Imagine a 17 yr. old kid laying on plush grass on the side of hill tending his dads’ sheep. He’s already killed a lion and bear to protect them. He had no clue he was being groomed by God to rule over God’s people, Israel. No seminary or Bible school.
In my simplistic ways I want to be like him. What qualified him for such an enormous endeavor? One “little” thing:the stuff going on in his heart. King David wrote 150 letters TO and about an unseen Being. Crazy? No. He was all alone but knew the SILENCE to still his heart. Loneliness was not an issue. He saw the Unseen.
His psalms are more tender and loving than any romantic letter between a man and a woman. His depth of wisdom and revelation are astounding. This kid lived in the Old Testament yet the invisible God was N.T. revelation. He wasn’t thinking doctrines. He ” groaned and even yearned” for the PRESENCE of God in Whom He received profound revelation (Psalm 84).
David writes “Let me experience Your faithful love in the morning, for I trust in You. Reveal to me the way I should go because I long for You”. Obviously God heard David.Why? David had something we all possess but few realize its’ power, before men and God. It is called HEART. It is the essence of salvation. “With the HEART a man believes” (Rm.10:6-10). In today’s “christian” culture most people use their mind to assimilate doctrine rather than HEART to find His Presence.
If you would let me, I would hold you with a deep brothers warmth. I know your life is very tough. No matter who you are, or how small or big your pain, God wants to comfort and help you. I know you life is very tough because mine is the same. Unless you are an alien from. Mars we share the same common human vessel.
In the vast range of human history we see one indelible vulnerability. Each man has a throbbing pain of loneliness and severance from our Creator God. Life itself is a cold winter night. The very air we breath is bitter with hostility (Eph.2:2). It permeates our senses with strange feelings, and our mind with bizarre images that alienate our heart into a bewildering dark space.
We don’t know why, or are even aware that we do, but our walk is as zombies on a pretend mission of nothing to nowhere. We exchange a nod and glance with a fellow stranger who, if we dare look closely into his eyes, see that he also hides shared sorrows and a shattered existence. Am I ‘out to lunch’? Gooblie gop or real?
It is my heart desire to spend my remaining time on this planet to help anyone who wants what I have found as the only means of comfort, recovery, sanity and stability. One breath of actual revelation can lift you out of impending darkness all around us and inside us. Understanding how and why all things are the way they are provides a head map to navigate into His “still waters” (Ps.23). The word REVELATION can hit you as a bit intimidating. Right? In our boring mundane routine life it’s like “How could I ever experience THAT”? We’ve all heard stories of people, both present and past historical figures, who frame their “revelation” as a high and lofty mystical “vision”.
But, if we listen closely, we can discern the lack of real, and file them in the mental category of “Loony Tune Nutsies”. So I would just say, don’t buy the lie that revelation is exclusive and “out there”. In fact, true revelation occurs when you merely take Jesus into your conscious recognition. It is “easy” to receive His “light” (Jn.1:9/Mt.11:30).
The proof of revelation is not in a sensational description of an ultra-emotional ‘heavenly’ experience. It is known in the ‘down-to-earth’ real change seen in someone who has come to understand GOD Himself as having come ‘down-to-earth’ to them in Jesus. My dear friend, in this world of ‘survival of the fittest’, there is no time to play games about God. Jesus warned that in the ‘last days’ delusion would be rampant. Biblical documents reveal Jesus as the weakest, most wounded and most rejected man ever to walk this earth. He did so to offer the very triumphant power He attained in His resurrection (Is.53/Jn.6:37).
You can come into the divine embrace of this living Brother, right now, right there, in the cold isolation of this moment (Jn.6:40). God IS love. Jesus is love. Not a theory or doctrine for salvation. Everything about Him is about you. It’s just that there is “stuff” that must happen to generate ETERNITY in your blood. Stop. Listen. Ponder. Revelation is not out there someplace that requires you take on a long distant rugged journey. HE is here beside you Who only requires the full investment of yourself (Mt.7:7ff). No. He doesn’t need your moral capacity but heart sincerity. You don’t need to get the right words. Just ‘spit it out’. Your love for Him that is.
