1) BRIAN MASON MESSAGE - 4th. February 2013
And Samuel said unto Jesse, Send and fetch him: for we will not sit down till he cometh hither.
1 Samuel chapter 16 verse 11
The ways of God are perfect. Saul, although he still remained King of Israel had been rejected by God because of his disobedience.
Then came the word of the Lord unto Samuel, saying, It repenteth me that I have set up Saul to be King: for he is turned back from following me, and hath not performed my commandments. And it grieved Samuel; and he cried unto the Lord all night.
1 Samuel chapter 15 verses 10 and 11
Saul had looked to go his own way instead of wholeheartedly following God. This can be said to be the same with some Christians who want to go their own way or give God their second best instead of every part of their life being a living sacrifice. For are we not called upon to be living sacrifices?
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.
Romans chapter 12 verse 1
How grieved must God be in our day to see that few will obey the call to be living sacrifices. However, this is the only way by which we can enter into all that God has for us. Just like Samuel there has to be an acceptance of God’s word and move on in His purposes to see God at work. Samuel was given clear instructions. He was to fill his horn with oil and go to Bethlehem to Jesse as one of Jesse’s sons was to be anointed to take Saul’s place.
Samuel was afraid as he knew that Saul would question why he was going to Jesse. God will always provide the means to do that which He tells us to do. The Lord gave Samuel an answer as He told Samuel to take an heifer and say that he had come to sacrifice to the Lord.
Whatever the Lord calls upon us to do He will provide the way and the means. In the ministry which the Lord works through me, that of Bible College Of Wales Continuing the Lord has called upon me to be responsible to take the gospel to every creature.
An impossible task to the human mind but not to someone who like Paul and Peter amongst others has learned the great plan in their lives. That plan is that there is a mightier than ourselves for our lives are so divinely in the Holy Spirit that they know exactly what to do and when to do it.
I know that as one called to be responsible to ensure that the gospel reaches every last person in the world the Bible College is integral to fulfilling this command of the Saviour. Although like with Paul there have been many hindrances the Holy Spirit working through me is overcoming all the hindrances. Men and women will hear and respond to the call to be trained for the ministry through the Bible College.
If those from the western world still choose to follow the false training of higher criticism and want a life of comfort rather than a life of being a living sacrifice then that is their choice. Paul turned away from the Jews and went to the Gentiles. God will leave the western world system of training to its own devices and seek those from the third world to be trained at this His college.
However, should there be those from the western world who are prepared to give their all to God then they will be welcomed with open arms at the college. God is greater than the opposition and He will have all the glory.
What I have outlined above in regard to the Bible College can be likened to how Samuel looked upon the selection of the new king. When Eliab was presented to Samuel he looked upon Eliab in the natural. Looking and thinking in the natural are not God’s ways.
The teaching of higher criticism in universities and Bible Colleges is in the natural as there is nothing of the Spirit of God. Any course which embraces higher criticism is spiritually dead. As far as God is concerned it has no value. It may provide a degree at the end of the course but that is all it is as this is theory instead of knowing the living God as a person who lives and works through us. At Bible College Of Wales Continuing you will both receive a degree and know that God is still alive and working out His own purposes.
All the sons of Jesse that were present had been brought before Samuel but none were found suitable. Samuel asked if there were any other sons. David was called for from his task of looking after the sheep. David had not been considered important enough to have been invited. That was the thinking of man in the natural. Once David was anointed the Spirit of the Lord came upon him. O that God will raise up men and women who are prepared to go all the way with Him.
It will cost them everything. Instead of walking by sight and in the natural God seeks those who will walk by faith, accept the unseen and are hungry and thirsty for Him so that they are immersed in Him and carry around with them the sense of His awesome presence. Lord you have not changed so I dare believe that there will be those who respond to be living sacrifices and give their all to you. It is only then that we know what it is to walk in heavenly places.
2) BRIAN MASON MESSAGE - 15th. February 2013
Then said Boaz unto his servant that was set over the reapers, Whose damsel is this?
Ruth chapter 2 verse 5
In the Christian life one aspect is not only to know what is the Lord’s will for us but to constantly remain in the centre of His will. How many are prepared to listen for the voice of the Holy Spirit whispering to us what is that perfect will of God for us. Those who have been greatly used by God over the centuries have been the ones who have heard the Holy Spirit telling them what to do but also realise it is not themselves who can do the work but only God Himself in the person of the Holy Spirit. The great danger is to hear the Holy Spirit and then try and act on our own or move out of the Lord’s perfect plan. It is only by being in the centre of God’s plan each and every moment that God is able to do all He wants to do through us. When we move out of God’s plan we not only frustrate God’s plan but place ourselves in danger of becoming a prey to Satan himself.
