If we study the progression of Romans 5:4, (trials then perseverance then character then hope), we begin to understand the real issues. Threshold wars are waged when the heat of trials gets our character to a red-hot blaze, like the point when metal can be changed and re-shaped. That is the point when the heat makes it tempting to quit and run to the nearest place of relief rather than complete the process by submitting to the Blacksmith’s hammer. So these wars are screaming the question while we’re in the heat of battle: “Will you do the right thing, let God change your heart and mind where necessary? Will you choose to respond to trials with wisdom and develop godly character; or will you remain the same person, refusing to be conformed to His image?” And our answer at this point will either propel us on to hope and toward promise, or cause us to fall short of hope and promise.
(Simon Purvis) — Jesus didn’t tell His disciples to go out and preach the gospel so a few people could go to heaven. He commissioned them to disciple the nations. The preaching of the gospel is to get people free from an evil age, getting people delivered from an evil culture over into an age where there is righteousness, where we can walk right, our families can be right, our character can be right. The church is a different culture than this age and God intends for the culture of the Kingdom of God in the church to change the society out there in the evil age. (From Bro. Simon’s message at KC2018)
Jesus wanted His disciples connected to a higher source than the religion they had been stooped in. Jesus wanted followers whose lives showed His loving, redemptive character as a result of their relationship with Him. The legalism they had practiced could identify adherents but couldn’t produce fruit that witnessed to who the Father really is. The only thing their legalism communicated was that they were connected to a religion and its rules. Jn 15:8 “This is how my Father shows who He is–when you produce grapes, when you mature as my disciples.” (MSG) The fruitless things in their lives were pruned back by the word of Jesus so they might produce good fruit, good character (15:2). We are praying you discover daily that the character of Jesus is demonstrated in your life. (Marty’s Daily Discovery as heard on TEXAS PRAISE RADIO at the bottom of the hour 24hrs/day.)
Zeal can attract people and even hold their devotion for a time. But zeal cannot replace character nor can it substitute for lack of character. Character, not zeal, is the wineskin for the new wine of the new level or the new season of authority. I have seen zealous people split churches and destroy the reputation of a church in a community in a fraction of the time it took to build that reputation. I have seen zeal undo the work of spiritual leadership in a hurting person and drive that person from the church. But character builds, sustains and adds to. It doesn’t take away.
“For Barnabas was a good man [privately and publicly—his godly character benefited both himself and others] and he was full of the Holy Spirit… And a great number of people were brought to the Lord.” (Acts 11:24, Amp)
Have you felt that you were being assailed? In the Bible, the word “ASSAIL” means: to attack with violence; to attack with a view to produce changes in one’s feelings, character or conduct. There may be ample evidence all around you that you are being assailed, but I speak over you a blessed assurance that, as you cry out to Him, Heavenly Father is releasing His marvelous favor and lovingkindness in the midst of the assault and the assailant is being put to flight. The psalmist declares in 31:21,”Blessed be the Lord, For He has shown His marvelous favor and lovingkindness to me [when I was assailed] in a besieged city.” We are praying you discover daily God’s lovingkindness in your life. (Marty’s Daily Discovery as heard on TEXAS PRAISE RADIO at the bottom of the hour 24 hours/day. www.txpraise.com)
“…you will praise the name of the Lord your God, who has acted wondrously in your behalf. My people will never again be put to
shame.” (Joel 2:26b, NET)
The 3rd question God asked Adam was if he’d eaten of the tree. God wasn’t looking for information of course. He was helping Adam realize the point of origin of this earthquake that cracked his self-image and damaged his self-worth was when he defied the boundaries. If anyone ever feels like God sets boundaries to demean or be unjust or cruel, they need some vitamin “G” as in “G”row up! He sets boundaries wisely to set the stage for the truest expression of commitment, respect and honor in a lifetime. It takes self-government to work within boundaries and that self-government develops maturity and character. Character is a matter of righteous values and moral strength. Character is essential to taste true fulfillment in your lifetime. It will take Character to keep you wherever purpose takes you. I’ve known really gifted and skilled people who lost everything because they did not have the self-government and character to honor boundaries and protocol in relationships or career or finances or health.
(This is the second excerpt from Kathy’s article “Seeing Us The Way God Sees Us—Part 2“ which was published in SEEC Magazine [Marty and Kathy’s ministry magazine]. More excerpts will be posted Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Previous excerpts may be read by scrolling down this page.)