GOD’S POWER, NOT OURS

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QUOTE: J.N. Darby

 Walking with God:  “Oh! Cultivate intimacy with Him;
it keeps the conscience alive and the heart happy.  “Blessed are they that dwell in thy house.”
He whose heart is in the house, will prefer the rugged way which leads to it, to the easy
way that leads away from it.”  J.N.D. (Pilgrim Portions)

LIVING WATER

“Yet a little while am I with you.” “Ye shall seek me, and shall not find me.”
“Ye shall seek me, and, as I said unto the Jews, whither I go, ye cannot come.”

“Such therefore, is the present position of the people of God: they are where
Christ manifestly is not; and where He is, there they cannot come as yet.
It is painfully true, it is sorrowfully true, that this is their experience now.
They are not with Jesus, though the Lord in mercy makes it up to them;
by the earnest of it which He puts within them [2 Cor. 1:22], they have the
certainty that they shall be with Him. [John 14:3].

This is the desire of their souls; this constitutes their hope of glory, to be
in the presence of Christ; to see “him who loved them , and washed them
from their sins in his own blood;” to “see him as he is,” and “to be like him.”
This is what we are looking for, if we are believers. We have, it is true, while
here, another Comforter, a blessed Comforter; but His very teaching and
instruction leads us to desire more of Him, and more of the Father, and of Jesus;
and He sends forth our affections towards Jesus, and leads us to desire His
presence; just as there, with sensible objects, where we really love, we are
longing to be in the presence of the object; so, the indwelling of the Spirit,
who is love, draws out our affections towards Jesus, making us practically
and painfully conscious of the present truth of Christ’s words, “Whither I go
ye cannot come.”

Have you come to the sorrowful acknowledgment and perception of Christ’s
words? Are you conscious that you are in a distinct position from the
present system of things in this “city of confusion,” and that you are opposed
to it in affections, desires, and pursuits?….that your affections are carried away
to Him who has departed: Him whom the world rejected – Him whom the world
turned out, and left itself in the darkness which it loved? Are you conscious
that the night is far spent? ….that the day, the glorious day of His appearing
is at hand?

We, brethren, are not of the night, nor of darkness. But are we walking as
children of the light, and of the day? We know it is the night now, because the
“Sun of righteousness” is absent. His glory is hid, and His beams are seen
obscurely even by the keenest spiritual vision. But are our desires intensely,
turned towards the returning light? Are we waiting for it “more than they that
watch for the morning: I say, more than they that watch for the morning.”
[“My soul waiteth for the Lord more than they that watch for the morning:
I say, more than they that watch for the morning.”Psalm 130:6]

The question with our souls, brethren, is, whether there is this apprehension –
this spiritual apprehension, of what the Lord Jesus is to the soul, so as to be
sensible of our state at present, as living on an absent Lord? ‘While I am
in the world, I am the light of the world,’ said Christ. Christ, our light, is not
visible with us, but He is coming; the day-star may be hid till the day-dawn
appears, but then shall “the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his
wings.” [Malachi 4:2]

This is what the believer is hastening towards; he is longing for the day – the
night is not his joy – it is not his happiness. But he waits for the day-star – Him
who, though He has hitherto refrained from openly manifesting Himself to the
world, yet has revealed Himself in the hearts of His people, causing them to
delight, to glory in, and to love, an absent Lord, more than all sensible and present
objects, delights, and enjoyments. And in this position is the believer set at
present, waiting for the glory, of which he has the earnest in his soul: “He that
believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself.” [1 John 5:10]

We must look forward to that time when there shall be nothing to keep us from
our own home, and when our souls shall be filled with joy and gladness and
thanksgiving on getting up out of the wilderness. But we are not yet there; and
therefore the Lord has prepared, and wonderfully given, that which is to be the
very comfort and stay of our souls while in this wilderness: “He that believeth
on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.”
[John 7:38]
Now however sad it is that our Lord is absent from you, still, while you are here
resting on the smitten rock for support and comfort, your wants can always be
supplied. Christ can cause you to overflow with the spiritual apprehension of His
refreshing grace. He will make you so one with Himself, that the fountain, the
inexhaustible fountain which He contains, shall be so indwelling in you, as to
be ever flowing, every streaming, even in the wilderness; not keeping in, but
flowing out in joyful acknowledgments of spiritual refreshment. It was this
that Christ promised He would give after His departure: “This spake he of
the Spirit, which they that believe on Him should receive; for the Holy Spirit was
not yet given, because that Jesus was not yet glorified.” It is thus that Jesus
makes His people partakers of His fullness even here. It is true, they have not
all the joy; but when the wilderness shall be left behind, then will they enter
into all the joy of the Lord. In the meanwhile the Holy Spirit, who makes them
conscious that they are still not in the land of rest, fills them with all that can
compensate for its wants while here below, in causing by His indwelling, “rivers
of living water” to flow forth: this is the joy of the Holy Spirit.