Although using the Old Testament book of Ruth as an example this provides a perfect illustration of what happens when we move out of the centre of God’s will. There was a man named Elimelech who lived in Bethlehem with his wife Naomi and two sons Mahlon and Chilion. Bethlehem means House of Bread. Although there was a famine Elimelech failed to believe that God was greater than the famine and was well able to provide for Elimelech and his family in Bethlehem. There was no need to leave Bethlehem and go to the land of Moab. Not only did Elimelech move out of the centre of God’s will but he went to live in Moab whose people were not God’s people. Elimelech walked away from God and he soon died. The situation grew even worse when Mahlon and Chilion decided to marry. They chose wives from amongst the Moabites. They had gone against the will of God as they should have married from amongst their own people. After around ten years both sons died without having children.
The situation looked bleak for Naomi. Not only was she in a foreign land but away from her relatives who would have helped her in her time of need. God in His mercy, though, was gracious to Naomi for she had had no choice but to go with her husband and sons to Moab. At first both her sons wives said they would go with her to Bethlehem but in the end only Ruth decided to go. Although not of God’s people Ruth shows a faithfulness and purity which would have been pleasing to God.
The people of Bethlehem were moved at the sight of Naomi on her return. They said “ Is this Naomi?” Without doubt Naomi was a changed woman. Instead of being content as she was before she had left she now called herself Mara as she believed God had dealt bitterly with her. Naomi confessed that she had left Bethlehem full but returned empty. This is the experience of many a Christian who steps outside of God’s will to follow that of their own choosing. God wants to give us His best if only we will accept this on God’s terms and we fulfil His conditions. When we do so although the road will never be easy because our Lord showed clearly that like Himself His followers would also need to go the way of the cross, this is God’s way. It is when we start going our own way that we become discontent like Naomi.
In our own time there is an industry which draws those who like Elimelech have walked away from God’s provided ways. These are the ways clearly set out in the Bible. It is the Bible where we have all the promises we can stand on for a holy, righteous and pure life, a life which can always be at the centre of God’s will. This is a life which does not need to have constant introspection and examination to look at its past. There is no need to go to residential centres and pay to deal with fears from the past. No this is a Satanic scheme to bind Christians and has nothing to do with our Lord Jesus Christ. Is not our Lord’s words sufficient enough to show that anything which is not based on God’s word is Satanic and should not be touched? We are to believe and act upon that which is written. It is written that Jesus Himself said:
And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.
St John chapter 8 verse 32
It is the truth of the word of God which sets us free not the Satanic courses which go under the name of Christianity. No these courses can never set you free they can only lead to further fear and take you further away from God’s will for your life. The only ones who will benefit from running centres which put on courses which cannot be supported by the Word of God are those who run the courses to make money for their own ends. These people and their courses are no better than the moneychangers who Jesus drove out of the temple. Where in all of the many courses which are introspective and self centred is the vision to obey the words of Jesus to preach the gospel to every creature.
Have you considered whether you are in the centre of God’s will? Like Elimelech you may have gone right out of God’s will. If you have by going your own way of continual introspection and by your choices shown that it is my way and not God’s way be warned. We are not on earth to be happy but holy. We are to give God His rightful place in our lives. Are you giving Jesus the pre eminence in your life each and every moment. It is no wonder we have waited so long for revival. God is shut out of the lives of the majority of those who call themselves Christian for they and not God, in Jesus Christ are on the throne. O that the stronghold of a Christianity which shuns God and chooses to follow its own way be bound and the captives set free. Revival comes through brokenness when hidden sin is publicly confessed. Is the Church ready to accept this condition? Lord God come and take your rightful place and in doing so bring revival once more because lives are lived for you alone as they fulfil the words of the Psalmist.
The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: A broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.
Psalm 51 verse 17
Praise God, though, that like Naomi there is a way back into the centre of God’s will. Naomi was not only provided her daily needs but through the marriage of Ruth to Boaz (for Ruth was the damsel who gleaned in Boaz’s field) became a grandmother. Her grandson was named Obed who became the grandfather of David. It was of the line of David that our Lord Jesus was born. God ways are perfect if we will only accept His way rather than our own.
3) BRIAN MASON MESSAGE 19 03 13
Then said the Lord to him, Put off thy shoes from thy feet: for the place where thou standest is holy ground.
Acts of the Apostles chapter 7 verse 33
The words “ Put off thy shoes from thy feet: for the place where thou standest is holy ground” had been spoken to Moses by God when God had made Himself known to Moses at the burning bush. Stephen referred to these words again during his own defence to the high priest and the council of the Jews. Stephen had been accused of speaking blasphemous words against Moses and God.
