Passage of Scripture.
“Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for Whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ and be found in Him, not having my own righteousness, which is from the law, but that, which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness, which is from God by faith; that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death, if, by any means, I may attain to the resurrection from the dead” (Philippians 3:8-11).
“… attain to the resurrection from the dead.” Brothers and sisters, you and I live on this earth, but we have to attain to the resurrection from the dead. Here the issue isn’t only about who will take you from the grave – like in a fairy tale, you wake up just like that. Paul never regarded his life this way, he planned it. He said that he did everything and gave up everything for the purpose – “to attain to the resurrection from the dead.” He lived for the purpose of reaching the resurrection.
Paul continues saying that he doesn’t say this because he has already attained or is already perfected. It was not a stop on the way, he continued to work and improve in the Lord, to achieve perfection.
“Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that, for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those thongs, which are behind and reaching forward to those things, which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:12-14).
Get educated, develop – wisdom and knowledge are a smashing sword. The sword is wisdom and its hilt is knowledge.
Paul says that he presses on to lay hold of ” that, for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me.” Jesus has laid hold of us completely – to our last cell, to the last element of our bodies and souls and spirits. Paul, who wanted to attain Christ – to know, to comprehend Him fully, to the same measure as Christ had attained him. Just as a husband in marriage joins with his wife, and she joins with him, and they know one another for the birth of their offspring, so the Bride is called to know Christ just as Christ has known her.
Paul had the same goal – he sought to attain Christ as Christ attained him. It is that one love which in Christ Jesus has been commanded to us from the eternity.
“Not that I have already attained…”. It is a constant striving for more. This is a healthy desire, it is not an inferiority complex. If you aspire incorrectly, it will “pour out” a complex of dissatisfaction – dirty and negative. But Paul had a holy dissatisfaction. As the revivalists put it, Brother Rain in particular, – a holy dissatisfaction.
This point, “forgetting what is behind”. I want to focus on it.
“Therefore, let us, as many as are mature, have this mind; and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal even this to you. Nevertheless, to the degree that we have already attained, let us walk by the same rule, let us be of the same mind.” (Philippians 3:15-16).
Every person has a past. Our past can become a burden, either an attacking evil or a blessing. The question is not what kind of past it was, poor or rich, sick or healthy, joyful or sad. Doesn’t matter. Any past can be turned to advantage, these materials can be used to reinforce the future.
Especially important is the attitude to wounds and mistakes that we experienced. We can remember them and suffer. I remember how one woman said that she would never forgive her parents while she was alive. She cursed herself and determined for a curse. That is, she became their judge. She kept them in the hell of her own soul. She created hell and placed her memory there. It didn’t exist, but she made it.
Don’t create your own hell! This woman was all sick, miserable, tormented in pain and hated her parents.
These traumas and mistakes of the past are the place of hell created by us. We put creatures, monsters, illusions there and guard them. If you continue to suffer, then you have not loosed yourself from the past.
Yes, maybe the trauma was very great – you experienced losses, violence, injustice. But why did Christ die? Why did He give us the Holy Spirit, which “drowns” all these “deposits of scrap metal”.
Imagine a flood that comes and there’s nothing left on top, just water. This is how the Lord floods our past.
I am opposed to Christian counselors who “dig” into the past. I will not let you dig into my past if I know that the Lord has forgiven me. If I have the joy of the Holy Spirit within me, I will not allow anyone on this earth to get inside and raise it. Because it is wise not to allow anyone to make you miserable from scratch.
I want to say that even a good memory can be a curse. Those experiences of joy and happiness that you have from God can make you unhappy. Because you have already left or lost something out of this.
The attitude towards our past must be covered with the Blood of Christ. We speak on the ground of Apostle Paul – how he treated the past.
“Forgetting what is behind” refers not only to the bad, but also the good that was. Even the good that was, can be “low level” in comparison with what God is sending for you now. It may be nothing compared to the present.
You know it is not useful to share past experiences. I watched people trying to reproduce past experiences – experiences of the Spirit, revelations. They were chasing the past. We must understand that even a good memory must be abandoned. This is a past experience on your path as you were growing in wisdom. And I believe that path is straight, when we grow in maturity, and not degrade. The past is the past – you can’t change it.
Humanity gives sentence. In our cities and societies, it has rules of survival. Do not look for higher justice in human codes and laws, because they are a miserable shadow under the heavenly city.
