Wednesday, April 19, 2006

"Thy Kingdom Come!" - Part 4 - Kansas City Shepherds Conference.

Jesus the King of Glory. This section is probably the most exciting part of the entire sermon. Ern moves from the enthronement and glorification of Jesus Christ to His reign NOW to the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. He shows convincingly how the Holy Spirit is poured out on us to give us kingly authority.

"Now I don't wish to enter into eschatological debate tonight. I want to simply affirm my faith ... my faith in what I believe the Word of God teaches, with all due deference to what others may think. But I believe that when Jesus sat down at the right hand of God, the Father meant what He said. He said, "Sit at My right hand until ...". That's a time word. And I don't think He is going to leave the right hand of God "until". He's going to sit there until His enemies are subdued. He's going to accomplish this from heaven and when He's got it done, then He will turn the Kingdom over to the Father. But He's not going to do that until He's done the job He's supposed to.

The Father said, "You sit here Son, and You sit here until You finish the job and then hand it to Me finished. You sit here and rule and reign until Your enemies are made Your footstool". Paul picks up this statement and weaves it into the New Testament revelation when he says, "He must reign until ... He has put all His enemies under His feet" (1 Corinthians 15:25). When our Lord rose from the dead He made a pronouncement. He said, "All authority is given unto Me in heaven" and for years we have stopped there in our eschatological scheme. He has all authority and He reigns in benign joy not only "in heaven" but also "in earth".

I don't know of anything that has paralysed the purposes of God more in the earth than the teaching that Christ's authority is presently limited and the "reign of God" in the "now" on earth is not a possibility. I believe that He has all authority in the earth now. He's not only the King of heaven, He's the King of earth. He's the King of Russia. He's the King of China. He's the King of the United States. He's the King of Canada, the King of Europe, Asia, Africa ... He's the King of all the earth even now! (*applause*).

I must confess that it is only in recent years that I have found David in the New Testament. I found Adam there and I found Abraham but I hadn't found David. By that I mean I hadn't found David in the historical and eschatological significance that the New Testament attaches to him. That Jesus was "of the seed of David" - of course I knew He was. He was in the Messianic line and that seemed to be all it meant. There didn't seem to be any real connection between David and Jesus.

Now I had seen that there was a typical relationship betwen Adam and Jesus for Paul says that Adam was "a type of Christ, Him who was to come" (Romans 5:14, NAS). And there was a historical relationship with Abraham for it was Abraham's "seed" that was going to bless the nations of the earth. But not until recently did I realise the significant role that David played in God's plan and His relationship to David. For David prefigured Christ as God's delegated King. When Jesus came into the world, He came into the world as the Son of David. He came in as the King of the Jews. He came in as the King of all those that are redeemed, so that under His authority the redeemed community might become the means by whereby He would establish God's sovereign right to reign in His own redeemed earth.

Now continuing with this theme of David and Jesus I would like you to turn to Acts chapter 2. And I'm not going to ask you to read verse 4. (*laughter*). When we come to verse 29, we find Peter speaking of David's prophetic perception of the Messiah:

"Brethren I may confidently say to you regarding the patriarch David, that he both died and was buried and his tomb is with us to this day. And so because he was a prophet and knew that God had sworn an oath to seat one of his descendents upon his throne, he looked ahead and spoke of the resurrection of Christ" (Acts 2:29-31 NAS).

Now I don't want to quibble but it doesn't say that he spoke of the second coming of Christ. I think there's something here of deep significance that we've missed. As a result, it's paralysed us in the realization of the things that we have heard this week and which have been offered to us as present possibilities. When I heard Ralph Martin talk about a counter-culture and all that is going on, my heart leaped within me until I could hardly keep my seat. For I believe that in this hour, God is bringing into focus a fact that has been distorted for many many years, and that is:

God's purpose is not to redeem a bunch of people to sit at a bus stop and wait for the bus to come along and get them out of the world's mess. Rather God has redeemed them and cleaned them up and put Himself into them that He may send them back in to clean up the mess and be "the salt of the earth" and the "light of the world" so that with the power of the gospel they may vindicate God's purpose in the death and resurrection of His Son.

Now I believe that the second coming of Christ is the hope of the believer but I don't believe it holds out any hope to the sinner. It is the sinner's damnation - it is the sinner's judgement. Therefore if the sinner is to be helped, either individually or corporately there is only one way that God has designed to help him. That is by the power of the gospel. For the gospel is is the power of God unto salvation. And if it's the power then there is no "the-er" power.

And if Jesus Christ has all power in earth, there is no "all-er" power. He'll never have more power than He has now. If He's got it all, there's no more to be had. He's got it now and He is using that power in the gospel - not only individually but corporately, that in the redeemed community He may manifest the glory of God to the world! I believe the ultimate form of evangelism in this age of grace is going to be the manifestation of God's redeeming power through the total life of a redeemed community that demonstrates what the gospel can do in every area of human life both individually and corporately.

In Acts 2:30-33, Peter declares that David was "a prophet and knew that God had sworn to him with an oath to set one of his descendants upon his throne" and so,

"He looked ahead and spoke of the resurrection of Christ that He was neither abandoned to Hades, nor did His flesh suffer decay. This Jesus God raised up again, to which we are all witnesses. This Jesus God raised up again, to which we are all witnesses. Therefore having been exalted to the right hand of God and having received from the Father, the promise of the Holy Spirit, He has poured forth this which you both see and hear" (NAS).

