Now these were more noble-minded than those in Thessalonica, for they received the word with great eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see whether these things were so. (Acts 17:11)
I do hope that each of you that are seeking restoration take the time to search things out for yourself. None of us should look to another human being for our answers. Teachers are indeed a great asset and can help point out the Way, but we must do the digging ourselves. No one can do it for you. In the end, we are each responsible for our own choices. We cannot blame anyone else for our short comings. Therefore, putting our trust in a man’s (or woman’s) words alone will never bring us to perfection. We need the WORD and we need the SPIRIT to lead us into all TRUTH.
(12) “I have many more things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. (13) “But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come. (John 16:12-13)
For example, let us consider the verses above. First, our Master Yeshua makes a striking statement in verse 12. He has MORE things to say, but His disciples were not ready to bear it. Why weren’t they ready? We could answer this in numerous ways and each would have merit. For example, we know that they had not yet been filled with the Ruach HaKodesh. Perhaps, this was the missing element. Or we could assume that because Messiah had not yet been crucified and resurrected, that the disciples were ill prepared. Maybe their faith was weak. Maybe they needed to endure more testing. Maybe they were too immature to receive (or hear) deep revelation. Maybe the Master could see that in many areas they were still bound by the trappings of tradition. Perhaps all of the above are true.
The real question is, are WE ever in a place along the Way where the Master has more things to say to us, but we are not yet in a place to bear or receive it?
Only a foolish person would answer in the negative. The journey is not the destination. It is the path we take to get there. This is LIFE. Sometimes there are detours, potholes, or speed bumps. Sometimes the weather makes it hard to see, so we are forced be alert and slow down. Sometimes construction slows us to a snail’s pace. (Argh!) Sometimes other sojourners cause an accident or make a mistake that has to be dealt with and cleaned up before moving forward.
Other times, we find ourselves on an open road and free to watch the speedometer and odometer tick away faster and faster. But, days like this don’t come around often enough! We are far more likely to be dealing with an issue that is delaying us in one form or another.
And then there are things that can cause us to take a wrong turn altogether… Taking a wrong turn or misreading the map can have devastating results. The longer we wait to course correct, the longer the delay to our destination and the harder it will be to find the Narrow Path.
Why all the metaphors?
Because not everyone is where you are on the journey. We are each at different places, but hopefully we are all on the same straight and Narrow Path. We have a bad habit of judging or rather misjudging our fellow sojourners. We may criticize them for things they haven’t yet encountered along the Way. Or perhaps we are resisting the message they have been sent to tell us. Let Poppa deal with them. Our job is simply to warn them (or remind them) about that pothole or construction zone. These stumbling blocks are unavoidable, but at least you can be there to encourage them as they attempt to press through. Or you can get out of their way while they kick and scream in rebellion.
Other times, we encounter sojourners that talk about things we don’t understand. They are a little frightening to say the least. Are they telling me the truth? Maybe they want to throw me off track! What do we do? But then again, perhaps they have traveled further down the road than you have. Maybe the construction site they hit a couple of years or so ago repaired a few blemishes and renewed their vision. Perhaps their wisdom is just what you’ve been crying out for. Maybe it’s just the thing you are lacking to get through the traffic jam.
Maybe. Just maybe, the Master has more to tell you, but you’d rather inch along while your tires deflate. After all, tons of people are with you. You’ve even learned to make music as you toot your horns in unison. It’s comfortable. It’s familiar. It’s non-threatening. And it’s… stagnate.
Guess what’s causing all the traffic in the first place? The construction zone! You’re probably headed straight for it. And you probably need a fill-up and new tires. How different will the journey be once you’re outfitted with new tread and a full tank of gas?
Okay, enough already! I’ll make my point in plain English. All people are flawed, but they are each made in the image of Elohim. We all view the world and the Scriptures with our own biases and imperfect paradigms. (And it’s not as if our Abba isn’t aware of this!) Despite our short comings, we can glean from one another and give counsel to one another. Therefore, it is not only reasonable, but preferable for us to consider both sides of a debate, argument, and/or doctrinal issue. No one has the complete unadulterated truth.
This is why tradition can be so very dangerous. It can lead to complacency. The Holy Spirit is ACTIVE. Our walk with Him will be no less active, unless we choose to stay at the rest stop indefinitely. Choose life instead. It’s scary. It’s not safe. It’s hard. It hurts. It’s not fair. It’s unexpected. It’s challenging. But it is also exhilarating, surprising, beautiful, mysterious, and awe-inspiring. It is definitely worth the risk!!
However, life will result in many issues that will be scary and make us uncomfortable. Why do you think we are told to “Fear Not” in so many places? The journey will test everything in you, and it will not be predictable. You will often even surprise yourself!
My hope for you and me is that we will not be afraid! Don’t let men put fear in your heart. Don’t let the enemy steal the precious revelation that the Spirit is revealing. Just like the disciples, sometimes we are ready for the “more” that the Master has to say. Sometimes we are not. Don’t let the ones who cannot yet “bear it” deter you from listening to the Master. One day we will all be at the same place!