You need to be YOU. I know because I lost myself to find myself (Jn.12:25). It’s awesome. I am nothing. But I know Him Who is my Everything. Courage starts, not by standing against a violent mob, but standing “violent of will” against your own lazy self-pity. Only then can you ‘soldier up’ and set your inner man free (Mt.11:12/Jnn.8:32). Of course, there are levels and dimensions of revelation for it is merely another word for the Fathers’ love: starting now and on into eternity. There is width, depth, length and height (Eph.3:18).
Right now, in this moment, I ask you to show courage. Stop playing games with your soul. Admit that you feel the impulse to either disavow, or presume, you already know what I’m writing. It’s just wicked human nature. It’s not your personality. (Study Rm. 7:14). You are at war with yourself. You need to learn how to use weapons against your self (Eph.6:12/2 Cor.10:3). ‘Captain Self’ does not want there to be any more to following God than you already know. ‘Captain Self’ defies God’s revelation. You must incite an uprising to takeover the reign of Captain Self. A “sinners prayer” is a counterfeit to keep you a captive of yourself: “I don’t need revelation. I’ve got mans way”. It’s all obligation, legalism and token. How do I know? Just look at your life brother.
Be real. Soldier up. Pretense is an enemy to deep heart engagement. God doesn’t want “right” or “good” ways. He wants your love bro. Rip up that old heart before Him. Better yet reckon him to the cross. Banish the lip-service and token thing. If you get real you will hate token. You most certainly will hate it on the day when you stand before “the Lamb slain before the foundations of the world” and answer for all He has done for you.
So beautiful; “The Word (logos-revelation) became flesh and walked amongst us” (John 1:1-14). He (revelation) walked, talked and felt all the darkness of our sinful human body (but without yielding to sin). He wore sandals. He coughed, sneezed, laughed, cried and died. But imagine the ecstatic surge of power and joy the second He rose again. He yearns to bring His entire experience within us today. His entire goal is to permeate our wicked flesh with His risen Spirit. We can never meet God’s demands for righteousness by any of our efforts. But this is the gospel; good news. He awaits to quicken His righteousness within us. He is as close to you right now as the words in your mouth. But it is the presumption of self that blocks His revelation (Rm.10:5-10).
I remember, long ago, in my “Crazy War” days, when I was playing college ball. I wondered CAN ANYONE RECEIVE REVELATION? Even a scumbag like me? Well, here I am, fifty years later in Him Whom I love. It was all about being real. I never once deferred to the “Christian” games. I came into “the kingdom” where Jesus actually empowered me to no longer care what anyone thought (Jn.18:36). I broke with peer pressure and social conformity. My image, ego, died with Christ (Gal.2:20/Rm.6:6). Personal revelation of the living Jesus came from absolute surrender to the Word of God in a contrite heart. He opened up the flood gates of light and love.
I put up a huge picture of Jesus, similar to the one above, in my dorm room. My buddies ‘freaked’. It may sound like no big deal but to this 20 yr. old kid, having recently had a “Bad Ass” image, peer pressure was enormous. Nobody defies “the guys”. But now, I was no longer searching. I was declaring. My heart was infused with divine security of being a son in the living Son. My buddies, coaches and family utterly despised me. Any mention of Jesus made me a social outcast but I was unflinching. I built a defiant love FOR Jesus as I had once held to my rebellion against Him Light (Jn.8:32).
Everyone, including christians, batted me over the head with Bible verses, trying to inform this ‘misguided’ catholic kid that my picture of Jesus was idolatry. I just had to laugh because God used that picture more than anything they told me. It constantly reminded me to do one thing: FOCUS ON JESUS as a loving Person and by-my-side Brother. I was a young babe in Christ but my spirit knew the token “salvation” they proposed was contrary to Jesus Who bore all my filthy sin in agony. Eternal life IS revelation of the living Jesus (Jn.17:3,14:6,9).
