INCARNATION: By Invitation Only

What is the reality of Christmas for a Christian? Simple. Yet, profound: a celebration of the moment that Divine God became man, FOREVER. Incarnation. GOD WITH US. Later, this same reality becomes, GOD IN US, forever Divine! Do I have your attention yet?

GOD WITH US: Incarnation.

First, the Promise of this coming redeemer, this God-Man, comes through Isaiah,

“Therefore the LORD Himself will give you a sign: Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name IMMANUEL” (Isaiah 7:14), “which translated means, “GOD WITH US” (Matthew 1:23).

A miracle of miracles. The promised Messiah would come through a virgin birth. That’s a pretty amazing feat. And it happened. Prophecy fulfilled hundreds of years later. In Bethlehem.

Only once in all of history. Most people did not recognize the season of their visitation from God Himself, transforming from the Divine into the Human (yet who never lost His actual Divinity in the process; see Philippians 2:6-8).

The angels themselves recognized the miracle and declared,

“For today in the City of David there has been born for you a SAVIOR, who is CHRIST THE LORD (Messiah)” (Luke 2:11).

So, GOD WITH US. A God-Man appears. To quote from the Apostle’s Creed, the earliest record of truth that Christians everywhere still adhere to like super-glue:

“We believe in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the virgin Mary.”

But what of the rest of the story? What of us sharing in that unique Divinity? Could it be that part of the plan of God is to become ONE SPIRIT with His people?

GOD IN US: Incarnation.

First, remember the promise of sharing in God’s nature. The actual Divinity coming WITHIN actual people. Real God-qualities infusing with our human-qualities. Here was the promise through Ezekiel, who once declared,

“I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh, and I WILL PUT MY SPIRIT WITHIN YOU and cause you to walk in My statutes” (Ezekiel 36: 26-27).

Jesus lived in the Holy Spirit. He promised an in-filling was to come to all who would receive Him by faith. He calls it, “living water flowing from your innermost being” (John 7:38).

Crucifixion, death, & burial followed for this God-Man who walked in the power of the Holy Spirit.

Again, from the Apostle’s Creed:

“…suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died and was buried. He descended into hell. On the third day He rose again from the dead.”

Death is the debt that all men pay. The wonder and mystery of Jesus is that He did no sin to deserve this cruel death. He lived spotless and sinless. Death could not possibly hold Him. So He became a friend who died in your place. He took the cross that you deserve.

He doesn’t stay in the cold, stone tomb. He arises! Changed forever from God-Man into Man-God! He is the Man-God today! He first “breathes upon His disciples” this new, Heaven-born, champion Divine LIFE!

He then promises this life to come within these very ones (and all believers of all times) and on the Day of Pentecost, the Holy Spirit FILLS the human spirits and they are truly BORN FROM ABOVE. Man and woman begin to experience the Divine life, within, right now.

“The triumph of the gospel is enough to make any man the wildest kind of an enthusiastic optimist. The unifying of the nature of man and God is the crowning achievement of Jesus Christ. The reason for the cross was thus revealed. Man in God and God in man one and indissoluble, one mind, one purpose, one effort, one power and one glory.” –John G. Lake

BY INVITATION ONLY.

“Behold, I am coming quickly. And my reward is with Me” (Revelation 21:12).

His reward: INCARNATION FOREVER. You have a foretaste now. Then, you will have the FULLNESS.

And finally, if you are outside of Christ today, make a commitment to Him in your heart this Christmastime. He offers you a foretaste of His Divinity. Real LIFE, now. He calls you to surrender to Him.

Don’t wait until tomorrow.

Receive Him today, BY INVITATION ONLY. “And the Spirit and the Bride say, ‘Come!’” (Revelation 22:17).

Sky

The GREATEST SIGN (of the End-Times)

News reports have been buzzing all week with the sighting of the “Blood Moon” & solar eclipse in the night sky. This kind of “sign” in the sky will not appear again for 18 years. Many “prophecy experts” around the world are calling this a “sign of the end-times” and yet, I would like to focus your attention instead upon, the GREATEST SIGN and it comes from Jesus Himself.

