The Daily Word of Righteousness

A Basic Concept, #19

But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal. (I Corinthians 12:7)

There is a difference between ministry and witness. The gifts and ministries of the Holy Spirit are given by the ascended Christ to whomever He will, independently of the spiritual maturity of the one who receives the gift. Christ bears witness of His will through the gifts and ministries of the Spirit.

However there is a greater witness than that of gifts and ministries. The true witness of God is a "lampstand" that shines in the night of the world. The entire Body of Christ is the Divine Lampstand, the counterpart of the Lampstand of the Tabernacle of the Congregation. The purpose of the gifts and ministries is to build the Lampstand, the testimony of God.

The light of the world is the righteous, holy behavior of the saints.

Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. (Matthew 5:16)

There is an abundance of gifts and ministries today. However in many instances there is no moral witness. The ministry often loves the spirit of this age and practices the lusts of the flesh. The greatest darkness of all is found in the self-seeking of many of God's ministers. Each is seeking his own glory, his own kingdom, not the things that belong to Christ.

Throughout the world the Divine witness has been extinguished, both by faulty doctrine concerning the proper role of grace in the Christian life and also by the willingness of God's people to live in the world, in the lusts of the flesh, and in self-will and self-centeredness.

The lamp of God is nearly out but God is speaking to His Samuels.

The greatest witness of God ever given on the face of the earth, with the single exception of the days of Jesus of Nazareth on the earth, will take place in the near future. We are referring to the latter-rain revival of God's power, as symbolized by the two witnesses of Revelation, Chapter 11. Notice at the beginning of Chapter 11 that the witnesses are judged before they are empowered.

And there was given me a reed like unto a rod: and the angel stood, saying, Rise, and measure the temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein. (Revelation 11:1)

Those who are at the Altar of Incense, to speak in a figure, worshiping God and dedicating their lives to Him, will be judged very carefully in a detailed manner. Then they will be empowered to bear witness on the earth clothed in sackcloth, that is to say, clothed with humility.

The last-day witness will not be, as it is today, a situation in which many self-seeking "ministers" are heaping gold to themselves, living in luxury. Rather, the saints who bear witness in the closing days of the present age will be true disciples of the Lord, bearing witness of God's holy Person and ways from their position on the cross with Christ.

The greatest witness of all is about to come to pass but the witnesses first must be created in the moral image of the Lord and then brought into complete union with Him.

To be continued.