God Always Gets His Way
The following is taken from a discussion at one of the morning sessions at
Zerubbabel family camp, August, 1993.
For love to be love there has to be some choice in it. Because God is universal love, the reason we can know it’s a special kind of thing is He didn’t have to do it-He didn’t have to be that in the first place and if He hadn’t chosen to be that, He never would have made us.
I woke up this morning and I was trying to fit that together with the fact that God always gets His way. And then I thought about two things: one was when Jesus said, "Oh, Jerusalem, Jerusalem, how I would have gathered you under Me as a hen would gather her chicks under her and you would not." So Jesus was sad about that. And then when He called the rich young ruler and said, "Give away all you have." And we know the story: he had kept the law perfectly and he said, "I kept the law perfectly from my childhood, now what do I do?" And Jesus said, "Give away everything you’ve got and follow me." And he couldn’t do it. Jesus was sadhe was sorrowed by that.
So I thought, how does that fit if it’s not the Father’s will that any should perish, and we know that people perish? How does this fit together that God always gets His way? Because I have no doubt in my believing that God’s purpose and plan will ALWAYS be accomplished and nothing man can do or Satan can do will thwart it. It all works together for His plan.
What I began to think about–something I hadn’t thought about in a long time–is that God has an ULTIMATE plan. And his ultimate plan is that He will be outpoured love. And for that outpoured love to be what it is, it must have a recipient. So He breathes man into existence and breathes Himself into man. And part of Himself that man gets is this total freedom to choose. Not to choose whether I’m going to town or not. Not to choose who I’m going to marry. Not to choose what color toothbrush I buy. But I can choose to say "yes" to God or to, not say "yes" to God. My freedom is limited with that. And as I say "yes" to God then He in me lives my life, and when I dont say "yes," it’s a "no" and so Satan does it. So the big chance that God took was to have a creature like Himself and not a dog (which He already had), or a cow, or a monkey, or a tree-who don’t make choices. Part of the process is that a person is a person and not a cow or a tree because a person can make a choice and choose between opposites. And see, that’s what God did. He chose between whether He was going to be light or fire. And He chose whether He was going to be selflove or outpoured love. And He gives us that same freedom. But He took a chance. And His chance was that man wouldn’t go God’s way, and he didn’t. But God in His eternal purpose fixed that, as we know, through the Cross.
A CROSS IN GOD’S HEART
There was a cross in the heart of God from the beginning. The cross in the heart of God was that He died to what He could have been-a self-grabbing self-for-self. And He died to that eternally. And out of His freedom of choice, God chose to be light. He died to what He could be to live to what He chose to be-which was light and love and all that we know God to be.
So in His taking a chance, His ultimate, ultimate goal was to have fellow sons, not puppets. And for a son to be a son, he’s got to be a person. And to be a person, that person has got to have total ultimate freedom to choose between alternatives. The two alternatives that we get to choose from are "yes" to God and "no" to God. His ultimate desire, then, was that the people that would be His sons would only be those who would choose to come.
But God’s heartache (and what gives me identity with Him and what makes Him a person, too) is that He would grieve over those that would say "no." So He does get what He wantswhich is to have real persons to fellowship with and identify with and reproduce Himself in. But in so having real persons, He loses many persons because many persons, as we know from Scripture and as we know from life, ultimately choose to say "no."
This is why, to me, "God picks it and He really doesn’t care" is out the window. It would make no sense that God would pick me and not pick the rich young ruler and then grieve over him not coming. That makes Scripture an absolute joke-or for Jesus to say, "Oh, Jerusalem, Jerusalem, I would have gathered you…" when the truth is He and the Father would really mean, "We know we didn’t pick two hundred of those guys but we didn’t tell anyone."
Somehow God gets a family of sons-free people who, can exercise the choice between yes and no, goodness and badness. In other words, whatever you say-whatever the light the pagan African gets and however he says his "amen" to the Father, is God’s business and his business. I don’t know what people say when they respond to the light they are given. There is some kind of upward positive response that does take place, can take place, and in proof and in fact does take place.
YES OR NO
I can’t tell you my words when I said "yes" to God; I can’t exactly tell you when I did it. I can’t remember ever saying "no" to God. Starting as a very young child, I can never remember not knowing that God existed, that He knew everything I did and I was in bad trouble if I went against obeying God. That was as fixed in my brain as a little, tiny person as the grass was green. All that time I was knowing that even if my mother didn’t know it, God knew it. It was like I was the only person He had to watch, and He watched and knew everything. I’ve always known that. So I don’t know when my saying "yes" was. Was it when somebody introduced me to Jesus Christ and said that He died on a cross? Or was I being led that way the whole time? I can’t tell you. I can just tell you today where I am today.
