According to God's promise we look for a new heaven and a new earth (2 Pet. 3: 13). This is the hope of all believers. God's righteousness is the nature of the new dispensation. It ought to be the great concern of our lives that we are found in possession of the kind of righteousness which is going to fill and to characterize the new dispensation. As the above passages reveal, both Paul and Peter show great diligence in this matter of righteousness, utterly and ruthlessly refusing any other ground than that of
God's righteousness. "Only in thee have I righteousness...". "The Lord is my righteousness". This ground of truth is constantly being assailed by the enemy of our souls, hence the need to give diligence, that at the last we may be found in Him, clothed in His righteousness.
When the Lord's judgments are in the earth, this kind of righteousness will be the only delivering factor (Eze. 14:14-20). Here are three giants in the realm of righteousness - Noah, Daniel and Job. They represent the only kind of righteousness which God will recognize and accept. Noah -Imputed Righteousness. (Rom. 3:21 , 22; 4:6; Heb. 11 :7). Daniel -Inwrought Righteousness. (Dan. 1 :8). The righteousness of God wrought in us by a process of sanctification.
Job -Incorruptible Righteousness. A righteousness which cannot be destroyed';" which triumphs over all the enemy accusations.There are three references in Scripture to three other giants, but in the realm of unrighteousness -Sheshai, Ahiman and Talmai. These giants were responsible for preventing the children of Israel, from coming into their inheritance, i.e., "the glory of all lands" (Eze. 20:6), which Paul sought to possess (Phil. 3:8). From the following references we can see how real these giants were to the children
of Israel. They represent a very real enemy-activity to prevent the people of God from coming into their inheritance - a conscious enjoyment of the righteousness of Christ (Num. 13:22, 28, 33; Deut. 9:2; Josh. 15, 14; Jud.1:10,20).
"Others saw the giants, Caleb saw the Lord, They were sore disheartened, He believed God's word."
They saw the giants, and then saw themselves as grasshoppers. Caleb saw the giants, and then saw the Lord.
Sheshai -'Whitish', i.e. something less than white. Ahiman -'Brother of Man'. 'Man' was the word they used for the Manna, a heavenly mystery. This is the brother of that. Talmai -'an accumulation', 'to pile up'. Let us give careful consideration to these giants who were responsible for the overthrow of the children of Israel, lest we also fail after the same manner of disobedience. Sheshai would represent Giant Yesterday. He challenges us concerning our past, the sins of yesterday. He presents something of a 'whitish' past, but
it is not equal to God's whiteness. God paints in many colors, but He never paints so gorgeously as when He paints in white." What of our yesterdays? Have we a past made white, pure white in the blood of the Lamb? Or is it only a 'whitish' past? The wounds of sin may be healed but the scar of sin may remain. David's sin was forgiven and put away, but the scar remained and he was very conscious of it; "my sin is ever before me" (Psa. 51 :3.) The scar was there, and as often as he saw it, he thought of the terrible sin of
yesterday. But is he under a cloud of condemnation? No, he is right out in the beautiful sunshine of God's pardoning grace (see Psa.32). Have we finished with the sins of yesterday? When through some fresh associations, memory is awakened, reminding us of something of the past, making it live again as though it were but yesterday, does our conscience condemn us then? At such a time can we sing with blessed confidence: "What though the accuser roar, Of sins that I have done; I know them all, and thousands more,
Jehovah findeth none."
Noah is the answer to the Giant Yesterday. He is the heir of the righteousness which is by faith. Only Noah was found righteous before God. The whole world was condemned. Noah's righteousness alone could deliver him. But eight souls were saved. The others were delivered from that awful house of wrath by claiming relationship to Noah and by being with him in the ark. The only righteousness that can deliver us from God's judgment -is the righteousness of Christ. By faith we must claim relationship to Him and be with Him in His death. He was "delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification" (Rom. 4:25). If we would be delivered out of this present evil world and have a place in the new heaven and new earth, we must be in possession of this kind of righteousness.