I began to understand Gods’ “light” of our sinful focus on our external image and His focus was on our internal reality. Faith empowers us to rise above human fear, worry, anger, insecurity and defensiveness and enter His Spirit. Faith brings Jesus within us. To get out of His way, we must die with Him on the cross. In our death we begin to sense His Presence. His Spirit draws us into an intelligent love that presents options like EXIT signs to escape the highway of human behavior.
My life went from a dead STOP to the beginning of a journey into the Spirit. Revelation comes out of a common sense, gut-feeling, when you face the brutal reality and choose to seize the light and truth (Mt.11:12/Jn.7:17). It is seeing yourself, and the darkness of this world, then going beyond to believe Jesus: “The way, the truth and the life” (Jn.14:16). It is absolutely necessary. Let me explain.
When you get real- He will reveal
Revelation is not far-fetched or some sparkling image. Every human is born with a “radar” for revelation. It is called conscience. Jesus says His very entry into this world as the Light brought His light to “every man” (Read Jn.1:9/Luke 2:32). When you look at the heavens or behold a bird or mountain scene you see and hear God speak to you “I AM THAT I AM” (Ps.19/Rm. 10:17-18/Ex. ). Whether or not you choose to see, or remain in blind rebellion, is an individual CHOICE (2 Cor.4:4-6). God is everywhere using all sights and sounds to show Himself to men. The greatest window into His manifestation is the living Jesus. Behold, GOD.
Revelation is common. It is a depth of constantly NEW reality that instantly manifests a new dimension of God’s love. I live in a kingdom of revelation. It emboldens the courage to stand for Whom I see: Jesus. When I finally made my determination to follow Jesus it was the outcome of years of try-but-fail. I invested months of contemplating New Testament revelation. Many christians, to this very day, do not like my emphasis on “the living Jesus”. But I can never deny the moments in which the historical Figure became a living Presence. When you see His light there is but one response; to give His love to others (1 Jn. 1 Jn. 9-11).
Today, christian status-quo puts all emphasis on a kind of mental osmosis of Christian doctrine and behavior. “Just pray this prayer and get the system going”. Hogwash. It offers no power, all hype and ultimate shipwreck. Jesus took a modern secular term of his day, for actors in the market place, and applied to the Jews. A hypocrite is someone who pretends. Everyone knows it is not REAL. The absence of the living revelation of Christ breeds hypocrisy. It is play-acting. It is guesswork. IT is trying to fill your dark air space with colors that fade quickly.
The idea that Jesus offers His very Spirit is the coolest thing in the universe: the living God Personally enters the life of a sinful person. Shazam. No striving to “be good enough” The only One Who is good dwells within (Mark 10:18/Rm.3:10/Gal.2:21).
When I first read Pauls testimony it was a gut feeling that this is the “voice of the Shepherd” because it bears witness to my conscience (Jn.10:27). Paul explains “For I would have you know brothers that the gospel…is not according to man. For I neither received it from man, nor was I taught it, but I received it through a revelation of Jesus Christ…When God…called me…to reveal His Son IN me…” (Gal.1:10-24/1 Cor.2:10). Ahhh, now there’s a beautiful witness of a fellow brother.
Of course anyone can “know” and “follow” Jesus, as anyone can know and follow the historical figures throughout time. It’s what composes all religion. The muslim emulates the teachings of Mohammed; in politics men emulate an image or a Republican or Democrat; in philosophy, education, Hollywood, rock’n roll groupies follow the ‘top dog’. It is giving allegiance to an image. Sad to say this is the norm for salvation today. It is a natural recognition that the teachings, love, wisdom, humility, etc. of Jesus is worthy of admiration and emulation. But this is not fellowship in the living Jesus. Paul said “to reveal His Son in me” and “I no longer live…but Christ lives in me” (Gal.2:20). I stopped off at the cross to leave my life to as to allow Him to occupy.
