Cloud by Day, Fire by Night

The piece of art is entitled “Moses’ Tabernacle in the Wilderness.” I knew the artist, Norbert McNulty, who worked as a graphic artist for CBN. When we were acquainted, he was supporting his family working as a night warehouseman for my family’s business, even though for years prints of this painting were on display and available in every Christian bookstore you entered. Norbert had given the original and the rights to a Christian ministry. As his son puts it, “My father’s desire for all his paintings was that they would tell the great stories of God’s power, love, and redemption. He would frequently say to me that these images were tools to open doors for people to tell others about Jesus.”1 I don’t think the idea of financial gain from this art ever entered Norbert’s mind.

All of that is really an aside. What I want as your takeaway is this powerful image. In the Numbers 11 passage from which Pastor Nate preached on Sunday, the Presence of God manifests Himself as a cloud. It reminded me of a “Say what?” that occurred to me years ago while studying the book of Exodus. If you are new to my writing, from time to time I encounter something in scripture that sets my mind on edge like fingernails on a blackboard. I reacted like Arnold Jackson (that little character made famous by the actor Gary Coleman).2 Arnold used to ask his brother, “What’choo talkin’ ’bout, Willis?”

My “Say what?” in Exodus was found first in Exodus 13:20-22:

So they took their journey from Succoth and camped in Etham at the edge of the wilderness. And the Lord went before them by day in a pillar of cloud to lead the way, and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light, so as to go by day and night. He did not take away the pillar of cloud by day or the pillar of fire by night from before the people.

Then there is the story of the completion of the Tabernacle:

Then the cloud covered the tabernacle of meeting, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle. And Moses was not able to enter the tabernacle of meeting, because the cloud rested above it, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle. Whenever the cloud was taken up from above the tabernacle, the children of Israel would go onward in all their journeys. But if the cloud was not taken up, then they did not journey till the day that it was taken up. For the cloud of the Lord was above the tabernacle by day, and fire was over it by night, in the sight of all the house of Israel, throughout all their journeys. (Exodus 40:34-38)

In Numbers 14, the Children of Israel refuse to enter the Promised Land. God proposes to Moses that He, God, destroy all of Israel as if they were one man and start over with Moses. For me, it would have been a tempting proposition. But Moses, obviously made from higher moral fiber, instead intercedes for the people:

“Then the Egyptians will hear it, for by Your might You brought these people up from among them, and they will tell it to the inhabitants of this land. They have heard that You, Lord, are among these people; that You, Lord, are seen face to face and Your cloud stands above them, and You go before them in a pillar of cloud by day and in a pillar of fire by night. Now if You kill these people as one man, then the nations which have heard of Your fame will speak, saying, ‘Because the Lord was not able to bring this people to the land which He swore to give them, therefore He killed them in the wilderness.’ And now, I pray, let the power of my Lord be great, just as You have spoken, saying, ‘The Lord is longsuffering and abundant in mercy, forgiving iniquity and transgression; but He by no means clears the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generation.’ Pardon the iniquity of this people, I pray, according to the greatness of Your mercy, just as You have forgiven this people, from Egypt even until now.” (Numbers 14:13b-19)

This cloud/fire thing had become so identified with the people of God that Moses argues that God’s reputation will be damaged if He destroys Israel. It is part of the fame of God and His people.

So we ask, “Why the cloud and why the fire?” We could go on unpacking these questions until the Lord returns and not fully find an answer. But here are some ideas. The first clue is in Exodus 13:21 in the phrase, “so as to go by day and night.” The people of God, led by the Presence of God, are not restricted by the natural. You might say that Israel in the wilderness was the first night-vision-equipped army. Of course this also encourages us to stay in His Presence; out of Presence, out of His Light.

Certainly there is protection in the Presence. Aside from the whole supernatural “thing” of a great pillar standing in the middle of your camp and the effect that would have on pagan people, we are talking about the world’s biggest nightlight. Things that go bump in the night are not likely to come around.

Nate said something on Sunday about the fire of God being hidden in the cloud, the Face of God wrapped in the mystery of God. So why does darkness reveal Him? This is the answer God gave me those many years ago. The light of the world hides the Presence of God from us because we are distracted. As Jesus said in the Parable of the Sower, “the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word.” (Matthew 13:22b) When our attentions are on worldly things, when we are navigating with natural light, God is obscured and mysterious. But in the midnight of our souls, when all the light has gone out of our world, then the Presence shines forth.

