Sunday, February 24, 2013

                            When Will the Latter Rain Come?

    I have often thought that we are just waiting for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit to just happen sometime in the end time, and its coming wouldn't have much to do with what we do.   But that's not the picture that the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy depict!
    Zechariah 10:1 says,'Ask ye of the Lord rain in the time of the latter rain, so the lord shall make bright clouds, and give them showers of rain, to every one grass in the field.'  And Hosea 10:12 says,'Sow to yourselves in righteousness, reap in mercy; break up your fallow ground: for it is time to seek the Lord till he come and rain righteousness upon you.'  Notice that this says we have to ask, and we have to break up our selfishness and prepare ourselves spiritually to receive the outpouring of the Holy Spirit.  The latter rain doesn't just happen without much of our cooperation.  We must be changed in our hearts so the Holy Spirit can use us in a powerful way to spread the end-time gospel.
   Read this quote from Testimonies to Ministers p. 511-512,  'The dispensation in which we are now living is to be, to those that ask, the dispensation of the Holy Spirit. Ask for His blessing. It is time we were more intense in our devotion.  To us is committed the arduous, but happy, glorious work of revealing Christ to those who are in darkness. We are  called  to proclaim the special truths for this time. For all this, the out pouring of the Spirit is essential. We should pray for it. The Lord expects us to ask Him.  We have not been wholehearted in this work.
  Notice that this says, NOW is the time for outpouring of the Holy Spirit!  We are not waiting for the Lord to fill us, the Lord is waiting on us!  The Lord wants us to earnestly ask for it.  He wants us to be more fervent in our devotion to God, and to surrender our entire selves to Him. Let's do that today, so Jesus can come and take us Home sooner!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

                    What Are You Doing for the Master? Part 2

   We don't very often hear the topic of the Holy Spirit spoken of.   But could be our church is lacking the Holy Spirit, and that we haven't surrendered our selves, so the Holy Spirit can use us as the conduit to show Jesus to the world?  I don't mean the kind of 'outpouring' of the Spirit, where they get all hyped up, and have this emotional 'experience', and that's it.
   The outpouring of the Holy Spirit involves a lot more than that.  We must first lay self aside and ask earnestly for a changed heart, and to confess all of our grievances and and sins that we have committed against God and against each other.  And thus we can all be unified, with God and with our fellow man, so the Holy Spirit can dwell in us! So we can carry the gospel to the ends of the earth, so we can get this sinful world over with, so we can home to heaven!  We can hasten the coming of our Lord!  Matthew 24:14 says, 'This gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world, as a witness unto all nations, and then shall the end come.'  That's exactly what the disciples did in the upper room!
   Please read the following quote from the Spirit of Prophecy.  It's  pretty long, but please read it anyway.  :)            

  Review and Herald: "How can we stand  in the day of test if we do not understand the words of Christ?  He said: 'These things have I spoken unto you, being yet present with you. But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost whom the Father will send in my name, He shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto You.' It is the Holy Spirit that is to bring to our remembrance the words of Christ.  The theme Christ chose to dwell upon in His last discourse to His disciples was that of the office of the Holy Spirit.  He opened before them a wide tract of truth. They were to receive His words by faith, and the Comforter, the Holy Spirit, was to bring all things to their remembrance. The consolation given by Christ in this promise was found in the fact that the divine influence was to be with his followers to the end. But this promise is not accepted and believed by the people today, and therefore is not cherished by them, nor is its fulfillment seen in the experience of the church. The promise of the gift of the Spirit of God, is left as a matter to be little considered by the church.  It is not impressed upon the people, and the result is only that might be expected-- spiritual drought, spiritual darkness, spiritual declension and death.  Minor matter occupy the mind and soul, but divine power which is necessary for the growth and prosperity of the church, which would, if possessed, bring all other blessings in its train, is lacking, although it is offered to us in infinite plentitude. Just as long as the church are satisfied with small things, they are disqualified to receive the great things of God.  But why do we not hunger and thirst after the gift of the Holy Spirit, since it is the means whereby the heart may be kept pure? The Lord design that divine power shall cooperate with human effort.  It is all-essential for the Christian to understand the meaning of the promise of the Holy Spirit just prior to the coming of our Lord Jesus the second time. Talk of it, pray of it, preach concerning it; for the Lord is more willing to give the Holy Spirit than parents are to give good gifts to their children. 'For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.' "
     The fact that the last topic Jesus spoke of, before the cross, was the office of the Holy Spirit.  That should tell us really how important the Holy Spirit is!  When someone you love is dying, you only speak to them about the most important things.
    I am afraid that we are too occupied with small matters,  to desire with a deep longing for the power of the Holy Spirit!   We should be ashamed of this!   Don't we realize that if we ask in faith, and surrender our entire soul to Jesus, and be unified in Christ and our brothers and sisters in the faith, that we can receive the power of the Holy Spirit in its fullness?  Jesus says in Matthew 7:7-11 says, 'Ask, and it shall be given you;seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth and to him that knocketh it shall be opened. O what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone?  or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent?  If ye then being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?'   
    I know that I have often been occupied with worldly things, when we should be concerned about the things that really matter, that is the salvation of souls!  Let us all pray that the Lord can use us to be a witness for Him!