Kindgdom Bible Studies Kingdom of God Part 32


"Teaching the things concerning the kingdom of God..."



Part 32 



            The fifth beatitude, or principle of the Kingdom of God, is found in Matthew 5:7.  “Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.”  Mercy is a characteristic of the sons of God since it was a characteristic of the Pattern Son Jesus.  Luke states this principle in these words, “Be ye therefore merciful, even as your Father in heaven is merciful” (Lk. 6:35).  The life of the firstborn Son revealed this attribute of the Father’s own nature.  The life of all of God’s sons will express that same attribute, for it is the nature of our Father.  Mercy is love in manifestation toward an erring one.  In the Old Testament mercy is used to describe God  in His attitude and activity toward His people.  David exults about the goodness of the Lord, saying, “The mercy of the Lord endureth for the ages.”  It means that the actions of God toward mankind are merciful and remain so as long as time endures, until that blessed dispensation of the fullness of times, the consummation of all ages, when all things are gathered together into one in Christ, and God becomes ALL IN ALL everything to everyone, everywhere!  It is an enduring relationship that does not end until grace and mercy and redemption have finished their work on behalf of the human race.


            This fifth principle of the Kingdom of God insists that the sons of God are to demonstrate this same spirit in their ministry to men.  We are the instrument of God to bring His salvation unto all the ends of the earth.  And only love can prevail!  Judgment is sometimes necessary to restrain evil, but only grace and mercy reveal the tender heart and redemptive purpose of the Father.  And while it is true that the merciful also obtain mercy,  this demonstration of mercy is not motivated by the hope of receiving mercy in return.  That is only the glorious by-product of being merciful.  The sons of God do not come to have mercy shown to them, but to show mercy.  When we show mercy because it is our nature to be merciful, and with no hidden agenda of obtaining mercy in return, we are moving onto the high plane of sonship ministry.  It is still true that those who show mercy will have mercy shown to them, for it is the law of the Kingdom!  The Father will abundantly pour out His mercy upon those who flow out in His mercy unto others.


            Mercy is an aspect of the perfection of the Father’s nature.  This is to be found also in the sons.  For sons it cannot be something we learn to do, or something we do out of obligation because we are commanded to do it, but it must flow out of the heart of the Father birthed within us.  Many years ago there was a song titled, “Doing what comes naturally.”  That is what all of Adam’s race is doing what comes naturally!  In Adam it is natural to sin, natural to doubt, natural to fear, natural to lust, natural to strive, natural to fight, natural to hate, natural to cheat, natural to war, natural to retaliate.  All these things and many more are natural because they spring out of nature.  That is what natural means nature-al.  People just do what comes nature-ally!  But the sons of God are made partakers of the divine nature.  When a son of God does “what comes naturally” he is acting just like his Father!  Ah, yes, we are putting on the mind of Christ, the law of God’s life is being inscribed within our hearts, and we are coming to that place where we now think as God thinks, we now speak as God speaks, we now walk like God walks, and we act like God acts.  To be   perfect in character, to be pure in mind, to be kind, generous, faithful, loving and merciful is becoming NATURAL!  In the words of the country song:


                                                “I’m seein’ my father in me,

                                                  I guess that’s how it’s meant to be,

                                                  And I find I’m more and more like him each day;

                                                  I notice I walk the way He walks,

                                                  I notice I talk the way He talks,

                                                  I’m startin’ to see my father in me.”


            A brother related the following experience. “I recall one time when I had laryngitis, the doctor wanted to take a throat culture to see if I had an infection.  He took a long Q-tip and reached way back into my throat.  I gagged and coughed.  When he withdrew the Q-tip he said, ‘I need to do this one more time.’  I said, ‘Okay.  But this time I won’t gag.  I am going to practice positive thinking.’  He shook his head and assured me that, in this case, positive thinking would not work.  I insisted that it would.  And so he explained, ‘Bob, the gag is a reflex.  A reflex comes from the spine, not from the brain.  I’ll put pressure on the back of your tongue and you will gag.  It’s that simple.’  Then he demonstrated by having me cross my legs.  He hit my knee.  My leg kicked.  Then he challenged me, ‘Okay, try positive thinking.’  I did.  He hit my knee again.  My knee kicked again.  Then he summarized, ‘The brain doesn’t control the spinal cord.  And the spinal cord is the source of a reflex.  So, thinking, be it positive or negative, won’t do you any good in this situation.”


            The nature of the sons of God works like a reflex.  There is a realm beyond the mind and beyond the will where the nature of God makes us like our Father without conscious thought or effort.  Children often walk or talk or laugh or manifest some other mannerism just like one of their parents or some other ancestor.  These are inherited traits that have nothing to do with thought, training or effort.  It is the way we are.  The nature of God must be so formed in us by the operation of the Holy Spirit that the attributes of God become our nature.  If we are still thinking about how we should act and react, if we are still trying to bring ourselves to the point where we can manifest God’s life, then the nature of the Father has yet to be fully formed in us.  There is no condemnation if you fall short; but trying will not do the job.  Nature is inherited on the basis of relationship, and as we are truly born again from experience to experience, from realm to realm, we are made partakers of the divine nature.  When the Father’s life has truly become our life, the attributes of God will flow naturally and effortlessly and powerfully from our lives!


