Does God Use You Because You are Special in and of Yourself, are perfect in your character, have Never Sinned Since Being Saved (haha), or have a Seminary Degree?
Can God still use you? If so, why? How?
Were those who were used by the LORD to reach you perfect in all their ways? THINK about the imperfect people who were instrumental in your being saved. If God can use them, He can use us.
“If thou, LORD, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand?” Psalms 130:3
In a certain sense, the LORD uses us in spite of, not because of us!!!! “ALL of our righteousness are as filthy rags,” right? (Isaiah 64:6)
God first found and saved us in spite of us while we were yet sinners, right? (Romans 5:6-8; 1 John 4:9-10, 19) And, if you truly trust and obey Him, He will use you IN SPITE OF you NOT BECAUSE OF you! (Titus 3:3-7)
“For who maketh thee to differ from another? and what hast thou that thou didst not receive? now if thou didst receive it, why dost thou glory, as if thou hadst not received it?” 1 Corinthians 4:7
Like many of you, I am learning and KNOW more and more daily with Paul that there is “NO GOOD THING” in me except Jesus and He cannot and will not reign in my life unless I choose to die!!! Learn these verses and the divine truth of them (Psalms 39:4-5; Romans 7:18, 24). Write them on index cards and mark them in your Bible.
Is God Unable to Use You Because You’ve Sinned?
The answer to the above question is YES when you confess and draw close to Him in an abiding relationship (Psalms 51; Lamentations 3:19-26; Hebrews 4:14-16; James 4:6-11; 1 John 1:7-9; 2:1-2, etc.).
So you sinned? Join the club! One thing’s for certain and that it was my fault when I chose to sin and not God’s who “cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man.” (James 1:13-15) Yet, when I acknowledge and confessed that sin in drawing back nigh to Him in intimate fellowship, my sins were washed away “as far as the east is from the west.” (Psalms 103:12)
“As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.” Psalms 103:12
So, is your past sin greater than Christ’s cleansing blood applied when the transgressor repents/confesses?
If we think that our past sin is greater than the cleansing blood of Jesus Christ, should we not repent of this idolatry of lifting sin above Jesus and at once get the precious blood of Jesus up highest! Confess it, turn from it, and march on saint! Learn these truths well – Philippians 3:13-14; Hebrews 4:14-16; 1 John 1:3-2:2; Isaiah 44:22; Micah 7:18-19, etc.
Friends, if this doesn’t encourage you, I don’t know what will!
“Jacob was a cheater, Peter had a temper, David had an affair, Noah got drunk, Jonah ran from God, Paul was a murderer, Gideon was insecure, Miriam was a gossiper, Martha was a worrier, Thomas was a doubter, Sara was impatient, Elijah was moody, Moses stuttered, Zaccheus was short, Abraham was old,… and Lazarus was dead…. Now, what’s YOUR excuse? Can God use you or not? God doesn’t CALL the QUALIFIED, He QUALIFIES the CALLED.”
All have sinned and we all must reap what we have sown (Romans 3:23; Galatians 6:7-8). Yet, when we repent, returning to our LORD on HIS terms, submitting our lives to Him afresh, He will do a work in us (James 4:6-10).
Paul wrote “But by the grace of God I am what I am: and his grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain; but I laboured more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me.” (1 Corinthians 15:10)
God’s grace is “manifold” according to 1 Peter 4:10-11. Scripture defines divine grace as the LORD’s divine influence on our hearts and His operational power, His divine ability in us to do His will and be used of Him!!! This is exactly why Paul could say here in 1 Corinthians 15:10 that he “laboured more abundantly than they all.” He said that it was “yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me.” Yes, the apostle was extremely diligent and yet, when all is said and done, it’s God’s ability in us who are surrendered in true repentance to Him that brings Him praise and produces the fruit that is to His eternal glory! (Ephesians 3:7; 4:7; 1 Peter 4:10-11)
Christ’s perfect sacrifice alone made every divine blessing available to us!