So the "yes" response in a person’s heart has very little to do with the words you speak. People give you words so you can understand it yourself. See, God understands your heart, and you understand your words-"With the heart man believeth unto righteousness" but "with the mouth confession is made unto salvation." You can talk about it and it becomes clearer to you. But your heart response is something God knows. Maybe when you don’t even know it. Maybe when you do know it. Maybe when you can’t put words to it. So when I say that I’m walking in belief, that I’m believing who I am, only I can know what my little tricky, sneaky, vague unbelief things are. See, something as vague as, "Well there you go again. You never do it right." See, that’s a blatant lie and an unbelief statement. And if I am making that statement to myself-if I’m having the essence of that in my spirit and I’m believing that- then Satan is going to live out my life to some degree as long as I’m saying that. I can come back and correct it by saying, "Wait a minute, Christ is living here. How He’s doing it is how He’s doing it"-and clean it up like that.
So how we do that little technical part in making a "yes" response remains a mystery. I’m not saying that people say, "Yes, God, I’m going Your way!" You may say it that way. It’s not that clear-cut. But there is a response of the heart that says "yes" to God or there is a response of the heart that refuses to say "yes" to God, and in so doing, says "no." I don’t think the vast majority of people end up saying "no" to Godthey just never get around to saying, "yes." And they remain eternally lost and Satan’s captives.
But what He gets, even though a lot drop through the cracks, is a family of sons who are real people, And they are His real people because with some response to His call, they said "yes" back. They weren’t forced to; they didn’t have to; they weren’t preprogrammed. We are not robots. And so His ULTIMATE thing is He does get what He wants: a family of sons.
In the process, God has heartache because to let sons be sons and make choices, people were going to choose not to choose. And so He loses people. And God grieves over that.
But it would be ludicrous for God not to have us have free choice, to fix it some way that I would choose Him while someone else was programmed
not to choose Him. Suppose I’m representing Him-I’m living His life-and I am pouring my life out for somebody to know what I know, and He hadn’t pre-programmed them or tilted their choice in some way to, where they’re going to go His way. I’m lamenting over somebody in that state, and I’m grieving that they’re not coming-it would make loony-tunes sense that I would be grieving over somebody that’s slipping through the cracks and God’s sort of filing his fingernails-He had never programmed their computer to the same degree he programmed mine to where they would come to where I came, anyway. To me, if that’s what He’s doing, He will never see me again try to win anybody, witness to anybody, or anything because He’s monkeyed around with their parts to where some have a freer thing to come or are somehow pre-programmed to come and others haven’t quite got it.
I can see that God’s going to get His way. But His ultimate way is to have a vast family of sons who, can glorify Him forever. And glorifying God, to me, just means no more or less than recognizing God for who, He is. And the greatest glorification of God, really, is that He would CHOOSE to live in me and live His life out through me and reproduce Himself through me by me reaching other people.
And see God didn’t just look down one day and say, `Oh, I just Love you" like you meet a child or a person of the opposite sex and say, "Oh, I just love you." Love is the force of the universe. And for it to be that, it has got to continually be echoing through the universe forever-going on, going on, going on. It’s just like thunder that rolls, and rolls, and rolls out into the universe and never stops, or the waves of the ocean. It is ongoing.
So, God’s ultimate plan was to have a vessel that this love could pour out to and then pour out from. And it wasn’t like little folks down here like Tinkertoys and God says, "Oh, gosh, I just love you little folks to death. I’ve just got to get you back." He had to get the conduit cleaned up and get the kink out of the hose that His forceful love was going to pour through and it cost Him everything to do it. It cost Him His life to do it. But He had to do the Cross to get the universe back like He planned it in the first place.
We’re not just little things he loved and then He redeemed. His plan was to reproduce Himself through these vessels. And when the vessels got screwed up-you know, when your pipes get stopped up, you’ve got to call the Roto Rooter and they’ve got to come clean them out so the water can flow again. So He had to call in the big guns-His Life itself-to get the conduit cleaned up-to get us back functioning as we were supposed to function. And that was to be the echoing out of love through the universe forever.
So it’s a much bigger picture. Satan had stopped the life-driving force of the universe by stealing the vessel through which It reproduced Itself. And God
had to get His vessel back. So it cost Him His life to get it back-the life of His Son. It was His life that He chose to reproduce Himself in a human being and come here and pay the price to get the conduit back so that love could reverberate through the universe for eternity. So that’s how I see that God always gets His way.
See, I can get my way that my children would live with me. I could build a cage and lock them in it. I could do that. But would that be my ultimate way? My ultimate way would be that they would choose to be here and to be around and to be a part of my life. Not that I would chain them to some post somewhere in some cave. If I would say my ultimate dream would be for my children to live here, well, how am I going to do it? I would hope that they would choose to do that. Not that out of my selfishness I would chain them here. So if they don’t come, I would grieve over that. My ultimate would be fulfilled if they would be free-functioning whole people. And so that was God’s ultimate.
More Articles from The Intercessor, Vol 9 No 5
- Romans Six to Eight, Paul’s Key to the Liberated Life
- To Think About
- Editor’s Note
- The Committee
- Moments With Meryl
- Excerpt from The Intercession of Rees Howells
- Book Review: Continuous Revival
- Questsions & Answers
- Perfect Containers
- God Always Gets His Way
- Powerless Over Alcohol & Life: Step 11
- The Mailbox
- You’re Only As Sick As Your Secrets
- From Death To Life
- Words To Live By