VII.B.6.c Waiting in Weakness



Article 6  –  Progressive Aspects


By Daniel Irving

i.    A New Comprehension of Life

ii.   A New Awareness of Death & Our Consent to Weakness

Begger Lazarus 01


i.   A New Comprehension of Life

The knowledge of the power of God contemplates our own mortal weakness.  In this knowledge we abide unto God’s timing for transacting in His covenant in the blood of His Son.  Herein lies the principle of waiting upon God, Who will fill us with His Holy Spirit.

Obedience to the Gospel becomes of much greater significance when we begin to sense and to comprehend the residency of Christ within.  We come to perceive the very presence within us of the One Who awakens our heart, Who anoints us afresh, and Who subdues our sin-nature.  We also begin to perceive the profound association between Christ’s words and Christ’s presence.  We begin to integrate Christ’s words with our daily abiding in His presence.  As we do, we begin to walk in His Spirit.  We begin to know the Spirit of the One who said such things as . . .

“But seek ye first His kingdom and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added to you.”                   Matt. 6:33

Seeking “His kingdom and His righteousness” entails looking to the Lord’s testimony and His commandments and doing them.  The sense of His presence stirs the desire to be clothed with His righteousness that we be welcomed into His kingdom.  Heaven 01
We grow in trust the Spirit of Grace will accomplish the task of our sanctification.  For we have the Spirit of Him Who said:

“Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.”                                                                                     Luke 12:32

We know that our sanctification is God’s will.[1]  We have the assurance of our Lord.  Not only is our sanctification God’s will, it is His “good pleasure.”  If “this is the will of God, even your sanctification,”[2] then all things are poised to bring this result.  With so profound encouragement as the sense of God’s presence within us, even those words of Jesus which cut across the normal and healthy ways of operating in this world are now perceived as profound principles of liberty:  Wax Face 02

“And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul:  but rather fear Him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”        Matt. 10:28

For it is the fear of God which begins to operate as the more vital reality than fear in the natural.  As natural trepidation gives way to awareness of the eternal, we can rejoice in the Lord’s words:

Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake:  for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.  Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, & persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.  Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven:  for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.                        Matt. 5:10-12

Having no more quarrel with men, we become aware of the real conflict that exists with the spiritual agency that darkens men’s minds from the knowledge of the truth.  Natural strength is of no benefit in this new quarrel.  However, it is even God’s quarrel; one that shall be conclusively reckoned:

For it is the day of the LORD’S vengeance, & the year of recompences for the controversy of Zion.                         Is. 34:8Bronze Gilding 02 

This new comprehension of the passing significance of natural things is made possible by the indwelling of God’s Spirit.  Thus as God’s Spirit increases, so must the natural man decrease.  As we sense our own weakness, Christ’s life is made reality in place of our own.  This is why the Lord said:

“Whosoever 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;  but whosoever shall lose his life for My sake and the gospel’s, the same shall save it.”      Mark 8:34-35

This losing of our own life is a defiance of our nature.  Nature will never submit.  But our consent to be weak for the sake of Christ and His kingdom allows God to demonstrate His strength within the man.  Therefore . . .

Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.                                                                                      Matt. 5:3 

When we are strong in our own spirit, we are weak in the kingdom of God.  Through faith and obedience we consent to weakness in our own strength, in exchange for the strength arising from Christ’s resurrection from the dead.

ii.   A New Awareness of Death & Our Consent to Weakness

Recall Habakkuk’s prophecy concerning the nailed hands of Christ: Sacred Ht 01

And his brightness was as the light; He had horns coming out of his hand: and there was the hiding of his power.    Hab. 3:4

This was the vision Habakkuk was given as God’s response to the prophet’s horror over humanity’s loss of salvation.  There is power hidden in the hands of Christ; the hands nailed to the cross.

