It’s audio devo day!
It’s when your soul is deeply at rest in God’s love, that your spirit becomes mighty in His authority. Let’s lean in together to His intimacy circle, and receive revelation that kings and prophets have longed to walk in! Be wonderfully refreshed as you listen here:
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Hm… a remarkable Bible verse indeed… but what does it have to do with our series on the subject of rest? Great question! And I have a great answer for you. Something amazing about this Scripture is the passage that immediately follows it, which I am about to read for you.
I know you are going to recognize it because… the following verses from the book of Luke are exactly the same as those from Matthew in which we have been marinating our spirits for the last three weeks. And why exactly the same? Cuz Holy Spirit likes them so much that He was not contented to leave them in just one gospel. He wanted double emphasis on this one. You know, when God repeats something to us, it’s vital that we pay close attention. So here we go:
“O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, thank you for hiding these things from those who think themselves wise and clever, and for revealing them to the childlike. Yes, Father, it pleased you to do it this way. My Father has entrusted everything to me. No one truly knows the Son except the Father, and no one truly knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him” (Luke 10:21-22, NLT).
Sound familiar? I am sure it does by now, if you have been journeying with me through this podcast series about rest. If you haven’t gotten a chance to do so, make sure and check out the last three episodes. In them, we went in depths into how the revelation of the Father’s heart is our direct link to profound, lasting rest for our soul. This episode will make a lot more sense to you as a continuation of the previous three.
To sum up what we have learned so far: As we change and become like children, we gain exclusive access to God’s personal revelations. Jesus self-discloses to us. He allows us in closer, into God’s intimacy circle. He brings us into oneness with Him. He gives us deep-heart understanding of who He is, of who our Daddy God is. This deepening heart revelation of His gentle, humble, tender nature brings our soul into the refreshing rest that we so desperately need.
So now, today, we dive into Luke’s parallel passage of this same moment Jesus had with His disciples, where He imparted to them all of this. Through Luke’s perspective, Holy Spirit is opening up for us another dimension of this powerful truth. Here we learn this: As we adopt a lifestyle of childlike dependence on the Father, something else begins to happen. As we “grow down” in humility, we “grow up” in spiritual authority!
Yes indeed. “I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions” ties directly into what follows, “O Father… thank you for hiding these things from those who think themselves wise… and for revealing them to the childlike.” This lifestyle of childlikeness and soul rest is precisely how we become mighty in spiritual authority.
Did you catch that? It’s when your soul is deeply at rest in His love, that your spirit becomes mighty in His authority! Learning to enter into God’s rest leads to a life of victory in spiritual battles. As you learn to live at rest in Him, you learn to engage in each battle from the place of victory that Jesus already won at Calvary. You are no longer struggling in your own strength, but have entered into His limitless strength.
Again, it all comes back to intimacy with Jesus. In this same passage, the disciples are thrilled because they have successfully cast out demons. They report back to Jesus, brimming over with enthusiasm. He affirms that He has indeed given them authority over all the power of the enemy, but immediately follows with this: “Nevertheless do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rather rejoice because your names are written in heaven” (v. 20, NKJV).
Where are our names written? The Prophet Isaiah shares the Father’s heart with us about this: “See, I have written your name on the palms of my hands. Always in my mind…” (Isa 49:16, NLT). Your name is written in heaven because He has written it onto His very hands.
Think about that. Right now, the most prominent part of my body in my visual field… are my hands. They are “ever before me.” They are right in front of my eyes, all the time. This is a picture of where God’s focus is… on your name. Your name represents your identity. Right now, He is gazing on you, on the very essence of who you are. He has inscribed you right in the middle of His visual field. You are always on His mind. This, my friend, this is the reason to be filled with joy! Walking in victory over the enemy is secondary. When you find your delight in God’s gaze on you, trampling on snakes and scorpions will flow out of that.
How did the disciples learn to move in authority over the enemy? By absorbing this truth themselves… by keeping close company with Jesus. Walking intimately with Him, they watched Him do it. Eventually they were ready, and He sent them out to practice. They successfully won spiritual battles, imitating their Teacher. In the same way, the more time we hang out in God’s intimacy circle, the more we learn of Him. We grow in confidence in His complete victory over all the works of the devil. In turn, He is able to assert this victory through us into the world around us. We walk in greater and greater victory as we walk in deeper and deeper intimacy with Him.
So we learn that childlikeness, humility, dependency, deep trust, soul rest, and mighty spiritual victories all go together. It may seem counterintuitive, but truly, the restfulness of our souls is directly linked with great spiritual power and authority.
Tying all this together, we find one more vital key, coming at the very end of this teachable moment between Jesus and the twelve: “Then He turned to His disciples and said privately, ‘Blessed are the eyes which see the things you see; for I tell you that many prophets and kings have desired to see what you see, and have not seen it, and to hear what you hear, and have not heard it’” (Luke 10:23-24, NKJV).
Did you catch that word again? “Privately.” They were alone together. They were enjoying the intimacy circle. In that context, Jesus imparted these exclusive revelations to them. In that place, they were privy to astonishing favor. Not even prophets and kings that had longed to walk in such sacred honor had been able to… but these guys did. In responding to Jesus’ call to discipleship, they were in on indescribably great privilege.
He extends that same unspeakable level of privilege to “all who will.” If we will take up our cross and follow Him, we, too, can join His intimacy circle. We, too, can enter into rest that is far deeper than most people alive today will ever experience. We will learn to live as His little ones, following Him throughout every moment of our earthly lives in childlike oneness with Him. The spiritual victories that flow through us will be on par with the ones our own Savior walked in, during His time on earth. (After all, He predicted that we would do greater works even than these! [John 14:12]). However, these triumphs will not be the source of our delight. Instead, we will spend our lives rejoicing because our names are written on His hands… and He has brought us into ultimate closeness with Him!
In God’s intimacy circle… learning of Him… moving from victory to victory… enjoying enduring rest for our souls… enveloped in His everlasting love… this, my friend, this is the way to live!
In the world we live in today, what does trampling on snakes and scorpions look like? How does this Scripture apply to our twenty-first century context?