And the LORD answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it. For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry. Behold, his soul which is lifted up is not upright in him: but the just shall live by his faith.Habakkuk 2:2-4
Although coming late to you this month the content received this last month has been so meaningful to us and our life of faith here in Serbia. January has been marked wholly by logistical work to form the sufficient organization by which we can legally continue here in Serbia as ministers of God’s word and with this, it is easy to think that the work involved in completing this is completely vain since it does not directly invest truth into another’s soul, nor does it edify our spirit in the Lord. Despite this apparent burden, there has been this great clarity in moving forward. This clarity is what I would like to unpack today because it is this clarity that is so essential in faith.
The Living way within the Written
“Write the Vision and make it plain upon tables” – We do not know what the future holds for us, or which path truly is most expedient in reaching, touching, and affecting the world for the Glory of God but the way of moving forward in it is very clear. What is this clear way you may ask; well, it is the way that honors what the Father has written to the glory of His Son and His kingdom in the power of His Spirit! Clarity is best defined in the WRITTEN WORD of God not the circumstance and situations of the time. Do not look towards the sayings and ways of Christians to define your life in faith, look unto the Word of God. As ministers of the gospel abroad, it is tempting to follow a method of life instead of drawing from the means of life within the Word of God. Methods of evangelism, ministry, church organization, affiliation, and so on and so on without the scriptural authority are just what they started as – dead works of men. The word of God is our means of life, it should clearly define all aspects of who we are as believers, as ministers, and as a church designed to glorify God. It is sufficient for all of life. If the Word does not have this written upon a table authority, there will be no plainness or stability by which you can run.
The Protection of the Table
“Make it plain upon tables” – When you are hired by any sizable company the first thing you go through as an entity of the corporation is orientation. During this time, you receive this handbook or pages of protocols and procedures, policies, and work expectations or job descriptions. It is this time that most of us, being the great overqualified employees that we are we tend to check out and simply wait for the sign on the dotted line moment. Do we enter God’s kingdom this flippantly? Sadly, yes as we often bring preconceived notions of what we are expected to do and what we are supposed to become in Christ. It is only through the humble practice of STUDY and RECEIVING that we CLEARLY understand our new life in Christ! I am sure you can recall the time when that willful ignorance of policy came around and bit you back and in an investigation of that neglected document, you find explicitly written words that pertain to the situation you now find yourself in with the consequence of negligence. If you want to know God’s way and plan for your life, please dear born-again believers do not neglect the gift of God’s word. All of the Bible may not pertain to you now but all of the Bible pertains to all of your life.
The Power of Present Preparation
“It is yet for an appointed time” This is the aspect of clarity that I believe has most of us tripped up. The Bible is for All of life so any careful study and teaching received from it is preparation for life, but it may not be lived yet. Present preparation in God’s word accrues powerful WISDOM for tomorrow. Reading that dreadful policy handout at orientation prepares you for life within that corporation and when the situation arises you have a stable understanding to respond successfully. The Word of God is giving us words of eternal life IN time so that the experience of God’s power is ON time in our life. So many are confused in faith because they consistently fall short in understanding just how timely God’s word is for their life. Sure, the words may be spaghetti thrown on a wall to you now, but by the time they fall onto the floor of coming circumstances, you find them served on a silver platter as a hot divine meal. Cover your walls of life now like a Pollock painting with God’s words, time, and perspective given by the Holy Spirit will reveal the new life and kingdom that Christ has indeed placed you in as a born-again believer. The purpose will be clear as the perspective then develops.
Broad Perspective for Specific steps ahead
“at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry” – Here lies the next challenge of clarity, perspective. As we come to the close of Habakkuk’s divinely inspired writing in 2:2-3 we see the dispensing of the vision is NOT in his hands to perform but within God’s. He is instructed to WAIT, tarry, and by faith watch for its coming. The excitement of preparation is the expectation of what is to come, this stands true pertaining to God’s way through the Bible.
Perspective requires two key things to establish. 1. A Reference point (Present Truth) 2. A distant horizon (Coming Hope). Any one point of a cityscape gives little view of the glory intended by its architects and city planners. There resides a need to give viewers a window to the horizon and see the scope of what they have built so they install large boulevards, parks, high-rises with balconies, and skyscrapers with ample windows facing the glorious city. God provides this in our life of faith and the cityscape of it! There are many parks and boulevards and pleasant balconies by which we can see the greater scope of what He has DONE through Christ and the Cross. It is not until you find these precious points in your cityscape with Christ that you finally have that breathtaking view of God’s glorious hand in your life. This is what missions have been for us in spite of its grievous trials, it has been this great balcony on the highest floor of the tallest building overlooking the city. It has clearly shown us what is within reach in this time and has given us a clear view of how to get there, but this in all its clarity now took time and practiced patience of faith. No matter where you may find yourself in faith today, the orientation room, the room with the spaghetti on the wall, or the much-awaited terrace of understanding what is ahead. God has a plan in motion for YOU, do not neglect the privilege you have to experience each place that solidifies the beginning of it all: The High calling of God in Jesus Christ.
Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.Philippians 3:12-14
The word of God and the Souls of men are the things that will remain. May we keep these two things in heart and realize the investment of God’s word into our life IS an investment into others as God cannot help but use those that glorify and become more like His Son!
Our Vision and Prayer according to The Great Commission:
“All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore(Reach), and teach(Teach) all nations, baptizing(Immerse Them in Christ’s Truth) them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all(Challenge their capacity) things whatsoever I have commanded you:(Engage their faith in Biblical Responsibility) and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world (See Them faithfully kept by God’s Grace). Amen.”Matt 28:18-20
Please pray as we believe God to:
- Reach: Evangelism to the Lost
- Teach: Biblical Study and Training in the Word of God
- Immerse others in Christ’s Truth: Fitting into the fellowship of the Church, discovering their Identity in Christ, and Observing the Ordinances
- Challenge their capacity: Biblical Discipleship and Biblical Accountability
- Engage their faith in Biblical Responsibility through His Ability: Opportunity and Leadership Development in the Church
- See Them faithfully kept by His Grace: Faithful Feeding and Fruitfulness in their Lives