I have used this illustration before, but I think it bears repeating. When I go to a jeweler to look at diamonds, he does not pull out a piece of aluminum foil to display the gems. He lays them on a mat of black velvet so that I might see them clearly. It is not when things are going my way that I seek God. I know He is there, like the pillar of cloud standing sentinel. But in my dark hour, when all the options which were never really options have melted away, that is when I seek His face, and that is when I find Him.

Fred Teagle, Elder

_______________________________________________________

1 “Moses’ Tabernacle in the Wilderness”, Norbert McNulty

2 wikipedia.org (Gary Coleman)

This Week’s Key Verse: Numbers 11:25 “Then the Lord came down in the cloud, and spoke to him, and took of the Spirit that was upon him, and placed the same upon the seventy elders; and it happened, when the Spirit rested upon them, that they prophesied.”

Take a moment and pray that the Lord will speak to you in this time of study.

Moses Tabernacle (2)The piece of art is entitled “Moses’ Tabernacle in the Wilderness.” I knew the artist, Norbert McNulty, who worked as a graphic artist for CBN. When we were acquainted, he was supporting his family working as a night warehouseman for my family’s business, even though for years prints of this painting were on display and available in every Christian bookstore you entered. Norbert had given the original and the rights to a Christian ministry. As his son puts it, “My father’s desire for all his paintings was that they would tell the great stories of God’s power, love, and redemption. He would frequently say to me that these images were tools to open doors for people to tell others about Jesus.”1 I don’t think the idea of financial gain from this art ever entered Norbert’s mind.

All of that is really an aside. What I want as your takeaway is this powerful image. In the Numbers 11 passage from which Pastor Nate preached on Sunday, the Presence of God manifests Himself as a cloud. It reminded me of a “Say what?” that occurred to me years ago while studying the book of Exodus. If you are new to my writing, from time to time I encounter something in scripture that sets my mind on edge like fingernails on a blackboard. I reacted like Arnold Jackson (that little character made famous by the actor Gary Coleman).2 Arnold used to ask his brother, “What’choo talkin’ ’bout, Willis?”

My “Say what?” in Exodus was found first in Exodus 13:20-22:

So they took their journey from Succoth and camped in Etham at the edge of the wilderness. And the Lord went before them by day in a pillar of cloud to lead the way, and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light, so as to go by day and night. He did not take away the pillar of cloud by day or the pillar of fire by night from before the people.

Then there is the story of the completion of the Tabernacle:

Then the cloud covered the tabernacle of meeting, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle. And Moses was not able to enter the tabernacle of meeting, because the cloud rested above it, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle. Whenever the cloud was taken up from above the tabernacle, the children of Israel would go onward in all their journeys. But if the cloud was not taken up, then they did not journey till the day that it was taken up. For the cloud of the Lord was above the tabernacle by day, and fire was over it by night, in the sight of all the house of Israel, throughout all their journeys. (Exodus 40:34-38)

In Numbers 14, the Children of Israel refuse to enter the Promised Land. God proposes to Moses that He, God, destroy all of Israel as if they were one man and start over with Moses. For me, it would have been a tempting proposition. But Moses, obviously made from higher moral fiber, instead intercedes for the people:

“Then the Egyptians will hear it, for by Your might You brought these people up from among them, and they will tell it to the inhabitants of this land. They have heard that You, Lord, are among these people; that You, Lord, are seen face to face and Your cloud stands above them, and You go before them in a pillar of cloud by day and in a pillar of fire by night. Now if You kill these people as one man, then the nations which have heard of Your fame will speak, saying, ‘Because the Lord was not able to bring this people to the land which He swore to give them, therefore He killed them in the wilderness.’ And now, I pray, let the power of my Lord be great, just as You have spoken, saying, ‘The Lord is longsuffering and abundant in mercy, forgiving iniquity and transgression; but He by no means clears the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generation.’ Pardon the iniquity of this people, I pray, according to the greatness of Your mercy, just as You have forgiven this people, from Egypt even until now.” (Numbers 14:13b-19)

This cloud/fire thing had become so identified with the people of God that Moses argues that God’s reputation will be damaged if He destroys Israel. It is part of the fame of God and His people.

