Monday, May 23, 2011

From the Holy Place to the Holy of Holies

Roy Hession's words in Shadow to Substance resonate with me...

There was a time in my Christian life when I did not seem to have problems in my relationship wtih others. I imagined I went through the world smiling at everybody, with everybody smiling back at me. There were problems, all right but I was blissfully unaware of them... [when I went from the Holy Place of the Christian life to the Holy of Holies], I found there were many things in my attitudes to others that needed my repentance and God's forgiveness, and I discovered that not everybody had been smiling at me; they had seen and noted and remembered the wrongs I had done and the wounds I had inflicted. And I had the humiliation of having to take the place of the wrong one on this, that, and the other matter, as I entered the Holiest.

It's true. When we decide to go from just plain "living the Christian life" to living in the Holy of Holies, choosing complete consecration to God--total yieldedness in every area He reveals, we find so many things that used to be acceptable to us are no longer acceptable. We find that, as Roy Hession said, we may have hurt people in the past without knowing it.

As a teen, I carried around in the front of my Bible a little pamphlet entitled, "Others May; You Cannot." [See article below.] To others it may have seemed rigid. And to be honest, when I was a teen and a young adult, I harboured a great deal of pride in my heart at being "right" and living "righteously." I had a great deal of growing up to do--and still do! Yet, the older I get, the less I seem to know! The more questions I have!

Nevertheless, we all know that the baby should not be thrown out with the bathwater. A desire for holiness naturally brings forth a different kind of living. Sometimes it's viewed as radical. Crazy. Ridiculous. Extreme.

By G.D. Watson

Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any [man] will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it. ~ Matthew 16:24-25

If God has called you to be truly like Jesus in all your spirit, He will draw you into a life of crucifixion and humility. He will put on you such demands of obedience that you will not be allowed to follow other Christians. In many ways, He seems to let other good people do things which He will not let you do.
Others who seem to be very religious and useful may push themselves, pull wires, and scheme to carry out their plans, but you cannot. If you attempt it, you will meet with such failure and rebuke from the Lord as to make you sorely penitent.
Others can brag about themselves, their work, their successes, their writings, but the Holy Spirit will not allow you to do any such thing. If you begin to do so, He will lead you into some deep mortification that will make you despise yourself and all your good works.
Others will be allowed to succeed in making great sums of money, or having a legacy left to them, or in having luxuries, but God may supply you only on a day-to-day basis, because He wants you to have something far better than gold, a helpless dependence on Him and His unseen treasury.
The Lord may let others be honored and put forward while keeping you hidden in obscurity because He wants to produce some choice, fragrant fruit for His coming glory, which can only be produced in the shade.
God may let others be great, but keep you small. He will let others do a work for Him and get the credit, but He will make you work and toil without knowing how much you are doing. Then, to make your work still more precious, He will let others get the credit for the work which you have done; this to teach you the message of the Cross, humility, and something of the value of being cloaked with His nature.
The Holy Spirit will put a strict watch on you, and with a jealous love rebuke you for careless words and feelings, or for wasting your time, which other Christians never seem distressed over.

So make up your mind that God is an infinite Sovereign and has a right to do as He pleases with His own, and that He may not explain to you a thousand things which may puzzle your reason in His dealings with you.

God will take you at your word. If you absolutely sell yourself to be His slave, He will wrap you up in a jealous love and let other people say and do many things that you cannot. Settle it forever; you are to deal directly with the Holy Spirit, He is to have the privilege of tying your tongue or chaining your hand or closing your eyes in ways which others are not dealt with. However, know this great secret of the Kingdom: When you are so completely possessed with the Living God that you are, in your secret heart, pleased and delighted over this peculiar, personal, private, jealous guardianship and management of the Holy Spirit over your life, you will have found the vestibule of heaven, the high calling of God.
G.D.Watson (1845-1924) was a Wesleyan Methodist minister and evangelist based in Los Angeles. His evangelistic campaigns took him to England, the West Indies, New Zealand, Australia, Japan and Korea. He also wrote several books. Source:

If I'm going to be extreme about anything, I want it to be in the area of my love for God. Seriously, when you're in love, you are radical about the person with whom you're in love, are you not? Does my life show that I am crazy about God? That I am radically different than those who are not crazy about God? How does it come out?

I remember that, when I first fell in love with my Peter, he was constantly on my mind. I talked about him; ate, drank, breathed, dreamed PETER! Nothing and no one else could take his spot.

Think of how "different from the norm" my life would be if Jesus Christ was constantly on my mind. What if I talked about Him; ate, drank, breathed, dreamed JESUS CHRIST?! How radically different my life would be! How crazy I might seem to others--and sadly, even to other Christians who mean well and believe they themselves are truly devoted to Christ.

Am I really that radical? Do my neighbours and unsaved friends see that I am different? Do they know that nothing and no one is as important to me as Christ in my daily life (not just on Sundays)? 

Am I truly yielded to the Holy Spirit in every little area of my life? 

How regularly do I so hunger for the Word and spiritual food that I forego watching TV or pleasure reading just to spend the time with HIM?

Do people see a LOVE in my heart that only Jesus can give--a supernatural love for those who are unlovely or those who are merely different from me? Can I reach out and tangibly show love to someone who has hurt me or criticized me?

The truth is that with the Holy Spirit living inside of me, I have all the power to be all these things. It takes no effort on my part; it's simply my resting in Him and His power. He does all the work. 

THAT is the way I want to live. 

And THAT is living in the Holy of Holies.


  1. I like the new look! Keep writing... I am helped.


    I'd rather see a sermon than hear one any day ;
    I'd rather one should walk with me than merely tell the way.
    The eye's a better pupil and more willing than the ear ;
    Fine council is confusing , but example's always clear ;
    And the best of all the preachers are the men who live their creeds ,
    For to see good put in action is what everybody needs.

    I soon can learn to do it if you'll let me see it done ;
    I can watch your hands in action , but your tongue too fast may run.
    And the lecture you deliver may be very wise and true ,
    But I'd rather get my lessons by observing what you do ;
    For I might misunderstand you and the high advice you give ,
    But there's no misunderstanding how you act and how you live

    One good man teaches man , men believe what they behold ;
    One deed of kindness noticed is worth forty that are told .
    Who stands with men of honor learns to hold his honor dear .
    For right living speaks a language which to everyone is clear .
    Though an able speaker charms me with his eloquence , I say ,
    I'd rather see a sermon than to hear one any day .

    Edgar A. Guest


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