A Lamentation In Hope

February 10, 2015

The Lord utters His voice before His army, for His camp is exceedingly great; He who executes His word is powerful. For the day of the Lord is great and very awesome: who can endure it?
“Yet even now,” declares the Lord, “return to me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning; and rend your hearts and not your garments.”
Return to the Lord your God, for He is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love; and He relents over disaster.
Who knows whether He will not turn and relent, and leave a blessing behind Him, a grain offering and a drink offering for the Lord your God?
Blow the trumpet in Zion; consecrate a fast; call a solemn assembly; gather the people. Consecrate the congregation; assemble the elders; gather the children, even nursing infants. Let the bridegroom leave his room, and the bride her chamber.
Between the porch and the altar let the priests, the ministers of the Lord, WEEP and say, “Spare your people, O Lord, and make not your heritage a reproach, a byword among the nations. Why should they say among the peoples, ‘Where is their God?'”
THEN the Lord became jealous for His land and had pity on His people.

(Joel 2:11-18)

Where are your people, O Lord?
Where is the sound of their weeping vanished to?
Who shall minister unto the Lord; who shall enter the holy place?
The proud have received their reward; but the glory of God is revealed in the humble: the light of His good countenance is seen upon those that still fear Him.

“Or do you suppose it is to no purpose that the Scripture says, “He yearns jealously over the spirit that He has made to dwell in us”? But He gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Be wretched and mourn and weep. Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to heaviness. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and He will exalt you.”
(James 4:5-10)

Unto what end does this people puff themselves up by the fruitless works of man, forsaking faithfulness to God?
How long will they walk in the path of their own counsel, which only hastens its travelers to be destroyed with the wicked?
Will this people not be turned back to the paths of righteousness?

Their reckoning has not tarried, it is even upon them, yet they do not take notice, no, they cannot see what the Lord is working in their very midst. For those who refuse to hear the voice of the Lord will not forsake their stubbornness: they deceive themselves, insisting that they have not fallen away.

The severity of His warning is denied among this people; they trample upon His messengers.
But a remnant of the faithful still remains, and the Lord will sustain His obedient ones in the midst of adversity.

How can any man truly obey the Most High if he neither discerns His Word nor hears His voice? The working of His Spirit has been overruled by the deeds of the backslidden: they are proud to quench Him, supposing that they have attained greater knowledge than He who created all things.
They say among themselves, “Surely His council is clouded, and He is now obliged to bless our own paths.”

Unto such men the Spirit of Life is a stench; and now provoked, He removes all former wisdom from their midst, that they may sleep soundly in the accursed bed which they have made for themselves.
The chambers of their minds echo with vain plots of selfish ambition, and the word of the Lord finds no entrance into their souls. His Spirit is as the searching dove which finds no solid ground upon which to set foot.

Therefore another spirit gives them unction, and they speak forth boastful things from the mouth of the adversary, still presuming themselves to serve the Most High.

And they do not repent of their wickedness, for they do not fear Him; His ways have become foolishness to them.
The thief came to steal the word from their hearts; and now he has obtained the service of their ignorance and evil deeds, so that their children also are left in the wake of their desolation, ready to be swallowed up by the widening mouth of hell.
See how they waned and became utterly dry, as the river bed without a flowing spring! For the water of life found no course through them on account of the heaping up of their iniquities. When when the Lord called them to be seperated unto Him, their slumber only deepened.

Their mouths pour forth the bitterness of their souls, they esteem only themselves and mock the judgements of God.

The stork in the heavens knows her appointed times; and the turtle and the crane and the swallow observe the time of their coming; but my people know not the judgment of the Lord…
“…Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? No, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush: therefore shall they fall among those that fall: in the time of their visitation they shall be cast down,” says the Lord.
(Jeremiah 8:7, 12)

They declare themselves to be held in the Lord’s highest favor; but truly they are accursed, not knowing that their eyes have been darkened and their ears stopped from receiving the truth.

They will see Abel’s offering being accepted by God and their own rejected, yet deny that it is God who so judges them; and so they will seek to destroy the righteous, even in the name of the Righteous One.
They will make the drunkenness of the great whore their own drunkenness, and her sorcery and her fornication their delight. Into her madness they will descend, and by her madness they will kill the righteous.

But the blood of the saints, who by the precious blood of Christ and the Spirit of adoption were made one with Him, will be spilled unto their own sanctification in Him; and the wrath of the jealousy of the Lord will overtake those who slaughter His people, upon whose heads is truly their own blood condemning them.

Let not the faithful be taken in fear or astonishment, for these things must come to pass just as He has told us.

“Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried; but the wicked shall do wickedly: and none of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand.”
(Daniel 12:10)

You, O Lord, are merciful and have taught your remnant to stand upon the Rock, that they be not shaken. Deliver your children from the hand of the adversary!
May there be risen up a worthy host, clothed in the garments of righteousness.

Through the refining fires of tribulation we shall obtain victory eternal in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ!

“He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who conquers I will give of the hidden manna, and I will give to him a white stone, with a new name written on it which no one knows except the one who receives it.”
(Revelation 2:17)

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