So we ask, “Why the cloud and why the fire?” We could go on unpacking these questions until the Lord returns and not fully find an answer. But here are some ideas. The first clue is in Exodus 13:21 in the phrase, “so as to go by day and night.” The people of God, led by the Presence of God, are not restricted by the natural. You might say that Israel in the wilderness was the first night-vision-equipped army. Of course this also encourages us to stay in His Presence; out of Presence, out of His Light.

Certainly there is protection in the Presence. Aside from the whole supernatural “thing” of a great pillar standing in the middle of your camp and the effect that would have on pagan people, we are talking about the world’s biggest nightlight. Things that go bump in the night are not likely to come around.

Nate said something on Sunday about the fire of God being hidden in the cloud, the Face of God wrapped in the mystery of God. So why does darkness reveal Him? This is the answer God gave me those many years ago. The light of the world hides the Presence of God from us because we are distracted. As Jesus said in the Parable of the Sower, “the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word. (Matthew 13:22b) When our attentions are on worldly things, when we are navigating with natural light, God is obscured and mysterious. But in the midnight of our souls, when all the light has gone out of our world, then the Presence shines forth.

I have used this illustration before, but I think it bears repeating. When I go to a jeweler to look at diamonds, he does not pull out a piece of aluminum foil to display the gems. He lays them on a mat of black velvet so that I might see them clearly. It is not when things are going my way that I seek God. I know He is there, like the pillar of cloud standing sentinel. But in my dark hour, when all the options which were never really options have melted away, that is when I seek His face, and that is when I find Him.

Fred Teagle, Elder

_______________________________________________________

1 “Moses’ Tabernacle in the Wilderness”, Norbert McNulty

2 wikipedia.org (Gary Coleman)

The Spirit Rests On You

“. . . he took of the Spirit that was on him and put the Spirit on the seventy elders. When the Spirit rested on them, they prophesied,” Numbers 11:25

When you read this verse, what stands out to you? What do you feel as you read it? The reason I ask is because I felt deep peace reading it. These elders did not work to conjure up prophesy. They felt no pressure to perform on command or to prove anything. Instead, the Spirit rested and when it rested, it rested on them.

There is something so peaceful about when God chooses to pour out His Spirit and let it rest on His people. It’s not peaceful in an inactive sense. It’s peaceful in a “peace like a river” sense. This is the type of peace where one rests in God’s presence, but inside the person there is a flowing river, streams of life, and overflowing abundance that break forth into other peoples’ lives.

In Isaiah 66: 12-15 it says
For this is what the LORD says:
“I will extend peace to her like a river,
and the wealth of nations like a flooding stream;
you will nurse and be carried on her arm
and dandled on her knees.
13 As a mother comforts her child,
so will I comfort you;
and you will be comforted over Jerusalem.”
14 When you see this, your heart will rejoice
and you will flourish like grass;
the hand of the LORD will be made known to his servants,
but his fury will be shown to his foes.
15 See, the LORD is coming with fire,
and his chariots are like a whirlwind;”

Here the Almighty God is comforting Israel. Can’t you picture the peace extending like a river? God longs to comfort His people. He longs to extend His spirit on His people. But when He comforts us and when His Spirit rests on us, it is for something. Like Pastor Nate said, it is always for ministry and for His purposes. His Spirit is not on us so that we can sit by and hope that God accomplishes His work on earth. No . . . we are part of that work, and the wonderful thing is that the work does not wear us down. We may become tired and sometimes even discouraged, but there is never a moment where He will not give us exactly what we need for that moment. When we are called and when the Spirit of God rests on us, we cannot help but do what He tells us. He then equips us to do all that He commands. And, He delights in our obedience.

Do you feel a calling on your life? Is the Spirit of God resting on you? I understand that we don’t always feel everything. But hopefully, something deep down in you knows and is called to God’s purposes. If not, eagerly pray that God’s Spirit will rest on you and give you the peace and action that spur on obedience to His Word.

This Week’s Key Verse: Numbers 11:25 “Then the Lord came down in the cloud, and spoke to him, and took of the Spirit that was upon him, and placed the same upon the seventy elders; and it happened, when the Spirit rested upon them, that they prophesied.”

Take a moment and pray that the Lord will speak to you in this time of study.

