspheme the Holy Spirit:

Mt 12:31-32 And so I tell you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven. Anyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but anyone who speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come.

There is mercy that is new every morning for those who truly desire to be aligned with the Father. We are all in error from time to time, and which is why we need each other for exhortation, correction and an occasional rebuke. Scripture is clear on the value of correction. No man is perfect in knowledge, and we need the whole Body to get the whole picture. But we need the Holy Spirit to gain revelation, to give and receive correction and gain right direction.

If my heart is right, I will receive truth, humble myself and repent for error. This is the way of the church, and a right order that God has set in place through the Holy Spirit and the apostles. There is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ.

But even the apostles knew that such a right order was fully dependant upon the manifestation of the Holy Spirit.

Isa 30:1-2a “Woe to the obstinate children, “declares the LORD, “to those who carry out plans that are not mine, forming an alliance, but not by my Spirit, heaping sin upon sin; who go down to Egypt without consulting me…

Wrong order is correction from the mind of man. Right order is correction from the mind of Christ. The mind of man limits and silences, or speaks loudly and wounds… it is based in the law which was done away with at the cross! Right order is hearing then releasing liberty to all.

In such a place even children give a word, even newly saved work miracles, even the one in sin yesterday can raise the dead tomorrow. In such places of right order, those in error receive the rebuke easily. For when the Spirit of the Lord brings conviction, we fall to our knees and repent!

Pr 13:18 He who ignores discipline comes to poverty and shame, but whoever heeds correction is honored.

Pr 15:12 A mocker resents correction; he will not consult the wise.

However, dependence upon each other outside of first depending on the Spirit is the wrong way. Certainly, we encourage, we help and we lift up. But the Father, through his Son and by the Holy Spirit is our only means of truth. If we have a correction, it must be of the Spirit, or it does nothing but establish a new bondage.

Jn 16:13 But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.

All truth… Therefore there is no truth that is any truth that is not first revealed.

If I have anything at all to do in the church or in the streets, everything that I do must hinge upon my utter dependence upon the manifestation of the Kingdom of God on earth as it is in heaven. Anything less cheapens that which Christ died for.

Unless everything I do find its basis in revelation knowledge and manifest power, I am in error. I operate in less than what God wants for me and for the harvest. In such a way I have become part of the church defined as follows:

2Ti 3:5 …having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them.

If you read the full context of this scripture, “having a form of godliness but denying its power” is lumped in with what seems to be a complete list of significant worldly sins such as slander, lust, hatred and the like. It even sounds as if the Lord is identifying the spiritless church as the root of such error. But when the Spirit falls, the first thing restored into the church is right order… namely His order! Do we not then see how grievous is the error of rejection of the manifest power of God in the church?

If where you are has a form of Godliness but denies its power by use of any lesser argument, as Paul tells Timothy, have nothing to do with them. Unless you have a clear word from the Lord directly or through your covering to stay and let your light shine in such a place, you should move on.

Many people seek peace at the expense of truth. That is “feel good” church. That is not the intent of church, though well being is a goal. Seeking what our ears want to hear over what God knows, like for any reason we place our minds ahead of the Spirit, causes the Spirit to depart.

2 Tim 4: 2-3 Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage – with great patience and careful instruction. For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.

Those that believe Kingdom truth divide from those that will not believe His truth. No one seeks division, but Christ and the power of His cross are a stumbling block to those who are set in lesser ways. What profits a man who seeks peace at the expense of the fullness of His Presence and power?

Mt 10:32-37 “Whoever acknowledges me before men, I will also acknowledge him before my Father in heaven. But whoever disowns me before men, I will disown him before my Father in heaven. “Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to turn “‘a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law— a man’s enemies will be the members of his own household.’ “Anyone who loves his father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves his son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me…

To disown Christ, as defined in the above scripture is to accept any leavened argument that is a lesser definition of Him. That is to say that whatever argument we accept that reduces what Christ did or why He did it, or what He released in the doing is a lesser leavened argument. It is a cheapening of the cross.

Jesus died for our salvation and for those on earth that love him to reap a harvest in power, Christ and the power of his cross!

Therefore, faith without experience is dead… because a lesser argument has been accepted. But where truth resides in power, evidences happen.