“And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the whole world for a witness to all nations, and then the end shall come” (Matthew 24:14).

Jesus gives us a list of about 5 “categories of signs” (including world-wide natural disasters, wars and others). These all happened in the actual generation following His resurrection (about 40 years) leading up to the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem in 70 A.D. They are also potential indicators, to the final generation of people, that His coming is approaching soon. I personally believe that His final “sign” in the list has been in motion 2,000 years until now, and is nearly complete.

Thus, we are about to see the GREATEST SIGN be fulfilled in front of our very eyes, and it is possible it will happen in the next decade or two. The GREATEST SIGN is the final proclamation of Jesus to all nations: the story of the divine life of Jesus, the sacrificial death of Jesus on the cross to forgive sin, the resurrection of Jesus and His defeat of death, the inauguration of the Kingdom of God, and the pouring forth of His Eternal Life to all who will call upon Him and say, “YES!”

It is TIME TO ADVANCE THE KINGDOM! In the midst of spiritual darkness, your light will shine the brighter. It is NOT TIME TO RETREAT. It’s TIME TO KEEP ON ADVANCING until the witness of Jesus in the nations is finished.

God has been active in calling people to prayer and action, behind the scenes, (and not featured in world headlines), for many decades.

Back in 1934, just prior to the outbreak of evil and spiritual darkness of WWII, the Spirit of God called out to a young man in Wales named Rees Howells, and challenged him,

“Rees, do you believe that I can give the gospel to every creature?”

“Yes, LORD.”

“I am dwelling in you. Can I be responsible for this through you?”

What followed was a prayer directive, and has become known as, “The Every Creature Commission.” A new commission from the Spirit of God, for Rees and his team of intercessors in Wales to pray every year for 10,000 new laborers, both men and women, to be sent into the harvest fields, for the next 30 years!

That is approx. 1935 to 1965. They prayed, and thousands of people responded worldwide, in answer to this intercession.

Just a few examples: Billy Graham opened his now-famous Los Angeles campaign in 1949, and was jettisoned onto the world stage, proclaiming the gospel to millions in a huge awakening.

In the 1950’s alone, there were over 500 full-time evangelists traveling all over America in their famous “sawdust tent crusades” and saw countless people brought to the Savior.

There are also currently over 1,000 documented “awakenings” in small and large places all over the world. Revivals are breaking out all over, though you won’t hear of them on BBC News or CNN.

This incredible wave of the Spirit began to burst forth upon every continent during those initial years, & it continues through today.

Consider these facts,

*There are approx. 6,800 languages on earth. Only 1800 of those are left without a proper translation of the Bible. Of those 1800, Wycliffe Translators have missionaries working on 1500 of them!

*Many, many missions groups of all varieties are advancing the gospel into the unreached people groups. I had the privilege recently of meeting and hearing Loren Cunningham, original founder of Youth With A Mission (YWAM), speak at a Base near our home. He shared some incredible stories of the dedication of many young missionaries to carry the gospel to the un-reached, and how he felt that within about 10 years, in coordination with a number of other missions agencies, we could potentially reach the whole world and expose them to the gospel!

Will you begin to understand that the “GREATEST SIGN” of the end-times is not “Blood Moons” and solar flares, or natural disasters or wars. It is, quite simply, the finishing of the advancement of the Gospel to all nations, and then the end shall come.

It’s time to finish the “Every Creature Commission” and turn our daily prayers and expectation to, “Even so, Come LORD Jesus!”

So let me pose the question: what can you personally do to re-prioritize your time, your financial giving, & your prayer life, in alignment with this GREATEST SIGN?

At a recent Leadership Summit, I was honored preach a short, passionate message (about 15 minutes long) on the theme of this Blog. Please take a few minutes and hit the play button, or click on the “hotlink” to download the file, and listen when you have time. NOTE: this message includes my impression of the famous William Wallace “FREEDOM” speech from Braveheart in the Intro!

Enjoy and please share with your friends to stir them to missionary action & inspire their prayer life.

The Greatest Sign by Carl Wesley Anderson