Podcast: Download (6.3MB)
Podcast (podcast-mp3): Download (5.5MB)
Practical Living the Word Not Systematizing
December 21, 2015
With Martha Kilpatrick and hosted by John Enslow
This is the continuation of a series of Podcasts started in Episode #471.
(Martha) My husband and I are reading Sparks’ book, “The Face of Christ.” And that is an amazing thing, and we are talking about what is it when you see the face of Christ? Actually you see the revelation of Him. It’s when you go through and experience and suddenly you see who He is. You have seen Him intimately, right in His face, right in your face who He is, and that’s what it means. So he says that’s what the Jews did with the Torah. They made 600 laws that weren’t even there, and they systemized. And we’ve done the same in Christianity. We’ve done the same thing. He says that one rabbi drew up 1,500 odd laws on the one law, the Sabbath. You can understand why they, that they bind heavy burdens, grievous to be born and put upon men’s shoulders. It’s an impossible yoke. But when the Lord Jesus came and in Himself gave some interpretation of the law, some light upon the law which didn’t fall into their system, there was no room for Him. There was no room for God in His own law. And then he talks about the teaching of the apostles, “That the teaching of the apostle was not hammered out in the study or the lecture room. The teaching of the apostles was hammered out in the practical occupation with situations and conditions. They are in the work, and in the work they are coming up against situations of tremendous difficulty. They are brought face to face with the biggest, practical problems of human relationship with God, with human need. They were in the thick of things, in the fire, and right there the doctrine was hammered out. The truth was not an academic thing. It was a practical thing.” And that’s what’s going to constitute the Bride, because the virgin is prudent, wise and vs. the foolish. The foolish don’t take the Holy Spirit in the Word or the Holy Spirit in knowing Jesus, but the wise do. The wise are wise because they’re practical. The brilliant thing about John… I’ve always said it. He’s one of the most practical minded people I’ve ever known. Because he’s so practical minded that he’s in living that can solve so many problems and see right through to the core of a thing. And that’s… There aren’t many people that are truly that practical. We don’t think practicality is brilliance. We don’t think it’s… When you are practical, you’re a genius, because life requires that you be practical, and you’ve got a problem, and you go at it, and you find it like a mystery that you’ve got to come to the core of it. There’s a man that works with us here in the mountains, and he’s so dear, and he does many things, rescues me many times. And I tell him he needs to have a TV show called, “How to Fix Anything,” and he fixed Carole’s little garden cart with… It wouldn’t work, and he just fixed it with WD40. He can go to the simple problem, and then the solution is simple. He’s that practical, and I appreciate him greatly. He talks about the book of Romans, that that’s the one book that has been systemized to the nth degree, and yet it’s not at all meant that way; especially Romans 7. “I cannot do the good I want to do.” Help. And Romans 8, the practical solution is the Spirit. And that’s, to me, that is one of the most practical books there is. It’s experiential, and they like to make it that Paul was not saved when he despaired of his inability. And I want to say, “No, you haven’t lived practically by the Word of God, or you’d know that was not an unsaved man. That was a saved man that loves the law of God in his heart and wants to do it and can’t, and discovers that it’s Christ alone who can do what Christ calls us to.” So, that’s my joy. And then this is wonderful that Sparks says about Paul in Romans. “He is at a hand to hand grips with a living and terrible situation, and this is being drawn out of him, and that is why it has so much life in it. Every one of Paul’s letters were written to meet a specific situation, an actual position that something had arisen in life, and he was meeting that.” And that’s what your blogs are about, so I’m cheering you on folks. Write those blogs. “And what we need,” Sparks again, “What we need is to be flung into the situation that makes that bit of life and truth a matter of rescuing us from despair or destruction, and then the thing is more than doctrine. It’s Life.” If you get His life in your crisis, you can impart that life to others. It’s what Paul means when he says, “Comfort others with the comfort with which you have been comforted.” And that’s true of truth as well as comfort as well as anything that we live with Christ through. And we don’t solve it by reason or logic. That’s no different than the Jews and then any other religion; solve it by reason. What is the flesh? “Sense and reason without the Holy Spirit.” So, I just want to champion all of you who are sharing your life and your heart and your guts; forgive me, your vulnerability and how you are discovering Him. And people who look down on you in that, do not understand the brilliance and wisdom that you’re pouring out into the world. So, I’m asking God, “Increase the audience of getalongwithgod.com and what you’re writing,” because it’s, it is the utter wisdom of God and the knowledge of God. Well, bear with me, folks, I want to read one more thing from Sparks. “The true way is the living way, the way of life. God never gives His heavenly revelation as something upon which our brains are to take hold for purpose of dissecting and analyzing. God gives heavenly revelation to save us in an hour of desperate need. And that is why He allow us to be led into situations which make is necessary a new revelation. God is the practical way not the academic way, the living way not the way of a system.” And this one, final word from Sparks, “Everything we touch in the Word of God is a matter of grace, and you cannot stereotype the grace of God.” Taking Christianity to the tree of knowledge and being dead, making death, producing death, eating death, to assume that we can even know the meaning of resurrection or grace or indwelling is the most presumptuous pride, because it’s too big. He is too big. God is too big. He will have to be unfolded for eternity and revealed forever and ever.
