April 5, 2013
It was back in the spring of 1983. I was heading up the ministry and operations of the Christian Broadcasting Network - Alaska, and pastoring a fellowship called The House of Praise. Because of the public (and even national) attention we had garnered because of articles which had appeared in national publications, as well as my appearances on national television, there were people around me who began to treat me like I was really SOMETHING (if you know what I mean).
I woke up one day to the realization that folks were putting me on a pedestal and giving me an honor that didn't belong to me. It shook me to my very roots, and I began to pray, "Lord, whatever it takes, get me off this pedestal! Knock it out from under me so that folks realize this is all your doing -- not mine."
Whewww!!! If I'd thought about it more, I think I might have changed that prayer just a bit! My pedestal got knocked out from under me, all right! Brother, did it ever! Within a couple of months, I was shell-shocked! CBN-Alaska was dissolved along with our relationship with the national network, the leadership of the fellowship had been passed on to another brother in the Lord, and a whole fistful of other events were unfolding that I won't even try to get into here!
On the one hand the quieting voice of Holy Spirit was reassuring me that my prayers had been answered, and there was a settled peace in my spirit. On the other hand, there was the very heartfelt knowledge that I was no longer carrying a weight that belonged to the Lord. It didn't matter anymore that I wasn't everyone's fair-haired wonder; people weren't trying to bestow an honor and glory on me that was God's.
By the way, in case you think that I handled everything well and behaved honorably in the midst of it all, I've got a bridge to sell you cheap! 🙂 Ahhh, but that's another topic. Human flesh does not do well when it is given the honor, the glory, the adulation, the worship (and that's what it amounts to!) that rightfully belongs to the Lord. We see the disasters that result in people's lives when they are idolized by the public. The issue becomes compounded when that adulation and glory are suddenly yanked from them.
You understand where I'm going with this, don't you? I don't need to belabor things. The point is that glory -- The Spirit of Glory -- when it is seen in us as the Bride of Christ, is a reflection of the character and nature of the Lord Jesus. THAT'S the way it is supposed to be.
We WANT His Glory -- the Spirit of Glory -- to so pour out of every aspect of our existence that society sees Jesus Christ -- NOT us! When that happens, our onoma has become merged into His onoma, and His onoma has been merged into us!
Anyway, I'm getting ahead of myself. Let's take a slightly different look at the Spirit of Glory.
As we conclude our look at the Seven Spirits of God, once again for the sake of review, here are the Seven Spirits as they occur in Scripture.
1. The Spirit of Judgment & Burning
2. The Spirit of Wisdom & Understanding
3. The Spirit of Counsel and Might
4. The Spirit of Knowledge and the Fear of the Lord
5. The Spirit of Grace & Supplications
6. The Spirit of Truth
7. The Spirit of Glory
John 1:14: And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.
I Peter 4:14: 14If ye be reproached for the name (onoma) of Christ (Christos: the Anointed One and His anointing), happy (makarios: blessed, prosperous) are ye; for the spirit of glory (doxa: very visible and apparent honor, glory, dignity, praise; a weighty presence) and of God resteth (anapauo: to take up residence, to take ease, to refresh oneself) upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified.
The whole concept of Glory is one pretty much lost on the world of today. People have become so rational, so academically-minded, so concerned with human logic that the thought of some tangible – and yet inexplicable – visible presence manifesting on a person gets lost in the translation. Peter describes the manifestation of the Spirit of Glory as being the product of the onoma – the character, the makeup, the personality, the very essence of – the Lord Jesus Christ evidenced in us.
More than that, the Spirit of Glory comes with the anointing. Peter specifically uses the expression, “If you are reproached for the onomaof the Anointed One and His anointing …..”
That anointing is somewhat akin to a mantle. You’ll recall our discussion some weeks back concerning Elijah and Elisha, and the mantle of Elijah that he threw over Elisha. Here is an instance of the use of the word “mantle” in Scripture which is separate and distinct from every other use.
The Hebrew word which occurs ONLY in I Kings 19 and II Kings 2 where it is translated “mantle” is the word, ‘addereth. Although this word could be translated out as “splendid robe” or “goodly garment” its proper rendering is “glorious splendor.”
