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Common and holy – when we fail to distinguish between them, ruin comes.  “You must distinguish between the holy and the common, between the unclean and the clean, and you must teach the Israelites all the decrees the LORD has given them through Moses.”

In our case, the distinguishing of holy and common must progress beyond common and holy, but go onto holy and holy of holies and then the holiest of the holy, and for us, we must teach the called and the chosen all the decrees the Father has given through Jesus.  For Jesus Himself told us clearly, “I do nothing on My own but speak just what the Father has taught Me.”  So all the commands and decrees through Jesus are in truth through the Father, just as each and everyone of you here now are given to Jesus from the Father, and Jesus has chosen each of you as He has said, “You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit—fruit that will last.” 

So look to the left and right, the front and back of you now and realise your fellow disciples are not chosen by you, but are chosen by the Lord.  They are not holy, separated and sanctified to you, but holy, separated and sanctified to the Lord.  They are holy as you are holy—called, chosen and elected by the Father, Son and Holy Spirit—not just holy as the people of God are called to be holy, or holy of the holies as the disciples of Jesus are chosen to be holy, but holiest of the holy as the elect of the Holy Spirit are.

So, as you must not use the Grace, the Faith, the Life and the Spirit that has been given you through the Lord, the Lord and the Lord… do not use your fellow elect for common purposes.  What are common purposes for you?  They are the purposes common to the rest of mankind to start with, but in your case, commoner purposes include the purposes of the holy and the holy of holies people, and they are not your purposes.  Am I elevating you to where you should not be?  No, for I did not choose you, but it was the Holy Spirit who did, and many have come and gone, but few have stayed.  Even those who wanted to remain could not remain.  However, many are now also called to join.

Your fellow disciples… your fellow elect, have been chosen and elected for the task that the Holy Spirit has for them.  As such, they are not here to have a cup of coffee with you or to fellowship with you in the common way of the called and chosen.  That is why many of you have not quite understood why you are the way you are.  Just as the Lord has said, “I am who I am,” so you are who you are, and as He has said, “I the Lord do not change,” so likewise, you have been changed by God and are being changed by God and by no one else.

It is a constant temptation to be changed by those around you rather than by the Lord.  When that happens to us, we lose our holiness.  Even the great apostle Paul was changed for a moment by those around him when he listened to the elders – “You see, brother, how many thousands of Jews have believed, and all of them are zealous for the law.  They have been informed that you teach all the Jews who live among the Gentiles to turn away from Moses, telling them not to circumcise their children or live according to our customs.  What shall we do?  They will certainly hear that you have come, so do what we tell you.  There are four men with us who have made a vow.  Take these men, join in their purification rites and pay their expenses, so that they can have their heads shaved.  Then everybody will know there is no truth in these reports about you, but that you yourself are living in obedience to the law.  As for the Gentile believers, we have written to them our decision that they should abstain from food sacrificed to idols, from blood, from the meat of strangled animals and from sexual immorality.”  The next day Paul took the men and purified himself along with them.  Then he went to the temple to give notice of the date when the days of purification would end and the offering would be made for each of them.

That mistake by Paul was recorded for us that we may learn a few pertinent things.  What the elders said about Paul was true.  He was teaching them not to circumcise their children and not to live as Jews, but as believers of Christ in the freedom of Christ in all the churches founded by Paul.  Indeed, Paul had opposed Peter to his face in Galatians when men from James came and threw his church into confusion.  What they had said about Paul was the truth about Paul.  So why should Paul change his ways, for that was what the Lord had called him to do?  Indeed, Paul was sent back to Jerusalem this time by the Holy Spirit, as he was the only remaining one of the elect, because Barnabas himself had been deceived as Paul wrote: so that by their hypocrisy even Barnabas was led astray.  The Holy Spirit did not send Paul up that second time to join in the purification rites, but to be the truth of who he is in Christ – a man who no longer preached circumcision, who no longer lived according to the customs of Moses and a man who associated with Gentiles – in the hope that Paul might turn the Jerusalem church from going back to the commoner practices of the Law to the holy practices of Jesus. 

