Last week, we studied Revelation 1:12-16, the description John gave of one of the most spectacular visions of the Lord that a man was given to see. Jesus stood in the midst of the seven lampstands that verse 20 says are the seven churches.
Here we will focus on the last part:
"He had in His right hand seven stars, and out of His mouth went a sharp two-edged sword. His appearance was like the sun shining brightly" (Rev. 1:16, MEV).
The sword coming out of the Lord's mouth is His word. As Hebrews 4:12 tells us: "For the word of God is alive, and active, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, of joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intents of the heart." No power on earth is like the word of God. When He spoke, creation came forth. When He speaks to us, His new creation comes forth in us.
His word not only exposes, but it separates, divides and judges. His word goes deeper into our hearts than we can go ourselves. To be delivered from the root of sin and death of the fallen nature we were born with, this is necessary. His word does surgery on the depths of our thoughts and intentions. Have you learned to love His word this way? It hurts, but it hurts good. Such is the nature of the true word of God that comes forth from Christ in the midst of His churches.
Where is His word found like this today? Where is the preaching that cuts deeply, exposing our deepest sin and then leads us to the only remedy—the cross. Is it rare? It is rare and the reason many claiming to follow Christ and become the spotless bride that He deserves are more married to the spirit of the world than to Him.
As we will see later, a counterfeit church exists—a harlot that marries the spirit of the world and persecutes the true church. However, God allows this and uses it to bring forth the pure bride that He seeks. The false church feeds the lusts of the flesh, and being part of the true church can be painful. Yet true disciples endure the pain of His Word so that they can partake of His nature.
Although painful at times, His Word is the source of the greatest love, peace, joy, and freedom that we can know in this life. Again, it hurts good. His Word brings us to the greatest humility through seeing the depths of our corruption. Yet His Word also heals us and restores His nature in us.
When did you last hear a message about sin? Or one that laid you open, exposing the depth of corruption in your heart? It may have been the last time you visited a true church, one with the Lord in their midst. The word of the Lord is not only about exposing sin, but it is about that too. When there is none of this, we will not find "Pursue peace with all men, and the holiness without which no one will see the Lord" (Heb. 12:14). As 2 Timothy 4:1-4 warns us:
"I charge you therefore before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, who will judge the living and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom: Preach the word, be ready in season and out of season, reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with all patience and teaching. For the time will come when people will not endure sound doctrine, but they will gather to themselves teachers in accordance with their own desires, having itching ears, and they will turn their ears away from the truth and turn to myths" (MEV).
Much of the church today will only hear messages that make them feel good, resulting in some bizarre and unbiblical doctrines. Some even teach that judgment is not part of the New Covenant. A large part of the New Testament has to be avoided to embrace such foolishness, but this has been done. You can find a lot of entertainment, excitement and constant encouragement in those churches, but you will not find the Lord.
Many parts of the New Testament you will not hear in many churches today. Here is just one that should get our attention:
"I say then, walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh. These are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are revealed, which are these: adultery, sexual immorality, impurity, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, strife, jealousy, rage, selfishness, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, carousing, and the like. I warn you, as I previously warned you, that those who do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God" (Gal. 5:16-21, MEV).
If we seek only bliss and self-gratification now, we are in danger of having pain for eternity. If we will embrace the necessary pain of correction today, we will have the greatest joy for eternity.
Rick Joyner is the founder and executive director of MorningStar Ministries and Heritage International Ministries and is the senior pastor of MorningStar Fellowship Church. He is the author of more than 40 books, including The Final Quest, A Prophetic History and Church History. He is also the president of The OAK Initiative, an interdenominational movement that is mobilizing thousands of Christians to be engaged in the great issues of our times, being the salt and light that they are called to be.
For the original article, visit morningstarministries.org.
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