            Mercy is not measured by outward demonstrations of kindness and goodness.  As wonderful as visible acts of kindness are, they do not guarantee  the possession of mercy in the heart as a true revelation of the Father.  Any of us can force our actions to conform outwardly to the standard we believe God requires of us.  And even though externally we appear to be kind and gracious and good and merciful, we are not yet doing “what comes naturally.”  Mercy by revelation is the transmission of the very heart of God to the son.  When mercy flows out of our state of being, every attitude and activity is merciful.  There is no other possible way for the son of God to act or react.  Because the Christ within cannot act in any other manner, the son of God cannot act in any other manner.  He is merciful because he is filled with and possessed by the SPIRIT OF MERCY.  Blessed are the merciful!”


            All who rule and reign with Christ in His Kingdom rule in mercy.  The throne of God is the Throne of Mercy.  “And in mercy shall the throne be established: and he shall sit upon it in truth...judging, and seeking judgment, and hasting righteousness” (Isa. 16:5).  In mercy shall the throne be established, saith the Lord.  God has come to our lives in mercy.  The only reason we are breathing today is because of His mercy.  God didn’t have to wake us up this morning in our right mind, but He did.  Mercy is an aspect of God’s nature that flows out to all men, for our heavenly Father causes His sun to rise on the evil and  on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.  Man does not know how to be so merciful!


            The Greek word for throne is KICCE.  It means the place or seat of authority.  The throne of God is not a golden chair somewhere out in outer space, nor is it a seat in London, England or in Jerusalem, Israel.  It is the authority that is invested in the name of Jesus Christ within His elect.  The Lord is taking all the authority that is in the name or nature of Jesus Christ and He is establishing that authority in His sons and daughters as the power of life. 


            Before David became king, while Saul was seeking to kill him, God put mercy in David’s heart.  David and his men hid in many places in the mountains of Judah, continually hunted by Saul, but always escaping from him.  At one time Jonathan, Saul’s son, and David’s friend, came to meet David in a forest, and he said to him, “Fear not, for the Lord is with you; and Saul, my father, shall not take you prisoner.  You will yet be the king of Israel, and I shall stand next to you.”  And Jonathan and David made the promise to be true to each other and to each other’s children always.  Then they parted; and David never again saw his dear friend, Jonathan. 


            At one time David was hiding with a few men in a great cave near the Dead Sea, at a place called Engedi.  They were far back in the darkness of the cave, when they saw Saul come into the cave alone and lie down to sleep.  David’s men whispered to him, “Now is the time of which the Lord said, ‘I will give your enemy into your hand, and you may do to him whatever you please.’”  Then David went toward Saul very quietly with his sword in his hand.  His men watched to see him kill Saul, but instead, he only cut off a part of Saul’s long robe.  His men were not pleased with this; but David said to them, “May the Lord forbid that I should do harm to the man whom the Lord has anointed as king.”  And David would not allow his men to harm Saul.  After a time Saul rose up from sleep and went out of the cave.  David followed him at a distance and called out to him, “My lord the king!”  Saul looked around, and there stood David, bowing to him and holding up the piece of his royal robe.  David said to Saul, “My lord, O king, why do you listen to the words of men who tell you that David is trying to do you harm?  This very day the Lord gave you into my hand, and some told me to kill you, but I said, ‘I will do no harm to my lord, for he is the Lord’s anointed king.’  See, my father, see the skirt of your robe!  I cut it off to show you that I would do you no harm, though you are hunting after me to kill me.  May the Lord judge between you and me!”


            When Saul heard these words, his old love for David came back to him and he cried out, “Is that your voice, my son David?”  And Saul wept and said, “You are a better man than I am, for you have done good to me, while I have been doing you harm.  May the Lord reward you for your kindness to me this day!  I know that it is God’s will that you shall be king, and you will rule over this people.  Now give me your word, in the name of the Lord, that you will not destroy my family, but that you will spare their lives.”  And David gave his promise to Saul in the name of the Lord; and Saul led his  men away from hunting David to his place at Gibeah.  David is a type of the greater son of David who was prophesied to reign in righteousness over the people of Israel and over all the nations of the earth.  The blind man recognized who Jesus was when he cried out from his place by the roadside, “Jesus, thou son of David, have mercy on me!”  All the sons of God are members of that corporate son of David whose throne is established in mercy!  As the authority of Christ is raised up within us in mercy we are beginning to see the Throne of Mercy established in our lives.  When this wonderful work is completed within the sons of God the overwhelming manifestation of mercy shall be seen by all the peoples of the earth!


            The greatness of a man is measured by his attitude toward his enemies.  While living here on earth, our Lord was extremely kind.  He picked up little children and blessed them.  He healed all who were suffering with disease and pain.  While relatives were weeping over dead loved ones, He raised four of them to life again.  The Saviour of ALL men said to the woman caught in adultery, “Neither do I condemn you; go, and sin no more.”  His kindness made an evangelist out of the licentious woman at the well.  Because Jesus really loved the weak, helpless creatures whom He had created, He wept over them, prayed for them, succored them, and taught them continually.  Except those religious Pharisees, Jesus never spoke one cross word to the multitudes of people, saint or sinner.  He was very tender and kind and merciful in all His dealings with men.  His approach to them was very gentle, delicate and considerate.  Surely, then, we are safer in His hands than anywhere else!  The things He has in store for every one of us are far greater than we could plan for ourselves.


            Does God expect His sons to be either better or less than Himself?  In Luke 6:35-36 we read, “But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be THE SONS OF THE HIGHEST; for HE IS KIND UNTO THE UNTHANKFUL AND TO THE EVIL, BE YE THEREFORE MERCIFUL, AS YOUR FATHER ALSO IS MERCIFUL.”  In this instance Jesus plainly says that if we desire to be the sons of the Highest, we must be merciful as He is merciful.  THE HIGHEST IS MERCIFUL TO ALL! 


