4. God's Prophet for Today
Never think of Christ as an Old Testament prophet. Find the simplest heart in your assembly, one who doesn't know much and can't do much, but who loves Jesus, and in that one's heart you will find more of the glory of God than was ever upon Moses, Elijah, and all the rest of them put together. Jesus said, “The least little one in the kingdom of heaven is greater than the greatest of the prophets.” God will never go back to the minor leagues when He is the real deal in our hearts.
4. God's Prophet for Today
I am God’s prophet for today. — I think of you more highly than I do of myself; that is, I see you above me as the Lord Himself.
Both words are true of Christ, Christ is the only life we are, thus both words are true of us. We speak them by faith, though we may not “feel” either one.
Yet there is a powerful human forehead that claims, “I am God’s prophet for today.” You may have encountered such a person in your Christian experience.
There is an extraordinary human desire to be “the one who has it right.” This desire is at the center of human psychosis, and each one of us carries it to a greater or lesser degree. Of course, “I am right,” then means, “You are wrong.” And thus we have the source of all human argument and murder.
I am convinced that, when we whom God has separated from this world to some degree discover all reality as it is, we will be staggered almost beyond ability to bear how much the thinking we acquired in this world is lies built entirely on the lust to dominate and to abuse.
Most whose entire identity is wrapped up in the fabric of lies called the world will shatter under the horror. Consider a medical missionary who goes to Africa to help these poor people “dying of AIDS,” when he discovers that AIDS is caused by the very medicine he administers and that he is in fact murdering these people who would have been fine had he just stayed home. How will he hold himself in Jesus in the midst of that horror? Everything about this world is similarly wrapped in lies, lies built upon the lusts of wicked men who grant to demons the enjoyment of human suffering, though they themselves perish as well.
The world is a horror. Please, do not watch television news, especially Fox News. The image of the Beast is ratcheting upward in deceit and in the worship of the Beast. Everything presented on the television news is carefully crafted deceit designed entirely to mock those who watch and who “believe” what they “see” on the image.
The purpose of television news is to mock you, to demonstrate how easy it is to cause people to believe horrific nonsense while giving their wholehearted support to gross injustice. You will neither find nor draw out of television news any modicum of truth (except, occasionally, the weatherman). Rather, those who watch are drawn into an exaltation and worship of human beastliness centered on the worship of “government” in its supreme power over all.
It is inside this fabric of mental delusion, “I am the one who has it right,” that more and more individuals convince themselves, that, “I, above all others, am God’s prophet for today. Those who hear and follow me will enter into God; those who reject me are cut off from God.”
I truly think that future generations will look back on this present day as the greatest time of darkness and madness in human thinking in all of human history. Americans especially seem to lust for delusion; they want to be lied to.
Yet in the midst of the madness swirling all around, you and I believe that God Himself would show Himself through us, and that He is meek and lowly of heart. In the midst of the greatest darkness, the light arises in us.
I have been pondering the concept of identity the last while. I will likely circle around “identity” in more than one letter, including this one.
I study most everything; since age five when my eyes opened to a map of the world, I have carried an insatiable desire to understand the reality of human life upon this planet. I can talk non-stop about the reality of human history and hardly come to an end. Yet when I write concerning Christ our life, when I seek to impart to you the knowledge of the Glorious One who fills your heart full with Himself and who is moving, now, out from you, to overturn this age of human folly, I have a far greater desire working always upon me.
I do not want you to “know about human life in this world,” but how Jesus your only life is causing you to escape the matrix of the world, to escape its delusion and lies, to know how Jesus your only life is moving through you to shatter that thing that holds our dear brethren under the masquerade of faces, and to see all creation set free into the glorious liberty flowing out of Jesus your only life.
God proves Himself in the midst of darkness, in human flesh upon this earth. We move with God.
God has caused my life to be an open book, mostly because I find truthfulness and openness to be necessities, as necessary as breathing. Knowing that He made me thus, God has written all through the fabric of my life with His finger, as Paul says He does. I believe that to be true because I will see Him alone all through every one of my days.
A sister asked me if it would take as many years as it did me for her to come to know the precious reality of Jesus that I am only beginning to know and from which I share. For 36 years one of the deepest desires in my heart, a desire hidden beneath “impossibility” though always there, has been that God would use whatever difficulty He may have taken me through for others, that they, being spared the wrenching difficulty and the tears of confusion, would find a wide open door into all the goodness and reality of God revealing Himself through them.