It IS a covering garment of a type, but the word ‘addereth denotes the addition of special recognition, someone of renown, someone set apart for some kingly duty or commission. In fact, it designated the unique anointing that was upon Elijah. He – among all of the Old Testament prophets – became the prototype of the miracle-working prophet.
When that anointing and mantle was passed to Elisha and he received the “double-anointing,” the Glory of God was so marked upon him that not one single person ever questioned his commissioning from God. The Spirit of Glory rested upon Elijah and doubly manifested on Elisha. There was a presence on them that was so strong it brought fear to the enemies of Israel.
We have previously noted that the Seven Spirits of God occupy the Throne of God – that they are in fact the essence of Who He is. When God fulfilled His promise to Hannah and Samuel was born, she lifted up her voice in praise and worship. As she worshiped the Lord, she prophesied. Here is a portion of her prophecy:
I Samuel 2:7-10: The LORD maketh poor, and maketh rich: he bringeth low, and lifteth up. He raiseth up the poor out of the dust, and lifteth up the beggar from the dunghill, to set them among princes, and to make them inherit the Throne of Glory: for the pillars of the earth are the LORD’S, and he hath set the world upon them. He will keep the feet of his saints, and the wicked shall be silent in darkness; for by strength shall no man prevail. The adversaries of the LORD shall be broken to pieces; out of heaven shall he thunder upon them: the LORD shall judge the ends of the earth; and he shall give strength unto his king, and exalt the horn of his anointed.
Everything that Hannah prophesies is a small picture of how the Spirit of Glory operates and manifests. Samuel’s mentor was the High Priest Eli. Without getting into the whole story, the Philistines raided Shiloh, in the process taking the Ark of the Covenant. During the battle that ensued, Hophni and Phinehas, Eli’s two sons, were killed.
When Eli received the news that his sons had been killed, it provoked a reaction in him, but when he heard that the Ark of the Covenant had been stolen, he fell backward breaking his neck on the gate. Phinehas’ wife was just giving birth to their son when the news of Phinehas’ death was brought to her. She named their son, Ichabod.
I Samuel 4:21-22: And she named the child Ichabod, saying, The glory is departed from Israel: because the ark of God was taken, and because of her father in law and her husband. And she said, The glory is departed from Israel: for the ark of God is taken.
It was a striking event. Because of the sins of Israel, and because of the sins of Eli’s two sons which he had done nothing to stop, God permitted the Ark of His presence to be removed from the nation of Israel. Hannah had prophesied that the Spirit of Glory was the defense of God’s people. When the Ark was taken, the Spirit of Glory departed from Israel and they were left defenseless.
Not until David retrieved the Ark of the Covenant and established it in a simple tabernacle atop Mount Zion in the midst of Jerusalem did the Spirit of Glory return to Israel. David’s 33 years of nonstop praise and worship in Israel set the stage for the Temple to be built by Solomon. At the dedication of the Temple almost 40 years to the day from the ushering in of David’s Tabernacle, the Spirit of Glory manifested Himself in a way Israel had never seen.
II Chronicles 5:11-14: And it came to pass, when the priests were come out of the holy place: (for all the priests that were present were sanctified, and did not then wait by course: Also the Levites which were the singers, all of them of Asaph, of Heman, of Jeduthun, with their sons and their brethren, being arrayed in white linen, having cymbals and psalteries and harps, stood at the east end of the altar, and with them an hundred and twenty priests sounding with trumpets:) It came even to pass, as the trumpeters and singers were as one, to make one sound to be heard in praising and thanking the LORD; and when they lifted up their voice with the trumpets and cymbals and instruments of music, and praised the LORD, saying, For he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever: that then the house was filled with a cloud, even the house of the LORD; So that the priests could not stand to minister by reason of the cloud: for the glory of the LORD had filled the house of God.
In every instance where we see “Glory” represented throughout the Word, we see a weighty presence. Most of us have seen folks get “slain in the Spirit.” This is a rather trite expression, but what happens is that when the Spirit of Glory manifests Himself, there is a weight that comes with it which prevents people from standing. For at least the last 60 years, I’ve seen more folks than I can count go down under the power of God. Because I’ve also seen the phony acts of people who were putting on a show for their own reasons, I’ve resisted this with every ounce of my being.
