The TREE OF LIFE weekly teaching summary from THE WEEK ENDING:
December 05, 1999
A Personal Sense of Destiny
In our study of PHI chapter 3 we saw the divine perspective that the Apostle Paul had. In verse 7, Paul viewed certain qualities or attributes that were once highly regarded, now as loss for the sake of Christ. These things of human celebrityship are listed in verses 5-6.
PHI 3:5 circumcised the eighth day, [born] out from the race of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews [an outstanding Hebrew]; with reference to the Law, a Pharisee;
PHI 3:6 with reference to zeal, constantly persecuting the church; with reference to the self-righteousness which is in the Law, having become blameless.
These seven forms of human celebrityship include;
a. Ritual confidence.
b. Racial confidence
c. Tribal confidence
d. National confidence
e. Zealous confidence
f. Religious confidence
All of these gains formed the basis for human celebrityship and his confidence in the flesh. These are the things that the Judaizers used in their claims for human celebrityship. Interestingly, some excelled in one, some in another, Paul excelled in them all.
Times have changed; we don't have Judaism celebrityship today but we still have celebrityship in the political realm or the athletic realm, etc. The fact remains the same and the principle still stands, whatever celebrityship might keep you from Bible doctrine will destroy you. Paul had this status and here he lumps them together and super-imposes divine viewpoint on them, and calls them a loss.
PHI 3:7 "But whatever quality of things were gains to me, those things [gains] I have concluded as an expert as loss for the sake of Christ."
Two very important doctrinal principles are found here. First, a personal sense of destiny. Second, occupation with the person of Christ. This is the divine perspective of those who are in spiritual adulthood and who are going on to spiritual maturity. Renouncing or giving up any human achievement does not acquire these attitudes. The only place where there is to be denial is when there is a conflict with Bible doctrine. Human celebrityship is simply to be replaced by the celebrityship of Christ. You don't give up being great in some area. You replace your attitude toward that area of greatness with occupation with Christ. This means that you cease to attach any importance to that which you may excel in and you are occupied with Christ. This is a matter of priorities not giving something up. So if you have been promoted in some aspect or area of life, do not reject or renounce that promotion. God can use your spiritual growth and your talent and success to glorify Him in history. Bible doctrine in the soul will provide the standards, capacities and the perspectives to enjoy to the utmost that which God has provided.
We have seen that the Lord Jesus Christ, Moses and Paul had one main objective: to glorify God, and they did so by understanding their Personal Sense of Destiny.
Our Lord did and He knew His objective, He said in LUK 19:10 "For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost."
Moses knew it and did it which is why we noted Hebrews 11:25 where he selected the option of undergoing adversity along with the people of God rather than to have the momentary stimulation related to sin. He would have fallen short of his personal destiny as prescribed by God.
With that as a prelude, we begin the Doctrine of a Personal Sense of Destiny.
Point 1. Introduction
The sixth problem-solving device for the Church Age believer is a personal sense of destiny. This is related to the omnipotence of God, EPH 3:20. "Now to Him who is able to do infinitely more than all we keep asking for ourselves or think, on the basis of the power which keeps on working for us." God can do all He wills to do, but He may not will to do all He can do. This is one of the first principles that a personal sense of destiny discovers. God is able to do whatever He wills to do in the way in which He wills it. However, God does not and cannot do anything contrary to His essence. Therefore God cannot deny Himself; He cannot deny the fantastic eternal blessings above and beyond the resurrection body to the winner believer who uses his volition in time to glorify God. Divine omnipotence is always compatible with a right thing done in a right way. God's infinite and eternal power is limitless but it functions under the control of His perfect righteousness, justice and wisdom. 1SA 46:8-11.
So, in the function of His divine power, God is able to do anything that is compatible with His perfect divine essence. God never uses His omnipotence to make a right wrong or a wrong right. God does not choose to do everything by the immediate agency of His own omnipotence, but He has delegated His power to intermediate agents, Church Age believers.
Every one of us has a personal sense of destiny just like Moses and Paul did. God determines some things to come to pass unconditionally, but most events in human history are actually planned conditionally through the obedience of mankind or the permitted disobedience of mankind to the divine mandates. Such mandates include three categories:
1.The laws of divine establishment.
