In the sixth week of this series, Dr. Don G. Pickney reveals the need for the glory of God to come upon the Church and in the body of Christ, between now and the rapture (catching away to Heaven) of the Church.
In this teaching, he continues to unfold from scripture the revelation of the Day of Jehovah Tsaba (Lord of hosts) as declared in Isaiah 2:11-12 LITV "The lofty eyes of man shall be humbled, and the pride of men shall be bowed down; but Jehovah, He alone, will be exalted in that day. (12) For the day of Jehovah of Hosts shall be on all the proud and lofty ones, and on all that is lifted up; and it will be abased."
He again draws understanding from a particular passage of scripture of Psalmist David:
Psalms 75:2-10 JPS “When I take the appointed time, I Myself will judge with equity. (3) When the earth and all the inhabitants thereof are dissolved, I Myself establish the pillars of it.' Selah (4) I say unto the arrogant: 'Deal not arrogantly'; and to the wicked: 'Lift not up the horn.' (5) Lift not up your horn on high; speak not insolence with a haughty neck. (6) For neither from the east, nor from the west, nor yet from the wilderness, cometh lifting up. (7) For God is judge; He puts down one, and lifts up another. (8) For in the hand of the LORD there is a cup, with foaming wine, full of mixture, and He pours out of the same; surely the dregs thereof, all the wicked of the earth shall drain them, and drink them. (9) But as for me, I will declare forever, I will sing praises to the God of Jacob. (10) All the horns of the wicked also will I cut off; but the horns of the righteous shall be lifted up.”
The Day of Jehovah Tsaba is God taking a set time (Psalms 102: 13-18), a time appointed in scripture, set to be fulfilled at this time in the earth, an event that will affect every nation and people. None will escape this event. They will participate on one side or the other of God’s righteous judgment, a “vengeance to comfort all who mourn in Zion, to give them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, and the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness.” (Isaiah 61:2,3)
Pastor Don shows how God gave exceeding great and precious promises to those who would believe. But, there are certain promises, that in addition to giving the promise by faith, He also attached the promise to a future sovereign purpose, with a unique divine plan to later use His own personal fulfillment of any of the promise not obtained by believers, to accomplish and manifest His will at a later time.
Although faith has been given to the Believer to appropriate God’s promises, believers continue to struggle in their use of this powerful gift from God. Faith remains elusive to multitudes of believers as they attempt to see manifestation of God’s promises in their lives.
Apostle Paul revealed a truth that may hold answers for many as they accurately apply his scriptural concept:
Romans 12:3, 6-8 KJV For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith. (6) Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith; (7) Or ministry, let us wait on our ministering: or he that teacheth, on teaching; (8) Or he that exhorteth, on exhortation: he that giveth, let him do it with simplicity; he that ruleth, with diligence; he that sheweth mercy, with cheerfulness.
In this scripture holds several mysteries of faith. First, it is vital to have an accurate picture of what Paul is actually saying. We begin with what appears to be two identical phrases:
(3) “For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man… according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.”
Unfortunately, these two identical phrases (“to every man”) in the KJV could not be more opposite in their meaning, and the lack of the difference between the first and second use has led to great misunderstanding for many attempting to live by and use their faith. Assuming that these two phrases are as they appear to be, the same, one would gather that every man has been dealt the same measure of faith – perhaps a measure of some kind of little “faith glob” on the inside of us that has the power to grow and cause us to develop into some kind of great faith achiever.
Pastor Don says, “The problem with this is that one believer sees how another believer’s faith is work more powerfully than their own, or mirrors themselves against some minister’s use of it in their own ministry, and find themselves feeling inferior. Believers who do not see what they desire from their faith often become disillusioned and despondent spiritually.” But a proper understanding in this spiritual area could set them free to grow at their own pace and enjoy their spiritual life.
Let’s look carefully at Paul’s words. In the first part of the verse he states who he is addressing, “…to every man among you…” Let’s look at this phrase:
“to every man” Πάς pás; gen. pantós. All. Includes the idea of oneness, a totality or the whole.
Paul is addressing every person who is among them the same. He does not address them individually but as one whole group, no one excluded or made to be different from the others.
But the second phrase found in this verse, appearing to be the same phrase, actually holds an entirely different meaning. It reads, “according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.” Look at how different (opposite) is its meaning:
“to every man” ἕκαστος hékastos; fem. hekástē, neut. hékaston, adj. from hékas (n.f.), separate. Each, every one, of any number separately. "to each one separately;" "each one of them." This idea of separation or singling out is expressed still more strongly by heís hékastos, each one as individual, unique and different from all the others.
In the first phrase, the meaning holds the context of removing them as individuals and dealing with them as “one whole.” In the second phrase, however, the opposite holds true. He takes the original “whole” being addressed, and divides and separates them, each into “unique and different individuals.”
It is in the difference of these two phrases, and the lack of knowledge of that difference, that has led to grave misunderstandings of Paul’s meaning. Thinking the two phrases were as identical as they appear in the KJV, has led to the belief that “God has dealt to every person (as a whole) the SAME measure of faith,” when in fact Paul was saying that “God has dealt to every person, individually, and in a separate and distinct way a ‘certain measure’ of faith.” While addressing all of us “as a whole,” to be included in what he was about to say, he was not lumping all of us together in one big melting pot of faith. With many thinking that each was dealt faith as a whole in identical fashion, they have erred to the fact that God has actually in a strict individual fashion, given each member of the body of Christ a unique and special measure, quality or kind of faith. Not understanding this can lead to great consternation among many believers who expect everyone’s faith to work alike. While each person’s faith is “equally precious,” it is not in any way identical.