I am not writing with any sense of exclusivity or self-righteousness. God knows I have no ‘better than thou’ feelings. I am only writing this for you to realize revelation of Jesus is offered to anyone. From a “hard ass” soldier, “sleazy” 7-husband lady, corrupt business man to a bunch of low-lifes waisting their days scratching their bellies and fishing on a boat. However, the Scriptures reveal that without the Holy Spirit you are left with mere concepts of the historical Christ figure. It leaves you striving under the law in a phony lifestyle. Way down deep, you know your life is miserable and void of being a participant in divine life. Don’t do it bro, or sis. It’s just laziness and unbelief. Jesus loves you. No. You are not worthy. No one is. This is Gods’ gift. Revelation IS FOR YOU. It is not for a select few. The only thing you have to do is find and be real. Which for some is nearly impossible.
DETERMINATION NOT CONSULTATION- Galations 1:16- John 14:21
SILENCE IS GOLDEN- Want to “see” God? Be quiet.
As a father of six children there has been countless times when I have answered endless questions with deliberate silence. Why? Because it is in silence when a person must choose to be who they will be. Each of my children has struggled to forge individual character on their own. We are not clones or robots. Neither are we created to live by the motivation of others. To find revelation requires the same thing for everyone; FAITH.
God invested His very own majestic creative process to compose us as brilliant individuals made in His very image. The sin of lazy unbelief prevents fulfillment. Our will remains as a handicap dwarf, never developed. Sin has sent us so far from His revelation that our will remains in a limbo of spineless accusations and rebellion. Our insistence on God “doing something” more for us, than the crucifixion, is the very obstacle to seeing Whom He already manifested Himself to be.
Once I made the determination ( think of the meaning of that word) to follow Jesus I figured it was “cold turkey”. I didn’t need any emotional “experiences” just faith. The majesty in the life of Jesus revealed in Scripture is so stunning it’s either ‘all in’ or ‘all out’. The light in His Word began to propel me beyond myself to marvel and wonder of Him. I became nothing. He became everything.
It was a thought replacement therapy fueled by believing GOD IS (Hebrews 11:6). I’m not talking about emulating platitudes found in the common market of christianity. Jesus promises, if we obey His revelation, He will “disclose” Himself. When we close our mouth we understand that He has opened His to speak to us. It is in the silence of self-life that we receive revelation (Jn.14:21-23). Yes. It is a spiritual “experience” in that my entire life is new now walking in His revelation of the Spirit. It is not an emotional roller coaster. It is 1 Corinthians 2.
“BE STILL AND KNOW THAT I AM GOD” (Ps.46:10, 62:1)
The cross is the bridge and portal where we silence our own self-obsession, loneliness and self-pity. We “reckon” our sin dead and BELIEVE JESUS. The constant pitfalls arise out of unbelief; “Where is Jesus? Why doesn’t He answer my prayers? Why doesn’t He do something for me?”. It is the flesh of our human gravity and depravity demanding a sense-orientated complicity. God is Spirit. Those who relate to Him must be spirit.
You can’t touch the Spirit without spirit (Jn.4:24/1 Cor.15:45). A spirit is born out of faith. Learning to find God in our flesh is stupid. But our “silence” is fascinating. When we die our stupid insistence becomes silent. It proves you want and believe His revelation of the cross. It is not about whether God chooses to hear your prayers but whether you choose to be…lieve He already has. What is faith? What does it look like? It can be as tiny as a mustard seed. Yet, Paul says, it is nothing without love (1 Cor.13). An individual love for God is the birth place of all things real.