            The question follows: Why should the Highest be merciful to the evil and the unthankful?  The answer is clear that the evil one and the unthankful one may come to know the mercy and goodness of God!  They would never know that mercy in any other way.  If Jesus teaches us that we are to be kind to those who mis-use us, reproach us, curse us, and make themselves our enemies, then what kind of a God and Father would He be, whose words Jesus taught us, who would hate His enemies, refuse to be kind and merciful to those who oppose Him, and cast them into merciless eternal hell to burn forever even if they deserve it?  If such a thing were to be, then God would require us to be better than Himself!  Jesus teaches us that we are to be kind and merciful to the most despicable of men.  Do we then have a Father whose nature is entirely opposite to ours?  Impossible!  The sons of God are sent, as was the Son, to reveal the nature of our Father to all not merely in words, but by our actions.


            If we see a God who loves only those who love Him, then we have a very small and fickle God indeed.  But Jesus taught us the principles of the Kingdom of God, and laid down as the very Constitution of His Kingdom this law: “Ye have heard that it hath been said, thou shalt love thy neighbor, and hate thine enemy.  But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; THAT YE MAY BE THE SONS OF YOUR FATHER WHICH IS IN HEAVEN: for He maketh His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.  And if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?  BE YE THEREFORE PERFECT AS YOUR FATHER WHICH IS IN HEAVEN IS PERFECT” (Mat. 5:43-48).


            Are we to suppose that God requires us to behave in one way toward the unrighteous, while His own disposition toward them is exactly the opposite?  Are we to believe that our Father commands us to love our enemies, bless them that curse us, do good to them that hate us, and pray for them that persecute us...while He banishes His enemies to everlasting damnation, torturing endlessly those that curse Him, meeting out eternal vengeance upon those that hate Him, and shutting up all mercy from those who persecute Him?  But that is exactly what the churches tell us.  What great nonsense!  What horrible blasphemy!  “Oh,” they say, “God does not send men to hell; they take themselves there.”  What an absurd, unspeakable cop out!  It is God Himself who has all power over every creature and over every event that transpires in the whole universe.  There is no power but of God.  He is the Judge of all.  None can go into hell except that He banishes them there.  Men do not go down into hell on their own volition.  No man would!  Adam didn’t leave the Garden of his own volition, God Himself drove the man from the Garden.  The serpent didn’t do it; God did.  And the devil certainly isn’t the one who takes men to hell!  No scripture says that. 


            God in infinite wisdom has ordained judgment for His corrective purposes, but blessed be His name, He always makes a way for His banished to return.  Is it not obvious that if even one ounce of that infinite love, of that unequaled goodness, of that unending mercy, of that omnipotent power of the heavenly Father and His sons in His image, were to reach these people the goodness of God would ultimately triumph and lead all men to repentance; and hell would eventually freeze over!  And it is so!  Hallelujah!  It is so!  How do I know?  The Bible tells me so.  Furthermore, the mind of Christ and my Father’s nature and heart within my own ransomed spirit tell me so!  That is why God Himself is the Saviour, the Deliverer, and the Redeemer.  He loves the sinner enough to be patient even for long ages with him; He loves the sinner enough to forgive him any depth of vileness, insult, or injury; He loves him enough to pardon, cleanse, and transform him by His Infinite Grace and Omnipotent Power.  He hates sin enough to deal with it, He hates death enough to destroy it, and He hates hell enough to empty it!  It cannot but be true, David’s testimony of Him, “His mercy endures for the ages...”


            God not only reigns  in righteousness, He reigns in mercy.  Mercy is the activity of His authority and power.  “And in mercy shall the throne be established” (Isa. 16:5).  The Hebrew word for throne also means “a canopy; something that is covered.”  The mercy seat in the tabernacle in the wilderness was covered by the skins and the veil of the Most Holy Place and by the overspreading wings of the Cherubim of gold.  “To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my covered place the mercy seat.”  It was upon the mercy seat that the glory of the God of Israel dwelt.  He is preeminently a God of mercy, who remembers mercy in time of judgment.  The writer to the Hebrews says, “Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need” (Heb. 4:16).  God is the God of mercy.  Mercy is the ability to get in other people’s skin until you see the way they see, hear the way they hear, feel the way they feel so that you can be touched by the feelings of their infirmities.  That is exactly what Jesus did for you and me.  And it is what every son of mercy  must attain to.  “In mercy shall my canopy be established: and he shall sit upon it in truth...judging, and seeking judgment, and accelerating righteousness” (Isa. 16:5).  God’s throne is a covered place, a canopy, the place of mercy where all sin is covered.  On another level we are the tabernacle of God and the ark is in us.  The throne of mercy is established in our hearts.  “In mercy shall the throne be established.”  Where?  IN US!  “And He shall sit upon it.”  Where?  IN US!  “And He shall judge.”  Where? IN US!  “And He shall seek justice.”  Where?  IN US!  “And He shall accelerate righteousness.”  Where?  IN US!  Nothing that God’s throne is or that it represents is worth a hill of beans until it becomes reality and life in us.  God must reign in us and through us in mercy!


            The world today is full of people who excel in so many virtues, and live in a state of holiness so far as their conduct is concerned, and yet spoil it all with an unmerciful disposition.  It has been said that there are only two kinds of sin: there are the sins of the body and the sins of the disposition (soul).  Christians have been conditioned to condemn the sins of the body as far worse than the sins of the disposition.  But listen to this, O sons of God: No form of vice, not worldliness, not greed of money and possessions, not foul language, not drunkenness or drug abuse, not adultery or sexual perversion, does more to shut up God from men than unmercifulness.  For embittering life, for splitting churches, for breaking up communities, for destroying the most sacred relationships, for devastating homes, for alienating friends and loved ones, for withering up men and women, for perverting the innocence of childhood, for fostering hostilities and warfare, in short, for sheer misery-producing power, lack of love and unmercifulness take the lead.


