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Psalm 131:2. Surely I have behaved and quieted myself, as a child that is weaned of his mother: my soul is even as a weaned child.
John 6:57. As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me.
“Abandonment is the key to the inner court, so that he who knows truly how to abandon himself will soon become perfect.” We have a German hymn that says the same thing: “Ergebung heißt das schöne Wort.” And this morning, there’s a wonderful light shining in this place. It’s this: that we’re learning, slowly, to abandon ourselves.
Now, a person, of course, can abandon himself to sin—to flesh, to lust, to pride, to sensitiveness, to all the works of the flesh. But the wonderful thing is that we have learned—or are learning—to abandon ourselves to Jesus, or “wholly give ourselves to One who gives Himself to us”.
It’s been expressed in different testimonies this morning, and oh, how it rejoices my soul! Really a strange meeting, isn’t it, to see a platform full of preachers doing nothing? They’re either exceedingly dumb or they’re exceedingly smart. I think when a preacher gets to the place where he knows that he knows nothing, he’s beginning to be smart; then he’s beginning to be wise. Oh, the simplicity of giving myself to One who gives Himself to me!
That was the light that began to shine when I first came in contact with Pentecostal people, and I do thank God. I think I will thank Him for all eternity that He brought me into a little mission in Kenosha, Wisconsin, where people were abandoned to Jesus. It was new to me; it was strange to me, and yet, I expected that. Coming in among a people who knew the Holy Ghost, I expected that they would wait for the Holy Ghost—that they would recognize Him and give Him room. And they did, thank God!
We like to see people blessed; we liked to get blessings ourselves. And unfortunately, in Pentecost, we have taken the blessings and made idols out of them. How much advertising that is done today in the world over blessings! But Peter says, “God sent Christ to bless you: to turn away every one of you from your iniquities.” That’s the real blessing: when it isn’t a blessing; it ceases being a blessing, and it’s the call of the King—it’s the great, eternal call of Him who “gave Himself a ransom for all” to purchase us for a possession, for an eternal inheritance.”
Jesus gave a message years ago, and He said, “You think you’re seeking Me? And as soon as you turn to Me, you feel My touch—you feel the blessing. But you don’t know how long I have waited for you.”
Another one said, “Now, I’ve been seeking the Lord for three weeks, and I’ve got nothing yet.” But, you know, when you really seek Jesus and prove to Jesus that you want Him, He’ll make you feel like nothing. You’ll be coming down; you’ll be emptied; you’ll be stripped. “Whom the Lord loveth, He chasteneth.” “As many as I love, I rebuke.”
Isn’t it perfectly marvelous when Jesus says, “Let not your heart be troubled”? Now there are a lot of things when you look at them, they’ll trouble your heart. They’ll get right into your heart like bedbugs and cockroaches, and you’ll have a hard time to exterminate them. If you look at your troubles, and look at your sins, and look at your flesh, and look at your unworthiness, and look at your unfitness; look at your prayerlessness, and look at all these things that you’re guilty of. (Of course, you wouldn’t let anybody else know about it, but sometimes you can’t help but see it.) And God says, “Don’t let your heart be troubled. Look unto Jesus. Open your heart to Jesus. Believe also in Me. Why, I am your life. I am your righteousness, your holiness. I’m your attainment. I’m your zeal. I’m your good works. I’m your love and joy and peace. Give yourself wholly to Me, and I will give Myself wholly to you.” Oh, it will mean an absolute exchange!
In Pentecost, you’ve got it all; you’ve got Jesus, Hallelujah! You don’t talk about “the second definite work of grace,” and you don’t talk about healing, even; you don’t talk about the baptism anymore, you talk about Jesus! It’s Jesus, the lover of your soul—Himself.
You know, the reason we have these meetings is because God wanted them—because Jesus is longing… He said years ago that He is not satisfied with Pentecostal meetings. Jesus is longing to make meetings Himself—by His own Spirit: meetings in which He is the Lord, where He is manifested, where He speaks His word, He pours out His Spirit.
People became so changed by the power of God. They were set into God. I remember how when I’d go to visit people in their homes, sometimes we wouldn’t even say, “Hello.” We would just sit down and that wonderful cloud of His presence would come over people and we’d sit there, and I’d get up without saying, “Goodbye,” and just move out and visit somebody else. And wherever we went, there was that wonderful presence of Jesus. What had happened? Why, people had been set into God. It’s something that happens on the inside when you abandon yourself to Jesus Christ, and He becomes more than a blessing: He becomes the indwelling fountain of life. Something wonderful happens to you that’s more wonderful than the creation of man: it’s a “new creation.”