To know God is to know suffering, yes. God is love and love suffers long. But I hold that desire as a Covenant before God. God is a Keeper of Covenant. My expectation is that through whatever it is God enables me to share, you will find a wide open door, a sure path into the joy of knowing the Holy One who fills your heart full with all of Himself.
If God does that for you, than that is a reward to me beyond all human measurement of value. I am becoming a very wealthy man. And so I share of the experience of God in my own life and heart because I really have no idea how else to talk about God than that which is personal through me.
There is an element of the humility of Christ that is essential to our discovery of our true self, our true identity. I am willing to be an open book before you so that you also might find that humility, that reality, of Christ personally in you.
Jesus hung naked upon the cross, and He was not ashamed.
I am convinced there is no clearer picture of the reality of God’s heart as it really is than that. It is here that our true identity must begin. But let me re-state the essential truth. If you are looking at Jesus hanging naked upon the cross, you remain in death. Life is found only in looking out from His eyes, for you are truly and only inside of Him.
Those who look out from His eyes are in Life, those who look at Him from outside live in knowledge and are dead to God. And we look out from His eyes, not as part of the sin which He bore, but as an essential part of His Person, though yet unborn. Here am I, I and the children whom You have given Me.
Our true identity is anchored in the absolute revelation of God’s heart in the flesh, in concrete and physical reality, the only place and time before now that God has ever been seen or known by either heaven or earth.
I thought I was stepping forward into the next step of God for me in traveling across the country to share Christ with other dear believers.
I sit in services in which the word is always falling short of His glory, and sometimes my heart just bursts with the certain knowledge that there is no time for any more in-part, knowing that the fullness of times is upon us and that God’s people need to hear all the truth of Christ now, knowing that it takes time and much teaching washing over the hearts and minds of believers to escape the nonsense they have held to be “truth” and to come to know Jesus as their life. Sometimes, sitting there with no place to share the wondrous revelation of Christ that overflows from within me, my heart almost bursts with agony and with love.
And I say, “Lord, I would speak for You.”
I am a teacher. Standing before brethren, sharing the truth of Christ in personal clarity and in the power of the anointing is normal to me. Yet I am unable to make such a thing happen; I do not have that gift.
However, I am always reaching out to connect with other brethren, if, somehow, the Lord would open the doors and give a release of that which burns like fire within my heart.
And so, I and my family visited with Rich and Linda Novek, and with Joan Reilly. We had a wonderful time together. I knew Rich wanted to travel and minister as I did. When he asked me, I said, “Yes.” And thus I made plans and shared those plans with you, expecting that God is always arising, that He is always directing my steps. But after awhile I knew that the trip was outside of God’s shaping and design when He fashioned me.
So many times through my walk with God I have humbled myself and retracted my steps. Many other ministries of Christ tell how God spoke this or that to them, how they moved forward in faith, and how God moved through them in power. I have never known such speaking from God. How many times, in seeking to move forward in what I believed was the Lord have I found only humiliation and ruin? There are more times, big and small, than I can count.
Yet I testify of His goodness; His loving kindness is better than life. Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him; I will sing always of His kindness.
The human mind would say, “Surely, at 56 years of age, it is enough.” Surely the human heart would fail. Surely, God has so many who are capable, so many who are gifted with strength and anointed to lead.
What is there of me that He would write the letter of Christ upon?
That is God’s prophet for today, you know, the only prophet there is, the word of Christ written, etched, upon our hearts. Christ is found nowhere else.
There are three parts to our identity. Let me define identity. In fact, let’s be specific. Here is the Webster’s 1926 definition.
1. The extreme case of resemblance; absolute likeness of two or more things in the respect in which they are considered. 2. Sameness with itself; selfsameness; oneness. 3. Unity and persistence of personality; individuality, or an individual; unity or individual comprehensiveness of a life or character; as, he lost consciousness of his own identity. 4. The condition of being the same with something described or asserted, or of possessing a character claimed, as, the identity of stolen goods.
Wow! We have been using a word without even knowing what it means.
Here is a quote for definition 1. “Identity is a relation between our cognition of a thing, not between things themselves.” “Cognition” is what we know about something, the thinking of the mind. In other words, identity is the story we tell ourselves about ourselves.