            The sins of the body and the sins of the soul (disposition) are illustrated by the story of the Prodigal Son and his Elder Brother.  But, ultimately, which was worse?  And how many prodigal sons are kept out of the Kingdom of God by the unlovely character of those who profess to be inside?  Analyze, as a study in mercy, the thundercloud as it gathers upon the older brother’s brow!  What is it made of?  Jealousy, anger, pride, judgment, vindictiveness, uncharity, cruelty, self-righteousness, touchiness, doggedness, sullenness these are the ingredients of this dark and sullen soul.  I do not think I am mistaken when I say that the sins of the soul are worse to live in, and for others to live with, and more destructive to God’s gracious nature, than any of the gross sins of the body.  Did Jesus not say that the harlots and the publicans enter into the Kingdom of God before the religious Pharisees?  Why is a judgmental, condemning attitude so vile?  Because it denies the very redemptive nature and heart  of the Father His mercy!  And I do not hesitate to tell you that no man can be a priest after the Order of Melchizedek, which is the Order of the Son of God, unless he be a MERCIFUL PRIEST.


            The writer to the Hebrews put it this way: “Forasmuch then as the children (of God) are partakers of flesh and blood, He also Himself likewise took part of the same.  For verily He took not on Him the nature of angels; but He took on Him the seed of Abraham.  Wherefore in all things it behooved Him to be made like unto His brethren, that He might be a MERCIFUL AND FAITHFUL HIGH PRIEST in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people” (Heb. 2:14-18).  When the Word of God consented to be made flesh, to strip Himself of the glory He had before, and become a man, a human being, to live among the vileness of the sinful, rebellious, and dying, to be touched by the same infirmities, weaknesses, and feelings that touch us, to suffer being tempted in all points like as we are, to be rejected and suffer the agony of false accusation and the humiliation of ridicule, the pain of the stripes received from the Roman lashes, and the suffering of the cross itself why did He submit to all this?  The stock answer to this is that He had to become a man and suffer and die in order to purchase our redemption.  This is true.  This is a part of the reason He became a man, but only part of it; there is much more to the reason He became a man, much more. 


            Not for one moment would I detract from His great love for us in the sacrifice He made for our salvation.  Such love, such wondrous love!  Words fail to express the wonder of all that was transacted at Calvary, and how thankful and appreciative we are for it!  But in the passage quoted above we see that Jesus became a man, not only to die on the cross for our sins, but after having redeemed us, to become a High Priest forever after the Order of Melchizedek, a faithful High Priest and a MERCIFUL HIGH PRIEST.  Ah, Jesus could be the eternal King without having been so totally compassed about with infirmity.  But He could never be  a Merciful High Priest without it!  He might have been perfect in character and desirous to help us; but, if He had never tasted death, how could He allay our fears as we walk through the dreadful quagmire of  this death realm?  If He had never been tempted, how could He succor those who are tempted?  If He had never wept, how could He soothe and dry our tears?  If He had never suffered, hungered, wearied on the hill of difficulty, or threaded His way through the swamplands of grief, how could He be a merciful and faithful High Priest, full of understanding, compassion, and kindness?  And the nature of the firstborn Son of God, the High Priest of our Profession, must be the nature of every member of the body of sons who are also the body of the High Priest  the Priests and the Priesthood of the Most High God!  “And they sung a new song, saying, Thou hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth” (Rev. 5:9-10).  “And I saw thrones, and they  sat upon them, and...they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years” (Rev. 20:4,6). 


            Let all men know that God is a GOD OF MERCY!  “The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plentious in mercy.  He will not always chide: neither will He keep His anger for ever” (Ps. 103:8-10).  “Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands.  For the Lord is good; His mercy is everlasting; and His truth endureth unto all generations” (Ps. 100:1,5).  “Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful” (Lk. 6:36).  “Blessed are the merciful...” (Mat. 5:7).  SONS OF THE HIGHEST will be merciful even as their Father!  It is the mark of sonship.


            The following words by Paul Mueller are precious truth for this hour.  “The basic principle of mercy in the Kingdom of God is clearly stated: the merciful shall receive mercy.  Those who lack mercy, who condemn the lawless, inconsistent lifestyles of others, and put them outside the grace and mercy of the Lord, will not receive mercy for themselves.  Much of Christendom is embroiled in carnal, political efforts to isolate and bring judgment on those who do not live according to their standards.  It is plain to see that they themselves are violating a basic principle of the Kingdom of God.  When they stand before the great Judge of all, their merciless attitude toward others will bring forth a harvest of judgment.   But the judgments of the Lord are always tempered with His abundant mercy (Ja. 2:13).


            “Most certainly, what most Christians believe is far from the basic principles of the Kingdom of God.  A good friend told me years ago that the only truth most Christians know for sure is the truth that Jesus died for them.  Everything else they believe and teach is either a mixture of man’s ideas, or is total error.  But this is a new Day of reformation and restoration unto full redemption.  The Lord has been restoring truth to His elect, by the Spirit.  We are blessed in being part of another, significant, spiritual reformation.  This time, we are not led to post these kingdom truths on the doors of the churches, as Martin Luther did, but Father is writing them on the tables of our hearts, by the Spirit, where it will do the most good.