At a conference Della and I attended in Red Deer, Alberta a few years ago with Steven Shelley, Paul Keith Davis, Bobby Connor and Charlie Robinson, there was no amount of resistance that could keep me standing. I was down and couldn’t get up. The weight of the presence of the Spirit of Glory was such that I simply had no power to get up; and I stayed there on the floor until He lifted that weight from me.
By the same token, when the Lord took me to Heaven and I was ushered into the Throne Room, the Spirit of Glory was so powerful that I fell flat on my face. I was unable to get up or stand to my feet for some unknown period of time. Two very large angels picked me up, carried me out and stood me on my feet. Until they did so, I had no strength in myself whatever.
There is another picture of this in II Chronicles.
II Chronicles 7:1-3: Now when Solomon had made an end of praying, the fire came down from heaven, and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices; and the glory of the LORD filled the house. And the priests could not enter into the house of the LORD, because the glory of the LORD had filled the LORD’S house. And when all the children of Israel saw how the fire came down, and the glory of the LORD upon the house, they bowed themselves with their faces to the ground upon the pavement, and worshipped, and praised the LORD, saying, For he is good; for his mercy endureth forever.
Here is an instance where we see the Spirit of Judgment and Burning manifesting Himself with the Spirit of Glory. Notice that the fire came first; and then the Glory followed. It is a picture of what is happening in us and in the Body of Christ today.
As we’ve already noted, the Spirit of Glory is the last to appear in the list of the Seven Spirits of God. The Spirit of Judgment and Burning is the first named in Scripture. Consider the sequence.
1. The Spirit of Judgment and Burning begins the work of cleanup and restoration on those who will respond to the total and complete rulership of the Lord in their lives.
2. The Spirit of Wisdom and Understanding (Revelation) come next to bring us needed revelation of the character, the nature, the makeup and the personality of the Lord Jesus Christ as the standard by which we are to be measured.
3. The Spirit of Counsel and Might enters the ongoing processes in our lives to bring counsel, guidance and direction, and establish the boundaries of safety for our walk with the Lord.
4. The Spirit of Knowledge and the Fear of the Lord commences to create within us that necessary awe and reverence of the Lord, and make us Holy and without blemish before God.
5. Now the Spirit of Grace and Supplications goes to work in earnest. He’s already been at work in our lives, but our focus now is the Covenant-relationship with have with the Father through the Lord Jesus Christ. Access to our Covenant-privileges, rights and responsibilities comes into focus.
6. Because of our contamination by the world around us, the contamination that comes through religion, through the influence of the myriad of voices about us, and through a host of other sources, the Spirit of Truth must establish the baseline in our beings of all that Jesus is. As Jesus noted, He is “The Way, The Truth, and the Life.” “No man cometh unto the Father but by me.” Without the Spirit of Truth making this a certainty in every cell of our existence, we can be led astray and miss the goal – the mark that has been set before us.
7. All this processing must take place in us before the Spirit of Glory can be manifested and demonstrated in such a way that the world will sit up and take notice that we not only have been with Jesus – we ARE in Him, and He IS in us!
In Matthew 22, Jesus is giving the parable of the Wedding Feast and speaking of those who try to come uninvited, or unprepared. He makes the following statement – and this is perhaps the central purpose for the Spirit of Glory:
Matthew 22:14: For many are called, but few are chosen.
The Spirit of Glory manifests Himself upon us, in us, and through us to demonstrate that we have not only been called, we’ve been chosen. We’ve been chosen because we have responded to His call at every opportunity, without reserve, without drawing back, without compromise or argument of any kind. We’ve permitted Holy Spirit to work the Glory of the Lord in us by ignoring the cost to us personally, the cost to our reputation, the cost to our esteem and the cost to our flesh. And...we’ve been commissioned and given a mantle of the Spirit’s anointing!
And we still have more to share on this onoma transformation. See you next week.
Blessings on you!
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