There are three identities in Christian thinking. The most prevalent is: “I’m just a sinner, a sinful human, going to heaven after I die, even though I deserve to be cast into hell.” The second, the one that many of us have escaped or are escaping is: “I am divided; I am two (or is it three). Christ lives in me, yes. My spirit is born again and righteous, yes, but my flesh is fallen and evil. My flesh “nature” is always getting me in trouble with God. So I, this third little guy running back and forth, must force my flesh nature to obey my Christ nature.”
The third identity that we are learning is simply: “Christ is my only life. Whatever Christ is, I am; all that I find myself to be is Christ alone.”
I suspect that the identity we embrace in this present time will shape who and what we are through all the ages to come much more than most people realize.
“As a man thinks in his heart, so is he.” Solomon
Of these three identities, to cast our future by identity #2 is a terrible mistake.
And so, our identity is simply that we are the image and likeness of Christ; we are the same as He in all things; we are one, a complete individual person, filled full with the Person of God.
There are three parts to our identity. The first part, the foundation of our identity are these words.
And behold, a voice from heaven said, This is My Son, My Beloved, in Whom I delight!Matthew 3:17 (Ampl.)
I am God’s son; I am God’s beloved; God delights in me. “I am Your son, my Father; You delight in me.”
This is our bottom line. There is never a moment – ever – nor ever a reason of any kind that we should not find this WORD as the core and the totality of our heart, our thinking, our being. “I am Your son, my Father; You delight in me.”
On top of that foundation, our identity has two parts in the exact same way that Jesus’ identity had two parts. So yes, in a sense, Christian identity #2, held so ferociously by too many of our brethren, contains something that is true, but marred entirely by something that is false.
Our identity is fully human and fully divine. The problem is that identity #2 defines that duality as WAR. God defines that reality as MARRIAGE. Here is God’s definition.
“For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church. Ephesians 5:31-32
The problem with identity #2 is this word:
For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity (at war) against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God. Romans 8:5-8
First, those who teach war ALWAYS leave off verse 9: But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit… But second, consider reality. The problem is not “the flesh,” the problem is living “according to” the flesh.
The one who is always attempting to bring the flesh (our humanity) into subjection to Christ IS living “according to” the flesh. When I lived in that theology, I always thought about the flesh and how bad it was. My mind was always on my need to “keep the flesh” under control and how I always failed to do so. That way of thinking, that “mind,” that is always concerned about our human nature, trying to get our human nature “under control,” trying to bring our human nature “into subjection” to Christ, that mind is always at war with God for two reasons. One, it sees the flesh as big and God as small, absent, and derelict, and two it rejects what God says, preferring its own judgment of self.
Trying to force the flesh “not to sin,” is as much living “according to” the flesh as satiating the flesh with all the lusts of this world. There is no difference. Both are evil; both are at war with God.
In complete contrast, I live always in the Spirit. I never consider the flesh one way or the other. I have my eyes set on God; He takes care of me in all things and in all ways. My flesh is God’s flesh, not mine. I am one flesh with Jesus.
However, my purpose is not to shine the light once again on the false psychosis of the “Christian” mind, but rather to underline our true identity.
Marriage union. Fully human and fully divine. Just like Jesus.
Resting, then, upon the absolute foundation of these words, spoken by the Father to Christ our only life, and thus spoken by us back to the Father, “I am Your son, my Father; You delight in me,” our identity is a marriage union of two, a marriage union of our humanity, Christ as us, and our divinity, God, in Person, filling us full with all of Himself.
Our divinity is not something separate from God Himself, it is God Himself. Marriage union.
I cannot define myself or tell any story to myself about myself without God in Person filling me with ALL of His fullness being the largest part of my story. The second largest part of my story is God by the Holy Spirit flowing out from me setting creation free. The third part of my story, the most precious, is Christ living as me in this world.
If I am telling myself any other story than these three things, then I am lying to myself; I have embraced a false identity.
The human and the divine are not two equal parts, half and half. They are marriage union – one – all and all. And that brings me back to my own story.
Here is the knowing that has come to me over the last few weeks.
“Daniel, seek to know, accept fully, and celebrate with all joy your human limitation, the particular, individual shape and design by which I crafted you in all wisdom and foresight. At the same time and to the same degree, seek to know, accept fully, and celebrate with all joy My divine UN-limitation, the particular, individual ways by which I fill you with all of My glory and flow out from you to bring life and joy to others.”