            “All who receive of the Lord’s salvation and enter His house do so by the abundant mercies of the Lord.  The Psalmist said, ‘I will come into Thy house in the multitude of Thy mercy’ (Ps. 5:7).  And all who dwell continually in His house are surrounded by His goodness and mercy.  David said, ‘Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever’ (Ps. 23:6).  The basic principle of the kingdom of God and of the Lord’s house is mercy.  All who come into the kingdom and the house of the Lord can only come because of the Lord’s goodness, grace and mercy.  But for Christians to show a merciless attitude toward others is to stand in the doorway of the kingdom as the scribes and Pharisees did.  Jesus said to them, ‘ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in’ (Mat. 23:13).


            “The Lord has had mercy on His elect in Zion.  Therefore we should be merciful to others.  The Psalmist prophesied, ‘Thou shalt arise, and have mercy upon Zion: for the time to favour her, yea, the set time, is come’ (Ps. 103:13).  It is due to the Lord’s forever enduring mercy that He is now favoring Zion, which is the spiritual realm of the elect.  The Lord is dealing with the elect of Zion now, not with the multitudes in the world.  The Lord’s purpose for us is perfection in Christ. It is a purpose only He can fulfill.  The Lord will perfect that which concerneth me: Thy mercy, O Lord, endureth for ever: forsake not the works of Thine own hands’ (Ps. 138:8).  We are the works of His hands!  And we know that in His mercy, the Lord will surely perfect that which He has begun in us for His glory”   end quote.


            Demonstrations of mercy, such as the world has never known, are now upon the horizon, ready to be manifested at our Father’s appointed time.  Ah, darkness covers the earth, and gross darkness the people, but God is forming a body of His own nature with a message of mercy and hope, and in them the light of His glory shall arise upon all the ends of the earth.  God is preparing a merciful priesthood to minister unto all the kindreds and nations of mankind.  It is a light arising in the darkness and out of the darkness to swallow up all the darkness everywhere.  It is a theatrical of mercy in a world of wrath and violence and degradation.


            My earnest prayer to God is that all His dear sons shall learn this one grand truth: “Judge not, that ye be not judged.  For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again” (Mat. 7:1-2).  That is but a negative way of saying, “Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.”  Note the words: Shall be judged shall be measured.  There are two kinds of judgment.  One is of condemnation; the other is of mercy.  The one is according to appearance and accusation of evil; the other is righteous judgment and according to truth and mercy.  Jesus commands to “Judge not according to appearance, but judge righteous judgment.”  He warns against the judgment which arises from faultfinding and condemning.  The warning is just this: You will be judged with your own judgment, and you will be measured with, or in, your own measure.  The measure that you use for others is the very same measure that shall be used for you until you learn!  Until you become a merciful one!


            How precious this inworking of His grace whereby we are being transformed to become HIS MERCIFUL ONES.  How long we have walked with God without learning what it means to “have mercy,” to become a vessel or channel through whom His mercy is poured forth.  There has been far too much fight in us, a demand for justice according to what we perceived to be justice.  “And that He might make known the riches of His glory on the vessels of mercy, which He had afore prepared unto glory, even us, whom He hath called...” (Rom. 9:23-24). 


            Merciful priests!  The priestly heart is above all things a sympathetic, compassionate, merciful heart, in which the love of Christ constrains us to express His goodness unto men.  If a vicious serial killer is caught and slain, or some homosexual activist is murdered, there is that deceitful self-righteous spirit within us which silently judges, saying, “Good...there is one less murderer or one less pervert in the world.”  That is not the Spirit of God, and it is not the judgment of a Priest of God.  A priestly heart!  Oh, Spirit of God!  Write upon my heart, with indelible letters, the merciful heart of my High Priest!  It is my deep conviction that it is more important to manifest the nature of Christ in meeting a person’s need, than in witnessing to people about the “plan of salvation.”  Christians have become so conditioned to the idea that they aren’t “doing anything for God” unless they go out and witness, skillfully using the sword of the Word of God.  But, my precious brother, my dear sister, when you are merciful and encourage and help people in their desperate need, you become a living word to them that says, “I care and God cares for you!”  Jesus speaks His word through us in actions, we become a word that is alive to them, not a dead, printed word, or doctrinal word, or religious word, but a Living Word.  This is a life to be lived, as Jesus did, and it is more important than witnessing, quoting scripture verses, teaching or preaching.  Instead of witnessing, we BECOME THE WITNESS of what our Father is really like.


            There is no need to be skilled in the wisdom and ways of this world, no need to attend a Bible School or Seminary; no special talent is needed, no training, no education, no wealth, no power, or attainment in order to BE A VESSEL OF MERCY.  Any saint of God can be a merciful priest any day, because there are people who need help every day!  When we care for them, we are bringing the heart of God to them in the place of their need.  Our Father cares for every soul that has ever seen the light of day upon this planet.  The way that He has chosen to reveal that He cares is through His MERCIFUL PRIESTHOOD.  That is why it is so important for us to know what our Father is like, that He is a God of justice and a God that is filled with kindness and tender mercies that endure throughout all ages. 


