Saturday, 27 October 2007

Question and Answer Session on Grace and Glory!!

Thursday 25th October 2007 - PM Session with Rob Rufus.

I took notes as best as I could during this session but obviously the interaction was much too fast for me to follow completely. I did hear that it was recorded so hopefully I will be able to transcribe the whole thing at some point! For now - enjoy the notes. It is another opportunity to enjoy Rob Rufus at his best in another way and shows how well he was studied the Word of God and knows what he is teaching. There are some snippets that may be of interest to those cautious observers who are trying to put Rob Rufus into a theological box ... he gives away certain eschatological viewpoints!

Q: If Paul wrote to the Corinthians and said; "Gave you milk but you are not ready for bread yet" - but Hebrews says "Leave milk" - should we be concerned that grace is simply milk?

A: Hebrews 6 is foundational teaching of Christ. We must discern between good and evil in Hebrews 4 and 5 and then Hebrews 6 in context. God puts foundations as the finished work of the Cross. All doctrines must flow out of that finished work. It is milk - it is meat - it is everything and the Christian must go deeper and deeper depths in the revealing grace of God. The revelation to the Corinthians was "milk revelation"! Yet most evangelicals can't even get to that point in our experience of the power of God.

If you take the finished work of the Cross out of anything then you have Kingdom principles with no Kingdom power.

We never preach prepare the wineskin and then He will pour in the wine. He pours in the new wine which will create organic growth. What is the meat if the finished work of the Cross was "only" milk!?

Q: Revelation 10:1 - is the pillars of fire the legs of Jesus Christ?

A: The pillar of fire is Jesus (1 Corinthians 10) - God is very touch about His prophetic pictures of the Cross. Moses was barred from entering the Promised Land because he struck the Rock twice. By ONE sacrifice He made us perfect FOREVER! That angel is the last seal of judgement and the rainbow means that judgement is over.

The Book of Revelation is not chronological - it has already taken place. All of those churches have relevance for us today!

Q: A friend passed away and you prayed that they would be raised from the dead and a miracle would take place. Why?

A: Yes that person was diagnosed with leukaemia and was clinically dead in two days. It comes back to the point about having all 3 gifts in operation to see the dead raised. We are coming into that era but we won't see all raised from the dead. The apostles didn't raise everyone! But for trying - God says well done! Raising the dead was the exception in Scripture. You do need to get revelation and ask if the 3 gifts will operate.

But when you get a relative who is desperate to see her loved one return and wants to see them raised from the dead - then give it a try! But our reason must rest in revelation. Otherwise no one should exist the planet until they are 70! The prophets are speaking and saying this is the time. Heidi Baker is seeing about 80 resurrections in her work. The dead are being raised in isolated pockets - we must see that the Hebrews 6 doctrines are also practice! We must be wise. God has said before to Todd Bentley; "I didn't tell you to try and raise them". Otherwise the Church will live with a sense of failure. But above all let's be honest, hold up our hands and admit it is the Spirit who raises from the dead and not us!

Q: Law and grace - does the law have any role in the life of the believer? (Psalm 1) - "On His law he mediates day and night".

A: The law refers to the truth of who God is. David is talking about the Scriptures here. David pulled the New Covenant into the present by putting the Ark into an open tent. He pulled the dispensation of New Covenant life into Old Covenant life and for 30 years they experienced a revival of New Covenant life - free access to God!

The only value the law has is the value of spiritual adultery.

(Romans 10:3) - Christ is the end of the law to all them that believe. If you are dead to something then you have no capacity to respond to that stimulus! "Law written on our hearts" - isn't something you MUST keep - it is something you WANT to keep!

Q: The New Testament speaks about instructions of godly living - are they descriptions rather than prescriptions?

A: Yes. Paul never wrote to the Corinthians and said "Thou shalt not" - he said; "Don't you know who you are? You are light!". If keeping the law justifies you and brings blessing then we are all on our way to hell. The New Testament has instructions for living based on reminding them who are they are.

There are two components to grace: 1. Acceptance. We are accepted in Christ unconditionally. 2. Empowerment. To do things for Christ and to empower us to live holy lives. God's grace teaches us to say "No!". But teaching is a process of learning. "I laboured harder than all the other apostles but not I ... ". If people over-emphasise the empowerment of grace over the acceptance of grace then law dresses up as grace and brings the condemnation in for not working hard enough.

Fundementalism in the USA and Canada is a huge emphasis on empowerment and not acceptance - because of this people are leaving the church in droves. Fundementalism = very little fun and quite mental! They are very vulnerable to burning out for every cause. "Not in what you do but who you are". That is our true identity!

Giving tithes and offerings - not out of security is dead works and you won't be rewarded in heaven for it.

Q: Anything we can do to speed up or slow down the works of grace in our lives?

A: Try not to speed it up. As soon as we try and help grace, we slow the process down. The bigger the miracle required the less you must try! We don't live comfortably with our blemishes and our flaws. There is too much teaching on godly character and it blurs very quickly with law. God is very comfortable with our character flaws because He never had any illusions about us in the first place! If He showed you every wrong in your life then you would want to commit suicide.

God isn't interested in behaviour modification but heart transformation. If He can change the internal dynamics of our heart then gradually we will begin to see change flowing out of us and not forced in on us.

Fini de Gersigny: Part of the freedom of grace is to work on our strengths and not our weaknesses. "He gave some to be ...". Prophets make good prophets and we need better definition of what God wants us to be! We don't have grace for some things!

Q: "If you love Me you will obey My commands" and (Deut 28) - Blessings and Cursings. Can we open ourselves up to witchcraft by rebelling?

A: Two questions there! It is one command and not 10. "Love one another". Anything that says you must keep the tablets of stone isn't the Spirit of God. He cancelled the written code at the Cross! And then we died to it! He knows how vulnerable we are to it because Satan is a legalist. (Deut 28) is the pivotal issue in the church right now.

Grace will always make you confident to draw near to God but law will always make you shrink back.

Deut 28 says if you will FULLY obey ... but Romans 5:19 says by the FULL obedience of ONE man for ALL! He kept the Law fully! It's not "just as if you never sinned" but "just as if you had always obeyed!

We only come under witchcraft from the evil on by coming back under law. The "Debtors Ethic" is wrong and it puts people back under law. We owe Him a debt that we can never repay. The Gospel is so powerful - that is why we can't get to grips with it! All theology should move out of the two Adams.

Q: What about "Work out your salvation with fear and trembling"?

A: He didn't say "Work FOR your salvation". You already have salvation! Fear and trembling - does that mean servile fear? The Greek word does have a meaning for a bondage-type fear but it doesn't mean that. Rather it means a sense of awe and wonder at the preaching of the gospel. The New Testament began on the Day of Pentecost. But the Old Testament also began on the Day of Pentecost at Sinai! The Gospels are not New Testament - they are introducing the imminent arrival of the gospel of grace! Jesus was preaching the extreme spirituality of the law! That is Old Covenant teaching that Jesus was bringing.

Q: To truly understand grace, do we need to understand law?

A: Yes. We need to understand how perfect the law was but it was a shadow of things to come! Jesus said if you even think it then you are guilty! Our response to God must be - Give me grace! Romans 3 - law nullifies grace. Two people in the New Testament had great faith and their common denominator was that they were outside the law.

Descendants of Abraham should have had the greatest faith but the Pharisees and the law crushed them.

As soon as you see a self-righteous person don't give them grace - give them law! That will strip them and make them see their desperate need of grace. Rather than put the "Thou shalt nots" on them - see them changed from the inside.

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