Monday, October 3, 2011

Abiding in Christ - At This Moment - Day 15

Behold, now is the accepted time, behold now is the day of salvation. ~2 Corinthians 6:2

In order to keep abiding in Christ, moment by moment, day by day, we need to learn to exercise our spiritual muscles.  I remember reading years ago that it is important to "practice the Presence of God".  In other words, when you have a free moment in your busy day, think of Jesus.  Say to yourself, "Now, at this moment, I do abide in Jesus."

Abiding in Jesus is not based on feelings, nor on your growth, nor on your own strength.  It is simply a question of whether or not your will at the present moment desires and agrees to recognize the truth:  Your position is in Christ.

Pray.  "Father, I am in Christ!  I abide in Him.  Thank You!

Pause.  In the midst of your busyness, say, "I am still in Christ!"

Repent.  When overtaken by sin, acknowledge:  "Father, I have sinned, and I come to you.  I blush to say it, but I am in Christ. The sin is evidence that I must flee to You.  Thank You for paying the penalty.  Now keep me in You.

When David first became King over Judah, he was not yet king over all Israel, even though it had been promised by God.  The other tribes were still following Saul's son.  It took time for the Lord to work in the hearts of the men of Israel.  Read the story in 2 Samuel 3.

And Abner conferred with the elders of Israel, saying, “For some time past you have been seeking David as king over you. Now then bring it about, for the LORD has promised David, saying, ‘By the hand of my servant David I will save my people Israel from the hand of the Philistines, and from the hand of all their enemies.’”
(2 Samuel 3:17-18 ESV)
This story is a beautiful type of the promise by which the soul is NOW invited to trust Jesus for victory over every enemy, and to trust Him for a life of undisturbed fellowship.

The divided kingdom.  Just as Judah was faithful to the king God had chosen, and Israel was still clinging to the king of its own choosing, the inner chamber of your heart abides in Christ, yet the surrounding territory, the everyday life, is still ruled by self-will.

The longing desire for a better state.  The people of Israel were seeking a better king, the king of God's choosing, David.  Abner appeals to their knowledge of God's will that David must rule over all.  The believer, when first brought to Jesus, desires Him to be Lord over all, but unbelief and self-will set in.  So he longs for Jesus to reign, but struggles with his sin nature.

God's promise.  Abner reminds the people that the Lord had spoken, and that David would be king.  As David had conquered the Philistines, he would conquer the enemies further off.  In the same way, the soul is now invited to trust Jesus for victory over EVERY ENEMY, and a life of undisturbed fellowship with Him.

as he spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets from of old,
that we should be saved from our enemies
and from the hand of all who hate us;
to show the mercy promised to our fathers
and to remember his holy covenant,
the oath that he swore to our father Abraham, to grant us
that we, being delivered from the hand of our enemies,
might serve him without fear,
in holiness and righteousness before him all our days.
                                                                      (Luke 1:70-75 ESV)

 Picture David reigning over the entire land, leading a united and obedient people on from victory to victory.

Now remember the promise - this is what Jesus does for us, as soon as we exercise our faith in God's promise and surrender all to Him, and abide in Him NOW.

Whatever the present moment may hold, however unprepared the message finds you, however sad the divided and hopeless state of your life may be, do come and surrender - this very moment!~ p. 96, Abiding in Christ by Andrew Murray

Just as it took time for David the anointed king to rule over the whole land and subdue the enemies of Israel, it will take time for the Lord to conquer all of your enemies, and to train all of your powers for His service.  It is the work of a lifetime, and God will do it!

But your work is the work of a moment.  This moment!  Do it now!

Surrender all to Jesus.  Live only in Him.

Do it now!

Surrender this very moment to abide wholly, only, always in Jesus.

Do it now!

Your whispered, "Jesus, I abide in You" meets with an immediate and hearty response from Him.  He takes hold of His children and draws us close to Himself.

Do it now!

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