Spiritual Hierarchy & Authority, Part 26
April 13, 2018
We started talking about the connection between worship and authority a couple weeks ago, but my rabbit trails in laying foundations sort of sidetracked things a bit. I know that sometimes it may seem like I’ve become a broken record on this subject, but there is no substitute for the realm of real, intimate worship. The connection between worship and rulership in the realm of the Spirit is so important and so cohesive that it cannot be overstated. We will be talking more about this as we finish this series.
Let’s go back to where we ended last week. Satan’s efforts to get Jesus to fall down and worship him would have to-tally ended Jesus’ mission as redeemer. It would have canceled out His rulership and authority. He would literally have handed us all over to the permanent subjugation of Satan. Righteousness would disappear in the earth. Any effort of any man or woman to come out from under the authority of Satan would fail. There would be no spiritual authority of the kind that we now have.
Jesus made the connection between worship and absolute authority abundantly clear when he answered Satan’s final temptation with the statement:
Matthew 4:10: Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.
Was Satan’s effort ludicrous? Had Satan lost his marbles thinking he could sell Jesus on this idea that he could convince Jesus to bow down and worship him?
Take a look a Jesus' circumstances. For forty days he had fasted in the wilderness. I don't know how many of you have ever fasted for forty days, but Della and I have both done it many times. Except for a couple of very unusual circumstances in which we were supernaturally empowered throughout the forty-day period, we have mostly ended those fasts very weak and drained physically.
Several years ago, Della spent the last week of a forty-day fast in bed just struggling to hang on to some vestige of strength. I have to believe that -- in this instance for Jesus -- because He was setting the stage for the most critical phase of his earthly existence, He went through some real extremes in His flesh. The probabilities are that He was in very weakened condition physically and in a heightened state of sensitivity to the needs of the flesh. His victory, therefore, over Satan in the first two temptations must have been very energizing. His emotions would have been at a real high, and there would have been a natural tendency to rest on those laurels.
Satan's effort, consequently, would have been logical -- especially when you consider that he was eating of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, and judging the Lord accordingly. Jesus' answer must have been a real shock to him. It was not a logical response. It was a powerful comeback in the realm of the Spirit that raised up the Throne of God; one that decimated the roots and foundations of the Tree of Knowledge, and everything that Satan had stood upon,
"Begone, Satan! For it is written: You shall worship the Lord your God, and serve Him only." (quotations from the NASB)
Jesus' answer established the Throne of God for all who would come into relationship with Him; and it established the foundation for the Throne of the Lamb, which would become evident in time to come. He made it crystal clear that any and all thrones -- be they the thrones of this world, or the Throne of the Universe, be they physical power and authority, or spiritual power and authority -- are established in righteousness (a right relationship with God); and that righteousness is established in worship.
He also made it abundantly clear that the only real worship is the Worship of God. Some time later, as you will recall, the Samaritan woman cornered Him at the well and engaged Him in a discussion on worship. His answer to her was,
John 4:24: "God is a spirit, and they that worship Him must worship Him in Spirit, and in Truth!"
Once again, He made a point of the fact that all relationship with the Lord is based in worship -- in the realm of the Spirit.
In the late summer of 1995, I sent out an Open Letter entitled, "The Purpose of Ekklesia." (I will be distributing an updated version of that Open Letter in the weeks to come with the Coffee Break articles.)
In it I addressed the tendency in our midst to become so focused on the methodology of our spontaneous worship that we lose sight of our calling to the Lord Jesus Christ. Let me add a little to what has already been stated. When Earle, Marcia, Della and I first began to gather daily for worship in Anchorage in mid-1990, there was life springing forth in our midst constantly.
As time went on and the move to Trails' End occurred, the Ekklesia grew and our worship music took on a much larger scope. Our experiences in the midst of this worship took us into vast realms none of us had ever before considered in our wildest dreams.
At the same time, over a seven-year period, the frequency of our gathering together diminished from a daily basis to two and three times a week, then to once a week, and then to whenever we could get together. Our travels and varying schedules became such that we did well if we got together once or twice a month. All of us experienced "withdrawals," feeling as if a major part of our existence was missing.
In the same letter on the purpose of Ekklesia, I shared the strong sense that there was going to be a major shaking within our group. There was. It left many wondering "wha' hoppen?" I believe that it was been ordered by the Holy Spirit for the purpose of reorienting our focus.
We saw the methodology becoming the objective rather than the Lord. The visions, supernatural experiences with the audible voice of God, the sounds of angelic voices in our midst and the sounds of added instruments being played by angels as we were worshipping, so awed us that for a time our gathering together became the objective instead of ministry to the Lord. We were in danger of developing an "us four and no more" mentality, with an arrogant spirit of exclusivity. The other side of this coin was the evolving of a "preference" for being with certain ones in our midst.
This is a trap of Satan. If he can get us sidetracked with "gathering daily," or coming together so we can hear angels in our midst, or for the purpose of experiencing any supernatural manifestations, we have lost it! If we prefer the fellowship of certain ones to the exclusion of others, and focus our attentions on a select few, we immediately bow before the feet of Satan, succumbing to the Fear of Man. The immediate result for us is the loss of our place on the Throne.
Trying to go back to the way we did things five years, ten years or twenty years ago because of the way in which we were brought into the presence of the Lord back then, turns it into a worship of the methodology instead of worshipping the Lord. Again, we yield the Throne to the Enemy. Anytime the focus shifts away from the Lord to the peripheral events which occur normally as a part of being One with Him, we get sucked into a trap. Our objective is not hearing angels.