“Seeing then that we have a great high priest (Jesus Christ), that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. 15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. 16 Let us therefore come boldly (with full confidence) unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.” Hebrews 4:14-16
We can come boldly because of the blood of Jesus Christ. You must be deepened in this understanding! | The Blood of Jesus Christ
His grace and mercy sure are amazing aren’t they! Yes because He is amazing and freely offers His forgiveness and restoration to those who fear Him (Psalms 103:11).
It’s when we are weak in self, broken, contrite in heart, and fully fallen upon His sheer mercy, that the LORD can raise us up in His grace and power.
“And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 10 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.” 2 Corinthians 12:9-10
Being used of the LORD is not about learning sermons or going to seminary or Bible College. Those methods can be full of waste. They can be the fleshly way to be prepared and can actually lead us away from being used of the LORD. It seems from our reading of Scripture that when we look at those God used throughout history, they were prepared humility, brokenness, repentance, and giving His blessed Word first place in their daily lives.
Most of those I know who have seminary degrees have no clue of the Scriptural truth revealed on this page. They have traded knowing Christ by His Word alone for the cheap substitute, accolades and approval of mere sinful men.
Oswald Chambers well captures this poverty of spirit the LORD is looking for:
“He took the twelve aside . . . —Luke 18:31
Oh, the bravery of God in trusting us! Do you say, “But He has been unwise to choose me, because there is nothing good in me and I have no value”? That is exactly why He chose you. As long as you think that you are of value to Him He cannot choose you, because you have purposes of your own to serve. But if you will allow Him to take you to the end of your own self-sufficiency, then He can choose you to go with Him “to Jerusalem” (Luke 18:31). And that will mean the fulfillment of purposes which He does not discuss with you.We tend to say that because a person has natural ability, he will make a good Christian. It is not a matter of our equipment, but a matter of our poverty; not of what we bring with us, but of what God puts into us; not a matter of natural virtues, of strength of character, of knowledge, or of experience— all of that is of no avail in this concern. The only thing of value is being taken into the compelling purpose of God and being made His friends (see 1 Corinthians 1:26-31). God’s friendship is with people who know their poverty. He can accomplish nothing with the person who thinks that he is of use to God. As Christians we are not here for our own purpose at all— we are here for the purpose of God, and the two are not the same. We do not know what God’s compelling purpose is, but whatever happens, we must maintain our relationship with Him. We must never allow anything to damage our relationship with God, but if something does damage it, we must take the time to make it right again. The most important aspect of Christianity is not the work we do, but the relationship we maintain and the surrounding influence and qualities produced by that relationship. That is all God asks us to give our attention to, and it is the one thing that is continually under attack.” Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest, August 4
Andrew Murray wrote:
“Jesus never taught His disciples how to preach, only how to pray. To know how to speak to God is more than knowing how to speak to people. Power with God is the first thing, not power with people. Christ loves to teach us how to pray.” Andrew Murray, With Christ in the School of Prayer, p. xxiii-xxiv
Jesus’ disciples never ask the LORD “Teach us to preach” but rather “Teach us to pray.” Right? (Luke 11:1) Did they realize something so many today have no clue about?
Jesus sure did send His original twelve and us forth to “Go … preach.” (Mark 16:15) Yet, He never taught them how to preach such as we have today in seminaries (homoletics). If we are in His Word daily, walking in the Spirit and not the flesh, we will be “instant in season and out of season” to “preach the word.” (2 Timothy 4:2)
Your usefulness to the LORD has to do with your poverty or poorness of spirit, utter humility, obedience, and also your knowledge and application of His Word in daily living (2 Timothy 2:20-21).
***I am memorizing a series of verses now. Wrote them on index cards. … Ezra 9:13-14; Ps. 103:10-11 …. Go see why!
Some wonder: “But Why am I not Growing Faster? Why Does the spiritual maturity seem so slow or Gradual?”
NOT WHERE YOU WANT TO BE SPIRITUALLY?
