Living with a Heavenly Perspective

Montana Sunset.JPG

Montana Sunset – photo by Michael Clark

And the Lord said to Moses, Come up to me on the mountain, and take your place there… (Exod 24:12, BBE – emphasis added)

My beloved spoke, and said unto me, Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away. (Song 2:10, KJ2000 – emphasis added)

Come with me … look from the top [of the mountain]… (Song 4:8, KJ2000 – emphasis added)

Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away. (Song 2:13, KJ2000 – emphasis added)

For you are the temple of the living God; as God has said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Therefore come out from among them, and be you separate, says the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, And will be a Father unto you, and you shall be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty. (2Cor 6:16-18, KJ2000 – emphasis added)

Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hears my voice, and opens the door, I will come in to him, and will eat with him, and he with me. To him that overcomes will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and sat down with my Father in his throne. He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says unto the churches. After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up here, and I will show you things which must be hereafter. (Rev 3:20-4:1, KJ2000 – emphasis added)

And they heard a great voice from heaven saying unto them, Come up here. And they ascended up to heaven in a cloud; and their enemies beheld them. (Rev 11:12, KJ2000 – emphasis added)

All through the scriptures we see this common thread, God is calling a people unto Himself so He can have a loving relationship with them as His living temple. The Son is calling to Himself His bride that He can have an intimate relationship with her. Our call is emphatic. “Come to me!” “Rise up my love!” “Arise my love and come away!” “Come out from among them and I will receive you!” “Come up here and I will show you things.” The very meaning of the Greek word so glibly translated “church” (ecclesia) means “a called-out assembly.” We start out our Christian walk as His called-out ones and that call continues to grow in our hearts as we obey His voice.

Most of what is called “church” is composed of institutions focused on the things of this earth and not on the One who has called them into an intimate relationship with Him. It is concerned with buildings, organization, programs, mind tickling sermons, salaries, insurance policies, retirement programs, hierarchy, etc.

 

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Christchurch Cathedral – Photo by andrewprice001 on Foter.com / CC BY-NC-ND

 

T. Austin Sparks points out:

The Lord has not called upon us to form churches. That is not our business. Would to God men had recognized the fact! A very different situation would obtain today from what exists, if that had been recognized. It is the Lord Who expands His Church, Who governs its growth. What we have to do is to live in the place of His appointment in the power of His resurrection. If, in the midst of others, the Lord can get but two of His children, in whom His Life is full and free, to live on the basis of that Life, and not to seek to gather others to themselves or to get them to congregate together on the basis of their acceptance of certain truths or teaching, but simply to witness to what Christ means and is to them, then He has an open way…[emphasis added] (1)

Learning that we do not gather together after the manner of this world and its corporations and then living accordingly by HIS life in us is a life-long lesson. We who are Christ’s are His body. We are an organism with Him as our Head and the source of our very life. It is He who builds HIS church… never by might or by power, but always by His Spirit are we birthed and then knit together into His heavenly body as He wills. We have an upward call both as individuals and as members one of another, not of a “church.”

And [God] has raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: (Eph 2:6, KJ2000)

In another treatise, “Looking from the Heavenly Places,” W. C. Saunders wrote:

We are to live in the good of this [heavenly life]. He calls us to come with Him and look from the top. Here is a new realm for the exercise of faith, we are to reckon ourselves to be seated with Christ in His position of being far above all. Many Christians are too earthbound. They fail to realise and enter into the values of their true position in Christ. He wants His people to get on to higher ground, ever calling to us “Come with me … look from the top”. Our position ‘in Christ’ brings a new elevation into our lives. We can see things — even earthly things — from heavenly heights.

How different everything in life appears if we see it from Christ’s level rather than our own. Here is the secret of spiritual ascendancy, to stand with Christ on high and view your life “from the top”. I believe that whenever the way is hard and we are prone to be cast down, the Lord Jesus would whisper in our ears this invitation to rise up to Him and view the situation as He sees it. When Elijah was so depressed and sat under his juniper tree wanting to die, God sent the message to him: “Go forth and stand upon the Mount before the Lord”. The prophet found that from that position everything took on a different face… He reminds us that our true position is to be one with Him, even now. By His Word He calls us into those heavenly places that, with His help and encouragement we may look from the top. This is surely the true significance of the promise that we shall mount up with wings as eagles (Isaiah 40:31)… It is of supreme importance that we learn to look on things as He sees them. (2)

Paul wrote about this heavenly viewpoint in light of how we relate to Jesus and to one another.