Our objective is not in the gathering together. Even Ekklesia is not our objective. (Ekklesia is the Holy Spirit's paradigm and framework for our processing -- not the other way around. We can't build Ekklesia, and we can't pick and choose those whom we will "allow" the Holy Spirit join to us. It just isn't our prerogative.) Our objective can never be to keep the Ekklesia together in "the way it has been." This has been the downfall of many in each move of God, in every previous generation. We cannot afford the luxury of wanting things to go on "the way they used to."
OK. ‘Nuff of that! Let’s get back on track.
We have previously discussed the fact that John begins his writing of the Revelation by saying,
Revelation 1:10: "I was in the Spirit on the Lord's day, and I heard..........,"
John thereupon launches into a detailed description of those things which he both saw and heard. The revelation of the Throne of God, and the Throne of the Lamb is not one which can be known through intellectual pursuit. One does not "study" to learn about the Throne. Neither can it be perceived through an analysis of the scriptures. The Throne is a living experience, seen and revealed through and by the Holy Spirit, as we live and walk in the spirit.
I have no bone to pick with anyone who searches the Scriptures from dawn until dusk. In that which has been shared, the point I have endeavored to make is that one cannot have a relationship with the Scriptures. The Scriptures are not the object of our existence.
They are a testimony of the purposes for which we have all been brought into this world. They confirm what the Lord has done, is now doing, and will continue to do throughout the remainder of our time-space existence. Making the Scriptures a substitute for a living, breathing 24-hour-daily interactive relationship with Jesus Christ only subverts His heart and desire.
The Throne is, and must be, experiential for all who will be One with Jesus Christ -- changed, conformed, and molded into His new onoma. The Throne is not some mystical, ethereal concept. It is neither a geographical place, nor physical piece of gold or marble, nor some other substance situated in a certain cosmic locale.
It is the living, functioning reality of the rulership of the Most High God, in the most practical and cardinal aspect of our entire existence. It is the working of the power and the authority of Jesus Christ, our King of Kings, Lord of Lords, and Bridegroom -- our Other Self -- in us!
When Jesus cried out on the cross, uttering those final words before His death, "It is finished," He had accomplished something of such overwhelming proportions as to boggle the natural mind. He had completed a Plan ordained before the first words of Creation were ever spoken.
He had legally ended Satan's hold over a species of being -- a people -- brought into existence for the sole purpose of fellowship -- at His peer level -- with Him. He had once again established His Throne in the natural or earthly realm. He had provided a means for that same people to once again be seated with Him on that Throne.
Paul described it like this:
Ephesians 1:17-23, NASB: "[I pray] that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the Spirit of Wisdom and Revelation in the knowledge of Him;
I pray that the eyes of your understanding may be enlightened, so that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe, in accordance with the working of the strength of His might which He brought about in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead, and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places,
Far above all thrones and authority and power and dominion, and every onoma that is named, not only in this age, but also in that one which is to come. And He put all things in subjection under His feet, and gave Him as head over all things to the Ekklesia, which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all." (additions, mine)
It is important to note that Paul prays for those of us who believe to receive the Spirit of Wisdom and Revelation in the knowledge of Him, and to see the greatness of His power toward us. What is the greatness of His power to us who believe? It becomes obvious in the next few phrases when he describes Jesus as being (present tense) seated at the right hand of God,
"Far above all thrones and authority and power and dominion, and every onoma that is named, not only in this age, but also in that one which is to come."
Then he uses the pictorial metaphor of the body, describing Jesus as its head and us as the body, making us One with Him and also seated at the right hand of God.
That's not a theory! It is reality. "Heavenly places," once again, are not some mystic place in the cosmos. This is a living, operative actuality where we function in and through and with Jesus Christ, "Far above all thrones and authority and power and dominion, and every onoma that is named, not only in this age, but also in that one which is to come." This is the Throne of God and the Lamb!
In writing to the Ekklesia in Colosse, Paul said:
Colossians 1:15-17, NASB: "He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation; for by Him were all things created, both in the heavens, and on earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities: all things were created by Him, and for Him: and He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together."
The significance of this statement is that He did not just speak Creation into existence: He also created all thrones -- including His. Prior to Christ's death and resurrection, the thrones of His people were subject to Satan. Coming therefore in human flesh, and asserting power and authority over Satan, He redeemed access to those thrones for His people. Jesus overcame him by "the blood of the Lamb, and the word of His testimony," by virtue of becoming that "Lamb that was slain." For Him, it was finished. For us, it was just beginning -- and yet it had been completed! In the realm of the Spirit, time is non-existent.
Let’s quit here today and wrap up this series next week.
For those of you who’ve participated during the past three years in our Monday night Healing Prayer Conference Call, this is just a reminder that the calls have resumed on a once-a-month basis, the first Monday of each month. If you have a need for healing, or you have friends in need of healing, here is the number to call: (712) 775-7035. The Access Code is: 323859#. For Canadians who have difficulty getting in to this number, you can call (559) 546-1400. If someone answers and asks what your original call-in number was, you can give them the 712 number and access code.
At the same time, in case you are missing out on real fellowship in an environment of Ekklesia, our Sunday worship gatherings are available by conference call – usually at about 10:45AM Pacific. That conference number is (712) 770-4160, and the access code is 308640#. We are now making these gatherings available by Skype. If you wish to participate by video on Skype, my Skype ID is regner.capener. If you miss the live voice call, you can dial (712) 770-4169, enter the same access code and listen in later. The video call, of course, is not recorded – not yet, anyway.
Blessings on you!
Regner A. Capener
RIVER WORSHIP CENTER
Temple, Texas 76504
Email Contact: CapenerMinistries@protonmail.com
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