“Because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your
hearts;” not to make, but because ye are sons already. Therefore, you should
enjoy present fellowship with the Father and the Son in glory, but the indwelling
of the Holy Spirit, whose powerful presence would lead the soul to the
enjoyment of the unseen realities of glory which He testifies within; leading
also, to the contemplation of the Person, work, and offices of the Lord Jesus,
as undertaken for our redemption –as “the brightness of the Father’s glory, and the
express image of his person,” which was given them after they had believed;
“Behold what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us,” to make known
these great things by the indwelling of the Spirit in the hearts of us believers, enabling
us to know Christ glorified; and, from His glory, sending down the Spirit of the Father
in our hearts in attestation of it –who reveals all the glory from which He came. He
comes as the gift of Christ from the Father, and gives us to know the fellowship and
consolation of the Father’s love, testifying our claim to this fellowship, in that we have
been made sons. And though we know not here the extent of the blessedness that
awaits us, yet we know that when Christ “shall appear, we shall be like him;” when we
shall obtain the glory that is reserved for us.”

What fills the soul of a Christian with bitterness is the practical experience that he is not
yet come up out of the wilderness–that he is not yet in the glory. But, to refresh and
comfort him, the Lord gives him within himself while here those ‘living waters’ as in the
wilderness of old; by virtue of their identity and oneness with Christ, who is the Rock…
rivers of blessedness flowing from his soul, as being united to the living fountain.
Could your hearts contain the thousandth part of that love which the Spirit could
impart, your gratitude would overflow exceedingly…O let us testify that we are in a
position of wondrous blessedness, even here, till that day comes when we shall know
even as also we are known; and when not only Christ, as the first fruits, shall enter
into His glory, but the ingathering of all the saints shall be accomplished, and Christ’s
glory and joy will then be full.” [“The Living Water”, J.N.Darby]

SETTING THE WORLD RIGHT…..J.N. Darby

“My business is to walk as a Christian, and show the character of Christ, not to set the world right; when Christ comes He will do that, for He will take it into His hand. If I could only set myself and other Christians right that would be the thing. The Christian should be the perfect presentation of the character of Christ in the world that has turned Him out. We are the living witnesses of what we are enjoying of the Christ they won’t have. The world is under judgment, but in grace God has not executed it; He is sending out His gospel.”

WALKING IN FELLOWSHIP

“I am the light of the world; he that followeth me shall not
walk in darkness but shall have the light of life.” John 8:12

“If we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another,
and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.”

“Walking in the light, as God is in the light, believers have communion with
each other. The world is selfish. The flesh, the passions, seek their own
gratification; but, if I walk in the light , self has no place there. I can enjoy
the light, and all I seek in it, with another, and there is no jealousy. If
another possess a carnal thing, I am deprived of it. In the light we have
fellow-possession of that which He gives us, and we enjoy it the more
by sharing it together. As much as one is in the light, so much will we have fellow-enjoyment
with another who is in it.

To walk in the light as God is in it, to have fellowship with one another, to be
cleansed from all sin by the blood; these are the three parts of Christian
position.

“Truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ.”
The effect is, we have the Father and the Son, and we have nothing more to seek.
I have the Father and the Son. I have a great deal to learn; but I am in the Father
and the Son, and I am in the truth. I do not want to seek it if I am in it. I have
the very eternal God in whom I dwell—I have come to the Father. When there is
a consciousness of this, oh, what comfort and what peace! It not only guards
us from evils without, but it gives spiritual rest within. If I am striving to get
something, I have no communion. If I want to get to the Father, when I am in His
presence already, I have no communion; and if I am not brought up there, I cannot
have the sense of what the conscience ought to be in God’s presence. The joy
is, that our fellowship is with the Father, and not in the hope of getting there.
“These things write we unto you, that your joy may be full.” There is where
God brings the saint if there is humbleness. If there is not humbleness, we shall slip.
When we lose the sense of God’s presence—the sense of it (because we are always
in His presence in truth) we are at the point to sin. When the Spirit is not grieved,
the soul is in the presence of God for joy, learning holiness, it is true, but in joy,
because occupied [with our Lord Jesus Christ] in communion instead of in detection.

“My peace I give unto you.” What was that peace? There was no wandering
affections—there could not be, and so there was full peace of heart with God.
Christ having been revealed to the soul, the world is cast out, and Christ is everything,
and there is perfect joy.

There are three things which characterize a Christian. First, “he is in the light as God is
in the light.” Second, “we have fellowship one with another.” We are there together,
and all have fellowship by the same Holy Spirit dwelling in all.
Third, we can be there because “the blood of Jesus Christ cleanseth us from all sin.”
The more thoroughly in the light, the more it is seen that there is no spot on us through
that blood. The effect of being in the light is, that we confess our sins. “In whose spirit
there is no guile.”