That’s why priests are not to share people’s confessions. There is such an unspoken order in the priesthood that priests who share other people’s confession to other people will bear for these sins on themselves. Therefore, priests who’ve shared someone else’s confession, – repent, confess, cleanse yourself so that you can remove this burden.
It is important to accumulate the experience of life, but it should not be a burden on us in practice, we are what we have lived. Wrong attitude to the past makes us either unhappy or wise. Let go of the past, both good and evil.
One person has accumulated a lot of boxes with his memories, souvenirs, important things. And at one point he decided to destroy it all. He burned the boxes, but after a while he found that he had again accumulated an equal amount … He realized that this did not change him.
Someone said that a river that stands still turns into a swamp. We need to run freely. Free yourself from the past. This is a very serious moment. We take ground upon the Scripture: “forgetting what is behind.” Any, be it good or evil.
With some people you were connected really strongly in the past. But today I can’t act on the basis of the past. If you have cooled off, you don’t move with me, how can I say on the basis of memory that this is love?
A wise man makes new friends. Of course, he doesn’t forget the old, but you don’t live for the old. Run from the past, don’t let it hold you.
These things weigh tons of gold! If you can understand this, you will enjoy life, the present moment.
Human life is more like a dimension of a river. Have you ever wondered why life is called a river? It is written that a river of life flows from the Throne, and on its both sides grows the tree of life, and the leaves on it are for the healing of the nations.
The river flows. This is an element. If it’s on the move, you won’t remain the same. Life is a river – it flows and never returns. You can’t even step into the same river twice. There are new elements, new substances, new structures…
This needs to be understood. If you launch a small boat of your life on the crest of the river, let it go ahead, not get stuck in a backwater or by a snag.
Keep on living. Life goes on. Live! Therefore, we stand next to Paul, forgetting the back, stretching forward. All Satan can do is lick your dust.
But if you yourself are not at the peak of life and love, you won’t be able to give it out.
If you don’t receive love, how can you give it?
Three formats of time.
Past, present and future.
These three formats of time are always with us. Practically, eternity is not a continuous present moment. It is a combination of three dimensions. Because eternity includes past, present and future. There will be Abraham, David, Adam, and the future – there will be our descendants and the last church of Maranatha. Eternity comprises three concepts of time.
So, Present. I like the word that speaks of the present moment. It says this: “NOW”. “Now thus says the Lord.” Remember not what the Lord told you before, but what “now” He is telling you. Not what you used to have with experiences. Now, listen to the Word that is being given to you now.
Now He is saying this. Take it exactly as He is saying now. Here is eternity. Now. In order to understand what kind of moment of time we are in, we need to understand what the Lord is saying.
Therefore, seek, take a pause before prayer. Seek for His Name, seek for what He wants, seek to pray with all your heart, the greatest prayer – every time you should pray like that.
Today there are a lot of “duty” prayers. Just pray, not really knowing what for. But take a silent moment and pray as the Lord gives to you. Is there a “duty” encounter with God? Isn’t that how we should pray? Is this a “duty” meeting where you listen to the eternal Word? You sentenced it to “duty”. God did not sentence it, neither did I.
An interesting revelation came.
“It was shown how the man of God set some people apart and led them to the mountain, to his place. There was a tent on top of it, in which there was a couch. (Remember, I preached about the couch of Solomon, with sixty valiant men, every man having a sword on his thigh because of the fear in the night, they are expert in war. And the iron bedsteads of Og, king of Bashan. Those bedsteads are fighting. My couch is battling with the bedstead of Og. My peace against the bustle of the world. I imagine how furious Og gets on his bed when he has no sleep. And how well you can rest on the simple wooden bed of Solomon).
“The couch was amazing. On the one hand, it was a carpeted place – comfortable and beautiful. On the other hand, it was like a door. On the other hand, it was like a ladder leading up and down. On the sides it had wings with which he could cover himself. It was like a living being, whose face was looking at the sky”.
(I invite you to the world of this peace of God. We are talking about the present moment – we are talking about “NOW” – how to live in the present moment. This is a bed).
“It had connection only with those who could lay on it or sit on it. Some of those who were with the man of God began to sketch it, to which the man of God said that this shouldn’t be done, since this bed could tomorrow be like a simple hammock and fit in his bag”.
(Absolute truth. It could be a seat on an airplane, a seat in a car. In some places, and I thank the Lord, you can rest. And in other places there is no sleep – because the bed becomes sharp for you).
“I am showing this to you, so that you can value the mystery, understand every moment of life, which can be filled with heaven and be an open door to the mystery, which opens to those who love, thirst and wait.
