Echoes From the Campfire

There was a special feeling as the wind blew across those miles of grass, a wind so cool, so deep down inside you that every breath of it was like a drink of cool water.”
              –Louis L’Amour  (The Sky-Liners)

    “The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit.”
              –John 3:8 (NKJV)
How to Live in a Pagan, Apostate, and Foolish World

Key Verse:  “We know that we are of God, and the whole world is under the sway of the evil one.”  –1 John 5:19 (HCSB)

Several years ago I attended a church where some strange phenomenon was happening.  I talked with the Pastor and he said that this is the “new wine,” a new work of God.  I replied with a question, “Are you telling me that this is a ‘third testament’?  So this is a new, new wine?”  It didn’t go over so well, but I said that to warn against the mystic.
    Mysticism definitely is involved in Christianity, however, I said that as a warning for it can go overboard.  Much is done in the name of the Holy Spirit that isn’t very holy.  The person that says he has a new and fresh message stay away from him.  “The danger of mysticism is to concentrate so much on the Lord’s work in us that it forgets the Lord’s word for us.”  (D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones)  One thing that is easy to see regarding the mystic is their view on the doctrine of sin.  Rarely are they strong on the doctrine of sin.  They want short-cuts to great experiences.  This is not the true “mystic” in the Church for they will spend hours of meditation and solitude waiting for a clear word from the Lord.

         “The mystic tends to come and say, ‘Look here, you have nothing to worry about.  If you want to know God just as you are, you have to start getting into communion with Him, and He will speak to you and will give you all the blessings.’  They never mention the doctrine of sin in the sense that the guilt of sin is such a terrible thing that nothing but the coming of the Son of God into the world and the bearing of our sins in His own body on the cross could ever enable God to speak to the soul.”
              –D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

    Those that follow the “mystics,” those who have a “new way,” rarely regard the holiness of God.  They may nod their heads recognizing that He is holy, but forget that they are to be holy as He is (1 Peter 1:15)  People need to start with themselves and get rid of self-centeredness, they need to focus on God.

         “They [cults, etc.] tend to come to us in terms of our need.  That is why they are always so popular and so successful; they seem to be giving us the thing we want.  We have our needs, and they seem to offer us everything just as we want it without any pain or difficulty.  There is no more thorough-going test, therefore, of the truth of the faith and of the religion that we may be concerned with than this.
         Primarily, the initial test, the characteristic of the revelation of the Bible, the first crucible, in a sense, of the Christian faith, is that it starts with God.  We are silenced, we are put into the background, we are not considering man first and foremost.  It is God, it all starts with Him.”
              –D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

    The person who is truly seeking God and hungering after His righteousness will be one who thinks of God.  There must be contemplation of God in three ways:  first, to know Him through His Word; second, we need to see ourselves in sight of God; and third, we need to be confronted with the truth of God’s Word.

         “Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord…  For our God is a consuming fire.”
              –Hebrews 12:14, 29 (NKJV)

    The way we are to be guided in this world, the way in which we must be guided is by the light of the Word of God.  “We either regard the Bible as authoritative, or else we trust to human ideas.”  When we turn to human ideas there is nothing but confusion and chaos.

         “Our thoughts lie open to thy sight;
             And naked to thy glance;
          Our secret sins are in the light
             Of thy pure countenance.”
                  –John Greenleaf Whittier