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We all go through similar stages in our maturing process… so similar in terms of the same things in the same seasons that it’s almost scary at times. There is an emphasis in the Spirit right now. God is raising up sons. An invitation to a closer relationship is available and it has some different distinctions that we want to highlight in this newsletter.
What I am saying is that as long as the heir is a child, he is no different from a slave, although he owns the whole estate. 2 He is subject to guardians and trustees until the time set by his father… 7 So you are no longer a slave, but a son; and since you are a son, God has made you also an heir. Gal 4:1-7 NIV
Sons have an inheritance – “Inheritance” sounds like winning the lottery. The reality is that servants are prone to turn it down because the implication is accepting a responsibility to be a steward of something important in the Kingdom. Your “land” always shows up in the form of a dream or a desire in your heart, and it takes faith and work and persistence and warfare to make it a reality. Not everyone says yes to their inheritance. Why would anyone say no?
We all have talents and a direction from Jesus to multiply them. Two of the servants doubled their talents and were put in charge of “many things” (Inheritance) and invited to “share the master’s happiness” (fellowship with the Father). The last one buried his talent out of fear, because he thought the Father was a “hard man.” There is a price to becoming a son, but the payback far outweighs the price tag. God is good; His yoke is easy and His burden is light. The first requirement to be a son is a belief that you can do it, and to simply say, “Yes, Lord.” We have a Kingdom to “freely” receive!… for the asking.
Then the sovereignty, power and greatness of the kingdoms under the whole heaven will be handed over to the saints, the people of the Most High. His kingdom will be an everlasting kingdom, and all rulers will worship and obey him.’ Dan 7:27 NIV
Ask of me, and I will make the nations your inheritance, the ends of the earth your possession. Ps 2:8 NIV
“Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom. Luke 12:32 NIV
It’s practical – One stream of theology is a little too spiritual to inherit the real thing. The ingredient for involvement in the Kingdom is learning to navigate finances. Servants are often too spiritual (aka “humble”) to soil their hands with such practical things. The reality is that wealth creation and learning to convert money into time and ministry for your dream is the most “spiritual” thing you can do. I’m fine with offerings in the church mountain, but the rest of us are being invited to a realm that looks a lot different. It’s creative, industrious, entrepreneurial, and it generates value and income. Capitalism has Biblical origins and it’s the means by which dreams do come true.
Fire “hurts” – Life’s difficulties can theoretically be self-inflicted, enemy attack or testing from God. I want to suggest that the source really doesn’t matter. There is a lesson to be learned from all three, and that’s the most important point.
And you have forgotten that word of encouragement that addresses you as sons: “My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline, and do not lose heart when he rebukes you, 6 because the Lord disciplines those he loves, and he punishes everyone he accepts as a son.” 7 Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his father? Heb 12:5-8 NIV
The promise for sons is baptism in the Holy Spirit and with fire. The reason is purity and the obvious point is that, “No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.” (Heb 12:11) The depth of character and anointing that we carry has roots in brokenness and fire. There is no way to learn the power of His Resurrection without a proper death and burial of a few dreams and plans. When it seems hopeless, sons still have hope rooted in a faithful Father. Sons know that they are loved through problems and promotions, through gaffs and glory, and through tribulation and triumph. They are at home in plenty and in want and they don’t take Kingdom warfare personally. My greatest personal revelation of all the ups and downs of being in the fray is that “It’s not about me” and “seasons of testing only last as long as it takes to learn the lesson.” There really is a place for being thankful during the unpleasantness and pain of discipline when we anticipate the fruit that it will produce and simply trust the process that God uses to perfect us.
Roots of Bitterness – the very next section portion of Hebrews 12 is how to deal with the trauma of discipline. Let’s face it: some of the best discipline comes through people problems and those are the ones most likely to tempt us to unforgiveness. You will face disappointment and betrayal on your way to sonship. You will also taste the sweetest and most loyal fellowship imaginable when you press through. Your heart will be given a good reason to quit. Choose the reason to continue. It will heal your heart and open a door into your destiny.
Therefore, strengthen your feeble arms and weak knees. 13 “Make level paths for your feet,” so that the lame may not be disabled, but rather healed. 14 Make every effort to live in peace with all men and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord. 15 See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many. Heb 12:12-15 NIV
The question – The fellowship between the Father and His son eventually leads to a question, “What do you want me to do for you?” Servants can’t hear that question for theological reasons. In the servant/son transition the relationship changes from one of principled obedience to one of loving fellowship. The right response to the Father’s questions depends upon being in touch with the desires of your own heart. The Father will ask if you want His help in making your dream come true. Do you have an answer? Sons do, servants don’t. Sons are not afraid to ask whatsoever; their Father has invited them to do so. The genius of “Kingdom” is that sons and their Father share the same desires.
At Gibeon the Lord appeared to Solomon during the night in a dream, and God said, “Ask for whatever you want me to give you.” 1 Kings 3:5 NIV
When they had crossed, Elijah said to Elisha, “Tell me, what can I do for you before I am taken from you?” 2 Kings 2:9 NIV
Then the king asked, “What is it, Queen Esther? What is your request? Even up to half the kingdom, it will be given you.” Est 5:3 NIV
I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit — fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. John 15:15-16 NIV
Hebrews closes with this final thought. We are receiving a Kingdom which cannot be shaken. When everything around us is shaking, we are adding stability and making disciples of individuals and nations. We’ve read the last chapter and we win… PS: Our God is a consuming fire! Enjoy the ride.
Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, 29 for our “God is a consuming fire.” Heb 12:28-29 NIV
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