It is not about what you must do but whom you ARE in full surrender to Him. Are you a mouse, a maggot or a son? It is in the utter grasp of our wickedness that we can choose to “silence” ourselves, to the cross. Our self-righteous pride blinds us to the outrageous nature of our “questions”. I hear people say “God told me this” or “God showed me this”. Maybe He did. Maybe He didn’t. The Scriptures reveal God has already done and shown everything to show Himself in Christ. He now waits on you to fully comply; to “shut up” and die (Jn. 12:24-25/Rm.6:6). In our silence we see the magnificence of His revelation.
The choice, to BE…lieve God, and so act, produces the character of men of old. They weren’t looking for sensory manifestations. They let God be God. They stood in silence and awe. A man of God is one who “sees” God and “hears” God for Whom He has already revealed Himself to be (Ps.19/Rm.10:18ff). He is silent in his humiliation and worship. It is in this revelation “where” a man lives by faith (Rm.1:17,20).
My family and I love you my friend and offer our help to capture this most marvelous revelation of the living God.
The determination to follow Jesus, is no different than it was for Peter and Paul. Their faith was not proven by how much God showed them but how much they believed Him. Jesus asks you exactly what He asked Peter “Who do people say that I am?”.afterwa
Peter expressed the popular acclaims. But then Jesus asked Peter Whom he himself saw Jesus to be. Peter shared his revelation and Jesus said this was remarkable. This passage offers us a window into revelation. Peter made a determination not a consultation. He had been talking directly to God.
Jesus said “Flesh and blood (common knowledge) did not reveal this to you Peter but My Father Who is in heaven” (Mt.16:17-26). This lowly fisherman received revelation, in his daily routine, directly from the Father. Soon afterwards Peter was used by Satan to try to stop Jesus from going the cross (v. 22-23). A few years later, Peter also flatly denied he even knew Jesus (Jn.18:25).
So we can see that serious human failure is no obstacle to revelation. Jesus does not, in any way, hold our wicked ways against us (2 Cor. 5:19). However, in this same passage Jesus tells Peter to “take up your cross”, which is the resolve to reckon our sin to His cross.
Jesus explains Peters’ revelation as “THIS ROCK”. Revelation is the substance to becoming the “Eklesia” (Greek- one called out of the world by seeing revelation of Christ; i.e. the true church). Jesus is not referring to Peter as the source of revelation but the Father. He just finished declaring that the”flesh and blood” of Peter was not the source.
My friend if you truly want to change it is not by undertaking some enormous efforts of your flesh and blood. A HEART OF LOVE FOR GOD is having the courage to switch your allegiance from ‘Captain Self’ to the “Commander and Lord of hosts” . The reason people find it so hard to change is lack of truly knowing Him. Obligation will never result in real change. We cannot change ourselves no more than a leopard can not change its spots (Jer.13:23). Flesh and blood is the blood, bones and guts in our body. It has no spiritual capacity. It is only “something” from heaven that provides “something” to motivate us to live on earth (Jn.3:3-8). Jesus says it is “living waters…bubbling up to eternal life” (John Jn.4:14, 7:37-38/ Rm.10:17).
ANYONE CAN RECEIVE REVELATION. He is the” Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.” (2 Cor.6:17-18/Is.9;6).
My dearest friend, please, listen to me. Pride has a thousand disguises and each one keeps God away: “God resists the proud”. Don’t play games with this monster. Only the cross can destroy its powers. Humility is not in a fixed response. It is not a box. It has no limitations. Any real variation is the answer to pride. Explore its’ depths.
“I praise Thee O Father that you hide these things from the wise and intelligent and reveal them to mere babes. Yes Father it was well pleasing in Thy sight. All things have been handed over to Me by My Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father, nor does anyone know the Father except the Son, and anyone to whom the Son will to reveal Himself” (Matthew 11:25-30). Do the “work” (Jn.6:29). I love you bro, or sis.
The purpose in this life is one thing: to secure true revelation of eternal life and tell others (Jn.17:3).