Wednesday, 6 February 2008

The Presence of God - June 30, 2004

While Dan is keeping us updated on Rob's current teaching, (Thanks Dan!), it is my heart to go back to the beginning of Rob's teaching at CCI and get a good grip on the foundations he laid from the start.
This is the first message of City Church International, preached by Rob Rufus, June 30, 2004. 
Rob starts out sharing a prophetic word(s) given to he and Glenda, from all over the world, before they started this church. (Singapore, US, Australia, UK)
"God's gonna raise up highways, where He's gonna level the mountains and fill the valleys and He's gonna bring people from the North, the South, the East and the West, and bring them from the nations and draw them to this place."
It's going to be a work of the Spirit of God. We don't work for God we work with God. This church is not going to be a lot of sweat, it's going to be the work of God. The New Testament is a rest. As we wait on Him, the Bible says in Isaiah, He acts on behalf of those who wait on Him.
We want to have the annointing, the most important thing you can have in a meeting, and we want relaxed people. Not tense people, that messes up the flow. When everyone is tense, it binds the people, the preacher and stops the annointing. 
Rob says, "I am an introvert posing as an extrovert." There's no excuse for shyness, shyness is a part of the curse of the fall. 
Saying, I just worship God according to my culture, according to my temperament, that is almost blasphemous - worship doesn't cater to us, it caters to God! And we worship according to the culture of the kingdom. We celebrate! Anything that's in the Bible of expressive worship - let's express it here. Whether it offends people or not.
Let's model a culture of expressive adoration for God. That He is worthy! We are not here to please men, but to please God. We're not to live in the fear of man, not here to make the church user friendly to man - but to make the church a place where God wants to come and when God comes the multitudes will come as well. Everyone wants to have an experience with God.
Let's also model a culture of responding to the Word of God. While preaching there needs to be a responsiveness, not just blank stares. We don't want to let people think well I'm just conservative. Well I wanna take those people out to their car and put their hand in the door and slam the door on it and then see how conservative they are. They are going to have an expression very extrovertly! Now I wouldn't really do that, but I am just saying that the degree of the stimulation will determine the degree of expression. 
When people tell me they are conservative, they are saying they have had a low degree encounter with God. When God touches your life, you are going to express it. When God touched the cripple he went walking and leaping and praising God.
Let's talk about the Glory of God, God's will for the fullness of his glory in the church. 
this is actually an oath, he's swearing there, taking an oath in the Hebrew language
- the shalom of God, means nothing missing nothing broken, peace, the completeness of God. There is full provision where the glory is, and supply in the glory.
2 Corinthians 3:5-18, talking about the glory on the law, they had to have veil's over their faces when Moses came down with the 10 commandments to cover their face from the glory - there's even more glory in the Spirit. vs. 9 alludes to the free gift of righteousness.
Rick Warren in his book, "The Purpose Driven Life", says this about the glory,"the glory brings the weight of importance, the glory is the very nature of God. It is the weight of God's importance. It is the radiance of His power, it is the demonstration of His power and all his other intrinsic qualities."
The very weight of His importance. Now that for me is the most important thing about the glory - the glory brings the weight of God's importance. In the cloud of His Glory the weight of His importance comes. 
There will be people on the earth in the last days that fit God into their busy schedules, and everything else is more important than God, their children, their career, their homes, their marriages....God is a hobby. People will have a form of godliness but DENY the Power. 
The Bible says have nothing to do with it! It's a fraudulent religion, that doesn't actually put God first. 
But you watch, when the cloud of the glory comes, most Christians haven't even experienced the glory cloud once, the glory cloud comes in and suddenly people see the awfulness of their perverted priorities, and their hearts are laid naked before a God of weighty infinite importance. They suddenly realize that He's the Creator of the heaven's and the earth and the most hardened sinners and the most tough men fall on their faces and weep with horror at their rebellion and defiance toward a Holy God.
