THE BAPTISM- IN CHRIST AND TRUE REVIVAL
THE SPRITUAL SIGNIFICANCE OF WATER IN BAPTISM
Water in the scripture is a symbol of peoples depending on the usage. It is also a symbol, of hard and difficult situations, which we MUST encounter in our spiritual journey, from glory to glory. Naturally, we Humans cannot survive in water. When we find ourselves in situations, problems or activities which are higher than our natural abilities, then we are going through waters. Spiritual speaking. This is where self says I have try all that I know and can do, or the situation is higher than all my skill, knowledge, power and understanding. The Old man (Adamic self) is dead and useless in such a situation.
The water, with its entire negative outlook is the only way to True Spiritual Baptism. Without the Waters, there can be no Baptism, and without Baptism, there can be no glory or presence of God in our individual or corporate Lives.
The Baptism is the Spiritual endowment we received from on high, enabling us to go through the waters, and coming out victoriously, through the coming of the Glory or the presence of God in our individual lives.
And JESUS, when he was baptized, went Up straightway out of the water: and loe, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a Dove, and lighting upon him(Matthew3v16, Note the Baptism comes before the Glory).
The Baptism in Christ is not a one way thing. Every water (that is problems, challenges, weakness, failure, limitations etc in our life) is a call to partake in HIS Baptism, to gain a higher Glory.
Spiritual Baptism is the Point where our self life is totally surrendered, and submitted to the will of God. In this self is dead, and the spirit of the new man made alive within. Here the Fathers joyfully work what HE wills in our individual Lives. There is no old self to resist this divine operation, because, he is dead (the old man).
Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with [him], that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. For he that is dead is freed from sin. (Roman6v6-7).
Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind: for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin;That he no longer should live the rest of [his] time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God.(1peter4v1-2).
We suffer in the flesh, by ceasing from the works of our adamic self which will not hesitate to avoid the waters the father has allowed to try us and bring us into HIS Baptism. In this we know true communion and union with the Heavenly father. Heavenly Secrets becomes opened and abundant grace supplied.
THE WATERS OF BAPTISM IN OLD TESTAMENT SAINTS
Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea; And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea;And did all eat the same spiritual meat; And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ.(1Corinthians10v1-4).
From the scripture above, we can see that though the Children of Isreal were not physically immersed in the natural water, yet the scripture affirmed that they were baptized unto moses in the Cloud and the Sea. The Cloud speaks of the presence of God , which brought them out of Eygpt. It took a Baptism (dying to their own wills) for them to follow Moses, under the instruction of the LORD to the wilderness.
In the red Sea, they faced a higher challenge which does not the least need any natural help. When the ultimate of their helplessness, was revealed in the journey the LORD was taking them, the LORD of the work brought them INTO HIS baptism by dividing the Sea. Baptism is always a dead of our natural strength and the coming of a supernatural assistance to keep us above every situation we find ourselves.
Because the church of today is full of its own programs, activities, preaching, and methods rather than what they are hearing from the Heavenly Father, the lack of true new covenant baptism and Glory within the lives of many professing Christian should not be a surprise to any true Saint. The Church of today did not yet recognize its own weakness, and so keep doing its own things, resulting in bringing the results of its own works,which is basically sinful adamic works. We do not have to look to the world without to see the high rate of gossip, impatience, selfishness, divorce, carnality, fashion etc. Do not be surprised that even sport is now encouraged in some Christians Gatherings.
We are the limitation, not Christ. Waiting for revival implies that Christ is restrained in some way. It is us who have strayed from the foundations that Jesus laid. When we walk on the foundation of the rock who is Christ, we will see the restoration of His true glory. Humans are and always will be the limitation to Christs true ministry being restored. (Kevin, New zealnd).
Almost every Pentecostal you meet will tell you he/she is baptized with the Holy Spirit because he/she has received the gift of tongue. Confusing the Gifts, with the power of the spirit which alone can enables us to walk in every situation we found ourselves without tainting the garment of holiness and righteousness within our souls. Not only have they dilute the baptism of the Spirit, but have made it a one way experience thing. We will always have to go from Baptism to baptism to receive a higher grace, when the LORD brings us to circumstance or challenges, which are higher than the measure of HIS grace within our lives. He will always try us, for us to see how much of HIS life or grace is within us, by using the waters. Not one water experienced.