(J.N. Darby, Nine Lectures on the 1st Epistle of John)

A QUOTE……J.N. Darby

“Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves
likewise with the same mind [Phil. 2:5,8]: for he that hath suffered in the flesh
hath ceased [released from sin nature] from sin. That he no longer should
live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God.”
1 Peter 4:1-2

“Now it is the same thing with respect to ourselves in daily life. If I suffer in the flesh,
the will of the flesh is assuredly not in action; and the flesh, in that I suffer, is practically
dead-I have nothing more to do with sins. We then are freed from it, have done with it,
and are at rest. If we are content to suffer, the will does not act; sin is not there, as to
fact; for to suffer is not will, it is grace acting in accordance with the image and the mind
of Christ in the new man; and we are freed from the action of the old man. It does not act;
we rest from it; we have done with it, no longer to live, for the remainder of our life here
below in the flesh, according to the lusts of man, but according to the will of God, which
the new man follows.” 1Peter.4 JND

HIS GLORY…And Ours

“And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them;
that they may be one, even as we are one..”
“Father, I will that they also whom thou hast given
me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my
glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me
before the foundation of the world.” John 17:22,24

“I will that they whom thou hast given me be with
me where I am.” There we are not only like Christ
(conformed to the Son, bearing the image of the
heavenly man before the eyes of the world), but
with Him where He is. Jesus desires that we should
see His glory. For He speaks here of given glory.
It is this which is so precious to us, because He has
acquired it by His sufferings for us, and yet it is what
was perfectly due to Him—the just reward for having,
in them [his sufferings], perfectly glorified the Father.

He had declared unto them [the disciples] the Father’s
name, and would declare it, even when He had gone up
on high, in order that the love wherewith the Father
had loved Him might be in them (that their hearts might
possess it in this world—what grace!) and Jesus Himself
in them, the communicator of that love…

For it is in the Son who declares it to us, that we know
the name of the Father whom He reveals to us. That
is, He would have us enjoy now that relationship in love
in which we shall see Him in heaven. The world will know
we have been loved as Jesus when we appear in the same
glory with Him; but our part is to know it now, Christ
being in us.” (J.N.Darby, Synopsis, Vol.3, pg. 518-520).

“Being found in fashion as a man, He humbled Himself,
and became obedient unto death, even the death of the
cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted Him and
given Him a name which is above every name.” Phil.2:8-9.

The Son of God came to die for our sins and when He
died as our substitute He took upon Himself all which
we deserved as guilty sinners—Then God, because He did
this work, righteously rewarded Him, because He and He
alone deserves a reward. This reward consists in glory.
Then our loving Lord gives the glory He deserves and He
received to all those who belong to Him. He makes His
own sharers of His acquired glory.

It is not difficult to find the acquired glory of our Lord in
The New Testament. It is sevenfold:

1) He received in resurrection the glory of Sonship, inasmuch
as He is the First begotten from among the dead. We share this
Sonship with Him and are sons of God in Him.
2) Then God made Him the heir of all things (Heb.1:2). [God]
made Him heir of all things as the head of the new creation.
(2 Cor. 5:17). And we are heirs of God and fellow-heirs of
Christ. (Rom.8:17).
3) God gave Him a glorious place for a reward. He seated Him
at His own right hand. The man in Glory is as near to God
and as dear to God as any Being can be. He holds a place
higher than the angels. In Him we are seated in the
heavenly places of Christ Jesus. (Eph.2:6).
4) He received as His reward a glorious name, “the name
which is above every other name.” And it is written
“I will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name
written which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it,”
the promise to the overcomer (Rev. 2:17). “And I will write
upon him My new name” (Rev. 3:12). “And they shall see
His face, and His name shall be in their foreheads” (Rev.22:4).
5) He received the glory of Priesthood, being constituted a priest
after the order of Mechisedec. And we are priests with Him.
(1 Peter 2:5,9).
6) He is made King of kings and God will give Him the promised
kingdom. The throne over all the earth is His and the nations
will yet be His inheritance. His own are to reign and rule with
Him.
7) Finally He received the glory of Judgeship. All judgment is
committed to Him. This also His own will share with Him,
for it is written “Do ye not know that the Saints shall judge the
world? Know ye not that we shall judge angels?” (1 Cor. 6:1,3).

Such are His acquired glories and our participation in them. The
consummation of all is not now but in that coming day of glory,
“when He is manifested we shall be manifested with Him in glory.”
It is the day in which He will come “in His own glory, and in His
Father’s, and of the holy angels” (Luke 9:26b). His own will be with
Him in that glory; they shine in His glory. “He cometh to be
glorified in His saints, and to be admired in all them that believed”
(2 Thess.1:10). Thus shall we be perfected in one, and the world
will then not be called upon to believe that the Father sent His Son,
but the world will know. Faith will be changed into sight. There
will be a glorious public display, when the Son brings many sons
to His glory. “Father I will that they also, whom Thou hast given Me,
be with Me where I am; that they may behold My glory, for Thou
lovedst Me before the foundation of the world.” John 17: 24
(The Gospel of John, pg.332-334, Arno C. Gaebelein)