Peter speaks of a very important thing that must be in the life of the of God – it must be there. 1 Peter l:10, 11, 12. There is no Gospel preached and there is no soul saved, and there is no extension of the Kingdom of God apart form the preacher preaching the Gospel by the Holy Ghost sent down from Heaven, and there is no Holy Ghost where there is flesh working. We are not to drag down to our own level the precious things of God. The most important people in all the world today to God are His, and we know from experience in time passed, it is the devil’s aim to get people into the ministry to destroy and drag down and hinder the work of God. A Servant of God is not to be a social entertainer. He or she is not to come down to the social level. When you see a Servant of God, either brother or sister, that is too fond of the social side and that lives on the same level as the saints of God, mark the words of scripture, that brother or that sister will be ineffective in the work of God.
"Who say men that I am?" "Some say you are Elisha, John the Baptist, some say one thing and some say another." "Whom do you say I am?" “Thou are Christ, the Son of the living God." "Blessed are ye, for flesh and blood has not revealed that to you, but My Father which is in Heaven." The revelation that gives us victory over the world. I have been seeking to warn the people to beware of substitutes, to beware of the ritual, for the true revelation of God to our hearts. That ritual will get you nowhere. It will only fail. The natural man can understand the ritual, but the natural man will never have the revelation of God. That is the word that is left out of the 11th chapter of Hebrews – “TALK.” Many earnest, honest, well-meaning saints of God destroy and cut off the ears of many of their flesh and blood by this unnecessary talking and preaching, and forgetting to do and be what those people in the 11th chapter of Hebrews did and were. I had a case of that brought to me at the last convention. There was a woman there and she had been in the P.B. for 28 years and she had become interested through some of the saints and had come to convention, and the truth was beginning to dawn upon her, and one of her guardians told me that a woman came and started talking to her, and she took her away as quick as she could. I know the meaning of it, and I know the old lady came and wanted to talk to her, I know she would have only muddled and hindered her while meaning all right. Some people, you know, they would like to get the long trousers on the converts before they have been weaned. I am amazed many a time at hearing what old and trusted saints have been saying to young converts, and it will do nothing but hinder them. Some people like to get at young converts the moment they are born; they will nurse them, it is not their business to nurse them; it is the spiritual parent’s business. You stand back, you keep hands off, you tread very lightly, it is a new birth, a new born babe, that you were never the means of bringing forth, and you would only use clumsy hands and destroy life. The mother's hands are the hands to handle the new born babe – that has the natural instinct. The others are too clumsy and awkward and unsympathetic. So hands off. We do not mean any harm, you just try and talk to others who are a bit harder, and that can stand up to you.
Now look at 1 John 5:6. What does that mean? Does anybody know what that means? What is water, and then you may get at it. The word of God came by the hands of the prophets in the Old Testament, and the word of God came by the hands of the servants of God in the New Testament. Does that make it clear? This is he that came by water and blood, not only declaring the word of God to men, but the accompaniment that must always be there – the blood, and the blood speaks of a life laid down, a laid down life. We have a Hymn and one line says, “The blood stained path that leads to God.” It is the path that is marked by the lives of the people of God as laid down. “This is he that came by water and blood, not by water only.”
The worthy preacher, the beautiful preacher, the man or woman of words, the orator. What does God say about all this kind of thing – wind – sowing and reaping a whirlwind. That is the condition the prophets in Jeremiah’s day had got into – they had left the blood out, they had ceased to lay down their lives, they were sowing wind and reaping a whirlwind. Have you ever seen a whirlwind? It leaves nothing behind it, and this thing of preaching, either in the saints or the servants of God, that has not the accompaniment of the life laid down, is only sowing wind, and will only end in reaping a whirlwind, and when they are done there is nothing left, now do you see? “Not by water only, but by water and blood.” “It is the spirit that beareth witness because the spirit is truth. For there are three that bear record in Heaven, the Father, the Word and Holy Ghost, and these three are one, and there are three that bear witness in earth, the spirit and the water and the blood, and these three agree in one.” The three Heavenly witnesses will be faithful witnesses, but what about the three earthly witnesses? Wherever the spirit of God is given, it is given to the man or woman that has the water and the blood – wherever there is a life laid down in sacrifice on God’s altar. Think of old Abraham long ago and you will see water and blood every step. He pitched his tent and built his altar, the one must be the accompaniment of the other, and when he gave his sacrifices and placed them before God, he kept guard so that the fowls of the air would not descend and take away the sacrifices, and remained on guard till the sun went down and all the sacrifice was licked up by the fire of God. What is it that takes the sacrifice away? The thoughts and suggestions of our own human nature, of our carnal state, and when we follow those suggestions the sacrifice is taken away – the fowls of the air have got it. What does the 13th chapter of Hebrews say? “We have an altar, whereof they have no right to eat which serve the tabernacle.” The ritualist people have the water – the people that know all about it. They have no right to eat of this altar that our sacrifice is laid upon. You have an altar, and I have an altar, and we need to guard against the flesh in us. Perhaps I should go to another part that was suggested by what Fred was speaking about yesterday. II Chronicles 29:16. The priests went into the inner part of the house – what presumption. They went into the inner part of the house of the Lord to cleanse it and brought out all the uncleanness that they found in the temple of the Lord into the court of the House of the Lord, and the Levites took it, to carry it out abroad into the brook Kidron.
