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NateMarshall
Member



Joined: 2012/6/5
Posts: 19


 Speaking of being broken before the throne...

Brethren,

I know that in the Christian life, it's difficult to ask the question, "How do I...?" simply because we are each individuals with whom God has an individual relationship. What he may accomplish in you by this method, he may accomplish the same end in me by a different method. And frankly, my brain tends to work in a highly formulaic manner (E.G.: prayer + blameless living = blessing, or anything along those lines, not necessarily this example), and this is an un-realistic way to think as a believer.

So...

With that in mind, I want to ask: how has God brought you to a place of brokenness? I know the scriptures, I've studied the prayers of the prophets and the encounters with God in the biblical narratives (Abraham, Jacob, Isaiah, Paul, etc.,etc.) and I've got to say that more than ever, I desperately want the presence of God to overwhelm me. I want to be broken before him, but I look at my life and I know that I'm not at a place of brokenness yet. This isn't some legalistic trip I'm putting myself on, or a quest to conquer condemnation; this is a desire of mine. I feel that I might slip into legalism (e.g.: you just have to pray more, Nate; you just have to read more, Nate; you just have to fast more, Nate) and I don't want that to happen. Although I AM reading and praying and fasting more, it's because my affection for God is increasing, not because I'm relying on those avenues or "formulas" (prayer + fasting = brokenness) to break me. I want my full trust and hope and expectation to be in God, not in me or my methods. I want to be broken before the throne, I'm just struggling to get there...

Any doctrine, reproof, correction, or instruction in righteousness would be wonderful right now. :)


_________________
Nathaniel Marshall

 2012/6/7 21:05Profile









 Re: Speaking of being broken before the throne...

Quote:
.... I want to be broken before the throne, I'm just struggling to get there...

Any doctrine, reproof, correction, or instruction in righteousness would be wonderful right now. :)



You cannot struggle to be broken any more than you can struggle to be fixed.

When God breaks you it is not a fun time. It is not a religious exercise and cannot happen through religious exercises. It happens when EVERYTHING that you place hope, joy, comfort or trust in is removed from your grip, leaving you entirely shattered.

OJ

 2012/6/7 21:36
NateMarshall
Member



Joined: 2012/6/5
Posts: 19


 Re:

Allow me to amend my statement:

I'm not struggling to get there (or maybe I am a tad bit), but I'm struggling with understanding how men are broken.

A.W. Tozer said, "Don't try to wound yourself. If you try to wound yourself, you won't get any place. 'Faithful are the wounds of a friend.' If you try to wound yourself, you will only give in to the flesh. Come to Him, and let Him do the wounding. Nobody can teach you this wound, and you cannot inflict it yourself."

Is brokenness a bad thing to ask for? When I've told close brothers of mine this desire to be broken, the response I normally get is along the lines of, "you'll be sorry you asked for that." Really? Will I be? I sincerely hope not...I'm not expecting fun, or fluffiness, or kittens or candy sticks.


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Nathaniel Marshall

 2012/6/7 21:45Profile
dbiser
Member



Joined: 2009/9/5
Posts: 100


 Re: Speaking of being broken before the throne...

It is of the Lord that this brokenness comes. When a person yields themselves to see as God sees, feel as God feels, and know as God knows. (As much as finite creatures can experience Infinite attributes of God) Moses was there when he saw the great sin of Israel, 'This people has sinned a great sin'. When JEremiah saw the wrath and judgment of God poured out on Jerusalem and Judah he wrote Lamentations. God allows for us 'enlarge our heart'. When Christ looked upon Jerusalem, knowing their rejection of Him and His Father, He wept over the city. Why? He was broken for the sins of His people and He knew what would happen in AD 70.

The agony of seeing sin, knowing how God will meet that person in their sin will cause brokenness. Knowing even more that God is merciful and gracious and stands ready to pardon, cleanse and forgive, but the hardness of men's hearts keep them from receiving His great gift of salvation is even more heart breaking. And to know the reality of eternity that these souls will spend an eternity in hell for their life, causes us brokenness.
How do we not stay in a constant state of perpetual anguish and brokenness, we 'look unto Jesus' and see His glory; we know His Divine love; we see His mericful blessings and provisions; we count His faithfulness to us and give thanks for we knwo we deserved nothing, but receive all things. It is the paradox of our livng. Always rejoicing, yet consumed with grief for the lostness of men. Crying out to God for mercy upon a wicked people, yet knowing that this same God is more than willing to show His mercy to them that seek it.
There is well that cannot be drained of all that goes into this. Hope these tidbits help a little
blessings,
until,
dan b

 2012/6/7 22:02Profile
Blayne
Member



Joined: 2012/5/27
Posts: 274


 Re: Speaking of being broken before the throne...