This is a clear revelation, it is accordant and in harmony with my spirit. Enjoy the present moment. At this moment we hear the voice. Despite the fact that there are some inconveniences, but you hear the voice. You receive the grace and bliss of the present moment.
This is the river of life, we live, we are alive. Let go of the inconveniences you are experiencing in some way. Soul is no matter, it is spirit.
I make a decision – to live freely, in this moment. When we “lie down on the face of God” – this is the highest level of unity.
Enjoy this moment. Let go of the past, even its good things. Just accept everything new.
How to treat the future?
The future may also become a curse for us. “Now I’ll graduate from the university, and then it will begin!” Or “Now I’m getting married, finally, happiness will begin!”
– Now what?
– Now it’s bad luck. Still waiting for happiness.
Don’t let the future bother you. Paul says, “Do not overestimate yourselves.” What is your future? As Paul says, have a goal, but don’t make yourself suffer. It is important to have the ability to open up to what is happening and the inevitable. It is important to be able to face the inevitable. In marriage, meet the inevitable. Maybe you don’t have kids – that’s not a disaster. No need to complex or suffer. Accept the inevitable and live happily.
We create our own misfortune. The past is already gone. But it brings misfortune into the present. The future has not happened yet, but it brings misfortune into the present. What for? It’s all in our head.
We make ourselves happy or miserable.
Therefore, the ability to open up to what is happening, to accept the inevitability. Enter into thanksgiving, give thanks for everything! For this is the will for us in Christ Jesus.
About the future.
Revelation. “The likeness of a man and his mouth was shown. There was a door in the chest that was open, and inside the chest three spheres were shown that were spinning simultaneously, in the same direction.
The first sphere was the universe, with all the elements of heaven, earth and everything that inhabited it. Living creatures lived in it: animals, birds, fish, which could move in the Universe with the abilities given to them.
The second sphere was the world of people who could only walk with their feet. They were very inventive, making machines for themselves that gave them unlimited ability to move on land, in air, in water and under water.
And the third sphere was the world of people, who were like birds. How wonderful! They could walk on the ground with their feet, but they grew wings – they learned to fly with them and move in flight, flapping their wings.
It was then shown that there was also a door in the mouth, behind which was a fiery white light. A hand took these spheres and moved them into the mouth, into the open door, into this fiery white light. When moving to the mouth, all three spheres went through this fiery white light, which began to melt and change inside these three spheres.
In the first sphere there was a remelting of the entire universe – what will happen – with all the elements and living beings. In the second sphere, the world of people with their inventions was melt. Not all people and inventions were melted down, but most of them were burned by fire. And in the third sphere, the world of people like birds, was melted down. It was shown that their bodies changed into white fire and became radiant from the fire of white light. Their wings were not damaged by the fire, but were also melted down so they could fly.
It was shown that after the remelting, all three spheres seemed to stop for a moment, everything seemed to fall silent. (Wouldn’t this be half an hour of silence in heaven?) But then all these three spheres in the mouth again began to spin simultaneously in one direction in motion around their axis.
This is the blessed bliss of the age to come. Eternity is called the age to come. That’s where we’re going with you. Not into imaginary things that we have invented for ourselves and which make us unhappy.
Pastors, reconsider your message and teaching. The church of Christ is getting more unhappy every year. Let the “holy hooligan” rise up, pluck the carrot that is hung in front of the donkey so that he goes on and on after it, and give it to this donkey now!
I take the grace now and turn it into the present. In order to properly relate to the future, we must understand that the blessed bliss of the future age awaits us.
The world of the universe, the world of people and the world of bird people will unite into one, and there will be a new heaven and a new earth.
Where am I going? I know where. It’s not just one carrot. Rather, it’s like a bag of carrots. On your way they lie one after another. You ate one – you have the motivation and strength to go after another.
This universal rotation is heading to the All-embracing Christ, Who redeems His creation and Who unites the redeemed creation in Himself. He draws closer to Himself, makes the Bride of Christ of the Church of the Gentiles and the Israel of God in the promises, joins with her in marriage, submits to the Father, and it becomes God all in all, and eternity finds its Sabbath and peace.
Look into those things, and many others will become much smaller for us. They will no longer traumatize us that much, bother our rest, interfere with our taking pleasure in Jesus Christ.
Many of you, when you believed, you took pleasure, but over the years you came to enjoy Him less and less, and as “strong believers” you suffer.
How could you lose your pleasure in Christ if you were on the right path? – Because of the past and because of the future.