#129

                                                                                     (Source of material:  Rev. B.R. Hicks)

God's plan for the new man is that he grow into the image and likeness of the LORD.  Conversely, the old man is condemned to decrease and yield his power, authority, and influence to the new man.  It is God's plan for the old man to lose his ability to control the believer.  We will always have the old man with us, but his influence and control should be severely curtailed.  The new man "feeds" off the old by being renewed.  We must see how unlike Christ we are so we can take it to Calvary, get it washed in the blood (renewed), and expand the new man.  Exposure is an answer to prayer.  We have prayed, "Jesus, I want to be more like you, I want to be in the Bride, I want to love you more!"  When He exposes our carnal nature (answering our prayer) we sometimes get mad at the vehicle or utensil Jesus has used to show us our problem.  It is so easy to get sidetracked from what is really happening.  Exposure is a blessing, an indication that Jesus is still attempting to get us to the Bride.  He has heard our cry to be in the Bride and He will not relent; exposure means He is still fulfilling His part of the bargain!  If we want to love Him more, He must show us where we are loving something else that is preventing our heart from fully loving Him.  If we want to love Him more, He must crush the idolatrous loves of our heart!

Please read Exodus 37:1.  It is revealed here that Bezaleel made one of the two arks possessed by Israel.  Reading further in verse six, we see that this ark had a mercy seat placed over it.  Now read Deuteronomy 10:1-3.  Here we find that Moses also made an ark of wood that did not have a mercy seat.  In verse 2, we read that Moses broke the original set of tables for which Moses was never reprimanded by the LORD.  In verse 3, Moses makes a second set of tables.  The original, broken set of tables went into the ark made by Bezaleel.  The unbroken, second set of tables were placed inside Moses' ark.  The ark of Bezaleel was carried upon the shoulders of the priests, the ark of Moses was lifted up by the LORD Himself.  Please read Numbers 10:33-36.  The ark of Moses would rise into the Cloud and Fire, minus a mercy seat, and scatter Israel's enemies.  Their enemies were shown no mercy by the unbroken law, yet, Israel carried an ark with the broken law concealed inside, covered by a mercy seat.  The LORD was concealing Israel's sin of breaking the law from her enemies.  The Father was dealing privately with Israel regarding her sin, at the same time dealing with her enemies with no mercy.  He did not show the sin of Israel to the other nations---it was private.  

Please read the story of Peter in Acts 10:1-22.  Note in verse 17 that Peter doubted in himself what the vision should mean.  In verse 34, he seemingly gets a "revelation" and determines that God is no respecter of persons.  God was trying to reach Peter privately, regarding a sin in his own heart, by showing him the various animals in the vision.  Peter did not recognize his own sin privately, so the LORD went public.  Please read Galatians 2:1-14.  The LORD used Paul to publicly (verse 14: "before them all") reprimand Peter for his hypocrisy.  Peter separated himself from those who were not Jews.  Spoken another way, he considered non-Jews to be unclean which demanded him to not eat with them.  In verse 11, Paul "withstood him to the face" for his hypocritical behaviour.  Peter's action also caused other apostles to sin because they followed him in his behaviour.  Peter misinterpreted the vision and did not see, privately, that he was calling other nations unclean.  The LORD had no choice but to reveal his sin publicly through the Apostle Paul.  Peter did repent and in later epistles refers to Paul in endearing ways.  God does not expose our sin publicly if we accept his reproof and chastisement privately.  He will conceal our sin from our enemies while encouraging us to humble ourselves and repent privately.  This is a "Way" of just Him and the individual believer.  He loves us all one-on-one, just Him and me!