The meaning of the name Ahiman suggests Giant Today. The Manna had to be gathered day by day. When the enemy cannot accuse us of our yesterdays, he will certainly seek to accuse us of today's sins. What about today? Hear his accusations. his taunts as he holds Today before us. "You call yourself a Christian! You say you are born again! What about that temper, pride, selfishness, jealousy?" And so, when we think we are well rid of giant Sheshai, his brother Ahiman stands towering over us, threatening to rob us of our
inheritance in Christ.
The righteousness which Daniel represents is the answer to the Giant Today (Dan. 1: 8; 3:18; 6:4, 16, 12-23). If the Spirit of God is going to do a work of sanctification in our lives, working in us the righteousness of Christ, He must find in us that same purpose of heart. It is obedience from the heart that brings freedom from sin (Rom. 6:17, 18). It is our response to the truth that enables the Holy Spirit to complete His work of sanctification in us, the obtaining of the glory of the lord Jesus Christ (2 Thess.2:13, 14).. The ultimate test will be as to how much of His righteousness, His fine gold, (Rev. 3:18), is found in us. The type of righteousness Daniel represents, will be the only delivering factor in that day. Talmai- 'an accumulation' suggests something for tomorrow. We have to deal now with Giant Tomorrow. Somehow, we have got through today, but what about tomorrow and the next day? How many are tormented by this Giant Tomorrow! In Job we have a full answer to all the torments of Tomorrow. The giants are all the time trying to get us to be occupied with ourselves. To see them and then to see ourselves as grasshoppers! That is what the enemy was doing with Job. He began with a burnt offering which represents Christ's perfect, spotless righteousness and then his eyes got turned in looking to his own righteousness. But the story has a wonderful ending. Job ends as he began, with the burnt offering (1: 5; 42:8). He ends by seeing the lord! "...now mine eye seeth thee" (42:5). The enemy is put to flight and Job stands, clothed with a righteousness which is incorruptible, unassailable.
Others saw the giants. Caleb saw the Lord! And it is said of that man -"...Caleb drove thence the three sons of Anak, Sheshai, Ahiman and Talmai..." (Josh. 15:14). "Only in the Lord shall one say of me: I have righteousness". Can they say this of me? "The Lord is my righteousness". "Behold Him there, the risen lamb! My perfect, spotless Righteousness, The great unchangeable I AM The King of Glory, and grace." L.C
HE HATH DONE ALL THINGS WELL
Scripture Portion: Mark 7:31 -37
This small fragment in the Word of God has a message for all of us. I want you to remember these words and allow the Holy Spirit to write them on your hearts. From the moment we accept the Lord Jesus Christ as our personal Savior, receive the gift of eternal life and begin the life of walking with God. we have the privilege and honor to prove God and to enjoy His power, in a greater measure every day. Many people get discouraged and are cast down during trials, afflictions, hardships and sufferings. Those who know God, know that these trials. Afflictions, sufferings and hardships are the means of knowing Him in a deeper way, and as we go on proving Him. We can testify again and again, "I know, my Lord does all things well!"
It is good to remember that whatever God gives is for eternity, and also that whatever He does, He does perfectly. He does not leave any work unfinished or incomplete, nor will He do anything half-heartedly or shabbily. When man on the other hand, has some job to do, often he will not do it fully. Some sisters sweep the rooms, and instead of removing the dust, gather it all in a corner and leave it there; or when they wash vessels, they often do not wash every part of the vessel properly both inside and outside. Some people while erecting a building spend too much money in the beginning, and when the money is over, the doors and windows are made with very poor wood, or perhaps they even have no window- frames, and use cardboards to cover the space. It is human nature to leave things undone or half done. But God does not work that way. Whatever He does is done thoroughly, and is complete and perfect. We may not understand God's ways and dealings with us. We may have to go through many painful experiences and face disappointments for many years, yet one day we shall say, "I know, my Lord has done all
things well". So let these words sink deeply into your hearts. Our Lord delights to do all
things well and to make us complete and perfect, and to do this He has to take us often
through all these strange and painful experiences.
Many years ago in a weaving factory in Calicut, I saw how cloth was woven and beautiful
designs were brought into the cloth.