The idea that we must break free from our human limitations is a false story. It is NOT marriage union with God. Attempting to break free of human limitation is the rebellion of Adam.
I must reduce myself down to the precise human limitation God crafted me as, Christ as me, while at the same time and in equal measure, I ratchet up my seeing and expectation of the God who fills me full.
Through His entire life, Jesus did only one thing contrary to His human limitation – walking on water. Yet He did that entirely by faith in the God who filled Him full. Christ as us allows us to be one with Jesus without any need to “take on” or to mimic Jesus’ own personality.
Now, my words, “I must reduce myself down,” do not mean, “bring myself under subjection,” or“make myself little.” They mean simply to rid myself of human imaginations; to know myself as I really am, as God designed and fashioned me to be. To know when, where, why, and how my own heart sings in the joy of human fulfillment.
To be utterly content with myself as I find myself to be in the present moment. To be utterly ecstatic with the God who fills me full with all of Himself. Our identity is marriage union – forever.
To be naked and exposed for all to see, hanging there between heaven and earth, despised and rejected by all, unknown even by your mother, and to be utterly content and without shame in the present moment, in all the limitation of the human is to be the image of God.
And to know that we know that we know, that in every step, in every circumstance, in every breath, God is in us and by our lives, the good and the not good, the joy and the pain, God in us is reconciling the world to Himself.
This is what it means to be like Jesus. We are just like Him.
If there is anything in the story you tell yourself about yourself that is not just like Jesus as He really is, then you are lying to yourself. And as you lie, so you must be. Let us speak only the truth; let us speak only Christ.
My pain and my joy is God in me reconciling the world to Himself.
(Any time you read the words “me” and “I” in any speaking of Christ, you are saying those words in your mind as yourself, as your own story.)
Never think of Christ as an Old Testament prophet. Find the simplest heart in your assembly, one who doesn’t know much and can’t do much, but who loves Jesus, and in that one’s heart you will find more of the glory of God than was ever upon Moses, Elijah, and all the rest of them put together.
Jesus said, “The least little one in the kingdom of heaven is greater than the greatest of the prophets.” God will never go back to the minor leagues when He is the real deal in our hearts.
I want to continue with rejoicing in our human limitation. Our problem is our hearts. But our hearts are a problem because of the way God created them. God created your heart to be filled with the Creator of the universe, to know Omnipotence, to walk together with Omniscience, to be filled full with all the Person of God in intimate union. God created your heart specifically to contain the very heart of Almighty God.
Our hearts are not yet comfortable with knowing God. Our hearts do not yet know that they ARE filled full with God as they were designed to be.
Here is the problem. The human heart, designed by God to contain Almighty God, thinks highly of itself, while, at the same time, does not reckon with the God who fills it full. It stands to reason that a heart designed to contain God should think of itself as superior. Our difficulty then is that God does not think highly of Himself. He is meek and lowly of heart. Yet He is Almighty God, dwelling in the praises of His creation.
Consider the one picture we have of God. Actually it’s more like a short video. Our picture of God, the one time heaven or earth has ever really seen Him as He is in His eternal Being, begins with Jesus, descending the steps of the upper room, singing a hymn of praise together with His disciples, to Jesus standing before those same disciples after His resurrection saying, “As the Father sent Me, so I send you.” That video clip is God as He is.
Then, from that video strip, we extract three still-frames. One still-frame is the moment of Jesus rising to His feet in Gethsemane, the Cup turning to Joy inside His heart. The second is Jesus, stumbling beneath the cross He could not carry. The third still-frame is Jesus, hanging naked and bloody upon the cross, saying, “Father, forgive them.”
Those three snap shots ARE God’s Heart. They are not “from” God’s heart, they are not indicative of God’s heart, they ARE God’s heart made visible and knowable in time and space, to heaven as much as earth.
God does not think highly of Himself, yet He carries us utterly inside His heart and there we have always been. God comes as the lowest of the low, as the servant of all. When God shows up in the earth, He gets down on His knees and washes people’s feet. This is God. God doesn’t want to “Be Somebody,” yet He fills our hearts with Omnipotence.