Hi! NateMarshall

You wrote:
"I've got to say that more than ever, I desperately want the presence of God to overwhelm me. I want to be broken before him, but I look at my life and I know that I'm not at a place of brokenness yet."

I think you might have been reading too many pious devotional books or self-help books.
The truth is, God has no desire to have you, "broken before Him" as you are asking. Absolutely none whatsoever!

I too was unwittingly caught up with this pious nonsense for years.

In many Christian circles the idea exists that God wishes to break and destroy the human spirit, the will and the heart. They sing: 'Break me completely'. This approach amounts to asking God in prayer to do the work of the evil spirits. As if God desires robots or human wrecks and ruined people.

Ours is a time in which the key of knowledge has been taken away from among Christian people. The bible teaches that the law of the Spirit sets us free, so it is unnecessary to memorize the Ten Commandments, but very necessary to investigate the laws of the spiritual world. "An athlete is not crowned unless he competes according to the rules. 'I do not run aimlessly'", Paul says, "'I do not box as one beating the air'".

In Ephesians 6 the apostle writes that we are not contending against flesh and blood, which includes our own flesh and blood. Falsehoods lead people astray, teaching them to sing: "Make this poor self grow less and less".

Jesus however taught us to pray: "Deliver us from the evil one!"

The bible does not teach us to fight and abandon ourselves. Luke 9:25 asks: "What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses or forfeits himself?".
We lose ourselves only when we are overpowered by the evil one. When a man loses himself he falls victim to the devil who overpowers him, robs him of his freedom and injures him.

Jesus, however, has come to heal the injured that they may truly be people after God's purpose. God's Spirit seeks to have fellowship with man's restored spirit in freedom that the pure fruit of this communion may be revealed.

Others teach that one has to be willing to pay the price if one wants to enter the Kingdom of God. They say that the price is putting the self to death. These people unwittingly sing, "Break me, melt me, fill me". The price they offer for the Kingdom of God is the willingness to be broken. They want to get rid of everything God has given them in life. They ask God to break them as an earthen pot and to fill them afterwards!

When they sing "break me, fill me", they have surely pushed aside their common sense. After all, once it has been broken into pieces it's quite difficult for an earthen pot to be repaired. A Christian should rather pray for healing and restoration for that is the way in which he can be filled with the Spirit of God.

Jesus said: "For what does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses or forfeits himself?" (Luke 9:25). Those who put 'self' to death and become 'nothing', those who lose self, are an easy prey for the evil one, for there is no power left in them to resist him.

Self-control is one of the fruits of the Spirit. It means that man's will controls and directs his spirit. This is the way in which the spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets. A man who loses self-control, that is, loses control of his own spirit, becomes an easy prey for the enemy.

In Psalm 51 David speaks of his awful sins and transgressions, confessing that his spirit is broken and his heart is wounded. This is the result of the powers of sin in his life. He is fearful and anxious that God may turn away from him, and he cries out: "A broken and contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise".

On the contrary: "God heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds", (Psalm 147:3). "The Lord saves the crushed in spirit", (Psalm 34:18). God does not break man's spirit, he does not make him sick or crush his heart. God "satisfies your heart with food and gladness!", (Acts 14:17).

Jesus came to heal, to save, to set free and to restore. He sets the prisoners free and breaks their chains. That is why Scripture says: "Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice!"




=============================================
Speaking of being broken before the throne...
by NateMarshall on 2012/6/7 18:05:05
=============================================

 2012/6/7 22:26Profile
Blayne
Member



Joined: 2012/5/27
Posts: 274


 Re:

Hi! NateMarshall

I returned to this Thread to re-read it. Sometimes I'm having to do that because I don't always obtain the intent of the Thread at first glance.

Whew! It was only on the second reading that I noticed your saying: "A.W. Tozer said, "If you try to wound yourself, you will only give in to the flesh. Come to Him, and let Him do the wounding. Nobody can teach you this wound, and you cannot inflict it yourself."

This fellah's advice is utterly pious nonsense!
Unbelievable! It's obscene that anyone should suggest that Jesus desires to wound people.

