The only ministry that matters is resurrection ministry. The only word that matters is a resurrection word. Now, here is the problem. Resurrection tends to be taught from two extremes. The first extreme is the teaching that generalizes Christ’s resurrection and assumes we have something simply because there are scriptures to back up the teaching. It is theoretical teaching. Religion always assumes more than it walks in. The other extreme is the teaching that places Christ’s resurrection into the future. It tells us that one day our bodies will be transformed into His likeness, and we will all be manifested sons. The truth lies outside of both extremes. Jesus said in John 11 that HE is the resurrection and the life. Resurrection is not a doctrine, and it is not an event. It is a realm of life we enter into. The Lord has recently brought the emphasis on the passage “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.” Life only precedes from death. This is the order of resurrection. Just as His resurrection is a living experience for us, so is His death. Only that which has died carries His life. It is that simple. The further we go into this circumcision of the eighth day we have discussed, the deeper becomes His life in the words we minister. Why is it that some can teach and bring forth revelation, yet the authority and weight of Christ cannot be discerned in the ministry? It is because such persons are ministering from this side of the cross. Christ’s death, i.e. the circumcision of heart, has not been fully incorporated into them. Varying degrees of this truth can be applied throughout Christianity.
The more we die to the self-life with all its various manifestations, the greater will be the authority of the word we speak. Our words will carry His life. This resurrection ministry cannot be duplicated. It cannot be mimicked. On the surface ministry from the soul realm can sound exactly like ministry coming from the realm of spirit. Too often we cannot tell the difference because we ourselves have not died deeply enough. The further we go into this eighth day circumcision the greater will be our discernment to recognize life from death. Only Christ’s life can create. Only His resurrection made alive in us can produce the spiritual fruit of the kingdom.
32 ¶ “Now learn the parable from the fig tree: when its branch has already become tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near;
33 so, you too, when you see all these things, recognize that He is near, right at the door.
34 “Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place.
35 “Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away.
The above verses follow a long discourse by Jesus addressing the tribulations and upheavals that must come upon the earth before His presence is revealed. Verses 32-35 hold special significance for us. Some so-called Bible teachers like to imply that these passages refer to natural Israel. They teach that Israel becoming a nation again points to the fulfillment of all Jesus’ words. These verses have nothing to do with natural Israel. The passages point to a spiritual fruitfulness as a sign of the nearness of God’s kingdom. Spiritual fruitfulness only comes through resurrection, as has already been stated. Everything on the far side of the cross expresses the fruitfulness of the kingdom. Everything on this side of the cross expresses the theoretical.
A message came recently called Becoming God’s Farmers. It expressed a realm of the kingdom opening in which we begin to beat our swords into plowshares and our spears into pruning hooks. The transformation of weapons of war into farming implements implies a time of fruitfulness and harvest. We know we have entered the realm of resurrection when such things are emphasized by the Lord.
We are in a time in which the nature of God is to be revealed in a people. This too is expressed through sowing and reaping. We can gain much insight through 1st Cor. 15.
21 For since by a man came death, by a man also came the resurrection of the dead.
22 For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive.
23 But each in his own order: Christ the first fruits, after that those who are Christ’s at His coming,
24 then comes the end, when He hands over the kingdom to the God and Father, when He has abolished all rule and all authority and power.
25 For He must reign until He has put all His enemies under His feet.
26 The last enemy that will be abolished is death.
35 ¶ But someone will say, “How are the dead raised? And with what kind of body do they come?”
36 You fool! That which you sow does not come to life unless it dies;
37 and that which you sow, you do not sow the body which is to be, but a bare grain, perhaps of wheat or of something else.
38 But God gives it a body just as He wished, and to each of the seeds a body of its own.
39 All flesh is not the same flesh, but there is one flesh of men, and another flesh of beasts, and another flesh of birds, and another of fish.