From now on, therefore, we regard no one according to the flesh. Even though we once regarded Christ according to the flesh, we regard him thus no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. (2Cor 5:16-17, ESV2011)

As I was growing up in the Catholic church, everything about their buildings was focused in knowing Jesus after the flesh. There was the statue of Mary holding the baby Jesus or He was hanging on a cross above the altar.  But the living Christ was somewhere way out in space with the Father, far out of reach of mere mortals. Yet, Paul makes it clear that it is our privilege to know Him after the Spirit and abide with Him and the Father in heavenly places. And not only that, we are to know our brothers and sisters as His NEW creations and not after the flesh. But do we afford one another the grace to see them with spiritual eyes? How quick we are to find fault and judge one another after the flesh (especially in Protestant Bible, fundamental and charismatic churches) instead of seeing each other as a work of the Spirit in progress.  Or how quick we look upon the outward beauty, intelligence or wealth or lack thereof instead of looking upon our hearts (see 1 Samuel 16:7). Yes, we Christians are still way too earthbound and the whole structure of our churches teach us to be so. Christ’s call is still the same since John heard it on the island of Patmos two thousand years ago.

“Come up here and I will show you things [from My perspective].”

“Dear Father, please do what it takes to raise us up into your heavenly point of view so that we may see all things the way you do and have your divine hope and confidence that all things do work together for the good of we who love you and are called according to your divine plan. Amen.”

(1) http://www.austin-sparks.net/english/books/002226.html

(2) https://www.austin-sparks.net/mags/ttm09-5.html#91

12 comments on “Living with a Heavenly Perspective

  1. Lynette says:

    Loved this Michael, Father is saying the same thing to me, to LIVE with and from Him in the heavenlies – which is not always an easy thing to do with all the earthly distractions all around! What you wrote reminded me of this: https://unveiling.org/2008/02/02/google-heaven/ 🙂 And by the way, the second quote was not written by TAS, but by W C Saunders in an article called “Looking From the Heavenly Places” a great title! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    • Michael says:

      Thanks for your comment and catching my mistake. I keep forgetting that there were other older saints who wrote from a common heart with brother Sparks on that site. The truth is where you find it and Austin-Sparks is a gold mine.
      I read your blog article. You are right in that as we are IN Christ we see as He sees, just as while on the earth He saw in the hearts of men the things that His Father saw.

      “But Jesus did not commit himself unto them, because he knew all men, And needed not that any should testify of man: for he knew what was in man.” (John 2:24-25, KJ2000)

      Liked by 2 people

  2. This is a very inspiring article! ⭐ Amen to your prayer, Michael.

    I just saw that The Lord said to Moses, “COME UP TO ME on the mountain, and take your place there… (emphasis added) while her Beloved asked her to “Rise up, my love, my fair one, and COME AWAY” or even “COME WITH ME …look from the top [of the mountain].”

    It seems to me that COME WITH ME reveals more closeness and intimacy than COME UP TO ME as in the first case the Beloved (Christ as God incarnated) is already with His bride, not further away on top of a mountain which Moses still had to climb up.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Michael says:

      My dear Susanne, Once again you have encouraged me with your words. This is great insight. You have brought to light the difference between the Old Covenant and the New. Moses was bid to come up on the mountain to receive the law, but the Shulamite bride of Solomon is an Old Testament prophesy of the New Covenant relationship of Christ and His bride. We are so blessed as His bride to be engaged with Him in such a great love.

      “Thank you Daddy for sending us your Son to manifest to us the depths of your heart. Amen.” And thank you, Susanne, for showing me that even Father God loves us so much. You know that this has been an uphill battle for me.
      Michael ❤

      Liked by 3 people

  3. Kenneth Dawson says:

    I can remember many instantses when Father would tell me to do something His way and I would argue against Him cause I wanted to do it my way. He would then say to me—Hey do you want Me to be the leader or not? So I would do it His way and get peace—It’s the only way fly!