Indeed, the practices and decrees of the Law are common practices compared to the things that Jesus wants us to practise.  “You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth’; resisting an evil person; defending what is yours when someone wants to steal it; suing another person; hitting back when you are hit on the face… anyone can do these things!  Giving to the poor, praying openly, fasting… anyone can do these!  Making holy pilgrimages… anyone can do this!  Searching the Holy Scriptures out… anyone can do that!  But to “Love your enemies.”  “Do not resist an evil person.  If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.  And if someone wants to sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well.  If someone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles.”   You are an unusual person to even practise these things, but who can come to Jesus for eternal life unless the Father draws him?  The decrees and commands that the Father gave to Jesus to give His disciples are holy compared to those through Moses. 

And amongst the commands and decrees of Jesus, there are even more separated commands, for Jesus said, “And these signs will accompany those who believe: In My Name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on sick people and they will get well.”

How much would it offend you if I was to say to you that if these signs do not accompany you, you probably are not really a believer?  Would the possibility that you would offend them stop you from speaking the truth as Jesus said, “And these signs will accompany those who believe…”  Or would you, for the sake of peace and fellowship, keep quiet?  Even if you are such a person now who can’t speak in tongues, can’t drive out demons, can’t heal the sick, yet you say you are a believer, would you be offended that these words, “O unbelieving and perverse generation”/ “O unbelieving generation” were said about you?  After all, these are the words that Jesus used about the nine disciples who couldn’t drive out that demon.  Would you be offended if another said that about you or would you receive it like a child and consider perhaps you do not believe as you should, not as you could, but as you should and in truth, you do not really practise all the words of Jesus because you do not want to believe all the words of Jesus, but only those which suit you?

Would the pressure to appease the elders cause you to do something that betrays you, just as it did to Paul who went off to be purified along with them?  What an insult to the Holy Spirit who made him holier than any rites of purification could.  Paul allowed himself to be degraded to a common purpose… just another believer who was zealous for the Law and lost the holiness that was his through his election by the Holy Spirit.  Indeed, at that time of Acts 21:20-26, he was the only one left.  Barnabas was gone.  The Father had thousands who were saved through faith in Jesus.  Jesus had hundreds who were practising His words and preaching His words, but the Holy Spirit only had Paul left out of His team when He said to them, “Set apart for Me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.” 

Likewise, the Father has hundreds of millions saved living in this world, even believers, and Jesus has millions who are practising His words to a degree… all of them living in hope to be greeted by Him as they die and go to Heaven.  How many does the Holy Spirit have who are living to greet Jesus with honour at the Mount of Olives, even if the Father has set a date beyond a natural lifespan?  How many do you know who are seriously practising John 11:26, who are not preparing themselves for Heaven, but are preparing Earth for Jesus’ return?

The preaching of the gospel to all nations is a common purpose for all believers.  The making of disciples in all nations is a common purpose for all disciples, but the preparation of the Earth for the Lord’s arrival so that not only will He find faith when He returns, but also honour… that is a holy purpose.  And what sort of holy faith would honour the Lord?  The lukewarm faith that says, “If God wants me to walk on water, I will,” or the type that says, “If someone hurts me, I will hurt them back… an eye for an eye.  If someone sues me, I will sue them back.  If someone causes me to suffer wrongly, I will make sure they suffer as much!”  Or should Jesus be greeted by a quality of faith that indeed, those who greet Him have proved that every word of Jesus is true, and that indeed, those who believe in Him will never die and have done all the things He had been doing and even the greater things?