Kara Hanger, Equipping Coordinator
Kara Hanger, Equipping Coordinator

When you read this week’s key verse, what stands out to you? What do you feel as you read it? The reason I ask is because I felt deep peace reading it. These elders did not work to conjure up prophesy. They felt no pressure to perform on command or to prove anything. Instead, the Spirit rested and when it rested, it rested on them.

There is something so peaceful about when God chooses to pour out His Spirit and let it rest on His people. It’s not peaceful in an inactive sense. It’s peaceful in a “peace like a river” sense. This is the type of peace where one rests in God’s presence, but inside the person there is a flowing river, streams of life, and overflowing abundance that break forth into other peoples’ lives.

In Isaiah 66: 12-15 it says

For this is what the Lord says:

“I will extend peace to her like a river,
and the wealth of nations like a flooding stream;
you will nurse and be carried on her arm
and dandled on her knees.
13 As a mother comforts her child,
so will I comfort you;
and you will be comforted over Jerusalem.”

14 When you see this, your heart will rejoice
and you will flourish like grass;
the hand of the Lord will be made known to his servants,
but his fury will be shown to his foes.
15 See, the Lord is coming with fire,
and his chariots are like a whirlwind;”

Here the Almighty God is comforting Israel. Can’t you picture the peace extending like a river? God longs to comfort His people. He longs to extend His spirit on His people. But when He comforts us and when His Spirit rests on us, it is for something. Like Pastor Nate said, it is always for ministry and for His purposes. His Spirit is not on us so that we can sit by and hope that God accomplishes His work on earth. No . . . we are part of that work, and the wonderful thing is that the work does not wear us down. We may become tired and sometimes even discouraged, but there is never a moment where He will not give us exactly what we need for that moment. When we are called and when the Spirit of God rests on us, we cannot help but do what He tells us. He then equips us to do all that He commands. And, He delights in our obedience.

Do you feel a calling on your life? Is the Spirit of God resting on you? I understand that we don’t always feel everything. But hopefully, something deep down in you knows and is called to God’s purposes. If not, eagerly pray that God’s Spirit will rest on you and give you the peace and action that spur on obedience to His Word.

The Presence Based Church (Part II)

Devotional for Saturday, August 2, 2012
The Presence Based Church, Part II

Please Read: Matthew 5:1-11
I began yesterday talking about Presence-Based Church and revival and prophesy. The obvious question would be, “What is revival anyway?” Let’s look at the etymology (source) of the word.

revival (n.)
“the bringing of an old play back to the stage,” 1660s (see revive); first used in a religious sense by Cotton Mather, 1702 (Historic Puritan preacher).1

revive (v.)
early 15c., from M.Fr. revivre (10c.), from L. revivere “to live again,” from re- “again” (see re-) + vivere “to live” (see vital). Related: Revived; reviving.2

Modern definitions include to “return to life,” “return to use,” “return to usefulness,” and one I remember which said, “a series of religious meetings held mainly in the south.” The final one is definitely not what we are talking about here.

The history of the American Church is filled with revival. The First Great Awaking preceded the American Revolution; the Second Great Awaking, which began in 1790, continued to affect American churches through the Civil War and led to many of the Christian social movements that reformed and remodeled American society into the twentieth century.

The second half of the nineteenth century saw the rise of the Holiness Movement among Methodists and Baptists seeking to regain the piety they felt was being lost in their denominations. Out of them rose the First Latter Rain movement. This was generated by a hunger for the power and Presence of God and was characterized by prophesy and speaking in tongues. It became the precursor to Modern Pentecostalism. Starting in Western North Carolina and Eastern Tennessee, it generated the modern Church of God. “Similar revivals began taking place at this time, including those at Topeka, Kansas, under Charles Fox Parham and Azusa Street in Los Angeles, under William J. Seymour. Together, these became known as “The Outpouring of the Latter Rain.”3 I could continue with the Second Latter Rain and the Charismatic Renewal, the Brownville Revival and the Toronto Blessing, but space does not permit.

One might ask, “Why does the Church need revival?” We need look no further than the Book of the Revelation in the “Letter to the Churches.” “Nevertheless I have this against you, that you have left your first love.” (Revelation 2:4) “Nevertheless I have a few things against you, because you allowthat womanJezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, to teach and seduce My servants to commit sexual immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols.” (Revelation 2:20) “I know your works, that you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead.” (Revelation 3:1) “I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot.So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth.” (Revelation 3:15-16) These are a few of the things happening in the churches while the last Apostle was still living.

