I was reflecting this morning on the effects of revelation on one’s life. Paul speaks several places in scripture about the revelation of Christ and His gospel and their impact upon his life. This revelation had a death and life effect on Paul. This revelation is a mystery revealed and cannot be understood by someone who has not experienced it. No one can teach it to you. It is “… the mystery which has been hidden from past ages and generations, but has now been manifested to His saints, to whom God willed to make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you the hope of glory.” (Colossians 1:26-27) Paul was arrested by this revelation to the point that he counted his own life as not his own and was constrained by the love of the one whose life he now belonged to.
Without this revelation you will not live in freedom. You will do the things of God retaining a right to yourself and operating with yourself as the reference point of God’s work. This in time makes His work burdensome because it is works. It is not your life working for Him. It is to be His life working through you.
“Not you producing His life, but you expressing His life, as you by faith trust Him to live through you, as you.” The Rest of the Gospel by Dan Stone & David Gregory
Oswald Chambers in “My Utmost for His Highest” (March 4th) shares the effects of this revelation on our service to God.
Is This True Of Me?
“None of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself… Acts 20:24
It is easier to serve or work for God without a vision and without a call, because then you are not bothered by what He requires. Common sense, covered with a layer of Christian emotion, becomes your guide. You may be more prosperous and successful from the world’s perspective, and will have more leisure time, if you never acknowledge the call of God. But once you receive a commission from Jesus Christ, the memory of what God asks of you will always be there to prod you on to do His will. You will no longer be able to work for Him on the basis of common sense.
What do I count in my life as “dear to myself”? If I have not been seized by Jesus Christ and have not surrendered myself to Him, I will consider the time I decide to give God and my own ideas of service as dear. I will also consider my own life as “dear to myself.” But Paul said he considered his life dear so that he might fulfill the ministry he had received, and he refused to use his energy on anything else. This verse shows an almost noble annoyance by Paul at being asked to consider himself. He was absolutely indifferent to any consideration other than that of fulfilling the ministry he had received. Our ordinary and reasonable service to God may actually compete against our total surrender to Him. Our reasonable work is based on the following argument which we say to ourselves, “Remember how useful you are here, and think how much value you would be in that particular type of work.” That attitude chooses our own judgment, instead of Jesus Christ, to be our guide as to where we should go and where we could be used the most. Never consider whether or not you are of use— but always consider that “you are not your own” ( 1 Corinthians 6:19 ). You are His.
Once you have had a revelation of Christ, there is no turning back. You couldn’t even if you wanted to.