Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered outside the gate. Therefore, let us go forth to him outside the camp, bearing his reproach. For we have no continuing city here, but we seek one to come.
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“If any man speaks, let it be as oracles of God.”
Peter, in 1Peter 4:11
“I’d have you to know, brothers, regarding the gospel delivered by me,
that it is not of man. I did not receive it from man, nor was I taught it,
but it came by a revelation from Jesus Christ.”
Paul, in Galatians 1:11–12
The only truth that exists is what the Spirit is saying this moment. Moses and Aaron found out, as did many other biblical characters, that what God commanded to be done in one situation was not the truth later. And because Moses and his brother did not learn that lesson in time, they sinned by keeping an old commandment and were forbidden to lead Israel into the land of Canaan. God said to them, “Because you did not believe me, to sanctify me in the eyes of the children of Israel, you shall not bring this congregation into the land which I have given them” (Num. 20:12). Moses did what God commanded him to do in an earlier, and similar, situation, but God had now given Moses a different commandment, and Moses and Aaron failed to obey it. We might say that they went by tradition rather than by a living faith.
Because only what the Spirit is saying right now is true, the relationship between God and His servants must be a living one. Otherwise, that servant will certainly harm God’s people by following an old pattern, one that worked at another time and in another circumstance. If a minister has no testimony of receiving his doctrine from God, stay away from him. He is only repeating a rumor about God that he has either heard from another man or that he has only read about in the Bible. He does not personally know what he is talking about.
If a pastor’s sermon is not a part of his testimony, if what he is saying is not the result of a personal experience with God, he is teaching falsely as far as he knows. The things that Paul taught the Gentiles were the result of a personal experience with God. He spoke of being “caught up to the third heaven” and of hearing things from God that were “not lawful for a man to speak.” And when his converts were being led astray by men who were teaching things of the past, Paul wrote them with tears, “Who has bewitched you, that you should not obey the truth?” Paul knew they had been fooled by men who could repeat much about what other men, such as Moses and the prophets, had received from God, but had no testimony of their own.
God is a living God. Therefore, the only issue of life is, what is the Spirit saying now to the saints? Whatever that is, is the only truth that exists anywhere for God’s people, and everything else is a lie, no matter what great man of God in history used to say it and (as Moses’ story proves) no matter even if God used to say it.