So answer me, how many do you think does the Holy Spirit have for this work?  As far as you know and I know… only those you see with you.  I may be wrong like Elijah was wrong when he presumed that he was the only one left, but at least Elijah presumed that and sought to preserve himself.  Paul unfortunately, so that we may learn, did not keep himself holy for the purposes of the Holy Spirit and joined in the common purpose of the church of his time, which was to appease those believers who were zealous for the Law.

Guard yourself each one of you, and guard one another and do nothing, I say nothing that would cause you or your brothers and sisters in the elect to lose their place in the holiness of the purposes and plans of the Holy Spirit to bring about all that the Father has imagined for Jesus’ return to Earth.  It is time to repent, for up until now you have not been commanded to distinguish between the common and the holy, as you now have.  What you have done before does not matter, but what you will do from today matters.

Stop using and relating to each other for common purposes, but see each other as holy as God is holy, that each of you have been elected because there is something about you that the Holy Spirit knows can be used to bring about His plans and His purposes to materialise the Father’s imaginations for the glory and honour of Jesus.  If you do not see that about yourself, cry out to God.  If you do not see that about each other, cry out to God.  For He did say, “Call to Me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.”  If He replies, you will understand why you are elected and why the others are elected.  If He does not reply, remember the Lord said, “Later you will understand,” so carry on with the task at hand and do not be distracted and dissuaded.

If Paul had been able to stand alone like Shammah, son of Agee the Hararite, who defended a field of lentils when Israel’s troops fled from the Philistines… had Paul been able to defend his field of Gentiles, he would not have been put in chains.

Listen now, and listen well.  When you are an elect of the Holy Spirit, the persuasion of your brothers and sisters around you can cause you to lose your holiness and put you in chains.  Your true freedom can only be maintained by keeping yourself holy as God said to Israel, “Keep all My decrees and laws and follow them, so that the land where I am bringing you to live may not vomit you out.  You must not live according to the customs of the nations I am going to drive out before you.”  And Jesus said to some believers, “I know your deeds, that you are neither cold not hot.  I wish you were either one or the other!  So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit [vomit] you out of My mouth!” 

Do you know why you are here now… those of you who have been discipled and have been called the elect?  Are you going where the rest of the church is going?  Are you taught to prepare yourself to be honoured by Jesus when you die?  Indeed, based on your destiny and destination, do you really have anything in common with those whose destination is Heaven and whose destiny is to be greeted by Jesus because they have lived, believed and have died.  The truth is you have nothing in common with them, no more than Paul had any traditions or practices in common with the elders of Jerusalem.  Had Paul taken his stand, he would have been rejected by the church, but he would have been free to do what the Holy Spirit wanted him to, and who knows, the Jerusalem church may have repented of saying that it seemed good to the Holy Spirit that we the Gentiles should abstain from drinking blood.  That is history.  What you and I have done, and how we have behaved up to now is also history, and its only value is to learn from it so as not to make the same mistake.

Observe what is acceptable and practised amongst the denominations around us – from their teachings to their social interactions within their fellowships.  Observe these customs.  At this place it would be better not to practise what they practise unless the Holy Spirit specifically commands the retaining of their practices, for their beliefs and their practices are preparing them for a different interim destiny and destination than ours, although ultimately, we will all end up in New Jerusalem and New Earth.  However, they believe and are practising to get there through death and Heaven, spending the Millennium in Heaven to await the Second Resurrection.  Our destiny and destination… certainly the hope of glory that we have been called for, is to defy death, forgo Heaven and to spend the Millennium on Earth as part of the First Resurrection.

Test everything again… keep what is holy, and throw out what is good along with what is evil, for the Knowledge of Good and Evil both led to death.  We only want to know what is holy beyond the good, pleasing and perfect will of God.  We want to know the holy will of the Holy Spirit—the will of He who searches the mind of the Father and who does not speak on His own.  To whom would He share the knowledge of His will?

The will of the Father is holy… but is common to all believers.  The will of Jesus is holy, but is common to all disciples.  But the will of the Holy Spirit is holy and is holy to His elect, whom He has set apart from out of the believers and disciples.