40 There are also heavenly bodies and earthly bodies, but the glory of the heavenly is one, and the glory of the earthly is another.
41 There is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars; for star differs from star in glory.
42 So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown a perishable body, it is raised an imperishable body;
43 it is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power;
44 it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. If there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual body.
45 So also it is written, “The first MAN, Adam, BECAME A LIVING SOUL.” The last Adam became a life-giving spirit.
46 However, the spiritual is not first, but the natural; then the spiritual.
47 The first man is from the earth, earthy; the second man is from heaven.
48 As is the earthy, so also are those who are earthy; and as is the heavenly, so also are those who are heavenly.
49 Just as we have borne the image of the earthy, we will also bear the image of the heavenly.
Notice the allusions to sowing and reaping throughout the above verses. “. . . is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power.” We are being raised up with Christ to sit with Him in the heavens (Eph. 2:1-6). This must be a practical experience for us, not a theoretical one. All of Zion is to be characterized by her great fruitfulness. It is the “spiritual farmers” within her that make it so. They are planting and harvesting in the realm of resurrection which makes such fruitfulness possible.
9 Now there was a man named Simon, who formerly was practicing magic in the city and astonishing the people of Samaria, claiming to be someone great;
10 and they all, from smallest to greatest, were giving attention to him, saying, “This man is what is called the Great Power of God.”
11 And they were giving him attention because he had for a long time astonished them with his magic arts.
12 But when they believed Philip preaching the good news about the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were being baptized, men and women alike.
13 Even Simon himself believed; and after being baptized, he continued on with Philip, and as he observed signs and great miracles taking place, he was constantly amazed.
14 ¶ Now when the apostles in Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent them Peter and John,
15 who came down and prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit.
16 For He had not yet fallen upon any of them; they had simply been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.
17 Then they began laying their hands on them, and they were receiving the Holy Spirit.
18 Now when Simon saw that the Spirit was bestowed through the laying on of the apostles’ hands, he offered them money,
19 saying, “Give this authority to me as well, so that everyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit.”
20 But Peter said to him, “May your silver perish with you, because you thought you could obtain the gift of God with money!
21 “You have no part or portion in this matter, for your heart is not right before God.
22 “Therefore repent of this wickedness of yours, and pray the Lord that, if possible, the intention of your heart may be forgiven you.
23 “For I see that you are in the gall of bitterness and in the bondage of iniquity.”
The above verses tell the story of Simon the Magician and how he offered the apostles money to be able to impart the Holy spirit to those on whom he laid his hands. Simon was soundly rebuked by Peter and the wickedness of his heart was revealed. This story further reveals to us that the life of Christ, i.e. His resurrection, cannot be duplicated or mimicked. Simon was a counterfeit. He could do many astounding things as the Scriptures indicate. Verse 13 says that Simon believed and was even baptized. Such actions are enough for the religious realm. “Simon is now saved and one of us.” It took spiritual discernment for Peter to recognize the corruption still in Simon’s heart. Such discernment becomes easy in the realm of resurrection, for it’s obvious when Christ’s life is present and when it isn’t.
Why is it that the Scriptures speak of how a little child shall lead (Isa. 11:6)? Children are indicative of a realm without leaven. The realm of resurrection has no Adamic leaven in it at all. One thing we must keep in proper perspective is that God is bringing us into this resurrection realm one step at a time. It is not an all or nothing scenario, which is the way religion always perceives things. God isolates areas of our spirits, bringing them into the cross experience, and ultimately His resurrection life. We are not yet living fully in the realm of spirit, i.e. resurrection. We are enterING, present tense. We have moved far enough in to see the blossoming flower such as Sylvester saw Saturday morning. Nothing blooms on this side of the cross, only on the far side of resurrection. God is doing a work in our spirits. He is not refining our soul lives. They change only as God completes work after work in our spirits. This realm of life is to be ministered. It is the true manna that is to be fed to all those who are hungry and searching.