I heard a brother share just recently that he believed that “the False Prophet” (of the thirteenth chapter of the Book of Revelation) is composed of Christians who are seeking the power of the Holy Spirit, but are doing that because of their desire for self-aggrandizement and power. I pretty much have to agree with that. This brother also shared that he believed that a great split is happening in the church today, and this over the personal cross of the believer. I pretty much have to agree with that, too. I say this because a great majority of Christians today are choosing to EVADE the disciples’ cross but they still desire to preach and teach and “do great things for God.” This is a rather dangerous thing to be doing, as it can lead to great corruption of heart.
Now, when I am out ministering to people in the streets of our cities (and elsewhere), I try not to make much of an association between myself and what is known as “Christianity” today. I say this because Christ has for so long been (horribly) misrepresented by zealous Christians who want to work for God, but who bear not the disciples’ cross. There is so much “ministry work” going on today by people who have not yet made their way to THE HEART OF GOD through the cross of Christ, that I often have to just tell people, “I am definitely a disciple of the Lord Jesus Christ, but I don’t like to be considered ‘Christian.’ I really don’t want to be lumped in with that thing that most people call ‘Christianity’ today.”
Beloved ones, as most of you probably know by now, there is only a very small minority of Christians today who are really willing to take their lives and their gifts and bring them to the feet of the Lord and say, “Not my will but only Yours be done.” I’m sad and sorry to even have to say it, but there are really only a faithful few today who have taken the cross of Christ so seriously that they are willing to surrender themselves to the process of almost unbearable heart-rending and heartache, disappointments and massive rejection, major setbacks and profound conflicts, to be brought to the place where they can disappear and Christ can then arise in ministry to others. These that I describe here, beloved, are God’s firstfruits (in process).
Dear brothers and sisters, we REALLY need to be aware these days that even crossless-Christians can work miracles and bring forth profound words and teachings in the name of the Lamb. Please, don’t be fooled by that. It is only through those who are willing to lay down their lives as genuine sacrifices for others that the world will be profoundly and permanently changed, and this by the power of GOD’S LOVE as demonstrated through the wisdom of the cross! Yes, it will only be BY DEMONSTRATION OF THE WISDOM OF THE CROSS through lives laid down in sacrificial service to others that the great Feast of Tabernacles will be ushered in. This is God’s plan for the ushering in of that glorious Kingdom age, beloved. There is no other plan, though many people may want to think so. — D