Paul wrote: “the weakness of God is stronger than men.”[3]  Even so, yet, God became a man.  The death of His body would not have been possible except that he partook in human weakness:

For though He was crucified through weakness, yet he lives by the power of God.  For we also are weak in Him, but we shall live with him by the power of God toward you.                       II Cor. 13:4

Therefore through Christ, God subjected Himself to stress, duress, strain, and sufferings upon frail human nature through the Person of His Son.  Recall that at various times He cried.[4]  Crying denotes a breakdown of composure.  We do not cry unless we become overwhelmed.  He looked ahead at His cross and was grieved at the prospect of mortal agony.[5]  He was not super-human so as not to feel pain the same as us.  He also was stressed by the behaviors of those around Him.  And it is remarkable what kinds of things it was that particularly distressed the Son of God!

O faithless & perverse generation, how long shall I be with you?  How long shall I suffer you?                                 Matt 17:17

And He was not speaking of the Pharisees!  He was speaking here of His own disciples!  What was the issue that caused Him to react?  Their lack of faith in God; faith in Him Who was about to redeem them through that very same means; faith in the sacrifice of His Son.

The knowledge of the power of God contemplates our own mortal weakness.  In this knowledge we abide unto God’s timing for transacting in His covenant in the blood of His Son.  Herein resides a substantial aspect of what it means to wait upon God.  God, Who will fills us with His Holy Spirit may do so if we be an empty vessel; emptied of our own strength and inspirations.  Through consenting to this operation of the Spirit, our natural man becomes  increasingly divested of his own proxy to reason, to assert argument, to speak, and to act. That proxy is increasingly invested in Christ who begins to rule the man in a new way, by a different strength.

Take my yoke upon you, & learn of me; for I am meek & lowly in heart: & you shall find rest unto your souls.   For My yoke is easy, & My burden is light.                                                                                      Matt. 11:29-30 

This is the “new man” made to be in the likeness of his Creator, of which Paul writes:

And that ye put on the new man which after God is created in righteousness & true holiness.                         Eph. 4:24

To “put on the new man” is no spectacular feat if God has given us His Holy Spirit and the revelation of His Son.  When we “put on the new man” we strengthen the kingdom of God within us[6] that is ruled by Jesus Christ.  Under Christ’s rule we may be divinely “renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him.”[7]  This involves a daily and continual “opting” for the kingdom of God by obedience to the commandments of Jesus.  Through such things as: turning the other cheek, taking no thought for tomorrow, giving to them that ask, etc., we are reckoning ourselves dead. 

Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.                Rom. 6:11 

Will we become weakened in respect to those around us; particularly those against whom we compete in life?  We will.  We will become weakened in the spirit of this world, through whom the mighty of the earth prevail.  But we will be strengthened in the power of God which is a much better thing.  It is the power of our Creator, and so is eternal; surviving the end of natural things, and bearing the promise of a glorious vindication in infinite power.  We trade our own temporal strength for weakness; but weakness with a foretaste of that invigorating power of the Lamb of God.  Thus Paul writes:

. . . but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day.                                                                                    II Cor. 4:16

Unto this path we consent, and in this course and with this hope, we wait upon God. Heaven 01

For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding & eternal weight of glory.                       II Cor. 4:17

And so, with each wave of heaviness, each wave of sadness, each wave of perplexity of mind, we simply lift our hands unto God and affirm to Him that our trust is in Him.  We affirm to Him that we hope in the Person of His son, Who died for us, and Who will lead us out from where we are, and into the light, in His perfect time.  In return we receive a very real and tangible comfort from His Spirit that more than makes up for the momentary, light affliction.  And on the day of resurrection, there will be an eternal weight of glory that cannot presently be perceived.

For since the beginning of the world men have not heard, nor perceived by the ear,  neither hath the eye seen, O God, beside thee, what he hath prepared for him that waiteth for him.           Is. 64:4 

[1] I Thess. 4:3  “For this is the will of God; your sanctification.”

[2] I Thessalonians 4:3

[3] I Corinthians 1:25

[4] John 11:35

[5] John 12:27

[6] Luke 17:21  “Behold, the kingdom of God is within you.”

[7] Colossians 3:10


About Lamp-Stand

I was converted to the faith of Jesus Christ in 1982 at which time I received water baptism and Spirit baptism. In the Spring of 2008 I was led of the Spirit through a process of repentance upon which I had an encounter with Christ that worked a profound change upon my inner being. I became aware that I had been forgiven a great debt of sin. I soon felt the Lord's direction that I close my office that my energies not be divided from the study of doctrine.
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