2. Eternal salvation.
3. The execution of the PPOG (Predesigned Plan of God).
Paul puts it like this as a part of a personal sense of destiny in 1TH 3:3-4 "so that no man may be disturbed by these afflictions; for you yourselves know that we have been destined for this. For indeed when we were with you, we kept telling you in advance that we were going to suffer affliction; and so it came to pass, as you know."
In each category God provides blessing for positive volition and discipline for negative volition. God's eternal purpose for human history is never frustrated by the negative volition of mankind. In fact, the opposite is true; God frustrates the plans of mankind.JOB 5:12, PSA 33:10.
One of the great principles of having a personal sense of destiny is that you finally learn to take the responsibility for your own decisions, the good ones and the bad ones. For the believer a personal sense of destiny is related to your mental awareness concerning the plan and power of God. This means that you understand and function under the three spiritual skills as the means of utilizing the power of God resulting in the glory of God. The three spiritual skills include the two power options, the filling of the Holy Spirit and the metabolization of Bible doctrine and then formation of the problem solving devices on the Forward Line Of Troops (FLOT) of the soul.
A personal sense of destiny focuses on becoming a winner believer through offensive action of the spiritual life. A believer who has this sense of destiny understands that environment or circumstances in life is not the issue, but your volition, which must line up with the sovereignty and omnipotence of God. This results in a life beyond gnosis or knowledge which is parlayed into the life beyond expectation. That's the principle of 1CO 2:9 "As it is written: No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love Him."
On the other hand, the function of the arrogance skills in the life of the believer result in the miserable circumstances of unrealistic expectation, which is sowing to the wind and reaping the whirlwind, HOS 8:7. Unrealistic expectation is the futile function of arrogance. The life beyond expectation is the awareness of the power and grace of God combined with the spiritual skills to form that personal sense of destiny.
As we saw with Paul, a personal sense of destiny depends on the grace provision of God's divine power rather than the cultivation of human dynamics which are motivated by human success standards. These create unrealistic expectation and lead to great frustration. The only success that counts for the believer is the execution of the PPOG and the conveyance of your escrow blessings for time. We cannot glorify God by the function of human power. God's glory demands the utilization of divine power. Therefore, we see the importance of being filled with all the fullness of God.
EPH 3:8 "To me, the very least of all saints, this grace was given, to preach to the Gentiles the unfathomable riches of Christ,"
EPH 3:16 "that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man;"
Point 2. A Personal Sense of Destiny gets it Precedence from the Dispensation of the Hypostatic Union.
The strategic victory of the humanity of Christ in the dispensation of the Hypostatic Union establishes precedence for the use of divine power in the execution of the PPOG. Without understanding this concept there is no personal sense of destiny. The humanity of Christ gave up the independent exercise of His own divine attributes in order to establish precedence for the function of the spiritual skills in the Church Age. The humanity of Christ relied on the same power options that have been given to us as believers. He did not use His own divine power unless it was a part of the Father's plan.
ISA 11:2 "And the Spirit of the Lord will rest on Him, The spirit of wisdom and understanding, The spirit of counsel and strength, The spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord." Also see ISA 42:1, JOH 3:34, LUK 4:1, LUK 4:14.
HEB 9:14 "how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without blemish to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?"
The humanity of Christ used the same three spiritual skills that have been given to us as a part of our portfolio of invisible assets. In hypostatic union, He possessed eternal, unchangeable glory in His deity but He also acquired eternal, unchangeable glory in His humanity through the function of these spiritual skills. You must remember that the Lord Jesus Christ did something very interesting that a lot of pastors don't emphasize. As the chief cornerstone of EPH 2:20, to the Jew and Gentile, He fulfilled the Mosaic Law, MAT 5:17, and He pioneered the spiritual life for the Church-age believer, HEB 12:2. So, the availability of the spiritual skills in our portfolio provides unlimited options for glorifying God under the same pattern of precedence established by the humanity of Christ. Our Lord demonstrated that the three spiritual skills could handle greater problems than we would ever face in life. More pressure was put on the humanity of Christ than was ever put on any member of the human race before or will ever again. Our Lord's personal sense of destiny was manifested in all He endured prior to going to the Cross-and while hanging on the Cross. He never reacted because He had a personal sense of destiny.