Galatians 6:17 “From henceforth let no man trouble me: for I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus.”
There is something very authoritative and final about the way that Paul cites the “marks of the Lord Jesus” in his body as an end of all discussion and conflict. I can imagine the look in his eyes…
This is Paul, as he closes this Galatian letter; and after his stern rebuke of their flesh based efforts…He rebuked them for allowing a bewitching spirit to take them into a false way! Some perverted, corrupted gospel message.
He challenged Simon Peter to his face for his hypocritical bigotry in dealing with the Gentile brethren. Then added to this book, his brilliant contrast of the failure of Rabbinical Law, versus the glory of the Torah-fulfilling walk in the Spirit-life.
He felt it necessary, to remind them without much detail—of his credentials, his “corn-in-the-crib” if you will…
THE MARKS OF THE LORD JESUS…The word “marks” here means – a mark incised or punched. For recognition of ownership.
A poem by Amy Wilson Carmichael…
Hast thou no scar?
No hidden scar on
foot, or side, or hand.
I hear thee sung as
Mighty in the land.
I hear them hail thy
Bright ascendant star;
Hast thou no scar?
Hast thou no wound?
Yet, I was wounded
By the archers, spent.
Leaned me against
The tree to die, and rent
By ravening beasts
That compassed me, I swooned;
Hast thou no wound?
No wound? No scar?
Yes, as the master
Shall the servant be,
And pierced are the feet
That follow Me,
But thine are whole,
Can he have followed far
Who has no wound? No scar?
There are a lot of “HAIRBRANDS” out there today. Plying their trade, and hawking their wares. Trying to look like the real thing, sound like the real thing, get the blessing like the real thing…BUT they’re not the real thing.
Hairbrand… (It’s a cattle country term). Smells like the real thing when it’s applied. It hurts the animal like the real thing; in fact it may hurt more. And it does leave a mark of sorts. But, in about 6 months time they’re gone because they don’t go deep enough to leave permanent scar tissue.
I Peter 5:1–3 Peter said, in his instructions to young ministers and pastors… “be thou an ensample to the flock…” An EN-sample.
ENSAMPLE = an image stricken into a coin, as with a blow.
Paul said to the Corinthians, “As we have borne the image of the earthy, so shall we also bear the image of the heavenly!”. That is what Peter is saying to us here pastors, preachers, ministers…If you’re going to lead God’s people, then you’re going to have to let him burn and beat his image into you where the flock can see it…that’s the only way!
“There is a reason that some men carry weight in the Kingdom of God.
It is NOT just because of their calling …but because of their endurance of process.”
~ Mark Hanby
Luke 20:20—26 tells us of the instance when the Jews were trying to trick Jesus into saying something for which they could condemn him to the authorities. He simply said “give me a penny” and asked “whose image is on it?” Because whoever’s image is on it determines, not only its ownership, but its worth in this world.
I am just a coin in the pocket of my Savior. I must be willing to be spent any way he sees fit, on anything, on anyone that he chooses. His marks on my life identify me as belonging to him.
WHOSE IMAGE DO YOU BEAR?
Are you willing to bear the marks of the Lord Jesus in your life? He was…A man of sorrows…acquainted with grief. Despised and rejected of men. We esteemed him stricken smitten of God and afflicted. He was cut off in the midst of his day…No one stood by him! Are you willing to bear the burning, pounding blows in your life of… Sorrow… Rejection… Misunderstanding… Loneliness… Betrayal by those you love the most? Are you willing to bear with the process as he strikes his image into your very soul?
Suffering successfully builds in us an Endurance…then Character…then Hope…a hope based on the Word of God and not our circumstances! We need to learn to deal successfully with “the process” while keeping our focus on the joy that is set before us, in His fulfilled Purpose in our lives.
Zechariah 3:1—7 Tells us about a brand plucked from the burning… Joshua by name.
I Kings 19:12 talks about Elijah when he was depressed in the cave and the word of the Lord came to him and told him to go stand on the mountain before the Lord… And there came to him first a STRONG WIND, and then AN EARTHQUAKE, and then A FIRE….and God was NOT in any of them!
David explains that curious phenomenon for us.
- Psalms 50:2-3 Out of Zion, the perfection of beauty, God hath shined.
3 Our God shall come, and shall not keep silence: a fire shall devour before him, and it shall be very tempestuous round about him.
No He isn’t IN those things, but they do precede Him, and work AROUND Him! SO, WHAT IS HE DOING TO ME?! He’s burning me…he’s knocking the snot out of me…WHY?! So I can hear His voice when He speaks to me…That’s why some of our people have not heard from God for MONTHS or YEARS…if we’d really be honest and confess the Truth… because we won’t endure the process that would make us able to hear Him!
Matthew 3:8-13 Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance:
9 And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.
10 And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
11 I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire:
12 Whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.
13 Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him.
Only after Israel had endured the pounding, devastating fury of John’s ministry in Matthew 3 was it ready for what the scripture says in verse 13—“then cometh Jesus…”
For those of you who long for a ministry of the miraculous, for signs and wonders, for healing and the gifts to flow through your ministry; it will only be as you offer yourself freely to the Marking, and Scarring ministry of a John Baptist.
If you’re going to make a mark on this generation it will only be because you’ve allowed Jesus to burn and beat HIS marks into you.
When I stand at the judgment seat of Christ
And He shows me His plan for me.
The plan of my life as it might have been
Had He had His way, and I see;
How I blocked Him here, and I checked Him there,
And I would not yield my will –
Will there be grief in my Savior’s eyes,
Grief, though He loves me still?
He would have me rich, and I stand there poor,
Stripped of all but His grace,
While memory runs like a hunted thing
Down the paths I cannot retrace.
Then my desolate heart will well-nigh break
With the tears that I cannot shed;
I shall cover my face with my empty hands,
I shall bow my uncrowned head…
Lord of the years that are left to me,
I give them to Thy hand;
Take me and break me, mold me to
The pattern Thou has planned
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