God's Promises to the Hidden Man
XIV. A Personal Challenge
I hope that I have now been able to clearly show by this letter that purified identity goes beyond losing our old identities and senses of purpose. It goes beyond finding our sole identity in Christ through communion with God. Purified identity expands to find identity in Christ through restored relationship to creation. It does so by laying hold of the promises, coming to God over them with zeal, accepting the old man's failure and death over them until the time appointed where the new man can receive them.
This is the reconciliation between earth and heaven, stoicism and hedonism, holiness and faith which philosophers and theologians have wrestled with. This is the fulfilling of Jesus' prayer to bring heaven to earth. It is true kingdom teaching. It is the restoration of complete fellowship between God, man, and creation as it was in Eden.
If I have been able to make this clear to you, then you should be able to see yourself somewhere in the picture and find direction for where you ought to be going next. Let's start at the bottom:
Some of you have been born again, but you haven't come to recognize your true identity in Christ. Therefore you've hardly begun to lose your old sense of identity. Some of you are still shackled to inherited and acquired identities—family and job ties that keep you from Christ.
Others of you have begun losing old identities and pressing into pure identity in Christ alone through personal communion with God. You've seen the evil side of human desire in you. But you've stopped short in your holiness. Because of fear of failure and/or your overwhelming awareness of the evil side of natural life, you've not come to see God's further call to you through creationary promises.
You've not come to see your supernatural call from Him—a call that says "yes" to your desires, not just "no." You've not answered this call to perfected identity through tangling with creation. You're too content in your "holiness" and you're drying up on the inside. You're not as holy as you may think you are.
Still others of you have come to see your supernatural calling by faith. You've latched onto the vision for your life. You see it in the spirit. But the truth is you haven't come to lose your old identities first, and you too are afraid of failure. You also don't have a very good knowledge of God through personal communion. You don't spend time just getting to know Him for who He is. Therefore your vision for yourself carries a heavy taint of idolatry. Through your lack of separation from old identity, you're using your glorious vision to reinforce your old identities and nature. You need deliverance from this. You're not reigning as much as you may think you are.
Finally, others of you have been pressing "full steam ahead" into purified identity, laying zealous hold of God's promises. You have both denied your old identities yet affirmed God's vision for your life through the fulfillment of your deepest desires. But the weight of repeated failure is getting to you! You've lost more than you ever dreamed you'd have to lose in hope of finding God's reward in life.
More than once you've been tempted to throw in the towel. Your sufferings have drained life of all its joy and meaning for you. Your original vision with its desires seems irrelevant now. You wonder why you bothered to sacrifice so much to see so little in return. You are the people I have written this letter for most.
I'm writing to encourage you in that single hope of the purity of your identity. You've lost everything, yes—but you still have your identity in Jesus—and it's purer than ever now. Hold onto that if there's nothing else of your vision left to hold onto. Your final meaning is found in Jesus even if you've been stripped of all else in waiting on Him.
His presence gives you meaning and purpose when creation has lost its meaning for you. Let failure work to your glory in this.
Meanwhile—Don't turn back in denial of your first vision! No matter how much you've lost, don't go back and doubt your vision! No matter how distant or irrelevant it may seem to you now, don't yield to the demands of the evidence!
Let as much be taken from you as must be taken, but don't you be the one that quits! Yield up everything, but deny nothing! Let God build on your past where you no longer can. But don't deny your past. Don't back-pedal. Don't question. Don't make excuses to explain to the doubts of others. Don't try to "start over" for yourself.
Evidences prove nothing—and if “evidences" are the only basis for accusing your faith over the past, don't listen. Just stay with God. And wait. You still have Jesus. You still have your identity in Him. Now just rest under the altar where you've been slain. Just rest... rest... Take no thought for all the years...
These are my challenges to all of you today wherever you find yourself. God has a plan to bring you to Himself through restored calling and companionship. My job is to help you find that plan, walk in it, and endure its attendant failures to the end without turning back ("the same shall be saved," i.e., fulfilled Mt. 24:13).
Challenging you by these letters is part of my own calling and restored companionship. That's why we have the peculiar relationship we do. You are part of my restored relationship out of the ashes of my lost ones. You are the beginnings of my restoration—-and the evidence that God is succeeding at reigning through me.
written from Pleasant Valley
Prince Edward Island, Canada
First Love Ministry
- a ministry of Anglemar Fellowship
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Page updated May 30, 2018