As for the church today, the Lord gives a strong warning, and it comes by way of the visionary Zerubbabel. Consider carefully these words from Zechariah:

Zec 3:8-10 “‘Listen, O high priest Joshua and your associates seated before you, who are men symbolic of things to come: I am going to bring my servant, the Branch. See, the stone I have set in front of Joshua! There are seven eyes on that one stone, and I will engrave an inscription on it,’ says the LORD Almighty, ‘and I will remove the sin of this land in a single day. “‘In that day each of you will invite his neighbor to sit under his vine and fig tree,’ declares the LORD Almighty.”

Zec 4:1-6 Then the angel who talked with me returned and wakened me, as a man is wakened from his sleep. He asked me, “What do you see?” I answered, “I see a solid gold lampstand with a bowl at the top and seven lights on it, with seven channels to the lights. Also there are two olive trees by it, one on the right of the bowl and the other on its left.” I asked the angel who talked with me, “What are these, my lord?” He answered, “Do you not know what these are?” “No, my lord,” I replied. So he said to me, “This is the word of the LORD to Zerubbabel: ‘Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the LORD Almighty.

These Zechariah verses make clear the symbolic nature of the visions therein contained, and the ever great need for the power of revelation to make it all known. All of which is pointing to the person of Jesus and prophesying the very foundation and future of the church to come. Who can understand such as this without the Holy Spirit to clarify it. By the mind of people we get a thousand answers to this verse. But by the Mind of Christ, we gain the specific answer Father wants us to know for us today!

Zerubabel’s vision of the gold lampstand was a vision of the church that was to come, today’s church, the seven churches, or seven lights, or seven eyes of God that see the whole earth. The primary response God had to his vision were these words, “Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the LORD Almighty.

The testimony of Christ’s activities, John 14-16 and Acts 1-5 make clear these unmistakable principles by which the church is to be founded. In grave error are those churches that are founded on anything less.

Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom! Therefore, where the Spirit of the Lord is not, there is bondage.

Where the Spirit of the Lord is, we do ten times more with ten times less ten times easier. AND we get singularity of truth and singularity of purpose.

Where the Spirit of the Lord is, it is about God and not of any person or church or program. Where the Spirit of the Lord is, the radical light of truth overcomes the comfort of dark and hidden falsities. Where the Spirit of the Lord is, the harvest is short at hand, and by a nameless faceless generation of people that do not fear persecution and who go forth as in Nahum 2.

Na 2:3-6 The shields of his soldiers are red; the warriors are clad in scarlet. The metal on the chariots flashes on the day they are made ready; the spears of pine are brandished. The chariots storm through the streets, rushing back and forth through the squares. They look like flaming torches; they dart about like lightning. He summons his picked troops, yet they stumble on their way. They dash to the city wall; the protective shield is put in place. The river gates are thrown open and the palace collapses.

And so, the only validator of spiritual truth is the evidence of the Kingdom of God manifesting on earth. Where there are no evidences, there error resides.

Flee such places of error. Have nothing to do with them unless the Lord clearly tells you otherwise. Do not do so in anger, though they might be angry with you. Do not do so in judgment, though they might judge you. Persecution is possible from those who do not or will not understand. In all things though, love and forgive.

I say this because there are many groups (many “home churches”) who have been formed by those who have been wounded by the religious church, or worse, wounded because they did not hear what they wanted to hear, nor receive the correction that was necessary… Likewise have nothing to do with such as these.

But whatever you do, do not stay in places of willful dryness. To do so is like a tree planted in the desert that bears no fruit. It’s like putting on a yoke of chains. In time, it takes on the nature of its surroundings. In time, it dies in lifelessness. No water, no River, no fruit.

Jesus did nothing but what the Father willed. The Holy Spirit did/does nothing but what Jesus speaks. Therefore we should do nothing but what the Holy Spirit brings. And remember, as goes the leader, so goes the church.

We have a choice and a responsibility between ourselves and no one else but the Father as to where we plant our roots. He alone knows the hunger and need of our hearts. Therefore plant your roots by the River of God. If your not already there, find a place that seeks the Face of God in great worship. Find a place who clearly believes in the manifestations of the Holy Spirit of God. Do not fear that which is unseen. Overcome the arguments of the mind that is in enmity with God. The mind must be yoked to the mind of Christ by the Holy Spirit. Find a place where that is the focus. Plant your roots there.

Persevere! Gain and then put on the manifest Presence of love and joy! Then go ahead and reap your harvest in power.

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