Monday, January 16, 2006
Ern Baxter - A Prophet of His Generation.
It has been hugely encouraging to find some fellow Ern Baxter fans in the last week (don't forget this amazing guy too)! They have links with Covenant Ministries International (I think) formerly fathered by Bryn Jones. One particularly thrilling thing was to hear that Keri Jones (Bryn's brother) has said quite recently that "it is time to get men like ... Ern Baxter off the shelf and soak ourselves in their revelation again". Thank God for Keri Jones and the impressive looking All Nations Church in Cardiff!
Through that link, I have also had some interaction with an amazing guy called Mark Lawrence who commented on my earlier blog and said:
"As you've noticed the Holy Spirit has been stirring a number of us to read and listen to Ern's material. Recently I've been listening to the Adam Christ analogy and the Kingdom and the Holy Spirit series from 1991. It struck me that Ern was ahead of us then and he still is!".
That comment really seized my attention. Yes indeed, we now have some twenty years seperating us from Ern's ministry - have we really developed any of the ideas and visions that he brought to the church? I would have to agree with the comment and say no - he is STILL prophetic in his generation and ours. However my concern is that if we don't have Ern Baxter on our shelves then we cannot do as Keri instructed and get him off and soak in his revelation. Therefore my call is to let him speak again!!
This is an article from the New Wine magazine entitled; "The Earth is the Lords!". May his vision seize us again.
"The Earth Is the Lords" by Dr Ern Baxter.
When I was a young boy, I was a soloist in our school's sixty-voice boys choir. One day our choir leader taught us a hymn that I've remembered ever since especially one particular line; "Let God be in my head, and in my understanding". I belong to a generation of people who have talked about God in their hearts. But I've come to se that I need God in my head too. I find myself praying again and again, "God be in my head and in my understanding. God use my mind as a repository for ultimate truth". One important reason why I believe we must stretch our minds and understanding is so that we can comprehend God's ultimate purpose in history, which is often referred to as eschatology.
Eschatology is not, as some would say, a particular theory concerning the outcome of history; rather it is the study of every phrase of the end of the world as it is revealed in the life of Jesus Christ. It begins with the inauguration of the kingdom of God at Jesus' birth and ends with the consummation of the Kingdom at His second coming.
The word eschatology stems from the Greek word eschatos which is translated "last". Tradionally defined as the doctrine of last things, the word eschatology occurs about 50 times in the New Testament. The usual understanding of eschatologyas the last things or days is that it pertains to the future, but that is not the meaning of eschatology as it is used in Scripture. In the Bible, it is descriptive of the total time period between Christ's incarnation and His second coming. It refers to a limited time, either lengthy or limited. Hebrews Chapter 1 says, for example that Christ was manifested and revealed in eschaton, or in "these last days" (v2) and in 1 Peter 1:20 we read that it was for our benefit that Jesus was revealed in eschaton or in these "last times".
The Bible also tells us that this current age is the one that terminates the ages; all prior ages are fulfilled in this climactic age. Jesus refers to this in the Gospel of John; "Of all which he hath given me, I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day" (John 6:39). The writer of Hebrews says, "He hath in these last days spoken unto us by His Son" (Hebrews 1:2) and "Now once in the end of the world hath He (Jesus) appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself" (Heb 9:26).
Our Lord Himself categorically states that He is the fulfillment of the hope of the people of God, the "Amen" to all of God's promises. He says in Revelation chapter 1: "I am the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending" (v8); "I am ... the first and the last" (v11).
The Meaning of It All.
So then, what is God's purpose in history? The answer is victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. We see this as early as the garden of Eden and then in God's promises to Abraham. Beginning with creation, we find God's victory over sin, for no sooner had man fallen than God made a prouncement of His intention. In dealed with the serpants deception, God says to him; "Cursed are you" putting an everlasting curse upon Satan (Genesis 3:4).
Then in the New Testament that curse is fulfilled. Satan's future was settled once and for all at Calvary where Jesus Christ destroyed principalities and powers and made a show of them, triumphing over them in His Cross (Colossians 2:15). This is further verified in 1 John 3:8 which says; "For this purpose was the Son of GOd manifested that He might destroy the works of the devil". This is a truth that we should fix firmly in our hearts as we do battle with Satan's dying efforts.
Because of Jesus' victory, Satan is defeated and we are the army that is running him to hell. The gates of hell shall not prevail against us. God has made us His instruments to effect Satan's defeat in history and establish Jesus as the true ruler of history.
As we move on from God's redemptive pronouncement in the garden, we come to that significant period in history when He starts a new dimension of His purpose in the man called Abram, who was eventually called "the father of the faithful". Speaking to Abram or Abraham in Genesis 12:1-3, God says that through him and his seed all the families of the earth will be blessed. That fulfilment is referred to in Romans 4:13:
"For the promise that he should be heir of the world, was not to Abraham or to his seed through the law, but through rightousness of faith".
The promise was made to Abraham and his descendants that they should possess the earth. It remains God's intention that the seeds of Abraham should possess the earth. Jesus confirmed that promise when He said that the meek shall inherit the earth (Matthew 5:5). Hebrews 11:10 says Abraham "looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God".
That's the city that has been coming down from heaven for 2, 000 years - the New Jerusalem. It will not stop coming until it has engulfed the entire earth, until the earth becomes the scene of the government of God and our often-repeated prayer; "Thy kingdom come" has been fully answered.
Next: The Foundation of Victory in the Person of Jesus.