The LORD has a reason for delivering His people “little and little” which means little by little. Exodus 23:29-31 says: “I will not drive them out from before thee in one year; lest the land become desolate, and the beast of the field multiply against thee. 30 By little and little I will drive them out from before thee, until thou be increased, and inherit the land. 31 And I will set thy bounds from the Red sea even unto the sea of the Philistines, and from the desert unto the river: for I will deliver the inhabitants of the land into your hand; and thou shalt drive them out before thee.”
This truth is reserved only for those who truly fear the LORD. And, all who truly fear the LORD are daily seeking His holy face and obeying Him. Any person who believes they are saved and isn’t seeking the face of the LORD daily and diligently, has already fallen away and is lukewarm and apostate.
“And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with ALL your heart.” Jeremiah 29:13
“Seek the Lord and his strength, seek his face continually.” 1 Chronicles 16:11
“God is Greater than Our Hearts”
To those who still feel ashamed …
“And hereby we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him. 20 For if our heart condemn us, God is greater than our heart, and knoweth all things. 21 Beloved, if our heart condemn us not, then have we confidence toward God.” 1 John 3:19-21
- “God is greater than our heart, and …” – Think on this: Is your own heart and the thoughts of it greater than God? No.
- “God … knoweth all things” – He’s not surprised by anything.
- The LORD desires to grant His children a clear conscience and that will occur as we choose to go about things His way – “Now the end (divine goal) of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned.” (1 Timothy 1:5)
Remember how Peter openly denied Christ three times? Is it not a denial of Christ that we do if we choose to sin – deny Him the place of reign in our lives? Did Jesus forgive Peter?
When Jesus foreknew that Peter was going to sin, what did He tell Peter? Did Jesus say “Peter, I know you are going to sin and when you do, I’m going to be done with you”? No.
“And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat: 32 But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted (restored), strengthen thy brethren.” Luke 22:31-32
JESUS just as easily could have said that He was going to condemn Peter after he sinned. Yet did He? No. No, instead He restored Peter, His son.
Knowing Peter was getting ready to sin yet again by denying Him three times, couldn’t Christ have said: “Peter, now I am done with you! I allowed you to walk on water and you took your eyes off of Me and denied me while we walked on that water and several times after that. You are going to cut off the ear of Malchus and I’m going to have to put that ear back on him to heal the hurt you brought to him! Then, you are going to go so far as to try to stop me from going to the cross, the very reason I came to this earth. And now, you just cursed and openly denied me before others, violently rejecting Me! I’m done with you! No more mercy! You are shut out of My kingdom for good now!”?
Has Jesus changed? – “Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.” (Hebrews 13:8)
So if Jesus didn’t condemn Peter when he deserved it fully and Christ hasn’t changed, just what makes you think He is done with you?
After sinning and being restored, Peter was shortly afterward used of the LORD to win 8,000 precious souls to the kingdom of God! (Acts 2-3) God used Peter after he sinned and then repented. God used Moses to lead millions of His people after Moses murdered a man. God used David after he committed adultery, deceived, lied, and murdered. The list goes on … Can God still use you?
If the LORD can use a donkey, or worse yet, even me, just WHO among can He not use? (Ephesians 1:6)
Who among us is sinless perfection or would even dare tout such a lie?
“If I justify myself, mine own mouth shall condemn me: if I say, I am perfect, it shall also prove me perverse.” Job 9:20
“Who can say, I have made my heart clean, I am pure from my sin?” Proverbs 20:9
What About When Others Condemn Me for What I’ve Done?
First off, one way to look at the condemnation of other mere men, is that when someone is condemning you, they’re giving someone else a break! Think on this.
What about the judgment of others? God’s Word assures us that “the wrath (condemnation) of man worketh not the righteousness of God” and that those who are heavy handed at condemning others (in attitude and/or word) are full of sin themselves – which they seek to hide from men but God’s sees it (James 1:20).
“Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things. 2 But we are sure that the judgment of God is according to truth against them which commit such things. 3 And thinkest thou this, O man, that judgest them which do such things, and doest the same, that thou shalt escape the judgment of God?” Romans 2:1-3
Have you ever felt like you just sinned your last sin and that God was surely done with you?