Stephen had been accused of speaking about Jesus and that the temple would be destroyed and so too would be the customs which Moses had delivered. Stephen recalled the history of the Jews from when God had made Himself known to Abraham.
Stephen explained how God had become their God through covenants and mentions Isaac, Jacob and Joseph. The time of famine and Jacob and his family going to join Joseph in Egypt is recounted right up to the time when there was another king who did not know Joseph. All this history would have been well known to the council members. The account of Moses would also have been well known.
Moses was the greatest man in the Old Testament. Although he had been brought up in the palace of Pharaoh he had tried to help God’s people his own way. When Moses had seen one of the Hebrews being mistreated by an Egyptian he had taken matters into his own hands and killed the Egyptian. As a result he had to flee from the palace and spend forty years in the wilderness. These were years when Moses spent the time with his family and looking after the sheep.
However, God had not forgotten him and although in his own eyes Moses had failed because he had not helped his own people the Hebrews God had been waiting His own time. The Christian too can go through an experience of what can appear failure. There are times when others may think we are failures.
What is seen as failure by others is taken by God as an opportunity to work out His own purposes in His own time and for His own glory. How different are the ways of God to the ways of man. The Christian life is one of the replacing of the human with the divine. To get to this position there is no room for thinking in the natural. Thinking has to be on the lines of Christ Himself.
How can this be you may ask. Scripture shows how when it declares:
Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus.
Philippians chapter 2 verse 4
What a mind though. Not a mind of self centred thoughts. No this could never be as with Jesus it had to be the way of the cross. It is always the way of death to self which leads to the life of Christ being manifested through those who truly know Him. How true the following has been to those who know death working in them so that the life which they now live is by the faith of the Son of God
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, Neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are my ways higher than your ways.
Isaiah chapter 55 verse 8
Here Isaiah is speaking on a level which most of modern day Christianity will never reach. Why you might ask. Let us return to Moses. What was the first thing Moses learned about God when God met him.
It was that above everything else God is holy. God has to be given His rightful place for who He is. God is the creator and the One who upholds all things by His power. Moses showed this respect and God was able to do all He wanted to do through Moses in the setting free of God’s people from Egypt. God could only use Moses when Moses was ready and then only by Moses obeying God’s conditions.
Stephen in his recollection to the Jewish council of God’s workings on the behalf of His people and their rejection of God’s ways was not a popular message which led to Stephen’s death.
Today just as in Stephen’s day those ministers of God who like Stephen who deliver a disturbing message are not popular and are rejected by all but the remnant of Christianity. To preach on the blood of Christ, the cross, sin, repentance, hell, dying to self and holiness are subjects which only the remnant are prepared to accept. The rest of so called Christianity are aptly described by Isaiah as:
All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned every one to his own way.
Isaiah chapter 53 verse 6
O that people today would realise the meaning of the rest of verse 6 before it is too late and they find themselves in hell with no escape.
And the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.
Sinner have you repented of your sin and been cleansed through the blood of Jesus?
Those of you who do know Jesus as Saviour and Lord are you hungering and thirsting after all of God.
We will only seek fully after God when we like Moses know God as a holy God. Holiness is not something which many seek after today.. Are you prepared to go against the norms of society and be different by seeking a life of holiness. I close with these words of David.
Who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord? Or who shall stand in his holy place? He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart.
Psalm 24 verses 3 and 4
And Micaiah said, As the LORD liveth, even what my God saith, that will I speak.
2 Chronicles chapter 18 verse 13
Micaiah was a prophet. The scriptures tell little about him yet what is said speaks of a depth little seen today. Here was a man who stood out for being different from the rest of the prophets. Micaiah was not afraid of rejection for being different.
Micaiah was a man who dared to believe God. He was certainly not one who would compromise or seek to please others no matter what this cost him. This is illustrated in how he dealt with a matter concerning Ahab king of Israel and Jehoshaphat king of Judah. Jehoshaphat had gone to visit Ahab and Ahab had asked Jehoshaphat to go with him for a battle against the Syrians at Ramoth-gilead. Jehoshaphat unlike Ahab followed the Lord. He wanted to know what the Lord had to say in this matter. He did not rely on human reasoning as he sought to please and follow the Lord in all matters and being with the ungodly Ahab was not a reason to forsake consulting the Lord. Ahab gathered together all four hundred of the prophets who he knew would conform to his wishes and would not question Ahab’s reasoning. These were not prophets who knew the Lord. They used human thinking instead of hearing the voice of the Lord. As one man the four hundred prophets told Ahab to go to battle as God would deliver the enemy into his hands.