The Church loses her way. We become complacent. We become those who trust “in themselves that they (are) righteous, and despise others.” (Luke 18:9) This process is seldom intentional. It is a result of our fallen nature and a lack of spiritual vigilance. It has happened in almost every generation since God first called His people to Himself. Look at the Old Testament record. Look at the history of the Church. When the Church says to herself, “I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing,” that is the moment she has become “wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked.” (Revelation 3:17)

That is the time for the second beatitude:

Blessed are those who mourn,
For they shall be comforted.

Until we reach the point of sorrow for our arrogance, our presumption on God’s good will, we remain blind to His love and provision. We are wretched and miserable and don’t even know it. But we cannot mourn for ourselves alone. We must mourn for those lost souls that we have ignored in our self-sufficiency. A heart for those who do not know the truth, that is a sign of revival. And God will comfort that righteous sorrow with the salvation of many.

For revival to move forward then next beatitude is essential:

Blessed are the meek,
For they shall inherit the earth.

Most people associate the word meek with weakness. We see a “Caspar Milquetoast”4 type character, full of fantasies of greatness but unable to act on any of them. But this is not what the word means at all, at least not biblically. What character in the Bible is described as the meekest man in the world? Moses! Meek means submitted, in this case, submitted to the will of God. Meek is powerful. Meek is world-changing. Moses was meek. Elijah was meek. David (on his good days) was meek. Jesus is meek. Blessed are the meek, for God will give them the world according to His sovereign will.

The next beatitude, and the last one we have time to discuss today, is the catalyst of revival:

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
For they shall be filled.

If you read even a little about the history of the movement of God’s Holy Spirit, there is one defining characteristic. There is a group of people, often a very small group, hungering to be in a right relationship with God. That’s all that righteousness means, right relationship. They hunger and thirst after God. They are the direct opposite of the church at Laodicea. They have quietly, almost secretly been praying, calling out to God in their hunger and thirst, pleading for their want to spread among His people. This remnant is the spark in the brush that starts the great fire. I believe that this little kindling has been in KPC for a long time.

Well the time is right and ripe. Most of us have stopped patting each other on the back, congratulating ourselves on our greatness. Some of us have had the scales removed from our eyes and see how truly needy we are individually and as a people. We are kindling, dry and ready to burn for God.

Where are you? Do you believe that you personally are “rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing.” Then revival may come, and you will never see it. Or you may be in the “fire brigade” trying to stamp it out. Some will, because this fire will burn away all the hay, wood, and stubble. Some will not want to leave their comfortable little house of sticks. But if you know that you are “wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked,” then you will burn, and that which is not eternal will fall way like ash. The fire is coming. Will you fan the flames, or will you be “Smokey the Bear”?

Fred Teagle, Elder

______________________________________________________

1. www.etymonline.com/index.php?search=revival
2. www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=revive&allowed_in_frame=0
3. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Latter_Rain_%281880s_movement%29
4. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caspar_Milquetoast

This Week’s Scripture: 1 Kings 19:11 The Lord said, “Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.”

Take a moment and pray that the Lord will speak to you in this time of study.

Please read Matthew 5:1-11

Devotional today written by Fred Teagle
Devotional today written by Fred Teagle

I began yesterday talking about Presence-Based Church and revival and prophesy. The obvious question would be, “What is revival anyway?” Let’s look at the etymology (source) of the word.

revival (n.) “the bringing of an old play back to the stage,” 1660s (see revive); first used in a religious sense by Cotton Mather, 1702 (Historic Puritan preacher).1

revive (v.) early 15c., from M.Fr. revivre (10c.), from L. revivere “to live again,” from re- “again” (see re-) + vivere “to live” (see vital). Related: Revived; reviving.2

Modern definitions include to “return to life,” “return to use,” “return to usefulness,” and one I remember which said, “a series of religious meetings held mainly in the south.” The final one is definitely not what we are talking about here.

The history of the American Church is filled with revival. The First Great Awaking preceded the American Revolution; the Second Great Awaking, which began in 1790, continued to affect American churches through the Civil War and led to many of the Christian social movements that reformed and remodeled American society into the twentieth century.