How often are the LORD’s mercies renewed?
“And thou hast removed my soul far off from peace (“I feel forsaken”): I forgat prosperity.
18 And I said, My strength and my hope is perished from the LORD (“I feel deflated”):
19 Remembering mine affliction and my misery, the wormwood and the gall.
20 My soul hath them still in remembrance, and is humbled in me.
21 This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope.
22 It is of the LORD’S mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not.
23 They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.
24 The LORD is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him.
25 The LORD is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh him.
26 It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the LORD.”
The Bottom Line – The Real Score
When we do things our own way instead of God’s, there will be consequences that are going to cost us much (Galatians 6:7-8). We certainly will reap what we sow. Yes the LORD says “Be ye holy for I am holy” and yet, God’s not interested in anyone seeking to be holy unless they are approaching Him in the clear realization of their own sinful depravity and hopelessness and on the basis of His sheer mercy and to be in an abiding, saving relationship (John 15:1-6; 1 Peter 1:15-16).
“For in my wrath I smote thee, but in my favour have I had mercy on thee.” Isaiah 60:1
“O Israel, thou hast destroyed thyself; but in me is thine help. ” Hosea 13:9
We have destroyed our own lives by sin. You and I are no different at all than Israel whom the LORD was specifically addressing above. Yet, in Him is our help, our hope, our salvation!
We have made ruin and a huge mess out of the lives He gave us and yet in Him is our hope and help! – Only in Him!
In his heart the hell bound self-righteous devil believes he is inherently righteous and therefore better than others. So, he believes it’s okay to have a condemning attitude toward others who are of course, lower than he is. Such a person has no clue as to the depravity of mankind (including himself) and the sheer divine mercy that was displayed in the cross of Christ (Titus 3:5-7).
The humble servant, who realizes his own depravity and utter need for divine mercy, hangs his head in shame and says in his heart: “God be merciful to me a sinner.” (Luke 18:13) The God-less, hell bound self-righteous religionist goes before God touting the sham of his own righteousness. He says in the attitude of his heart: “God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican. 12 I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess.” (Luke 18:11)
It’s certain that sin is a choice we have made that we didn’t have to make and that sin is not good and that it will separate us from God who is “Holy, holy, holy.” (Isaiah 6:3; Revelation 4:8) Yet, that’s not the end of the story! It’s also just as true that the LORD desires to restore and not to condemn us – yet He will if we don’t come to in holy fear to be restored (Romans 11:20-22; 2 Peter 2:20-21; Hebrews 10:26-39, etc.).
The Door is Open not Closed!
To His own people who were at the time back-slidden and in imperative need of repenting, Jesus says:
“Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man (back-slidden) hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.” Revelation 3:20
Will we answer the door? We I answer His call to come to Him in an honest heart?
Does God wish for you or any one of His children to perish? Is God trying to condemn you? Is it His ultimate will to shut you out of His kingdom?
“The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward (toward His own people), not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” 2 Peter 3:9
Is it time to take a few moments alone with the LORD?
PRAYER: Father, in Jesus precious name, I come confidently before Your blessed and holy throne of grace in order to receive Your mercy for my sins. And to be empowered by Your blessed, enabling grace! I here and now openly acknowledge, admit, confess that I am utterly impoverished outside of Your saving grace! I am hopeless without Your help. Please forgive me for _______________ …… LORD, please restore unto me the joy of Thy salvation and fill me with Your Holy Spirit afresh, strengthening my inner man by Your Spirit. I love You LORD Jesus. Thank You for coming to this earth, born of a virgin, for living a sinless life, for dying on that cross for me, and that You were raised from the dead for my justification! In Jesus’ name! Amen.
“LESS THAN THE LEAST OF ALL SAINTS”???? Me argue with the apostle Paul? Yes, you bet! And I can tell you right now that I am right and he is wrong!!! (Okay, read on before you conclude that I am a heretic.) PLEASE HIT SHARE – Bone to Pick with Paul?
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Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned: