Coming Into God’s Light: Conclusion
April 14, 2019
Transcript of message from TV Broadcast 1384 -- taken from Closed Captioning Text
— Brother Phil Enlow:
We are so legalistic in our thinking about God, without meaning to be. We agree it’s not like that but we live as if it were. We live as if, well, I’m not qualified to be over there. I know that’s a wonderful place. But I messed up and I see all these weaknesses in me. I can’t get it right.
But what are we doing? We’re trying to fix ourselves. We’re trying to measure up. We’re trying to live by rules and principles and something to fix ourselves instead of stepping into the light and letting God do what He alone can do in us! He’s not requiring us to stand back and do penance — and we all do it! What a picture this place is.
And I’ll just drop this in here, every verb in verse 7 is that “present continuous.” This is not just an event that he’s talking about here. This is a way of life. And we think about coming as we are, as the moment of salvation, okay, Lord, I really am a sinner, I need a Savior, please save me! This is a way of life where I recognize every moment, I need Him instead of me! That everything about me — if I run in my own strength and what I am, it won’t be right!
And I’ll tell you, if God is going to change me into the image of His Son, which He has declared He will do, there are some changes that have to happen! But you know, there are things about me I don’t really recognize. I don’t want to recognize them.
You know, we sing the song about the secret place. You know, our heart is like a house — I can’t remember all the words — but our heart is like a house and it’s got rooms and I got some rooms where I’ve got stuff hidden there, I don’t want anybody to know about. And there’s this sense of fear. Oh, if God knew what I was really like — duh!
( laughter ).
( laughing ).
I mean, how foolish is that? But emotionally that’s how we are. I just can’t face that. I can’t admit that to myself, let alone to anybody else! How many of you have run into situations where people are, who normally have a certain amount of character and decency about them, do something that’s just really ugly, out of character? And they say, that wasn’t me.
( laughter ).
Well, yes it was. Of course, it was you! You just let something out that was really in there. You let it out to where other people could see it! And what the Lord is wanting to do is let the light shine in the deepest parts of our being, but yet, we can experience that without feeling like dirt!
That’s an incredible thing that He calls us to. How in the world can somebody like me have a relationship with somebody like Him? And of course, there’s only one reason. It’s that Jesus died. And there is a provision that has been made that nothing that is wrong with me needs to cling to me. I don’t need to live in that reality. I can come to Him and I can be washed.
You see, this is not just one of those deals — you know, there’s a song that some of the folks in Florida used to sing about someone who’s messed up and just wasn’t really quite ready to go in and confess it and get forgiven. They felt like they had to stew in it for a while. They had to get their emotions sort of lined up or something. They had to feel like, okay, now I can go. I’ve suffered a suitable period of time here.
That’s not the picture that John is painting here! That’s not the picture the Lord is painting here! He’s saying, there’s a place where you can be loved beyond measure! In spite of what you are, you can walk in the light and I have the freedom to shine the light anywhere I want in your life, in the deepest recesses without you being condemned and without you having to walk around feeling guilty!
( congregational amens ).
Because everything here is a continuous — if we walk, that’s a way of life, in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship, a relationship with one another. But He’s already declared that that’s with the Father and the Son as well. So, all of this is involved.
If we walk in the light continuously, as He is in the Light, we have continuous, that’s a relationship, …” fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us…” (NIV).
We sing the old hymn, “There’s a fountain filled with blood drawn from Emanuel’s veins, and sinners, plunged beneath that flood, lose all their guilty stains.” The Lord wants to be able to shine His light on anything in our life without us wasting time feeling guilty and shameful, and just having to walk around with our heads hung down and all that kind of stuff. We have this freedom to say, “Yes, Lord! I thank You for the cleansing that You have promised. I receive it by faith. I don’t come to You because I’ve done penance. I don’t come to You because I deserve anything. I come because of the declaration of Your truth and Your Word and your provision.”
We fear the light because of what it will show about us. But light isn’t just about us seeing the truth about ourselves. It’s also about seeing the truth about Him, because the truth about Him is not just that He’s so pure that I couldn’t possibly feel comfortable in His presence. The truth about Him is that He has come down and He has made a perfect provision for you and for me. Every deficiency that I could possibly ever have, He has come and He has met my need.
And He wants me to not to come into the light so that I would just constantly be looking inside and feeling like dirt and feeling, oh God, here we go again! I’m such a mess! He wants us to lift our eyes so that our focus is on Him. That’s the light that He brought into the world. That’s the hope of the gospel.
It isn’t about how bad we are but how good He is! It isn’t about how wrong and needful the needs that we possess, it’s about the amazing grace and love of God that we need to focus our hearts upon! And be confident, not because we deserve anything, but because He has made the provision and promised! That’s the light, part of the light that we need to walk in!
Oh, how we hold back. I’ll guarantee that if we went around the room today, every person who knows what I’m talking about, would be conscious of how much we know that there’s a place over there but I just — I don’t know, maybe someday, somehow. But I’m not quite qualified. I’m not — there’s this and there’s that wrong with me, and I just can’t quite — I don’t know how you put it.
Satan’s work in our minds is so personal. Everyone is gonna have their own version of this. But I’ll tell you, there is a Devil who is scared to death that people will lay hold of such a simple thing, and realize that we can walk with a holy God without fear. Praise God!
( congregational amens ).
Praise God! The reality is there is nobody within the sound of my voice that’s too hard a case for Him! I don’t care where you’ve been or what you’ve done, the worst of the worst! God’s love is strong enough to reach down to you and to lift you up. It’s the one that’s so proud and sitting in church and thinking they’re one of the good people — they’re the ones that’ll be left out.
Folks, I just want to quit fearing, quit being so proud. And quit laying hold or clinging to an idea of, well, this is what a spiritual person looks like, this is what a spiritual person feels like. I’ve got to put on this spiritual garb here if I’m gonna be that. Oh, I’m tired of doing that, let’s go back — you know.
Well it is! It’s tiring if it’s us trying to put on a front. God wants us to be able to relax in His presence and just be ourselves and let Him change us. Oh, praise God! I know you could — this is not about some spiritual high place in the way that we would tend to think of it, the way the devil would paint it, ‘cause that’s his trick, to keep us from enjoying God.
( congregational response ).
Being able to realize that what He wants: this is Him seeking us; this is not us trying to say, oh God, how can I have a relationship with You? This is God coming and saying, I have made a way! I have provided a place in this dark world, where you can dwell in the light, you can live in it. You don’t just come to church and talk about it, you come — you live it, from the time we walk out of here ‘til the time we walk back in. Well, you can do it while you’re here too.
( laughter ).
But the Lord wants us to have such an on-going relationship that there is a continual — where there are things that are wrong, and there will be — where there are things that are wrong, we can immediately say, “Thank You, Lord. Lord, I confess. But I thank You. In this moment I thank You that there’s that blood that is — that I don’t have to carry this burden around! Every time there’s a burden that comes up, I can lay it right down and walk on in freedom. I don’t have to walk around thinking I’m just so bad, I don’t qualify for anything.” What a key this is, to everything!
Because you think of the blessings that God has provided in that relationship! It’s the flow of His life, by the way. There’s a place where His life flows. If we don’t have that, what do we have? Self-life, self-effort? How’s that working out for you…Dr. Phil?
( laughing ).
( laughter ).
I’ll tell you what, I’m so thankful. I get this glimpse of it. I’ll tell you one of the other barriers to it. We wait for our emotions to get lined up, or we sit there and put a microscope on our emotions. And basically, it kind of goes like this, in some form or other: if it’s true I ought to feel it.
Well, if you’re waiting for your emotions to line up with truth, you got a long wait ahead of you. It ain’t ever gonna happen that way. I’ll tell you what God calls us to do, and when He says, walk in the light, He’s talking about choices we make. And it’s a choice to believe God instead of our inability, because we’ve all got that, that’s all we got.
It’s all we can bring Him: just as I am. “I come broken to be mended.” I mean, we sing that and we feel emotionally good about it, but then, we go out and we think, oh, that’s wonderful for so-and-so and so-and-so, but me, I’m a special case. And we let our emotions drive us away and hinder us.
I’ll tell you, there’s a part of me that’s sick and tired of that. And I just pray God will help me and all of us to be able to step into that place and be confident. I mean, what are we saying if we don’t? God, you’re a liar. I mean, you look down in verse 10, and it’s along that line. “If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives.”
If we’re claiming something and we’re living as if something is true and it’s contrary to God’s word, are we not kind of calling Him a liar? And we wonder why the light and the blessing is over there and here we are in the shadows. I’m in but I’m just not really — I’m not “one of them.” I’m not somebody that can be over there in that special place.
Old brother and sister so-and-so, they’re good enough. I mean, they’re special people. But I’m just gonna have to be comfortable in the shadows. Oh God, help us to realize that the weakest of the weak, the most unworthy that you could possibly think of yourself being, you’re the one He came for. You’re the one He loves. You’re the one Jesus died for. You’re the one He invites to come just as you are without a hint of condemnation, and to say, “Lord, I’m gonna choose not to fear and hide from the light. I’m gonna choose to step in because I know You love me.
“I know that there are things in here, they’re the cause of my trouble, they’re the cause of every thing that’s wrong with me. And my only pathway to deliverance is to come into the light and let You work, and just simply be free to be who I am.”
I’ll tell you, we have no idea what God could do if every one of us found the grace to do that. But, I’ll tell you, it takes choosing to believe the word of God rather than how you feel. How many of you know what I’m talking about? Yeah. If we go by how we feel, we will stay in the shadows right on.
Do you wonder why we don’t have more of God? Do you think maybe we live in the shadows too much? Do you think God is calling us? Do you think it’s His heart that’s calling us and not just the ideas of men? I believe God is calling His people because He loves them. He longs for us to be in this place, where we have this relationship.
And it’s wherever we go, we don’t have to put on a spiritual front, a spiritual mask. We just say, Lord, I’m looking to You. Thank You, and direct my paths. You know, that scripture was quoted, “…in all your ways acknowledge Him…” He’ll direct your paths. There’s this sense that I’m called to a relationship with Him. He’s not gonna accommodate me in a sense of self-will. He’s gonna change me so I’m more and more in harmony with Him. Now I’ll tell you, the more and more harmony with Him, the more and more harmony we’re gonna have with one another.
( congregational amens ).
And I’ll tell you, some of our masks, we’re gonna feel a little bit freer about letting people in, because we don’t feel that need to just — oh, I’ve got to be Mr. and Mrs. Perfect or something. I can just be what I am. I can look to God because I know He loves me. That’s the rock upon which I stand. It’s the confidence that He loves me, that He’s not basing His love today for me on my performance, that He knows what I am. He made provision. He knows everything that will ever come out as a result of His light. But His light is also the light of the Gospel and the cross and what that means. That’s what He’s longing for us to be able to lay hold of.
Folks, I pray that God will help us to lay hold of a simple truth like this and see it. I feel like there are moments when I’ve tasted it and just sensed that it’s real, that God longs for me to come there. And what it takes to get there is just choices on our part. Am I gonna listen to the voice that’s always kept me in the shadows, or am I gonna say, wait a minute, that’s from the devil!
I’m not walking in truth when I listen to that. I have the right, not because I have qualified myself, but because He has qualified me through the cross to come to Him, to lay hold of what I need so that I can step into the light just as much as anybody that’s ever done it! I don’t have to obtain to the spiritual heights of Hudson Taylor or somebody else from history that we read about that seemed to have come into this blessed place. It’s for all of us! And I believe God is gonna bring us…if we will start making choices not to listen and choices to agree with the truth. Because light is also truth, isn’t it?
( congregational response ).
It’s the truth of what He has offered to us, who He has offered to us, who He is, how He is. And I’ll tell you, coming into the light doesn’t need to mean that I’m — or it should not mean that I’m constantly focused on me. I’ll tell you, we’ve got a whole lot of people that just — they are so self-absorbed.
But we all do it in some degree, where my spiritual welfare is, how am I doing? How am I feeling? What’s happening to me? It’s all about me and my feelings. And we need to just be able to lift up our eyes and say, “My spiritual welfare is based upon Him. He is my rock. I don’t care whether I’m up or down or wherever I’m at, He loves me. That’s the foundation I stand upon. Whatever else happens in my life, how I feel, how I perform — all of that takes second place to the simple fact that He loves me. Jesus died for me. The blood of Jesus Christ still has the same power today to erase my sins and my guilt. I don’t have to live in the shadows!”
( congregational amens ).
May God help us to understand in a measure what coming into the light, walking in it, means. Because I’ll tell you, anything else is not what the Lord has designed. Isn’t it a simple truth? But yet, it’s profound. When you start going in every direction and every spiritual truth kind of funnels into this reality. There’s a place where we have a relationship with God that is based upon the truth about me and the truth about Him. And I can find rest and hope in Him, ‘cause there ain’t none here. But He is faithful. Praise God!
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