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God's Agenda vs. Our Agenda
24 September 2014
If God were to publish a list of the ten most popular prayers He hears from Christians in America, what do you think they would be? Perhaps something like this?
“My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways,” declares Yahweh. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts.” (Isaiah 55:8-9)The Bible, especially the New Testament, reveals to us what is important to God, and what is on His agenda. It also explains that if we want our prayers to be answered, we need to pray according to His will (agenda) — see 1 John 5:14-15 among a number of such verses.
Our daily concerns, which seem so big and important to us, are very often insignificant in the light of Eternity, because they are focused on self and our self-interests — OUR agenda — and not on God’s eternal agenda. To get a broad overview of God’s agenda, you might want to refresh your memory by taking a look at God’s Master Plan.
The last time I read the New Testament, I didn’t see anything on God’s agenda about protecting the United States, its economy, way of life, military or borders. Nor did I see anything about giving His people financial and material prosperity, or protecting from them danger and suffering. These are all things that God MIGHT do, but they are not even in the top 10 of His priorities. Yeshua (Jesus) is and what He had done for mankind is definitely in the number one slot. After that, the number two position is filled by the collective followers of Yeshua, the Body of Messiah, the ekklesia. The apostle Paul expressed this in a nutshell:
Husbands, love your wives, just as Messiah loved the ekklesia and gave Himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the Word, and to present her to Himself as a radiant ekklesia without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. (Ephesians 5:25-27)THIS is God’s agenda, and everything He does revolves around Yeshua and the ekklesia — along with His related, interconnected agenda for the Jewish people.
In his amazing, must-read book — Suffering, Martyrdom, and Rewards in Heaven — author Josef Ton wrote this about God’s eternal agenda:
The central purpose of God in human history has always been to make for Himself a people “conformed to the image of His Son,” so that Christ would be “the first-born among many brethren” (Romans 8:29), ultimately, “bringing many sons to glory” (Hebrews 2:10). God’s final purpose with these “sons” is to “put [them] in charge of all his possessions” (Matthew 24:47; Luke 12:44).
Throughout the course of earthly history, God has been at work shaping His children, forming their character, preparing them for ruling, and testing their faithfulness and reliability. He does this by giving them tasks and responsibilities, by confronting them with difficulties and challenges, and by testing their allegiance to Himself and their obedience to His rules and commandments. Moreover, God will continue this work until the end of history.
The Bible refers to the realization of God’s final purpose with man in several ways: at times, it is called obtaining the inheritance; at other times, reigning with Christ or being glorified with Christ; and it is also referred to as having treasures in heaven, or simply, as having rewards in heaven.
Most American Christians pray for the protection and prosperity of their country. But is their agenda REALLY in line with God’s purposes? God’s agenda for this country is for rebellious Americans to surrender to Yeshua, give their lives completely to Him, and follow Him with all their hearts. God’s agenda is to make the ekklesia in America holy, radiant, blameless, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish. He wants a people who can declare in all truthfulness: “If you have seen me, you have seen Yeshua” — see John 14:9-12.
In order for God to accomplish His agenda in America, it is quite likely that it will take the opposite of prosperity and protection. The American people are spiritually asleep — actually, spiritually comatose! — and the American church is a self-centered harlot. If we want our agenda of peace and prosperity more than we want God’s agenda of a purified ekklesia, then we are part of the self-centered harlot. Yeshua is coming back for a virgin Bride, not a harlot!
I’m not praying for American peace, prosperity, protection, or any of these other worldly, pagan, humanistic concerns. We can serve Yeshua just as well under an Adolph Hitler as we can under a Thomas Jefferson.
I’m not praying for personal prosperity, health, long life, or any of these other worldly, pagan, humanistic concerns. My passion is not for this earthly life. My passion is for the ekklesia of Yeshua — His Body, His Bride.
Is our main desire to have a good life in a prosperous America, even if that keeps “Christians” in spiritual harlotry? Or are we ready to have a hard life here so that the harlot may be purified of her filth and be the Bride that Yeshua deserves? To me there is no choice at all. It is obvious that Yeshua’s Bride has the top priority, and the concerns of this life are insignificant in comparison.
Let America fall, if that’s what it takes. Let the Muslims take over, I don’t really care. What I DO care about is that those who consider themselves Christians in this country will stop being spoiled, self-centered brats. I’m hoping with all of my heart that when the time comes to be martyred for their refusal to worship Allah, American Christians die well, with love, joy and forgiveness in their hearts, and so demonstrate in their deaths who Yeshua really is. I want to see a glorious American ekklesia full of willing martyrs, who will put the Islamic martyrs to shame. As it is now, they put us to shame.
If we are afraid of terrorist attacks, if we are afraid to lose something in this life, if we are afraid to suffer, if we are afraid to die — by an Islamic beheading or otherwise — then we are loving ourselves and our earthly lives more than we love Yeshua.
“If you want to be My disciple, you must hate everyone else by comparison — your father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters — yes, even your own life. Otherwise, you cannot be My disciple. And if you do not carry your own cross and follow Me, you cannot be my disciple.... you cannot become My disciple without giving up everything you own.” (Luke 14:26,27,33b)Jim Elliot once wrote: “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose.”
“If you love your father or mother more than you love Me, you are not worthy of being Mine; or if you love your son or daughter more than Me, you are not worthy of being Mine. If you refuse to take up your cross and follow Me, you are not worthy of being Mine. If you cling to your life, you will lose it; but if you give up your life for Me, you will find it.” (Matthew 10:37-39)
The only things worth keeping are the eternal things we cannot lose in this life, as long as we remain faithful to Yeshua. If we are afraid of losing anything is this life — loved ones, our health, possessions, job, security, comfort, inheritance, nation, etc., then it shows that we are not right with God, and that we are holding onto our lives here and loving our lives and ourselves more than we love Yeshua. It shows that we are not worthy of Him — and remember, those are Yeshua’s own words! He also said to His followers:
“I know your deeds; you have a reputation of being alive, but you are dead. Wake up! Strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have found your deeds unfinished in the sight of My God. Remember, therefore, what you have received and heard; hold it fast, and repent. But if you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what time I will come against you.In my next article, we will examine a vivid “prophetic” dream which Rick Joyner had last week, along with his resulting call to action. In light of today’s article, we must ask ourselves if he is promoting God’s agenda, or a human agenda?
“Yet there are a few people who have not soiled their clothes. They will walk with Me, dressed in white, for they are worthy. The one who is victorious will, like them, be dressed in white. I will never blot out the name of that person from the Book of Life, but will acknowledge that name before My Father and His angels. Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the ekklesia.” (Revelation 3:1b-6)
This article is 52nd a series of articles on this Web site related to Modern Christianity and the Church which also includes (scroll to see the entire list):
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