Errors lead a Christian away from the true foundation in the heavenly places and take him into Babylon, the great city of confusion, the great harlot who sits upon many waters (religious opinions). The pure and sound doctrine of truth leads along the high road to the purpose of God: the conformation to the image of Christ.

There is so much rubbish out there inviting Christians to excavate their navels. The evil one is doing treacherous damage while having God's people preoccupied with their 'self'.

It has always been difficult for Christians to have a proper perspective concerning the attributes of humility, obedience and sacrifice. However, we shouldn't be surprised that the evil one is eager to distort the intent and meaning of these attributes.

There will be some who might ask the question: "But doesn't man have to be little and humble? Doesn't he have to subordinate himself completely? Didn't Jesus say, "If any man would come after me, let him deny himself?", (Matt 16:24).

Jesus was speaking of those who would come after Him, who desired to follow Him. It concerns the first step on the high road. Those of us who want to share in the heavenly call will have to humble himself in the visible world. He will have to be inclined to help and serve others. He who looks after his sick neighbor's difficult children shows self denial. She who babysits for a young couple who want to go to church shows self denial. Those who insist on comfort, ease, honor and attention are unfit to follow Jesus, "He did not serve Himself".

Those who are capable of humility in their natural life will not be handicapped in spiritual life by earthly worries and the anxieties of life. But in his struggle against the evil one in his own territory, the believer will put on his royal raiment and use his authority. A true Christian is lenient and easy in the natural world, but in the unseen world he does not compromise, and takes up his place as a man of authority.

Some say that self has to die. The Spirit of God will not do this, for He is a life- giving Spirit. If self dies, how can Paul say, "I boast in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ"? Does man have a second self? If not, how can he have fellowship with Christ, if he has no longer his own self? Really, the enemy has an easy job of it if we piously insist that we have killed our own self, for how could there be life in us if we had? Or communion with God?

By fighting self, by making laws and precepts, by establishing rules and regulations, we end up in legalistic attitudes where joy and gladness will die. God wants us to struggle in the heavenly places against the powers, the rulers of this world, the evil spirits in the heavenlies, until, having been set free from all our enemies, we may serve Him without fear all the days of our life!

While it remains true that we are not fighting against self, but only the evil one, Jesus said that those who wish to follow Him, have to deny themselves. Self-denial is the first step on the road towards salvation.

What did the Lord mean by this?
As long as a woman is independent and unmarried, she decides for herself what to do and where to go. She is her own master. When this woman marries, though, she gladly and of her own will drops the independence she had. From that moment onward she is united with her husband, and arranges her behavior to suit him.
In a good marriage this kind of self-denial is not something difficult but rather a matter of joy. It is an easy yoke and a light burden. Paul writes: "I have been crucified with Christ and yet I live, that is, no longer my own self, but Christ lives in me. and the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in (communion with) the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me".

In faith the human spirit is married to the Spirit of God "in order that the just requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit", (Romans 8:4). It is God's purpose to take up a dwelling place in man, not to kill or subdue man's personality, as in a marriage that has gone wrong and as the devil tries to do, but in order to dwell together in the earthly tabernacle in perfect love and harmony. God has no pleasure in the death of a sinner, but in his repentance, that he may live ! He desires that his people have life, and have it abundantly.

Romans 8:12,13 says: So then, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh - for if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body you will live."

"We are debtors" means that we are required to live according to the Spirit, for He lives in us. We are not allowed to live according to the flesh to do its desires. If we live according to the flesh, if a Christian backslides or weakens until he listens to the enemy again, (the instigator of the evil desires in man), he is alienated from God, and this separation will lead to his destruction and death.

This verse also mentions the "deeds of the body", when the Evil One used the body to reveal his intentions in the visible world. How can we put to death these deeds of the body? By the law of the Spirit of life ... not by adhering to the law of Sinai!

The law of the Holy Spirit, which functions in the body of Christ (the congregation), leads to deliverance and salvation, to fullness and perfection. Putting it to death means commanding it to cease functioning. This happens when we resist by the power of the Holy Spirit the desires created by the devil. Then the body is for the Lord and the Lord for the body. Then we glorify God with the body, (1Cor 6:13,20).

The answer to the problem of sin cannot be found in humility, in self-denial, in chastising the body, in fasting or adhering to restrictive precepts, but only in faith that He who is in us is stronger than the one who is in the world. He who trusts in the Lord has faith in the power and wisdom of the Holy Spirit who dwells in him. The Holy Spirit creates in us thoughts and desires for that which is good and acceptable and perfect. He fills us with the thoughts of God which lead us towards life.