            It is the property of God to always have mercy, and mercy triumphs over judgment.  His mercy is above the heavens.  It is from everlasting to everlasting.  He has provided a way that the banished may always return.  There can be no limits to God’s mercy.  Men have limits to their mercy, but our Father has none.  The mercy of God is not only mercy, it is tender mercy.  It is mercy of the utmost tenderness and compassionate love and infinite kindness.  It is mercy that reaches to all, to the darkest sin, and to the lowest hell.  Christ Himself manifested that mercy.  It is mercy without any alloy, pure, and without any restraint.  It is mercy without any remembrance of the transgression.  It is the blotting of it out.  The record is erased.  It is the casting of it into the deep sea of eternal forgetfulness.  It extends through all time and into eternity.  Those who would be priests of the Most High must exercise His mercy.  When you exercise mercy it must be in great tenderness; not grudgingly, not by compulsion, but because it is your nature to do it.  Gentle and heavenly mercy is of God.  When God speaks of mercy, He uses a figure which is of the sublimest character.  He says not only that His mercy endures for all ages, but that His mercy is above the heavens, as if it were the dome of Infinite Love over all.  Matters not where are the heavens of His justice and wrath; His mercy is higher than all!  It shines brightest in the fair crown of God Himself.  It seems as if it were the celestial diamond in the diadem of heaven.  On the brows of all God’s sons there is no brighter gem.  He sets a crown of forgiveness and tender mercy upon our brows.  When we are compassionate and kind and merciful, we are most like God, the very sons of the Father.




            The sixth principle of the Kingdom of God is given us in these words, “Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God” (Mat. 5:8).  Who are the pure in heart?  Those whose hearts are undivided, unadulterated, unmixed, and unalloyed.  To be “pure” means to be “unmixed, single, free of anything that adulterates or taints; containing nothing but its own reality.”  Pure water is water without any contaminants; pure air is air free from pollutants; pure gold is refined until it contains no tinge of alloy, no trace of impurities, no residue of dross.  Under the law of Moses people were not permitted to wear garments of wool mingled with linen.  Not that there is wrong in either one, but the type is meaningful, for wool is derived from animals while linen comes from a plant.  They were not to plow with an ox and an ass in the same yoke, for an ox is a clean animal, but an ass is unclean.  God was showing that there are things that are not to be mixed.  Flesh must not be mixed with spirit.  Truth must not be mixed with error.  Righteousness must not be mixed with unrighteousness.  The will of God must not be mixed with the will of man.  The activities of the people of God must not be mixed with the methods and ways of the world and of Mystery Babylon.  Purity of heart means that the old Adamic heart is put off; the old religious heart is put off as well.  There is singleness of vision, purpose, hope and motive; the mind of Christ which is the nature of the Father is its only reality.


            This truth is powerfully expressed in one of the writings of George Wylie.  He writes, “Some years ago, at a camp meeting I attended, there was a lovely flow of teaching.  There was very little prophecy, but wonderful teaching.  The people, and especially the young people, expressed their appreciation of the teaching.  ‘This is just what we need,’ they said.  When it came to the last meeting, and the teaching ministry had not reached its climax, one of the brethren said to one who had taken it on himself to direct the meetings, ‘Don’t you think we should let the teaching ministry finish?’  ‘No,’ he answered, ‘we want to pray and prophesy over some people, we want to impress some who are here from a certain area.’  I won’t mention any names, but the idea was to try and impress those present with the greatness of our prophetic ministry.  We wanted to let them see how we could do it.  So we got some people up on the platform where all could see and prophesied gifts and ministries to them.  I don’t think they were the least impressed, as we never saw them again.


            “One wonders, when such things are done, how much of God is in it and how much of the fleshly nature; how much of the prophecy was from God, and how much came from the mind of man.  We have seen some poor earnest souls struggling to exercise a gift, and fulfill a ministry that was prophesied to them, that didn’t seem to be there.  How we need to make sure that our deeds are wrought in God.  ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Thy name...and in Thy name done many wonderful works...depart from me, ye workers of lawlessness.’  How we need to make sure that our hands are clean, that when we carry into the temple our sacrifice of praise and service, to present it to the Lord, that it is not defiled with the uncleanness of the works of darkness, the corruption of the flesh, and the pride of self.  Are we ministering unto the Lord in pure love or are we looking for praise and acclaim from men, trying to impress others with our ability and greatness.


            “‘Who has the right to climb the mountain of Yahweh, who has the right to stand in His holy place?  He whose hands are clean, whose heart is pure’ (Ps. 24:3-4, Jerusalem Bible).  ‘Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.’  If we are to see God, and stand in His presence in the Most Holy Place, we not only need clean hands but also a pure heart.  Pure means to be without mixture.  It is oneness.  One of the hamburger places here advertises ‘Pure Canadian Beef.’  That means there is nothing in their hamburgers but Canadian beef.  It has no fillers, no hamburger helpers such as oatmeal, bread crumbs, or whatever else they can put into it.  One can usually tell whether it is pure beef or not.

            “Our heart is our inward man and when we first invite the Saviour in, our heart is not pure; besides the Lord being there, there is a lot of the old self nature.  We have dual personality, a mixture of self and the Spirit of Christ.  These two are at enmity with one another.  There is constant conflict between the flesh and the spirit.  Whether we call it self, the flesh, sin, the carnal nature, or the old man, it is all one and the same and is contrary to God and doing His will.  ‘For the desires of the flesh are against the spirit, and the desires of the spirit are against the flesh; for these are opposed to each other, to prevent you from doing what you would’ (Gal. 5:17, R.S.V.).  If one is careless, and not overly concerned about pleasing the Lord, he may not be too conscious of this conflict and most of the time he will be living after the flesh; but if your heart’s desire is to do the will of God you will certainly know of this war in your inward parts.  When we desire to do the will of God, the old self is there to oppose.  Sometimes we know when the flesh has had its way, but many times we have been doing the will of self and are convinced we have done the will of God.  ‘The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked.  Who can know it?’ (Jer. 17:9).  It is so deceitful that one can even commit murder and think he is doing God’s will.  Jesus said, ‘They shall put you out of the synagogues; yea, the time cometh, that whosoever killeth you will think that he doeth God a service’ (Jn. 16:2).  Can you imagine a man being so deceived?  It is easy!  Many today, even among the professed elect, are committing character murder, slandering a brother in Christ, desiring to kill his ministry and destroy his influence with God’s children, and are convinced they are doing God’s will.