To stress this very point, Apostle Paul details how we obtained this faith, “according as God hath dealt…” As we explore this phrase, we come to gain even more understanding of the individual and unique fashion obtained by us with regards to our faith. By looking at the Greek definition below, we see in its meaning key words and phrases, “to be different, to differ, be different from, discriminate, make a distinction, mark off boundaries,” and then looking at the antonym we see that in fact our faith individually dealt us is NOT “together, called, convened, gathered together.” We find that God dealt to each of us a “proportion” of faith unique to our relationship with Him, our callings and needs for faith uniquely differing:
“hath dealt” – μερίζω merízō; fut. merisō, from merís a part. To divide, part, share. To divide, separate into parts. To distribute. In the pass., to be divided, disunited. To be different, to differ – Deriv.: diamerízō to divide among, distribute; merismós a division, partition, distribution; meristḗs divider, distributor; summerízō to have a share in, be a partaker of, distribute in shares. – Syn.: diaphérō to be different from; diakrínō to discriminate, make a distinction; aphorízō to mark off boundaries; diairéō to divide into parts – Ant.: sunágō, to gather together, assemble; episunágō, to gather together into one place; sullégō, to collect, gather up; sōreúō, to pile up, heap; sunathroízō, to call, convene, gather together.
So God did not deal faith out to “the whole,” one faith for all to share, rather He did just the opposite: He did so in an individual, unique and separate manner – no individual with the same distribution as any others. When we were born again, while we all received identical inheritance, we were not all made identical, rather we were made unique and special, with special gifts and callings and purposes. And we were given unique and special faith qualities and capacities enabling us to be that unique person we were made to be, and live out our individual lives with the quantity and quality of faith needed to fulfill God’s plan and purpose for our lives. It is within this context that Paul goes ahead in our key scripture to urge us to “attach our faith to those unique gifts and callings” given in God’s grace to us.
Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith” (given to us to fulfill God’s plan and purpose in the giving of those personal gifts and callings)
So while the Church has been taught that we are all made alike with regards to our “faith life” and therefore what one can produce with his/her faith all should, in common fashion, be able to replicate, just the opposite is true.
You were made to be what God has made you to be! Your faith walk is not to be like anyone else’s walk. That is what Paul is saying to the Philippians in the following scripture:
Philippians 2:12-13 AMP “Therefore, my dear ones, as you have always obeyed [my suggestions], so now, not only [with the enthusiasm you would show] in my presence but much more because I am absent, work out (cultivate, carry out to the goal, and fully complete) your own salvation with reverence and awe and trembling (self-distrust, with serious caution, tenderness of conscience, watchfulness against temptation, timidly shrinking from whatever might offend God and discredit the name of Christ). (13) [Not in your own strength] for it is God Who is all the while effectually at work in you [energizing and creating in you the power and desire], both to will and to work for His good pleasure and satisfaction and delight.
Wow! He is addressing them as a whole, much like he did the Romans in our key text, but he is not suggesting that, as a whole, they attempt to fulfill their faith and purpose. Just the opposite, he is urging each individual one of them, differing in calling and purpose from other individuals among them, to find their way and rely on the faith given to them to fulfill their personal destinies in Christ Jesus.
Finally, Paul address that individual faith given to us at the time of our “new birth.” He says it is not “without measure,” rather with measure.. “… the measure of faith.”
“the measure” μέτρον métron; gen. métrou, neut. noun. Measure. – A measure of capacity. Of length or surface, meaning a measuring rod ; See kálamos, a reed.
Generally, ek métrou (ek, from métrou), by measure, equivalent to metríōs, moderately, sparingly; a portion measured off or allotted. Deriv metréō, to measure, mete out; sitométrion, a portion, grain measured out. Syn: the measures or measurements in the NT are: méros, a part, a portion without specifying any definitive quantity.
In the passage, Paul later, in verse 6, states, “a proportion” equal to the task required by our gifts and callings:
(6) Having then gifts differing…
“differing” διάφορος diáphoros; gen. diaphórou, masc.-fem., neut. diáphoron, adj. from diaphérō to be different.
according (in a measure equal) to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith;
“proportion” ἀναλογία - analogía; gen. analogías, fem. noun from aná denoting distribution. Analogy means the right relation. In Aristotle it meant arithmetical or geometric proportion; as it is available in a certain measure.
Pastor Don calls attention to all of this in the context of showing us why we find ourselves limited in our “now” walk as believers in the Church, but as God’s glory comes upon us in the Day of Jehovah Tsaba, as this period progresses, God during this set time has prophetically promised to bend and stoop over and make up the difference in our faith and spiritual inferiorities. There will be no “coming short of the glory of God” as he lifts us up into the realm of His own glory and divine purpose. There is coming radical changes in how we as the body of Christ will function as we approach the coming of the Lord Jesus in the great catching away of the Church. From our individual callings and lives, we will be propelled into one great mass calling, to bring about the great global harvest of souls into God’s family. The glory upon you, will be the glory upon me, and the glory upon all of us as one great unified people – all carrying the same purpose – sharing together in the “rich sea trade and wealth of nations,” as it is converted to us for ability and common good of souls.
Isaiah 60:1-3 LITV “Arise, shine; for your light has come, and the glory of Jehovah has risen on you! (2) For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the peoples. But Jehovah shall rise on you, and His glory shall be seen on you. (3) And nations shall walk to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawning.”