THE BAPTISM IN THE LIFE OF JOSEPH
And unto Joseph were born two sons before the years of famine came, which Asenath the daughter of Potipherah priest of On bare unto him.And Joseph called the name of the firstborn Manasseh: For God, [said he], hath made me forget all my toil, and all my father's house. And the name of the second called he Ephraim: For God hath caused me to be fruitful in the land of my affliction.(Genesis41v50-52).
The names of the two sons of Joseph, Manasseh and Ephraim had a spiritual meaning to the Baptism He went through.
He named the first Manasseh, because He said God had made me forget all my toil and all my fathers. Manasseh, typify a circumstances were the self life, has proven void and fruitless. Self does not easily dies or surrender to the Will of God unless and until it sees it own hopelessness. So God allows situations or waters to come which will leave it naked and bare. When this is done, self easily vanish and allows the owner of the LIFE to have HIS way.
In the Life of Joseph, as most of us know, He was giving a dream by God about wonderful things HE will accomplice through his life. These will include, even his own family including the father bowing before him. By receiving a dream like this, Joseph will not have imagined that, before the fulfillment of this dream, it will take a total separation from all his fathers house. Every Vision or dream the LORD promised to accomplice through us, will have its own waters. Sometimes HE will allow circumstances to come, which will close every seemingly possible door of its fulfillment. Manasseh speaks of an end of the self life. So Joseph was brought to a painful situation, were his dream almost proved false. No hope of seeing his family again, being sold as a slave. It is even possible that when he was with his family there was a deep hidden self to toil and bring forth the dream to fruition out of his own natural self and understanding. Look this statement again:
And Joseph called the name of the firstborn Manasseh: For God, [said he], hath made me forget all my TOIL (the works of natural strength), and all my father's house
It takes a Baptism to go through the waters, were nothing positive or bright look promising in the future, and still unaffected by the yoke of Sin. It is not that very difficult, to walk in the will of God, when the future looks bright and promising. The Lord uses this type of comfort, in our initial work with HIM. If we are to continue growing in the LORD, HE must bring us to waters which will try to destroy, any hope of our usefulness in HIS service in the future. This is where many turned in to the works and activities of self and few continued. When the Lord finished working with the self life of Joseph through many baptisms of waters in trials and temptations, he brought him to inherit a measure of his glory. There was hope and the dream later came true.
The second son Ephraim speaks of the burial in the Baptism in the waters of trials and temptation unto the resurrection. This is the divine Consolation and the dawning of a new day within the soul.
For, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the LORD of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch.
But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall.
And ye shall tread down the wicked; for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet in the day that I shall do [this], saith the LORD of hosts. (Malachi 4v1-3).
Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the LORD is risen upon thee.
For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the LORD shall arise upon thee, and his glory shall be seen upon thee.
And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising. (Isaih60v1-3).
What a precious and greater promised we have in Christ today if we will only enter HIS baptism to come out from the many waters in our life without harm (sin).
THE DANGERS OF THE WATERS
Before we proceed further, I will like us look two characters in the Old testament: David and Sampson. We will look a little on each of them and see how they responded, when they faced with similar situations.
And Samson went down to Timnath, and saw a woman in Timnath of the daughters of the Philistines. And he came up, and told his father and his mother, and said, I have seen a woman in Timnath of the daughters of the Philistines: now therefore get her for me to wife.Then his father and his mother said unto him, [Is there] never a woman among the daughters of thy brethren, or among all my people, that thou goest to take a wife of the uncircumcised Philistines? And Samson said unto his father, Get her for me; for she pleaseth me well. But his father and his mother knew not that it [was] of the LORD, that he sought an occasion against the Philistines: for at that time the Philistines had dominion over Israel.(Judges 14v1-4).
The scripture above reveals how God directed Samson, to marry a woman for a purpose. He loved the woman, and obeys the LORD, though His parent knew not that it was of the LORD. He loved the woman so much. The spirit of the LORD was mighty upon Samson, and on the whole chapter of judges 14 reveals the Grace and the power of God upon his life.