    Like

    • Michael says:

      True, Ken. Part of His child training is to let us get our way and then learn from the suffering that results. It is much better to have an ear tuned to His voice and a heart that desires His will.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Amen, and Amen, to that prayer, Michael.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. If the organized church had avoided this error — had, in effect, avoided “organizing” and all that entails — it might have avoided much of the corruption that followed. Think of the wars prompted by the ambition of the church for territory and power. Think of the current sex abuse scandal in the Catholic Church. How it must grieve Christ that these things were done in His name.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Michael says:

      Anna, the corruption of the church started with the rise of the bishops ruling over the believers in their own areas (toward the end of the second century), even before Constantine put church corruption on steroids by consolidating power and making Christianity the official religion of the Roman Empire. Of course HE had the final say in any decisions that were reached among church leadership, thus making himself the first de facto pope.

      Anytime men gain power, corruption is not far behind. As Lord Acton observed, “It is not the question of who has the right to rule, nobody had the right to rule.” “Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” This fact is why Jesus opposed human power among the leadership of HIS ecclesia, His called-out saints. When James and John were lobbying Him for the two seats of power at His right hand and at His left when He established His kingdom on earth He had to correct them.

      And Jesus called them to him and said to them, “You know that those who are considered rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. But it shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, and whoever would be first among you must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Mark 10:42-45, ESV2011)

      Jesus was saying that the pyramid of power that is among the institutions of men is all upside down in the eyes of God. In His kingdom the peak is at the bottom and the bottom is supported by all the rest at the top. Jesus did not choose human forms of power, but made Himself the lowest of servants, even serving by laying down His life as a ransom for the sins of all mankind. The next level above Him was made up of those who were slaves to the body of Christ such as Paul (see my article, https://awildernessvoice.blog/2019/02/02/what-does-spiritual-church-leadership-look-like/). Then above Paul and the true apostles like him were those who served like Phebe:

      “I commend unto you Phebe our sister, who is a servant of the church which is at Cenchrea: That you receive her in the Lord, as becomes saints, and that you assist her in whatever business she has need of you: for she has been a helper of many, and of myself also.” (Rom 16:1-2, KJ2000)

      Humility and servant-hood is the true sign of the leadership of God, just as it was with Christ in the days of His flesh.

      “Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and you shall find rest unto your souls.” (Matt 11:29, KJ2000)

      No, my sister, what we see today in the churches and in the hierarchic systems of corporations and governments is pride and abuse of power and men never get it. Their answer to all the world’s problems is MORE POWER and the sheeple just keep voting for them, giving them more money and granting them more power to fix everything. Then they wonder where all this corruption came from as their idols fall on their faces before all and the electorate ends up with less and less freedom until they are under the power of a totalitarian state or religion that finally collapses under its own corruption (e.g. the fall of Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities, Enron, the current fall of the Catholic Church and the fall of the Soviet Union under communism, the World Wide Church of God and thousands of other church splits and eventually the collapse of the U.S. government). The power of Satan has been consolidated over the systems of this world to the point where only Christ can be trusted and the person who’s flesh has been crucified and weakened to where only Jesus can be seen any longer.

      No, my sister, Jesus saw the current and final state of the visible “church” coming and that is why He called it “Babylon the Great, the mother of harlots.” This mother and daughter harlot system should be obvious to all who have labored long enough under its abuses.

      Thanks for your comment, dear Anna. Fear not, Jesus will have His bride and she will be without spot or blemish.

      Liked by 3 people

  6. Adriana Patricia says:

    Amén Michael a esa oración. Que el Señor nos lleve a Él cada día más, estar dentro de Él, sumergidos en Él es poder ver todo desde Su perspectiva.

    Abrazos santos mi querido amigo.

    —-
    Patricia wrote:

    Amen Michael to that prayer. May the Lord bring us to Him more each day, to be inside Him, immersed in Him is to be able to see everything from His perspective.

    Holy Hugs, my dear friend.

    Liked by 2 people

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