[The following came during a period of meditation on February 21, 2006. Since it was not for a specific congregation, it sat in my Bible until YHWH* placed the burden on me to publish it.]
In days to come, the great church, the organization that was great among men, will die the slow death of a wasting disease. The qualities that have pleased me will fade. Indeed, they fade even now, because those approved by men but not by me are honored and received. They even take places of authority to guide and direct. And where is my place? Do they not usurp my throne?
Grieve the passing of an institution. Grieve even more the passing of my people, the ruins now given to ordinary commerce, more concerned with money than me.
Pass through the gates, holy remnant, you who seek holiness in me. Pass through together and do not look back, lest the salt of its sins poison you.
Look upon the bones. Look upon the ruins. Once proud, even haughty, the place is abandoned, though filled with people. Alone in the midst of a crowd, it mourns the former days of sweet fellowship.
How has this happened? How did the congregation wither and die? What infection or calamity has done this? Neither infection nor calamity, but rebellion and arrogance. Can any succeed lest I direct? Can I direct who will not follow? Folly has done this, and none repent.
It will not happen in a day. It will not happen in a month. It will not happen in a year. But year by year, little by little, the disease takes hold.
[I asked, "Is there no remedy?"]
The remedy is always at hand. Let the people come to me as little children to their father and mother, trusting and obedient. Let them come in truth. Let those who lead and claim authority humble themselves before me and measure themselves by my line. Let them honestly serve and glorify me and lift me up in the congregation until all live in me and for me, just as Jesus, who died for them.
*YHWH or YHVH is the English representation of the four Hebrew letters that spell the name of the God of the Bible, the one true, living God worshipped by Jews and Christians. YHWH was the name by which he identified himself to Moses in Ex. 3:14. According to references that I've read, the exact pronunciation of YHWH's name was lost in antiquity. After much study, I prefer to pronounce the name "Yahu-wah" (the "h" being aspirated as in "hay", emphasis on the last syllable), but the generally accepted pronounciation in common English is "Yah-weh" or "Yah-way". Some translations of the Bible, such as the KJV and NASB, substitute "the LORD" for his name, following a practice begun before Jesus' birth.
YHWH revealed himself in various ways to the children of Israel in the Hebrew Bible, which Christians call the Old Testament. He also revealed himself in and through his son Jesus Christ and acts, among other ways, in and through Christians by the Holy Spirit. Because the word "God" is being used today to designate all kinds of human inventions, although accepted for centuries in English as a name for YHWH, I prefer to use the name that YHWH chose for himself rather than "God" or "the LORD" as I did in early versions of my writings. Please read The Name of the One True, Living God for a fuller discussion.
|Remember who He is and whose you are|