It's the glory cloud - without the glory you will have NO revival- no revival, the glory must come back to the church, the church has lost the glory, it's got Icabod written all over it, it's filled with rituals and programs but the lack of the glory of God is evident. The lack of the glory has produced much backsliding in the church.
Where did we lose the glory? Romans 3:23
Many people don't realize this is lacking in many people's theology. Earth was not created the way it is today. God did not create cancer, or chromosone deficiencies, God did not create wars, famines, earthquakes or floods. God created a world that was flooded and filled with his glory. The whole world was filled with the glory of God. Before the fall, the world was in a glory realm. When God said, "It is good"-it is literally glorious. The trees literally clapped their hands and praised God. All of creation worshipped God, there was light and there was splendor. 
 (In the language where Moses says in Exodus 33, "Lord show me your glory"- the Lord says, "I will cause all my goodness to pass before you." )
Romans 8- God subjected creation to frustration. So, there's a frustration in the earth because the whole earth has come under a curse because of sin. Cancer, sickness, disease, wars, famines have come in - the dust of the earth, in the Hebrew, He formed man from the dust of the earth or glory particles. He formed man from glory particles, He took the glory particles from an uncursed earth. God created from His inner being of glory .....He breathed from the inner glory of His being into man's nostrils the breath of life and man became a living soul and stood up in the glory covered in the glory ...
When did the Glory come back?
Again there's the secret wisdom of God's cross- Jesus was the Lamb of God slain before the foundation of the world- so at the cross where we were justified, the glory of God could come back and cover us again.
Romans 4 - 5:1
Justification - it took place outside of ourselves and nothing to do with us. It took place by God's own initiative and planning at the cross and so even the means to be justified which is faith, is not the grounds of justification because we could say, it is my faith that got me justified. Even the faith we have came from God and we are justified totally by faith. 
Justification means not only are all my sins blotted out and all my sins, past, present and future have been dealt with, but God looks at me just as if I have never sinned, AND ALL the righteous obedience of Jesus is transferred into our credit account. The wealth of Christ's perfect love, obedience and holiness and everything He did is transferred into our credit account.
Now every Christian needs revelation on that!! That is the key to the glory coming into your life, because if you don't understand justification the enemy will come in and keep condemning you and reminding you of your sins and shortcomings - but You and I stand justified before a Holy God and Heaven's justice is 100% satisfied and the integrity of God's holiness is happy and satisfied that you are fully credited with all the obedience of Christ and He answers your prayers as if you were Jesus himself. That's what the glory is!
2 Chronicles 5:11-The priests then withdrew from the Holy Place. All the priests who were there had consecrated themselves, regardless of their divisions.
If you study the Old Testament, God's will was to have a nation of priests. God's will today is that every Christian is a priest. If you study how OT priests consecrated themselves, you will see they did it primarily in 2 ways. They applied the blood of a sacrifice to their right ear, their right thumb and their right big toe. They applied blood, they also applied annointing oil, (that's a type and a shadow) The substance in the New Testament is we apply the blood of the Lamb, Jesus Christ- the justifying power of the blood - we apply the supernatural heavenly annointing oil - I want viscosity in that oil, I want lubrication, I want that glistening supernatural divine enablement of annointing because the annointing always follows the blood, wherever the blood of Jesus is applied the annointing is applied. Consecration, biblically is not pledging our promise - "I promise I won't sin again Lord, I promise, I promise....." strength of resolution, fasting for 40 days, going through external religion- that is flesh consecrating flesh! It will not go into the glory - the way we are consecrated is from heaven, through the blood of the Lamb and the fresh annointing oil.
vs 13 & 14-13 The trumpeters and singers joined in unison, as with one voice, to give praise and thanks to the LORD. Accompanied by trumpets, cymbals and other instruments, they raised their voices in praise to the LORD and sang: 
       "He is good; 
       his love endures forever." 