I am stressing the fact that the Pentecostal outpouring is related to David brethren, and I want you to hold that firmly in your mind now.

"For it was not David who ascended into heaven, but he himself said, 'The Lord said to my Lord; "Sit at My right hand until I make Thine enemies a footstool for Thy feet". Therefore let all the house of Israel know for certain that God has made Him both Lord and Christ - this Jesus whom you crucified" (vv 34-36, NAS).

Now what came back from heaven after Jesus' ascension? That which came back from heaven was the coronation oil that had been poured on the on the head of David's greater Son - the new King. For "we see Him crowned with glory and honour" (Hebrews 2:9). As He ascended into the Presence of the Father and sat upon His throne, He was anointed with the holy anointing oil of universal kingship, and that oil descended on the day of Pentecost and covered and flooded and possessed and impressed and impelled men and women to become authorities for Jesus Christ.

And filled with the Holy Spirit they went out to challenge and to charm and to change the life of Jerusalem and the life of Judea and the life of Samaria and to reach the uttermost parts of the earth until the whole world knew that something had happened on the day of Pentecost - that King Jesus had shared the anointing oil of His ultimate authority with the royal community on the day of Pentecost. I believe brethren, that what is happening worldwide in this hour is unprecedented. This visitation of the Holy Spirit is not just to give us goose-bumps and teach us to play the tambourines and sing new choruses. That's all part of the package but there's something more important than all of that.

It is God's almighty purpose being revealed that at the end of this age He is going to manifest His glory in the redeeemed community. This outpouring of the Holy Spirit is not only an outpouring of blessing - it's an outpouring of authority. He is establishing spiritual authority in the earth so that He may in this hour bring into existance His Kingdom in power and answer the prayers of multiplied thousands through the centuries who have interceded by saying, "Thy Kingdom Come!" (*prolonged applause*).


James B said...

Wow ... Wow!! ... WOW!! How utterly, amazingly awesome!! I have never ever before thought of the baptism of the Holy Spirit in such large terms before! I guess I always thought of it in the "Dennis Bennett"-style. The blessing that is personal. But to think of it on a grand scale - an anointing of authority!! Of rulership that equips us to go out and fulfill the Great Commission!!

Absolutely outstanding!!

Thank you so much for taking the time that I know it is to reproduce this material! I am so going to need a copy of this sermon! Just imagining the applause! It has helped me too, to realise just WHAT praying "Thy Kingdom Come" means.


Ollie said...

I would agree ... but here's the crunch question that's bothering me. What about those who don't get baptised in the Holy Spirit!? Do they not have that kingly authoratative anointing? Sorry to be controversial - I know it's a hot topic, but it was just on my mind as I read this!

Baxter's Boy said...

No that's okay ... anything goes on this website! :) I think the dilemma with the baptism of the Spirit often comes when the discussion is about "When" it happens rather than "What" it is. Acts makes that quite clear - receiving the Spirit is an event that can be "Seen" and "Heard". Therefore we can suppose that verbal manifestations are to be expected. Seen? Well I would suggest that would include the "Joy Unspeakable" bit.

After all ... Ern Baxter said elsewhere that "something" drew the crowds together on the Day of Pentecost and that "something" was the manifestations that came from the 120 receiving the Spirit!

So having established that - we really can leave the "When" question to individual experience. The question should simply be "Did you receive when you believed?". That then frees us to go on and consider these broader and larger concepts that are presented in this simply outstanding sermon!

ABPWD said...

It's interesting isn't it. Perhaps if we focused more on "why" the Holy Spirit was given - and really took to heart the principles that Ern has laid out so wonderfully here, then there would be less argument as to who's got it and who hasn't. Could that be a valid argument? That the more personalised and the more individual we make the experience of the baptism of the Holy Spirit, the more potential there is to bicker about the smaller issues. If we could cling to this "cosmic" outline - that the Holy Spirit has been given that we might march out into that world out there and declare that the gospel is THE and ONLY THE power of God unto salvation, that power will give us the authority that they may sit up and listen!! How awesome - we don't have to start worrying about Da Vinci codes and the like - because we have been given the authority to declare that Jesus Christ is the only way to the Father - and with that authority given to us by the Holy Spirit, the world MUST sit up and take notice!!

Anonymous said...

Of course ... Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones argued that the reason why the Christian church is in so much trouble today is because we do not sufficiently understand the Sealing of the Spirit - or the Baptism of the Spirit. He didn't mince words!

What do we think of that argument?

Dr S A J Burgess

James B said...

And I would argue that is correct. Not only because Dr Lloyd-Jones wouldn't say anything rashly or quickly, but carefully and well thought out - but also because the sealing of the Spirit is our initiation into life in the Spirit!! It is the beginning! The gateway not the goal!! But it is a gateway that we must go through!! And if we dont go through it, or get confused about it (as Terry Virgo would say!) and just sweep it under the carpet in favour of the spiritual gifts then it is like doing a button up on your shirt out of place, so that the whole garment looks wrong.

Dr Annette Walker said...

So in essence the crunch is - "Anyone who is thirsty - come to me and drink!". This He spoke of concerning the Holy Spirit.

The question then, is not "when is He given" but "Are we thirsty?!".