It has come again the season of Christmas. And we will come back to this series in the New Year. Right now we are looking at the word: Perseverance. The Greek in Ephesians 6:18 which exhorts praying for the “perseverance” of the saints. This word in the Greek portrays this as being “to attend assiduously all the exercises “. This gives the sense that God Himself tests those who will become part of the remnant.
When I really meditated this last March concerning Ana in the Temple I began to focus what 84 years looked like. How many changes around her took place. Even the temple was torn down and a new one built.
The building work going around her. The inconvenience. The dust. Yet her focus was prayer and fastings of various sorts knowing that something had entered her heart. Something big was coming. She knew it, and the vibration of what she received in prayer began to circulate amongst a praying people.
It is evident that people today live at a very fast pace. Decisions have to be instant. Duties and responsibilities. Today it seems that this lifestyle has convinced people that this can be transported into the spiritual walk. And if we wait on a promise more than a year maybe we convince ourselves we heard wrong. However the test of time is the first test God puts along our path.
Time is the anvil which God tests our heart. They say that a discipline takes time to develop. It seems that our perspective of prayer must also come under the same hammer that strikes the anvil so that we understand that in time God fine tunes our understanding to see that God waits and works within certain intricate purpose so that the maximum celestial impact is felt in the given season.
And it is the remnant that understands that a walk in a different way in God will require a greater understanding will be needed. Psalm 103:7 says that Moses knew the ways of God and Israel saw His Acts.
Look at the difference here in this verse! Moses had an intimate realm in God in the forming of His Purposes. Israel, did not accept the collective priesthood, so that they saw and understood remained on a sensory level. So here we see Moses be part of the signs and wonders.
The anvil of time sorts out where we are, whether we remain in faith. Or not. Luke 1 speaks of the visitation of Gabriel to Zacarias and in his words were references to prayers which until then had gone unanswered. They were long forgotten. Time past and the physical capacity to bear a child had long been exhausted.
And so the remnant is tested in faith when the natural conditions are no longer favourable. When our prayer can be less focused on the very premise that brought us into this walk. When what was reasonable to believe for becomes risible to expect. The test of faith is mostly presented in the context of the spur of the moment decision to believe. But in the sphere of perseverance we must see faith as a constant ingredient that must accompany our pursuit.
The remnant is tested in its heart. When we consider Joseph betrayed by his brothers, falsely accused in the house of Potiphar, we see a young man with vivid destiny dreams now a prisoner in a foreign land. Psalm 105 shows us how Joseph was tried. He was subject to injustice. And yet his heart remained constant in what God had promised him.
The remnant is a people who live lives contradictory to the work that God had done in them. Yet they resisted the work of bitterness, dissalusionment, and unbelief in their hearts. So much so that Joseph was able to interpret dreams and that gift of wisdom and understanding brought his name to Pharoah. His wisdom helped save the nation from famine.
It’s all about our heart that the remnant walk treats to us.
The other test in our walk as a remnant is our test to obey. Obedience is highlighted when Abram heard God to leave Ur. Obedience is what led John the Baptist to the wilderness. This obedience to walk a lonely walk for the season God determines opens the door for God to establish through them destiny for nations. Abram was to become Abraham in that his life of faith brings to us the application of the covenant of Grace.
John the Baptist obeyed to be in the wilderness where he received signs that the Messiah was coming.
I always meditate on these in the context that these remnant people dare to remain distant from trends and fashions,they avoid crowds.
The area as a test, is a testing of our mind. The mind processes information, and today I believe that whole populations are being moulded by what they read or by what they see. Therefore in radical rejection and separation from these situation and people groups the Voice of God will be readily heard. Our minds are to be renewed says Romans 12. So that we can discern what is the Will of God. Renewing the mind requires a radical separation.
The final test is a test of our love. What comes to mind is Peter’s test in John 21. We must understand that the tendencies Peter manifests is common to all of us. His first failing in the denials is not the denials in themselves. He was always resistant to Jesus’ death and all notion of the necessity for His Sacrifice. He walks into a trap. He is confronted by being with Jesus. Yet in this situation he cannot bring himself to embrace the situation as part of a greater plan. His denials are fruit of his misunderstanding of Jesus’ mission.
Our own walk, as part of the remnant must bring us to a place of embracing the unpleasant parts of Jesus’ mission in us and with us.
Peter fails this test, because his foundation was faulty. Jesus comes to him to bring him to a love level. His destiny would be to bring him face to face with levels of love. The first being Agape, but the failing came in that intimate love of Phileo that Jesus needed from him. And for which the Church would need.
Jesus was to say that even though Peter could not embrace Him in trial and death, from this new place of understanding he could help those who would identify with Christ and walk a similar path of self sacrifice.
Today it seems that we try hard to make the faith acceptable. Yet in the Early Church it always meant that death was inevitable.
And its is here that the question is laid at our love; are we so much in intimacy with the Lord that this would require a self sacrifice so much so we would willingly lay our lives down?
For the most part, the remnant are pioneers, and pioneers pay a high price to open the way for others.
Therefore the greatest sign of the remnant is passing the tests required for being a remnant of perseverance.