In Chapter 15 a tragedy occurred. The only wife He love was given to another (read Judges 15v1-2, the whole chapter is full of victory of wars because of his rage). Even after this Grate Victory, the wound of losing his dear wife was still in him. This became waters of trials. In stead of waiting patiently on God, discouragement led him to go to a harlot (read chapter 16v1) and later married Delilah out of self. This became his ruin and fall.
Had he waited on God, his wife will have been restored to him. The waters of trials veil his spiritual vision. He no longer saw the God who kills is the God that makes alive.
Wherefore David arose and went, he and his men, and slew of the Philistines two hundred men; and David brought their foreskins, and they gave them in full tale to the king, that he might be the king's son in law. And Saul gave him Michal his daughter to wife.(1Samuel18v27).
David like Sampson faced a similar situation. As we can see from the quoted scriptures above, michal soul daughter was given to David as a wife on Condition. He was asked to kill two hundred philistines. Under the will of God, he was able to overcome and Michal was given to him.
A tragedy also occurred in the marriage of David to michal . Because of Saul hatred and Envy of David , Michal was later given to another man for married . David Patiently waited for the will of God. Knowing unless the LORD builds the house, the laborers build in vain. When the LORD gave the kingdom to David we find in 2Samuel 3v12-15 that David restored His wife back.
And Abner sent messengers to David on his behalf, saying, Whose [is] the land? saying [also], Make thy league with me, and, behold, my hand [shall be] with thee, to bring about all Israel unto thee. And he said, Well; I will make a league with thee: but one thing I require of thee, that is, Thou shalt not see my face, except thou first bring Michal Saul's daughter, when thou comest to see my face.And David sent messengers to Ishbosheth Saul's son, saying, Deliver [me] my wife Michal, which I espoused to me for an hundred foreskins of the Philistines.And Ishbosheth sent, and took her from [her] husband, [even] from Phaltiel the son of Laish.
This is a picture of the blessing of a yielded life to the Will of God. This is Baptism.
THE WATERS IN THESE PERILIOUS TIMES
Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season?Blessed [is] that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing.Verily I say unto you, That he shall make him ruler over all his goods.But and if that evil servant shall say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming;And shall begin to smite [his] fellowservants, and to eat and drink with the drunken;The lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looketh not for [him], and in an hour that he is not aware of,And shall cut him asunder, and appoint [him] his portion with the hypocrites: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.(Matthew24v45-51).
The Scripture above a solemn warning given by the LORD , about the need to persevere in HIS will amidst the many waters of adversity. Every true Child of God is a servant. This call is not just for some selected people we called clergy or pastors today. In reality, the Clergy system is not New covenant in its nature because it in denies the priesthood of all believers though a majority of them will not accept this. Anything which is not new covenant, in its nature is a hindrance in degree to true new covenant Life.
We can see every Believer is called to give meat (spiritual food) to the household of Faith. This goes along with the timing of God. We cannot give meat to the body without cooking it with water and fire. The fire is the presence or baptism of the spirit which gives our soul supernatural strength to go through waters and come out victoriously. Until the meat is thoroughly cooked through the water and fire, we are not fit to share it with the household of faith. We should only share what He tells us to share.
THE TRAGEDY OF THE DELAY
But and if that evil servant shall say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming;And shall begin to smite [his] fellowservants, and to eat and drink with the drunken;The lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looketh not for [him], and in an hour that he is not aware of,And shall cut him asunder, and appoint [him] his portion with the hypocrites: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Like in the Case of Sampson, we will always be faced with challengers and situations that will tempt to divert our mind, out of what the LORD has permitted us to go through. This is another area, were many fall away from the Faith. When the LORD allows us to go through difficult and painful situation, the purpose is to bring us to a higher baptism of Glory and Eternal Value. Because it is not always easy for the flesh, to Cease and patiently endure in situations like this, many souls out of impatience easily leave this abode, and made there own boat (out of the dictate of self) to cross the waters, in stead of going through baptism. Such Souls will later end in smitten there fellow servant who are calling them back into their first habitation of rest. If they did not heed the call, they will find themselves drunk, not with the divine wine of the spirit but with the dictates of the carnal nature. They will also end in feeding the doctrines which appeals to the flesh with its vain comfort. This is a corporate work and almost all of us atleast in degree have fallen in this area. It is time to wake up from our comfort Zones and patiently endure the waters that we must pass through before entering the Land of Canaan in fullness. Amen.
JAMES F JARJOU