(J) When you were reading this earlier this week, you told me about that, and kind of what I heard was that Paul was horrified that the letter that he intended to be experiential and practical was being systemized into a formula, and I was like, “Wow,” because, you know, we study the life out of things. We literally will study the life out of it. We think that we’ve mastered it, because we have the principles layered in an outline form, and that we can, you know, regurgitate what we’ve mentally accented to. But it has to be the practical, has to be the experiential.
(Martha) It occurred to me as you were saying that that the reason it has to be experiential is that it’s about obedience. And when you get in a situation, if your focus is obedience, if your direction is obedience, then you’ve got to find out what He wants of you in this situation. And so, it’s really… The underlying thing of wisdom is James. “My brothers, count it all joy when you enter in to trial.” Ask for wisdom. But if you’re double minded, don’t expect to get anything. Double minded means I want God, and I want me too. I want the world, and I want heaven. Double minded is most of Christianity. But if your one issue has become obedience to Him, then you will know, just automatically, that you’ve go to find out what is His mind and what is His will in this situation. If I didn’t make it clear enough, I think sometimes I’ve encountered and people have said to me, “But Martha, you already know that or didn’t you know that?,” if I go through a new experience of an old revelation. And, you see, there’s never… If you think in terms of systems, doctrines, principles, then you think there’s a place where you come that you know it. And there is no such place, because it is not a doctrine. It’s a Person. And so, there’s no end to the discovery of the Person. There’s an end to the discovery of doctrine, and that’s what, and I think it probably puzzles some people who read you, you all, that, “surely you know this.” Well, yeah, you do. Most of the time, you’ve already been around that one for 40 years. But it’s the fact that God is knowable and unfathomable. And that paradox, most people who live in the mind don’t want.
I love your podcasts. :) Thank you, people.
You opened here so many “trend topics” to talk about. :) So interesting… I will just comment in the line of Paul of Tarsus, if you let me. This is burning in me, sorry that I do such a long comment.
We do not understand (and I tell you, I have been the first one not understanding) our brother Paul of Tarsus. We do not see that Paul was a brilliant man BEFORE being called to be made an stupid man for Christ’s sake. I believe the greatest battle in this man’s life was the battle of being an awesome cultivated and capable man.
I believe he was chosen because of this amazing brilliancy, but not that this brilliancy would be shown up to the world (a brilliancy in which he operated to simply kill his brothers and sisters), but such that Christ could PUT TO SHAME the brilliancy of this age, the wisdom of this age, of which Paul was a good exponent.
Now, you know what we do with Paul? Instead of attending Christ in him… we attend his brilliancy!! You see how really idolatrous we are? We adore, we praise and render cult to his gifted mind and awesome knowledge… and his inner battle was to UNLEARN to LEARN, to LOSE to GAIN, and to be REDUCED to be FILLED with the awesomeness of Christ.
We praise what he was called of Christ (by Christ) to detest.
I believe Achilles heel of this learned and brilliant man was his brilliancy, his knowledge and his huge “mind”.
When you read Paul of Tarsus with this in mind, a new man, a new brother arises from the ashes. I tell you, a new thing you see, and a whole new world is opened up. Not of dead systematized neat doctrines, but of a man embarked in a journey to know his dear Christ at the cost of great real personal loss, the main of which was his brilliancy.
Love to the Body!
About 2 or 3 days ago, I heard the words; “it is midnight” in my spirit. I did not do anything about it or say anything to anyone. Then about a day after that, a beloved sister in The Lord, said she awoke, hearing herself repeating scripture from Matthew 25.The five wise and five foolish virgins. I only realised this morning, that verse 6 speaks about midnight there!
About half an hour later, I was lead to listen to your podcast, and I heard the same thing here between the lines: it is Holy Spirit: the oil, the doing what we are hearing from Him in the moment by moment.
I so very very much want to be ready when He comes!! The greatest event in the universe! the Greatest KING of all. I plead with The Helper to show us what it means to “go out and meet Him.”
Love to His precious Body.
Dearest Annalie , there is a tape series I taught in 2001 named “The Bride is Ready.”
You can find the transcript on the Shulamite website here:
Let me know if it blesses you! LOVE to you from us all
The audio version is available here:
How wonderful to hear from you! I have almost finished reading the series: gulping it down with a hungry heart….sometimes crying sometimes trembling sometimes in utter joy as I all the while recognize the ways of The Lord and His dealings with me witnessing with what you wrote. But throughout the reading of it, I could not shut my jaw, literally not.I was gaping at the awesome treasures of Him who entrusts us with Himself .
Love and appreciate you very much!
Just a quick clarification, the article series “The Bride is Ready” is entirely separate from the audio series “The Bride is Ready.” It is not actually a transcript. The audio series is far more in-depth though the two compliment each other beautifully!
Dear Annalie, I just remembered there is another series I taught in Ireland about the 10 virgins. I’ll ask Jennifer for the name of it and let you know….I believe it’s just one CD.
The CD she is speaking about is titled, Wise with Oil. It is currently not available at LivingChristianBooks.com but if you are interested please let me know and I will make it available to you. It is one of the best messages I have heard about the 10 Virgins. It makes you so hungry! Email us if you wish for it to be made available. firstname.lastname@example.org
The CD Wise With Oil is available now. Click here
“…to assume that we can even know…is the most presumptuous pride…”
As every new day is blessed upon me – I know nothing. He loves me, He’s got me – I’m on board. And then at the end of the day I am amazed at the gift of it all.