      Then the temple of the LORD was filled with a cloud, 14 and the priests could not perform their service because of the cloud, for the glory of the LORD filled the temple of God.
Can you see the difference there between the annointing and the glory - the annointing consecrates us to go into the glory - the annointing is wonderful, but sadly the flesh can still exalt itself under the annointing. When the power of the annointing is on you - you can start showing off a bit - sadly - and drawing attention to yourself. BUT when you go into the glory - NO flesh will exalt in itself. In the glory realm, at those times, we don't need annointed ministers, annointed priests- because in the glory, it says, the priests could not perform their service anymore. It says they couldn't even stand (in some other translations.)
God wants to take the church on being man centered, man operated, man driven under the annointing and take the church into the cloud of His glory - with God's weight of His importance in that place(the church) and people are not saying, by faith, God's here -but they are on their faces because God is there in manifestation, that's the Hebrew word for glory, kabod(sp?), which means the essence and substance of God's weighty presence, or doxsa in the Greek. 
2 Chronicles 7 - Solomon's temple was twice the size of Moses temple- but what happened was they would take rough stones and fit them together - we are living stones fitly joined together is that right! - so they would take rough stones and fit them together, but because the stones were so imperfect, they would then take cedarwood or cassia wood and then lay it over the stones to then smooth all the rough edges off - and cedarwood throughout the OT was a type and a shadow of the cross - then they would pour gold over, which is always symbolic of the glory. They were dedicating this temple and noticed where the fire came from....2 Chronicles 7:1-3- 1 When Solomon finished praying, fire came down from heaven and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices, and the glory of the LORD filled the temple. 2 The priests could not enter the temple of the LORD because the glory of the LORD filled it. 3 When all the Israelites saw the fire coming down and the glory of the LORD above the temple, they knelt on the pavement with their faces to the ground, and they worshiped and gave thanks to the LORD, saying, 
       "He is good; 
       his love endures forever."
Man, can you imagine that?! Can you imagine halfway through a message and the glory falls and the priest can't perform their duties anymore, -"the glory is here! We don't need to hear Rob anymore! Theology Himself will now speak to your heart -divine encounters!" 
You know the George Barnea Research went to thousands of non-christians in America and said, "What would make you go to church?" and they said, "If we could EXPERIENCE GOD!"
And then they said to the pastors this is the #1 thing these unsaved people are saying, and the pastors got all indignant, and said, "we talk about God every Sunday!" and they(GBR) said "we're not talking about academic information about God - we're talking about God COMING!!" 
(message skipped a bit here)
Heb 10. 
Apply the annointing oil- we can do that in five minutes, it's not a ritual, it must be done with faith, "Lord, I just apply the freshness of Your blood cleanse my conscience from dead works according to Hebrews 10. Thank you for the blood that speaks of better things than the blood of Abel, it speaks forgiveness- it doesn't speak judgement, it speaks pardon, protection, provision, promotion, prosperity, power- THE BLOOD! -apply the blood and then by the blood, let the fresh annointing oil come upon me - I can't use yesterday's oil, it's already stale - Today- fresh oil for today! Then you'll see when Israel lost the glory, that they had in the ark of the covenant because of a corrupt priesthood - under Saul the King - The Philistines took the glory so then David comes to the throne and he wants the glory back, because David doesn't want anything to do with rituals, David loves God -He's got a heart for God of devotion, he doesn't fear man, he fears God - Saul was so frightened of people's opinions -{ so many pastors are frightened - if I say this, so and so (who gives the biggest tithe, he's going to leave the church) I'm telling you if the glory comes there will be no lack! }
Here the glories lost and Israel is losing battles, they can't win wars anymore-they've gone into superstition - David comes to the throne and wants the glory back, but he runs in there puts the ark on the Phillistine cart and off they go,and the oxen pulling the cart start to stumble and Uzzah,(means strength in the Hebrew, man of influence), reaches out to steady the glory and drops dead by the judgement of God. David then goes and inquires of the Lord, and he reads the Scriptures and he finds out that the ark must not be carried on a cart- he says we didn't inquire for the prescribed pattern-there's a prescribed pattern to bring the glory back, because if you don't bring it back in the prescribed way, you will have short celebration of something that looks like glory and then people start dying- because the glory can't be brought back on that which is pragmatic and looks most practical with big shots handling the glory and bringing the crowds- It must be carried on the shoulders of the priests - All the priests (not just Uzzah, or the leader). All the believers, every priest carries the glory of God into the Sunday service. The priesthood of ALL the believers- the majority, not the minority- carrying the glory. 
The New Testament pattern is, every priest carries the glory of God into the Sunday services and the midweek services. 2 Samuel 6:13...after they walked 6 steps, David made sacrifices and danced. Why does it say 6? That's the number of man, man was made on the 6th day- the crowning climax of God's creativity - MAN- without connection to the glory of God though, man is nothing. We are NEVER meant to live in self-sufficiency. We don't have self-sufficiency. We are meant to live in the presence of God -24 hours a day, 7 days a week. That's why the cross split the veil from top to bottom, so the presence of God could come out and be on us 24/7. 
The #666, which is the mark of the beast, triple 6- triple means the # of completeness - the # means a religion will form in the last days which will exalt man as the measure of all things and man is complete in himself and they will worship the beast and the anti-christ(anti-annointing) and worship a religion of self-sufficiency and self grandeur - so for the glory to come back it had to be, that they stepped every 6 steps and worshipped God. For us to bring the glory back every priest must have a lifestyle of worshipping and blessing Him, making sacrifices to God. Just believe that you're justified, step in through the blood, through the annointing - don't try and work this up in your own strength, don't try and earn it! 
JUSTIFICATION- that's how you enter the glory!!

to be continued.........


Dan Bowen said...

This is absolutely AWESOME!! Thanks so much Lydia!! I must admit I've longed for ages to go back to the beginning and hear and discover Rob's foundational teaching but he moves so fast that I am having difficulty trying to keep up!! But what awesome corporate team-work ... I loved so much reading these notes!

Reading this - is it any surprise that City Church is building as it is? A desire - a passion for the Presence of God above all things!

lydia joy said...

Yes it is cool, I thought what a beginning for a church to have! It really helped me understand the annointing, the Presence and the Glory, a whole lot better!!!