If you will look at another part, you will see how the priests got into the inner part of the House of the Lord; this was a time when the Moabites had gotten victory over the children of Israel, and had gotten them down, and the Lord raised them up a deliverer, a man named Ehud. Eglon was a very fat man, and now doesn’t that speak of flesh, isn’t that a beautiful picture in the 28th verse. (Judges 3:22) “The dirt came out.” Doesn’t it say in Hebrews that the word of God is quick and powerful and sharper than any two edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart; neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight but all things are naked and open unto him, the eyes of him with whom we have to do. Now that is the New Testament version of the 29th chapter of II Chronicles verse 16. You have the priests, the Servants of God sent down from Heaven. Not by water only, but by water and blood. What does it say in II Corinthians 6:14, “Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers." I heard one say that had not entangled this way, “there was nobody in the testimony that I could love, so I went out for a Philistine to see if I could love him.” This person married a Philistine and became a Philistine. God foresaw that, and by the Servants of God, He sought to warn them, but they took their own way. It is the same with business associations, the same with social friendship, and anything that would bring you down to the level and make you as one of them, and shutting God out, the lamps are put out, and you cease to be a light, there ceases to be that incense from your life that rises as sweet incense into the nostrils of God. The devil doesn’t mind how much you pray, so long as it is not incense, and incense only rises from something consumed or sacrificed (verse 17). “Wherefore come ye out from among them, and be ye separate," saith the Lord, "and touch not the unclean thing and I will receive you, and will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be My sons and daughters," saith the Lord Almighty. Is not that a promise?
We are apart here for four days, and we mean business. Do you mean business? Are you here to go through the four days and hear all that is said, or do you mean business? Do you remember that worthy woman that was put on record? She was not an Israelite; she is called the wife of Heber the Kenite, and there came along an enemy of God called Sistesa, who was being defeated in battle. She said to him, "Come in," and she covered him with a rug, and he asked for a drink of water and she gave him a drink of milk. He said to her to stand in the door and if anyone came along she was not to tell them that he was there. When he was asleep she took a nail and a hammer and rove the nail into his head. If you do not destroy the enemy – the flesh in you – you will be found betraying the Son of God. It is only the cruel people that will get the victory. You remember reading about Samson. His father and mother took him for a walk, and he went down to the Philistines, and he got entangled there, but he got the victory and he slew the lion – flesh. He proved that the fear of God had begun to work on him at times. Then Samson went for another walk, and he met Delilah. His wife kept at him until he told her his secret of his strength, and he got his locks cut off in his sleep. His Nazarite vow was broken. He got up as before and shock himself and he never knew until then that the Lord was departed from him. They took him and bound him with fetters, of brass, and it says that he did grind in the prison house. That is what the flesh will do; that is what Delilah will do, get you to break your vow, get you to take the sacrifice off the altar, get the fear of God out of your life. The flesh in each of us will do the same. There is no difference in flesh. “Let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.” Let us turn for awhile to Ephesians 5:20. This Epistle was written for the conforming of each one of us to the image of Jesus, showing us what we have to do to be conformed to His image, and it is a strange thing that it begins with wives. "Wives submit yourselves unto your own husbands as unto the Lord.” You say, “No, not in my case.” The husband is the head and if you refuse to be in subjection to your own husband, you are doing the opposite to what Jesus says you are to do. These natural things show us that we are to be in subjection to the heavenly bridegroom, we are to submit to Him. He is our head. If you do not submit to your earthly head, or husband, there is little possibility that you will submit yourself to your Divine head, or husband – Christ. Christ is the head of the Church, which is His body, and here we are gathered as a part of His church. If there is not subjection, then there is nothing but disobedience, and we are victims to the world, flesh and the devil. So let the wives obey their husband in everything. Don’t think your husband is there just to be your bread winner; he is to be your head. “Husbands love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave Himself for it.” You read sometimes in the papers of husbands loving other people’s wives. Husbands love your wives, even if it is hard to love them sometimes; never have any other attitude toward them. Never take up an attitude of hatred toward them. You are to give yourself for her, to be her guardian and helpmate in every sense of the word, that you might get the best out of her and that she might get the best out of you, and that God might get the best out of you both. That is likeness to Jesus; that is conformity to Jesus. “That He might present it to Himself a glorious church – that it should be holy and without blemish.” The Lord is looking for a present today and that present is the Church, to be presented without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that it should be holy and without blemish. Will you help friend, toward this end? You can do it and I can do it, and I want to do it, in spite of the stubbornness of my nature. I want to help toward this presentation to Christ, who loved me and gave Himself for me. If you help toward this end, then this after will not have been spent in vain.