The second half of the nineteenth century saw the rise of the Holiness Movement among Methodists and Baptists seeking to regain the piety they felt was being lost in their denominations. Out of them rose the First Latter Rain movement. This was generated by a hunger for the power and Presence of God and was characterized by prophesy and speaking in tongues. It became the precursor to Modern Pentecostalism. Starting in Western North Carolina and Eastern Tennessee, it generated the modern Church of God. “Similar revivals began taking place at this time, including those at Topeka, Kansas, under Charles Fox Parham and Azusa Street in Los Angeles, under William J. Seymour. Together, these became known as “The Outpouring of the Latter Rain.”3 I could continue with the Second Latter Rain and the Charismatic Renewal, the Brownville Revival and the Toronto Blessing, but space does not permit.

One might ask, “Why does the Church need revival?” We need look no further than the Book of the Revelation in the “Letter to the Churches.” “Nevertheless I have this against you, that you have left your first love.” (Revelation 2:4) “Nevertheless I have a few things against you, because you allowthat womanJezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, to teach and seduce My servants to commit sexual immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols.” (Revelation 2:20) “I know your works, that you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead.” (Revelation 3:1) “I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot.So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth.” (Revelation 3:15-16) These are a few of the things happening in the churches while the last Apostle was still living.

The Church loses her way. We become complacent. We become those who trust “in themselves that they (are) righteous, and despise others.” (Luke 18:9) This process is seldom intentional. It is a result of our fallen nature and a lack of spiritual vigilance. It has happened in almost every generation since God first called His people to Himself. Look at the Old Testament record. Look at the history of the Church. When the Church says to herself, “I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing,” that is the moment she has become “wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked.” (Revelation 3:17)

That is the time for the second beatitude:

Blessed are those who mourn,
For they shall be comforted.

Until we reach the point of sorrow for our arrogance, our presumption on God’s good will, we remain blind to His love and provision. We are wretched and miserable and don’t even know it. But we cannot mourn for ourselves alone. We must mourn for those lost souls that we have ignored in our self-sufficiency. A heart for those who do not know the truth, that is a sign of revival. And God will comfort that righteous sorrow with the salvation of many.

For revival to move forward then next beatitude is essential:

Blessed are the meek,
For they shall inherit the earth.

Most people associate the word meek with weakness. We see a “Caspar Milquetoast”4 type character, full of fantasies of greatness but unable to act on any of them. But this is not what the word means at all, at least not biblically. What character in the Bible is described as the meekest man in the world? Moses! Meek means submitted, in this case, submitted to the will of God. Meek is powerful. Meek is world-changing. Moses was meek. Elijah was meek. David (on his good days) was meek. Jesus is meek. Blessed are the meek, for God will give them the world according to His sovereign will.

The next beatitude, and the last one we have time to discuss today, is the catalyst of revival:

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
For they shall be filled.

If you read even a little about the history of the movement of God’s Holy Spirit, there is one defining characteristic. There is a group of people, often a very small group, hungering to be in a right relationship with God. That’s all that righteousness means, right relationship. They hunger and thirst after God. They are the direct opposite of the church at Laodicea. They have quietly, almost secretly been praying, calling out to God in their hunger and thirst, pleading for their want to spread among His people. This remnant is the spark in the brush that starts the great fire. I believe that this little kindling has been in KPC for a long time.

Well the time is right and ripe. Most of us have stopped patting each other on the back, congratulating ourselves on our greatness. Some of us have had the scales removed from our eyes and see how truly needy we are individually and as a people. We are kindling, dry and ready to burn for God.

Where are you? Do you believe that you personally are “rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing.” Then revival may come, and you will never see it. Or you may be in the “fire brigade” trying to stamp it out. Some will, because this fire will burn away all the hay, wood, and stubble. Some will not want to leave their comfortable little house of sticks. But if you know that you are “wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked,” then you will burn, and that which is not eternal will fall way like ash. The fire is coming. Will you fan the flames, or will you be “Smokey the Bear”?

Fred Teagle, Elder

________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

  1. www.etymonline.com/index.php?search=revival
  2. www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=revive&allowed_in_frame=0
  3. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Latter_Rain_%281880s_movement%29
  4. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caspar_Milquetoast

The deeper devotionals this week are based on the message “Go to the Mountain” (When the Holy Spirit Comes – Part 9) by Pastor Nate Atwood at KPC on Sunday, July 29. To hear this message, go to www.kpc.org.