Jehoshaphat was troubled in his spirit as there was no witness that what these prophets had said was of the Lord. Jehoshaphat asked Ahab whether there was another prophet who could be consulted. Ahab said there was but he hated this prophet as he never prophesied good but evil. This prophet was Micaiah. What Ahab was saying was that Micaiah was different. Micaiah knew the Lord just like the better known prophets like Elijah and Elisha. Micaiah like Elijah and Elisha was fearless. He was a man who knew his God. Here was a man who heard from God. He was a man who declared the word of God at the expense of his own unpopularity and rejection. Micaiah was a man who lived for God and God alone.
Micaiah was called to come and see the kings. Whist the kings waited Zedekiah told the kings to fight Syria. All the other prophets agreed with him. This was the voice of a false prophet. We need to be aware that there are true and false prophets. Macaih came and was informed that the other prophets had told the kings to go and fight the Syrians and the Lord would be with them and for Micaiah to agree with the others. Micaiah would have none of this. He spoke fearlessly by saying he would say what God said to him. For some reason at first Micaiah appeared to be agreeing with the rest of the prophets until Ahab told him to tell the truth. Micaiah then said he saw all Israel scattered upon the mountains without a shepherd. This spoke of both defeat and the losing of their leader who of course was Ahab. Micaiah had a revelation of the majesty of God sitting on His throne with the host of heaven around Him. Micaiah was in a realm of the spiritual man walking with his God whereas the rest of the prophets walked in the realm of man not having any living relationship with God.
Micaiah spoke of Ahab being enticed by a spirit coming from the presence of the Lord to be a lying spirit in the mouths of all the other prophets. Zedekiah smote Micaiah upon the cheek as Zedekiah acted in the flesh that is the natural man as he was not spiritual. Ahab called for Micaiah to be delivered to Amon the governor of the city of Samaria and placed in prison. Micaiah was to be given bread and water of affliction until Ahab returned. Micaiah fearlessly told Ahab should he return then the Lord had not spoken through him. Ahab did go to battle and was killed. Although Micaiah is not mentioned again he would no doubt have been released and gone on serving the Lord the rest of his life.
What depth is found in Micaiah for he was a man who both knew God and walked with Him daily, always looking to serve the Lord at whatever the cost to himself. Micaiah stood out for one reason. He obeyed God rather than man. The rest of the prophets were no doubt living a life of comfort having all their needs met by Ahab on the basis that they agreed with him.
What can we learn from Micaiah and the rest of the prophets. The rest of the prophets show that it is easy to go along with the crowd. These prophets though were false prophets as they did not know the Lord and because of this did not know the true word of the Lord. This is a description of Christianity today which is not part of the remnant Church. The vast majority of Christianity today does not know the Lord and has heard and is still hearing from false prophets. Whether this be the Roman Catholic Church or the purpose driven church or anything else which is not hearing from God and obeying His word this is as spiritually dead as Ahab’s four hundred prophets. This means the vast majority of those who call themselves Christians have no living relationship with God as they have not been born again into the kingdom of God. Unless there is that deep conviction of sin by accepting what the individual sins are in a person’s life then there will be no deep repentance of sin as there is no sorrowing over sin or seeking to turn away from sin. Without repentance there will be no acceptance of Jesus as Lord and Savior and for a change of life to want to have the life of Jesus in them.
Micaiah too shows how the true prophet of God will never be popular. The true prophet hears from God and makes known the word of God. Where God sees sin He will call for repentance and a turning to Himself. This can be in relation to whole nations who once walked in the ways of God by obeying the Word of God in the Bible. How do nations like Great Britain and the United States of America look in the eyes of God today? Does not the abomination of their sin in rejecting God’s Word come up as an abomination before Him. God has been calling Great Britain to repentance through His prophets over a number of years yet the call has been ignored. This will have been the same in the United States of America. The call for repentance has also been made to the various false churches who follow other gods and are as pagan as Israel was in the reign of king Ahab. All these calls have gone unheeded. God is merciful but above all else He is holy and righteous. Where He continues to be rejected then Great Britain and the United States of America along with the false churches must be prepared to accept the consequences which may be to find themselves reaching a point where they are totally rejected by God with no hope of reconciliation.
01 08 17 Prayer
For Joab had turned after Adonijah, though he turned not after Absalom.
1 Kings 2:28
Almighty God may those who know you be faithful in these days just as Joab was in his day.
Joab stood the big test. He had remained absolutely loyal and true to David. He was not drawn to follow after the ambitious Absalom although towards the end of his life he turned after the craven Adonijah. May all who know you remain alert to the fact that where one man has gone back is exactly where any one may go back.
When they have gone through the big crisis may they be alert to be aware of the least things which may come and try to disturb their daily walk with God. This is asked through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.