Our hearts, created for Omnipotence, yet ignorant of God, just naturally want to BE Somebody! That is not evil in itself, it’s just natural. Yet it is evil when we see ourselves not filled with all the fullness of God. And it is disconcerting when we discover that the God our hearts were designed to contain does not think highly of Himself, but bows Himself as the least before the lowest human thinking only to serve.
The brother who says to himself and to others, “I am God’s prophet for today,” above all others, betrays himself. He demonstrates his extraordinary poverty. He does not know the God who fills his heart full to overflowing in meekness and lowliness.
Listen, seeing visions, knowing the great cloak of the anointing in power, speaking and watching miracles take place all around, these things are incidental. They are completely incidental. They are the outer lesser doings of a God who would much prefer to wash your feet, to serve you, but who does put on an outward show of “miraculous” doings in order to win our attention so that we will believe that He speaks the truth and thus allow Him to serve us.
God is all about blessing people by meeting their needs, but the “miraculous” is not miraculous at all, it is just the normal everyday operation of the heavenlies. Do we go around boasting how great we are because we just breathed a breath? In exactly the same way, what we call “miraculous power” and “mighty anointing” are as normal in that which is spirit as breathing is in that which is natural.
The mightiest thing in the universe is to know and to bear the heart of God. And God is meek and lowly of heart. He serves as the lowest and the least. He bears all inside His heart with great tenderness and care. I want to be the greatest in the kingdom of God. I want to know this God who fills my heart full with all of Himself. I want to share His heart; I want His heart to be my heart.
The brother who says, “I am God’s prophet for today,” betrays his great poverty in another direction as well. He simply does not know Christ, that Christ is his very and only life. What wretched, wretched poverty; my heart goes out to any poor soul that does not know Christ as their only life.
If Christ is my only life, then Christ is your only life. When I see you, I see Jesus. Whatever is true of Christ is true of every little one who loves Him. I am a wealthy, wealthy man, as I said earlier, because you belong to me.
God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, has in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds; who being the brightness of His glory and the express image of His person, and upholding all things by the word of His power, when He had by Himself purged our sins, sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high… Hebrews 1:1-3
Is this talking about Jesus? Is Jesus the One through whom God now speaks? Well, Jesus is my only life, therefore I am the present speaking of God, as are you in equal measure.
Each of us is unique, yes, that is, each of us has our own personal identity. Yet through each one of us, God shows Himself as He really is to all creation. And through all of us together, the universe knows its Creator.
So let’s come back to the wonderful human limitation by which God crafted me. And I speak of myself only because I’m the only expression of Christ I know personally. It is your infinite joy to share with others Christ personally through your human limitation. – God living in Person in Christ as you and flowing out of you as rivers of Spirit.
I was invited by a reader to attend her church on the other side of Houston. I know it is a wonderful church, filled with the goodness and grace of God. In the end, I did not go. I chose not to go as part of God showing me that I simply do not have to “defeat” my human limitation. Ever since we left community, I have moved time and again to connect with others in the hope that God would move in spite of my human limitation to fulfill the desire of my heart for a fellowship of like precious believers. He never has.
I once heard the anointing defined as “that divine enablement that lifts you up above your human limitation.” I now know that, seen out from the separation from God in which that definition was spoken, this idea is completely false, and the source of 36 years of unanswered frustration.
God designed our human limitation; He will never “lift us up above” it. In complete contrast, God Himself in Person comes into marriage union with our human limitation and thus walks in us and through us just like Jesus. NOT “just like” Jesus’ own personality, but just like Jesus’ relationship with the Father.
When Jesus stumbled under His cross, God did not “lift Him up above His human limitation” and thus enable Jesus to carry His own cross. No, God carried that cross for His weak and limited Son, through the strong shoulders of another man. The brightness of God’s glory, the express image of God’s Person, NEEDED the willing heart and stout legs of Simon of Cyrene to do what God simply did NOT enable Jesus to do.
God designed me with the ability to see, but He withheld from me the ability to execute, reserving that ability for others. Thus to be complete, I must walk with you. And I will do what I can do, I will write and read aloud what I see. And that very human ability God Himself fills with His own Person.
And so I apologize freely to the dear sister who invited me. But I will no longer attempt to do what I cannot do, nor ask God to enable me to do it. I will simply rest in His heart in me, and allow Him to carry me where I cannot go, even through the abilities He granted my brother and sister.