Blog In Audio:
Today I am still in California helping my family. My daughter in law had a bit of a setback, so I am here for a bit longer. It is truly a year to live in the moment and not by some momentum or plan. Flexibility is key to this present season.
I have been writing for some time in regard to the present grace of God at work in the earth. I believe this grace is one of the Spirit of knowing or knowledge. This is not a knowledge of information, but a knowledge of intimacy. It is the working of the Holy Spirit in the aspect of the Spirit of Knowing that causes us to be the testimony of the people of God. Being the people of God is one of seven attributes of the body of Christ. It is an aspect of brotherly love in being the community of God with a testimony of a love for God and a love for one another. In the Old Covenant there were seven sacrifices and offerings that were a shadow of the good thing to come in being the body of Christ. The actions of sacrifices and offerings were really a shadow of levels of relationships found in being the living body of Christ. I believe the sacrifice that correlates to the Spirit of Knowing was the freewill offering.
Deuteronomy 12:5 “But you shall seek the place where the LORD your God chooses, out of all your tribes, to put His name for His dwelling place; and there you shall go. 6 There you shall take your burnt offerings, your sacrifices, your tithes, the heave offerings of your hand, your vowed offerings, your freewill offerings, and the firstborn of your herds and flocks.”
God’s love is not merely a love of affection, but a love involving sacrifice. The love of God is something that God wants us to know, but it is not merely a feel-good love. It is a love that freely offers life for the sake of another. For the past several weeks I have been in California helping my son Aaron and his family finish a house remodel. I have been taking care of grandkids and working from early morning to night on the house project both inside and out. I am here because my daughter in law Amani had an emergency surgery a few weeks ago and I chose to come and help during this time of need. I have been making sacrifices of love for my family. I believe that there is a lesson in this concerning the present grace of God working in the earth. True love is a freewill offering, but it is also a sacrifice. It is not necessarily easy, but it is an easy decision. I have been doing things that have caused my physical body to hurt, but the pain is simply the fruit of my sacrifice of love. When there is no pain in the offering there really is not testimony of true love.
There is a great example of an organic freewill offering in the life of King David and his mighty men. When David was in the cave of Adullam, the Philistines came up against him in a valley that had a name meaning “giant”. I believe it was a place of giant resistance and giant difficulty and it was there that David longed for some relief. The Philistines held the well of Bethlehem captive and David just wished for a drink from that well.
2 Samuel 23:13 Then three of the thirty chief men went down at harvest time and came to David at the cave of Adullam. And the troop of Philistines encamped in the Valley of Rephaim. 14 David was then in the stronghold, and the garrison of the Philistines was then in Bethlehem. 15 And David said with longing, “Oh, that someone would give me a drink of the water from the well of Bethlehem, which is by the gate!” 16 So the three mighty men broke through the camp of the Philistines, drew water from the well of Bethlehem that was by the gate, and took it and brought it to David. Nevertheless he would not drink it, but poured it out to the LORD. 17 And he said, “Far be it from me, O LORD, that I should do this! Is this not the blood of the men who went in jeopardy of their lives?” Therefore he would not drink it.
In this story, these three mighty men risked their lives to get David a drink from the well of Bethlehem. It was a risk of their lives. It was a sacrifice! It was a testimony of their love for David. When David received the drink, he realized how precious this gift was. It was a freewill sacrifice of love. David in turn poured the drink out to the Lord. His sacrifice was also a freewill gift of love to God. Nothing in this story was easy. There was pain in the offering. It was a testimony of true brotherly love. It wasn’t a matter of getting but one of giving life for the sake of another. I believe this is the grace that God is calling us to embrace in this hour. It is a grace of sacrificial love that cannot be offended and gives life in the hardest of times.
Ted J. Hanson
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