Now, you’ve discovered how after two weeks everything is changed. Even our outstations are changed; they feel something. People tell me in their shops, in their homes, they feel a strange something, and then they wake up, “Oh, this is the time of prayer.” What is it? Oh, it’s the eagerness of Jesus Christ to come to this earth. And you and I either prepare the way for His coming, or we become stumbling blocks and we hold Him up.
A story of God’s taking notice of Hans Waldvogel’s early seeking at the Kenosha mission. “I didn’t know the unction that we know today. I had to ‘saw wood’—I had to pray through.” (from 1:46)
An example of failing to focus on Jesus in a meeting. “They shout the meeting into praise… It isn’t praise, and it isn’t silence. It isn’t any gift of the Holy Ghost. It’s the Giver!” (from 16:02)
The early meetings at Patchen Avenue. “People became so changed by the power of God. They were set into God.” (from 23:40)
Waiting on the Lord marks a difference in mettings. “But when they had revival meetings, I announced them in my church. I asked the people, ‘Go down and be a blessing.’ …But you know, after the people had been there a few nights and came back, they didn’t worship God anymore. They had lost something; something had gone away from them. Now I said, ‘Wait a minute. We better “hold fast that which we have that no man take our crown.”’” (from 27:52)
German at 0:16:
A quote from a hymn that can be found as number 1954 on page 872 of this hymnal.
Ergebung heißt das schöne Wort. — Surrender, the beautiful word is called.
German at 8:39:
Der kleine Hanswurst — The little tomfool
German at 27:35:
Ich bete an die Macht der Liebe by Gerhard Tersteegen
In Wort und Werk, in allem Wesen
Sei Jesus und sonst nichts zu lesen.
In word and work and all being,
May Jesus be the only one others can read.
A Short and Easy Method of Prayer, by Madam Guyon. The full compilation of books out of which this translation of Madam Guyon’s work is taken is available here.
by Gerhard Tersteegen (translated by Frances Bevan)
Where is the school for each and all,
Where men become as children small,
And little ones are great?
Where love is all the task and rule,
The fee our all, and all at school,
Small, poor, of low estate?
Where to unlearn all things I learn,
From self and from all others turn,
One Master hear and see?
I learn and do one thing alone,
And wholly give myself to One
Who gives Himself to me.
My task, possessing nought, to give;
No life to have, yet ever live—
And ever losing, gain;
To follow, knowing not the way;
If He shall call, to answer, “Yea—
All hail all shame and pain!”
Where silent in His Holy Place
I look enraptured on His Face
In glory undefiled;
And know the heaven of His kiss,
The doing nought, the simple bliss
Of being but a child.
Where find the school, to men unknown,
Where time and place are past and gone,
The hour is ever NOW?
O soul! thou needest ask no more;
God tells thee of His open door:
Still, hearken thou!
Himself, a hymn by A. B. Simpson, 1904:
Once it was the blessing,
Now it is the Lord;
Once it was the feeling,
Now it is His Word;
Once His gift I wanted,
Now, the Giver own;
Once I sought for healing,
Now Himself alone.
Beyond the Brightness of the Sun
by T. P. (translated by Frances Bevan)
I was journeying in the noontide,
When His light shone o’er my road;
And I saw Him in that glory—
Saw Him—Jesus, Son of God.
All around, in noonday splendour,
Earthly scenes lay fair and bright;
But my eyes no more behold them
For the glory of that light.
Others in the summer sunshine
Wearily may journey on,
I have seen a light from heaven,
Past the brightness of the sun—
Light that knows no cloud, no waning,
Light wherein I see His Face,
All His love’s uncounted treasures,
All the riches of His grace:
All the wonders of His glory,
Deeper wonders of His love—
How for me He won, He keepeth
That high place in Heaven above;
Not a glimpse—the veil uplifted—
But within the veil to dwell,
Gazing on His Face for ever,
Hearing words unspeakable.
Marvel not that Christ in glory
All my inmost heart hath won;
Not a star to cheer my darkness,
But a light beyond the sun.
All below lies dark and shadowed,
Nothing there to claim my heart,
Save the lonely track of sorrow
Where of old He walked apart.
I have seen the Face of Jesus—
Tell me not of aught beside;
I have heard the Voice of Jesus—
All my soul is satisfied.
In the radiance of the glory
First I saw His blessed Face,
And for ever shall that glory
Be my home, my dwelling-place.
Sinners, it was not to Angels
All this wondrous love was given,
But to one who scorned, despised Him,
Scorned and hated Christ in heaven.
From the lowest depths of darkness
To His city’s radiant height,
Thus in me He told the measure
Of His love and His delight.