We continue to celebrate the 20th anniversary of The Intercessor by blending insights from past issues with fresh, current perspectives on the Total Truth. The articles in this issue form a mosaic of revealing insights into the mystery hid from generations but now revealedChrist in you the hope of glory and the outworking of this truth in our lives.
In the lead article Speaking the Word of Faith, Norman Grubb brings into sharper focus how we operate in this union in which Christ lives as us. Once we glimpse the truth of Galatians 2:20I Iive yet, not I but Christ lives in mehow do we put this into practice? We no longer look around outside us, or upward to gather His thoughts. We understand that He is living out His perfect purposes by His body members and therefore by me as one of them.
Taken from Normans book The Spontaneous You, Modern Man and the Ultimate Question tackles the meaning of life. Drawing from the truth of the Bible and the increasing evidence in modern science, Norman begins with Creation to demonstrate that the answer to life is not found outsidein the universal but in the particularinside: inside the molecule, the atom, the nucleus. Likewise, God, in whom we live and move and have our being, is found within the born-again Christian as the one and only Spirit joined to our spirit. Glimpse this, says Norman, and it changes the entire way we relate to God. No longer is He someone outside ourselves that we reach out to in our prayers, but the One within, and we, His particulars, placed in each specific situation to see them with His eyes and to be His agent of redemption.
On a more personal note, Tommy Prewitts article A Miracle of Small Stones, demonstrates the power of fixing our believing on the truth of our Christ-union. Tommy walks us through the personal crisis that drove him to seekand findthe Answer to life. Struggling with depression and failing in medical school, Tommy needed an answer for his day-to-day living. His mother continued to point the way out: You dont have to get out of bed and go to class; Christ in you can at least do that. Slowly he took the truth by faith and chose to apply that truth–Christ in him could do what he could not. Step by step, Tommys life began to work, but never without temptations and roadblocks every time something positive would happen, something negative would come up, tempting me towards unbelief in who I am. He experienced not an overnight superficial change but day-in, day-out forever pushing forward with ever growing steps of faith laying the great faith foundation with little stones of faith.
Meryl Langley shares her wanderings from the wilderness of unbelief to "Living in the Promised Land" through her professional journey from grocery clerk to small business owner. Only when she "bowed her knee to God" and truly committed herself to the truth of Galatians 2:20 did she finally experience the promised "rest of faith" she was seeking.
Elliot Coatneys personal story, What I learned in Schoolis a candid recollection of how God used his college experiences to bring him to the place where he needed a life that worked. As most of us do, Elliot entered the school of faith beginning with the exposure of the lies he believed about himselfhe believed that he was smart and, therefore, better than others. But God orchestrated several circumstances, Elliot recalls, that left him totally despondentand ripe for a rescue. That rescue came through truth that we are not and never have been independent selves who are inferior/superior to one another, but created to contain Jesus Christ. Elliot found the answer that puts all human life into proper perspective.
Readers hungry for life-changing truth will enjoy the rich foretaste of Normans Galatians audiotape study found in Irene Gilsenans Tape Talk. Norman explores Pauls message that Gods sons should be free sons living a liberated, victorious life and tackles such thorny issues as liberty vs. license, faith vs. works, spontaneous living, handling temptation, being an inner person, and being one with Christ.
Joy as the hallmark of the Christian life is the topic of Part 1 of C.T. Studds The Laugh Of Faith. With fervent conviction and colorful anecdotes, C.T. begins by tracing the roots of a Christians joyfrom the joy of Gods people in the Psalms and through to the joy of many wise men finding Jesus throughout the New Testament. Faith is the cause. Joy is the child of faith, and the fruit of the Spirit of God .Faith sees the Son and the Son gives a sunny countenance. In addition to being insightful, C.T. paints a metaphoric portrait of joyand its opposite: a man with no faith, states C.T. dies as a candle goes out, flickering, flickering and failing; as the end of a thing at auction: going, going, gone! By contrast, Editors Note VOL. 21, NO. 3 THE INTERCESSOR 7 faith makes a man into a New Creation and the laugh of Faith is the merriest laugh there is.
Brett Burrowes Bible Studyoriginal in this issueis an excellent resource for anyone wishing to study and explain the biblical foundation of the concept of no independent self. Sin, Satan, and the Flesh probes into theological errors that evolved into the concept of an independent human nature so prevalent in churches today. Looking back into Church history, Brett exposes how a mistranslation of the word flesh has contributed to the mistaken idea that human beings have an independent human nature that is sinful and that leads them to sin against God. This mistaken concept is in direct conflict with the revelation in Romans that the spirit of sin is not part of our humanity, but dwells within the human body (Rom 7:15-20). Brett moves on to reveal that prior to Augustines writings, sin was understood by Christians to mean Satan and discusses how Augustines error originated the concept of sin apart from the person of Satan. He convincingly concludes, There is no independently operating human self or nature in the New Testament.
Powerless over Alcohol & Life: Step 10 explores the12-Step concept of taking a daily personal inventory and confessing wrongs immediately from the Total Truth perspective. This article is particularly clear on the importance of experiencing pain, rather than avoiding it with addictive substances or behaviors: the pathway of spiritual maturity requires paintrauma to the soulto turn from the deeply ingrained Satanic lies that we are independent selves who lack much, need everything we dont have and can never get enough. Practicing Step 10 is a daily choice in which instead of Alcohol (or other addictive behaviors or substances), I must now rely on faith in Jesus Christ, in God the Father, and the Holy Spirit to preserve me intact.
Three Letters from Norman in response to the same writer provide a personal reminder, especially to those who personally knew him, of Normans relentless encouragement to turn from the futility of fears and self-effort to the glorious truth that Another is living out His life as us. No effort or outward obedience can bring us into the liberty of Christ, but simply the obedience of faith to stand on the fact that not I but Christ lives in me as me, forever joined to my spirit and it is up to Him to live the life, change my mind, etc. These letters also remind us that Normans years sharing this message from conference to conference and house to house continues today in the Zerubbabel Conference Center.
Finally, we have included the first report on the Zerubbabel Conference Center as it took shape 20 years ago. The physical facility has taken a different form from that envisioned in the report, but the six purposes of our conference center are being fulfilled today. As proof, read these purposes in the feature Zerubbabel Conference Center and then review the testimonies this issue. The personal stories of Tommy, Meryl, and Elliotand Brets perceptive Bible study all provide evidence of Gods grace and liberty found by so many through the outreach of Zerubbabel Ministries.
More Articles from The Intercessor, Vol 21 No 3
- Speaking The Word of Faith
- Editor’s Note
- A Miracle of Small Stones
- A Vision For Zerubbabel
- Tape Talk
- Modern Man and the Ultimate Question
- Two Common Misunderstandings
- Living in the Promised Land
- BIBLE STUDY: Sin, Satan, and the Flesh
- School Days
- To Think About
- Powerless over Alcohol and Life: Step 10
- Letters From Norman
- A Priceless Inheritance
- Words To Live By
- The Laugh of Faith Part 1