Sunday, September 26, 2010
The Dove Comes to the Lamb
Over sixty years ago Roy Hession wrote the classic entitled The Calvary Road, examining the things indispensable to revival, of the individual first, and then of the church community.
There is much said about brokenness of spirit, relinquishment of personal rights, repenting of all known sin, trusting in the cleansing power of the Blood of Calvary, walking in the ways of the "unprofitable servant" (Luke 17: 7-10), avoiding the critical spirit, demonstrating the change in manner of fellowship with others.
A chapter of particular note is entitled "The Dove and the Lamb". Our target and the Church's target is to be increasingly more like Jesus through the input of the Holy Spirit. But the Dove will only come to rest on the Lamb. The author refers here to the image of Jesus being baptized at the River Jordan by John. There is much profit in studying the characteristics of this Lamb:
He is a simple Lamb - no guile, scheming or strategy for personal advantage.
He is a shorn Lamb - without rights, reputation or personal liberty worthy of striving or retaliation.
He is a silent Lamb - never yielding to the temptation to joust for self-defence or self-vindication.
He is a spotless Lamb - holding no grudges, resentment or bitterness.
He is the substitute Lamb. Let this fire our sense of loyalty and dedication to the ways of the Lamb. Jesus took upon Himself all of our wickedness at the Cross, releasing us from the weight and consequence of sin.
If in reading this you sense that what is being suggested is some sort of milquetoast personality, then consider the One held forth as the prototype! Physically strong; tempered by the elements; capturing the attention of thousands in His addresses; familiar with the everyday of workbench, fishing net, household and tilled field; fearless of wicked, threatening authority.
I conclude with the author's words:
"The Dove is the emblem of peace, which suggests that if the Blood of Jesus has cleansed us and we are walking with the Lamb in humility, the sign of the Spirit's presence and fullness will be peace. This is indeed to be the test of our walk all the way along. Let the peace of God rule (arbitrate) in your hearts (Colossians 3:15). If the Dove ceases to sing in our hearts at any time, if our peace is broken, then it can only be because of sin. In some manner we have departed from the humility of the Lamb. We must ask God to show us what it is, and be quick to repent of it and bring the sin to the Cross."
Individuals and faith communities, responding honestly to these suggestions, will see a resurgence of light, love and liberty, causing others to say, as Ruth said to Naomi:
"...whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God:" (Ruth 1:16)
(See also the earlier post entitled M'Cheyne's Rebuke)