            “The pure in heart is one in which only one personality dwells.  Paul described the pure in heart when he said, ‘I am crucified with Christ, nevertheless I live, yet not I but Christ liveth in me.’  Paul’s old self nature had been brought to death, it no longer existed, only the Christ lived within him.  Paul’s old nature was gone and the divine nature controlled his being.  If we are to have a heart pure enough to be able to stand when He appeareth, we will have to come to this place also.


            “If we are to arrive at the place God wants us to attain, and be what He wants us to be, the old self nature has to go.  If from us a pure stream of the water of life is to flow to the restoration and life of the rest of creation, this river must be unpolluted.  I think we should all be conscious of the fact that in the course of our ministry we may receive something pure directly from God, but after flowing through a carnal vessel what comes out of our mouth may not be all that pure.  It could, and usually does, pick up some impurities along the way.  It is like running pure water through a dirty pipe.  The water may be pure when it enters the pipe, but what comes out the other end has very likely picked up some of the impurities left by what formerly flowed through the pipe.  We have been contaminated with sin and self, and even though saved and washed in the blood, there is still fleshliness in us and we are still possessed with selfish and carnal desires; some of our own thoughts and desires can be mixed with what God has given us as it flows through us to others.  My prayer for years has been, ‘Lord, as I minister what you have given me to give to your people, please let it be a pure stream; let it not be polluted with my own thoughts or desires as it flows through my mind.  Cleanse my mind, renew my mind that I may only have the mind of Christ.’  Every time I sit down at the computer to write, my last prayer is, ‘Lord, I am your vessel; I want you to use this vessel.  I want to be like your firstborn Son who said, I speak only the words I have heard from my Father; I want to do the same.  Give me the words to write and help me to write only what you have given me, no more and no less; prevent any of my own thoughts or feelings  from entering into this writing’”   end quote.


            The pure heart is the heart that thinks only redemptive thoughts toward all mankind, regardless of their race, their religion or lack of it, or the degree of sin in their lives.  God loves them all, God was in Christ reconciling them all, not imputing their trespasses unto them, and God shall deliver and change them all, in their due order (I Cor. 15:23).  We are the elect who are now being changed in our order, for this Day is the Day of God’s choosing in our lives to change us into the image and likeness of Christ.  The process of our change requires a new heart.  We shall have a heart that wills only the purposes of God and His Kingdom.  It is the heart that counts all men and all things as reconciled unto God.  It is the heart that embraces the power of the Kingdom of God to subdue every person on earth, and make them subject to God’s will and way.  The pure heart is the heart that sees every hell empty, every sin destroyed in every life, every enemy, including death, abolished, and Christ All-in-all.  Those who have a pure heart do not consider any other possibility except the absolute triumph of God’s Christ.  They also know that all this is accomplished and fulfilled by the Kingdom of God.  These are the pure in heart who shall see God.  They shall see only God in all things everywhere!  With this pure heart they shall live to reign with Christ in His Kingdom until every enemy is put under His feet!

            This may, in some respects, be called the greatest of the beatitudes; for surely of all things, the most sublime is seeing God.  “Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.”  The word “see” in the original tongue is interchangeable with the word “know,” and must be so understood.  “Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall know God.”  It is better to know God than even to see Him by the eyes of sense.  There were many who saw Jesus who did not know Him.  They saw the Christ, but they knew not that He was the Christ.  They saw His miracles, but they did not know Him.  They thought that He was a great Teacher or Prophet, but they did not see God in Him.  They even rejected Him and hated Him, some of them.  You could see Christ Himself in bodily form today, but unless you had purity of heart you could not know Him to be the Christ.  I do not mean that you must be sinless, with never a wrong thought or deed.  No, that is not what I mean by pure in heart.  Your heart must be single, unmixed, turned wholly to the Lord, the Spirit.  Then you will know God when you see Him.  Only such purity of heart gives purity of sight.


            As one has written, “The nature of Jesus Christ will be demonstrated in the lives of the sons of God.  His characteristic conduct will be reproduced again through them.  Even as the holiness of His conduct is to be reproduced in this company, also His pureness of heart shall be duplicated within them.  He does not declare, “Blessed are the pure in deeds: for they shall see God.”  Frankly, one can have exemplary conduct and yet not have purity of heart.  We can manifest good deeds without having them spring from pure motives.  With a sinister purpose and evil motive men can look good and act good at times.  So we conclude that the pure in heart are not necessarily detected by good deeds.


            “Knowing now by this instruction of Jesus that sons of God must have purity of heart, our next consideration is how to obtain it.  The beatitude states that the pure in heart shall see God.  There is no higher, no more glorious reward than to see God.  It is not here making reference to a natural view of God with physical eyes, visualized as some ancient prophet with long flowing locks of snow white hair, or as a cloud of brilliant haze, or devouring fire as beheld by the Israelites throughout the wilderness journey, and by the High Priest in the Holy of holies. 


