As we have been studying, it is the calling of every Christian to dwell in the heavenly places with Christ and to bring the blessings of heaven to earth. However, our ultimate goal is more than just bringing the blessings of heaven to earth, but rather to bring the kingdom of heaven to earth. Because a kingdom would not be a kingdom without a king, this means the kingdom will never fully come to earth until the King does. So our true purpose is to bring the King to earth.
In 2 Peter 3:12 we have a remarkable statement when Peter says that we should be “looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God….” Since I first read it thirty years ago, this Scripture has caused me to marvel, possibly more than any other. Can we really hasten the coming of the Lord? The answer is “Yes!”
How can we possibly hasten the coming of the day of God? When the church makes herself ready, becoming the glorious bride that she is called to be, the Lord is not going to be able to resist her! The Father will just have to let His Son go to her! Then the King and His queen, who will love with perfect love, will rule over the earth until it has been fully restored from the corruption of the Fall. Then it will be delivered back to the Father (see 1 Corinthians 15:22-28).
As we see in the Song of Solomon, the charms of the bride are likened mostly to fruit and the things that make up a bountiful harvest. That is how we make ourselves ready, growing in the fruit of the Spirit, and bringing in the harvest. The truth is, if we grow in the fruit of the Spirit, it will result in a harvest.
Possibly the main reason why the church has repelled so many people is because of our historic tendency to emphasize doctrine instead of life. Certainly we must love the truth, and want to have sound biblical doctrine, but having the doctrine without the life only makes us hypocrites. The truth is the world has plenty of evidence that very few Christians really believe what they preach because if they really believed it they would live differently.
However, of even greater concern than how the church so often repels people, should be how it repels the Lord! If we were more concerned about why the Lord does not come to our meetings, they would be changed into something that would attract both the Lord and people. When Jesus is lifted up, not just doctrines, and not just buildings, programs, or our own personalities, all people will be drawn to Him.
The key words here are “drawn to Him,” not us. If people are being drawn to us, that is only evidence of how far we have fallen from our calling. If the Lord is in the house, there is not a single human being that will be getting our attention! As witnessed on the day Solomon dedicated the temple, when the glory of the Lord fills the house all flesh will flee.
It certainly is not wrong to want to reach people, but when we desire that more than wanting to attract the Lord, people become an idol. Our primary calling is to be so attractive to the Lord that He just cannot stand it any longer — He just has to come for His bride! If we become the church that so attracts the Lord, we will also become something so glorious that people will not only cease to be repelled, but they will marvel and look to the One who has so changed us.
~ Pastor Rick Joyner
|Pastor Rick Joyner is the founder and executive director of MorningStar Ministries and Heritage International Ministries and is the Senior Pastor of MorningStar Fellowship Church.|