So, in your repentance from using that which is holy for common purposes, now is the time to repent for seeking to use your fellow elect for common purposes.  If the church practises friendship between believers, then it is best not to.  If the church practises gossip about each other, then it is best not to, until you have prioritized your use of your fellow elect into the holy purpose, plan and will of the Holy Spirit first.

Your fellow elect are not here to pray for your problems, as much as to pray for the Holy Spirit’s problems, unless they are one and the same.  They are not here to comfort you as much as they are to comfort the Holy Spirit.  They are not here to keep you company, but to keep the Holy Spirit company.

If you will discipline yourself to be holy for the Holy Spirit’s plans and purposes, and honour and respect your fellow elect to help them to remain holy for the Holy Spirit’s plans and purposes first, then you will have blessed yourself to experience church life not known by the nations (denominations) around you—indeed, not even known by the first disciples.  For the first generation of the elect of the Holy Spirit did not succeed in their mission, so that now together with us, the manifestations of the imaginations of the Father through the will of the Holy Spirit for His Son, Jesus Christ, will be accomplished with even greater honour and glory.

It is the will—now hear this, hear this if you have ears to hear and a heart to understand—it is the will of the Holy Spirit to bring to pass the church of Jesus Christ, the body of Christ, that which the Father had in mind for the Son, for it is the Spirit of God who knows the thoughts of God, and it is the Spirit of God who knows what God has imagined for His Son, and only the Spirit has the power to bring to pass all that the Father has imagined.  Indeed, it is the will of the Holy Spirit to bring to pass all the good, perfect and pleasing thoughts of God for the Son, for His eternal pleasure.

If “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love Him,” then what eye has seen, what ear has heard, what mind has conceived what God has prepared for the Son of God who loved and obeyed Him even to death upon a roman cross, but the Spirit of God?  And as Paul wrote – We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us.  This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words.  The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned.  The spiritual man makes judgments about all things, but he himself is not subject to any man’s judgment: “For who has known the mind of the Lord that He may instruct him?”

And in the same way, you have not received the election of the world or the church, but the election of the Holy Spirit, so that our hope of destiny lies not in the wisdom of man but in the wisdom of the Holy Spirit, and that hope has birthed in our hearts the desire to be with Jesus forever, even if it means to live and never die that we may meet with Him above the clouds when He arrives.  And like the kings of old, to come bearing gifts of thanks, glory and honour. 

Therefore, since that which we hope and desire for we believe to be of the Holy Spirit, then the world and the church that is in the world must find our hope and desire foolish… utterly foolish!  But, because our faith is that this is the will of the Holy Spirit, we are subject to no judgement and no condemnation from men, for, if we are wrong, then we have presumed on the Holy One and have blasphemed Him, and as such we are already judged and condemned, not by men nor by God, but by ourselves.  So, like men condemned to the arena, consider yourself condemned to holiness unto the Holy Spirit, that if we have lied about the Holy Spirit, we should be more struck down than Ananias and Sapphira and worse.

Now then, should you treat those whom you have been elected with commonly?  Should you seek them out for common purposes as others are in the habit of doing, or should you be holy, for the Holy Spirit is holy?  “Know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”  Your destiny and your destination are holy, and likewise, that of your fellow elect.  Lay down your life, even your holiness to defend theirs, and do nothing that would cause them to be tempted from their holy election.

There has never been a group of elect on this Earth since Paul and Barnabas.  Barnabas had no business siding with Mark and splitting himself from Paul.  Our unity is not just one of friendship or love, but more than that, it is one of holiness.  It is not a matter of agreement or disagreement, it is one of holiness.  It is not a matter of likes and dislikes, it is one of holiness.  It is not even one of honour or respect, it is one of holiness, for the Spirit who elected you…  HE IS HOLY. 

AMEN

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