When Jesus invites the people to come to Him, it is to lay down the yoke of the enemy which burdens them. Jesus calls them to renounce their false thinking and ideas, to stop giving in to the pressure of the pious spirits, to listen to Him, to accept His thoughts (Word) and to take upon them His yoke. That is why it says, "Learn from Me".

Jesus comes to deliver all who turn to Him from the yoke of the pious spirits. That is why Paul was able to say: "For freedom Christ has set us free; stand fast therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery", (Gal 5:1).

Jesus specifies the qualities of his doctrine, as opposed to that of the evil spirits, "Learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart". The teaching of Jesus has nothing in common with the pressure and compulsion of the pious spirits. His call to serve God is not hard and commanding; He only invites: "Let him who desires come. Jesus does not threaten, He does not agitate those who follow Him but allows them ample time to develop harmoniously and to recover from inner damage and injury. "He will not wrangle or cry aloud, nor will any one hear his voice in the streets; He will not break a bruised reed or quench a smoldering wick", (Matt 12:19).

Jesus' yoke is easy, His burden is light. Are we prepared to take upon us this yoke, to turn away from the pious teachers who try to infiltrate our thoughts with ideas which don't belong to God? Are we ready to turn our back on the pious denial of natural life, on self-chastisement and the desire for outward show in our life of faith, on religious efforts and cold, hard religious consistency?

For Jesus promises those who accept his yoke, "And you will find rest for your souls".

 2012/6/7 23:57Profile









 Re:

Quote:

Is brokenness a bad thing to ask for? When I've told close brothers of mine this desire to be broken, the response I normally get is along the lines of, "you'll be sorry you asked for that." Really? Will I be? I sincerely hope not...I'm not expecting fun, or fluffiness, or kittens or candy sticks.



Those who recognize their brokenness need not be broken, breaking is reserved for those who think they are not broken.

Enter Pharisee, and publican, which one was broken and which one needed breaking?


OJ

 2012/6/8 0:03
Blayne
Member



Joined: 2012/5/27
Posts: 274


 Re:

Hi! Old_Joe

You wrote:
"When God breaks you, it is not a fun time. .... It happens when EVERYTHING that you place hope, joy, comfort or trust in is removed from your grip, leaving you entirely shattered".

I read those sentences of yours with much perplexity.

Because we confess that God is ONLY and perfectly good, we must be very vigilant about misappropriating our emotional postures to God.

The same thing can be said for all these who remain eager to wallow in a piety of denial and self-accusation. It is a false premise to believe the fraudulent emotional releases which usually accompany these pious spirits as coming from God. These emotive feelings testify to nothing about God nor of His posture towards us.

 2012/6/8 0:31Profile
NateMarshall
Member



Joined: 2012/6/5
Posts: 19


 Re:

Thank you, everyone, for your feedback.

I went and checked all the usages of the English word "broken" throughout the whole of the Bible, and it seems to be limited in use to: walls, necks, idols, bondages, and spirits. Any time the brokenhearted or the downcast were brought up, God was always healing and binding up wounds and, like you said Blayne, giving life. Not once is it ever used in the sense that the modern church uses it, "be broken before God", "be broken before His throne", etc.,etc. The only place it's used in a positive sense is in Psalm 51, and even then it's not a command to be broken, nor does it say that God breaks His people.

Perhaps "broken" isn't the right term to use, although the idea of humility (which is very right and true) is attached to it. 2 Peter 2:24 says "He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. [b]By his wounds you have been healed[/b]." Christ received the wounding and breaking that I deserved, and in Him I now have life.

I suppose this is a concept that is so prevalent in the church that it's become un-questioned, almost as if those that didn't know about it or strive to attain it aren't "mature in the faith". I've never considered its scriptural foundation (or lack thereof) until a few days ago.

I've been frustrated for a long time, but never thought to check Scripture until recently. What a bonehead. :P Thank God for His patience and mercy.


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Nathaniel Marshall

 2012/6/8 2:13Profile
NateMarshall
Member



Joined: 2012/6/5
Posts: 19


 Re:

This isn't to say that I've stopped meditating on this idea. I still have the encounters with God to consider more in depth, but solely on the fact that "broken" isn't used in Scripture in the contemporary way is certainly a compelling argument against the concept of brokenness.

O God, give us insight and discernment! What should we desire? What matches up with who you are? Teach us to pursue holy pursuits, and desire God-glorifying desires.


_________________
Nathaniel Marshall

 2012/6/8 2:25Profile





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