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Saturday, January 23, 2016

The Cross, the Church, and the Kingdom # 51

The Triumph of Righteousness (continued)

The Kingdom Established Within By the Tests of Faith

Why is He treating us as He does? Why does He lead us through the experiences that we go through? Do you ever have the slightest sense that the Lord has left you? In spite of what we have said about Christ bearing all for us, do we not from time to time feel the Lord far away? Why? Oh, we have puzzled over that! He has said, "Lo, I am with you all the days, even unto the consummation of the age" (Matthew 28:20); "I will in no wise fail thee, neither will I in any wise forsake thee" (Hebrews 1:3:5). "Then where art Thou, Lord today? Thou dost seem to be a thousand miles away today, I have no sense of Thy presence." Why? Just this: God's fact is that He is not far away. What about your faith in God's fact? Are you living on facts or feelings? by faith or by sight? - for everything has to be established by faith. Faith must rise up and say, 'Lord, Thou dost seem to be a thousand miles away today, but Thou art not, Thou art here, according to Thy promise. I repudiate the devil's suggestion that Thou hast left me, and that I have grieved the Holy Spirit and Thou hast forsaken me; I repudiate it on the ground of all that Thou hast done to bridge that gap by the Cross.' When faith thus asserts its position things are restored, the trouble is cleared up.

And as it is with that matter, so it is with all others. We are in the school, where we are to learn that we are not just living on the Bible in an objective way, and that there is a sense in which the Bible merely as a book cannot help us or do us any good. Somehow or other, there has to be something done between us and that which God has said, in order to make it real, and that is done through testing and trial; and thus the spiritual reality - the Kingdom - is established within us, and we learn to reign over that other kingdom. The Lord help us.

~T. Austin-Sparks~

(continued with # 52 - (The Triumphant Christ and His People)

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