            “The apostle John tells us that ‘No one has seen God at any time; the only begotten Son who is in the bosom of the Father, He has revealed Him, has made Him known’ (Jn. 1:18).  Paul supports this truth, saying, ‘I command you to keep the commandments unstained and free from reproach until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ.  And this will be made manifest at the proper time by the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings, and Lord of lords, who alone has immortality and dwells in unapproachable light whom no man has ever seen or can see’ (I Tim. 6:15-16).  John and Paul are both writing about visibly seeing God with the physical eyes of man.  Jesus affirms this same fact when He says, ‘And the Father who sent me has Himself borne witness to me.  His voice you have never heard.  His form you have never seen’ (Jn. 5:37).  He repeats the thought in John 6:46 by the reference, ‘Not that anyone has seen the Father except Him who is from God.  He has seen the Father.’  In I John 4:12 there is another reference to the fact that the Father is not beheld in physical form by man.  ‘Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.  No man has ever seen God.  If we love one another God abides in us, and His love is perfected in us.’


            “Perhaps these scriptures are sufficient to show that man is not to expect to see God with his human eyes, nor to expect to behold Him in the form of a man.  Therefore, this promise of Jesus to the pure in heart, does not indicate a physical beholding of a material form of God.  He promises to the pure in heart the view of the Father which He, Himself, always experienced.  The word ‘see’ used in the beatitude is specifically indicating SPIRITUAL PERCEPTION.  In John 3:3, the word ‘see’ is used in this sense.  ‘Jesus answered him, Truly, truly, I say unto you, Unless one is born anew, he cannot see the kingdom of God.’  The word is here connoting an understanding, comprehension, perception or revelative knowledge of the Kingdom of God.  We must also translate John 14:7 into this same spiritual category.  ‘If you had known me, you would have known my Father also.  Henceforth, you have known Him and have seen Him.’  We must guard against the idea that a visible view of Jesus was the sight of God.  That does not prove to be true.  The Pharisees beheld Jesus literally, but by all means they never saw the Father.  The words of Jesus made specific reference to a spiritual perception of the Father.  The person who beholds Jesus with spiritual comprehension is granted the privilege of perceiving Him in all of His glory, majesty and being far beyond any physical appearance!


            “Jesus was not saying,  ‘Look at Jesus of Nazareth, son of Mary, and you see the Truth and the Life.’  It was the eternal God speaking through the human lips of an earthly tabernacle who could lay claim to being the I AM who is the Way and the Truth and the Life.  Many had seen and known the earthly tabernacle of Jesus of Nazareth after the flesh, or from the human viewpoint, who never saw the eternal Christ, the Deity, the God within Him.  Likewise, many are now beholding the earthly tabernacles of the sons of God today after the human viewpoint, who never see the Christ, the Deity, the God within them.  They have never seen Him who spoke through Jesus’ lips to declare, ‘Before Abraham was, I am.’  They neither knew Him nor had seen Him, although Jesus had walked in their midst for over thirty years.  They saw with physical eyes and understood with human comprehension and thereby knew only after the flesh and not after the spirit.  Only those who came to know Him after the spirit had truly seen the Father.


            “‘Beloved, we are God’s children now.  It does not yet appear what we shall be, but we know that when He appears we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is.  And everyone who has this hope within him, purifies himself even as He is pure’ (I Jn. 3:2-3).  The ‘hope’ which is making us purify ourselves is the hope of this glory coming to us, the hope of seeing God as He is.  Millions who only hope to see Jesus coming in clouds are doing nothing about purifying themselves as He is pure.  But a company that has become anxious and hungry to see God as He is is setting to work to purify themselves.  When we receive the revelation that God plans to again fully manifest Himself in some human tabernacles, we immediately make ourselves candidates for that demonstration, and begin to purify ourselves (become single, unmixed, unadulterated), as He is pure, that we might qualify to see God as He is, and be of the company of sons in whom He will be glorified, and through whom He will manifest Himself to the waiting world.  When you inspect the company that today is attempting a purification of themselves in the inner man, you will find it to be the people that has this blessed hope that God once more is going to descend into tabernacles of flesh.  This time it will not be just one Son, but a company of ‘many sons brought to glory’”   end quote.


            George MacDonald adds these inspiring words: “It is not because we are created and He uncreated, it is not because of any difference involved in that difference of all differences, that we cannot see God.  If He pleased to take a shape, and that shape were presented to us, and we saw that shape, we should not therefore be seeing God.  Even if we knew it was a shape of God call it even God Himself our eyes rested upon; if we had been told the fact and believed the report; yet, if we did not see the Godness, we should not be seeing God, we would only be seeing the tabernacle in which for the moment He dwelt.  In other words, not seeing in the form what made it a form fit for Him to take, we should not be seeing a presence, a reality which could only be God.  To see God is to stand on the highest point of being.  Not until we see God no partial and passing embodiment of Him, but the abiding reality do we stand upon our own mountain-top, the height of the existence God has given us, and up to which He is leading us.  That there we should stand is the end of our creation.  This truth is at the heart of everything, means all kinds of completions, may be uttered in many ways; but language will never compass it, for form will never contain it.  We not only may, but we must so know Him, and it can never be until we are pure in heart.  Then shall we know Him with the infinitude of an ever-growing knowledge.”


                                                     I could see God tonight,

                                                     if my heart were right.

                                                     If all the rubbish in my soul

                                                     were cleared away, I’d be whole.

                                                     My breast then would thrill in glad surprise

                                                     of all the wonders before my eyes.

                                                     If my heart were right,

                                                     I could see God tonight,

                                                     and the radiance of His face.

                                                     I’d fling with light and fill this place

                                                     with beauty and the world would know

                                                     the face of God down here below


                                                     if my heart were right.

            To be continued...                                                                                          



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