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Hiding Place From Every Wind | Lesson 4, Part 1

Greetings MOL Family!

I’m glad we have such a wonderful Saviour that we can sing about and praise, aren’t you? A wonderful Saviour; and He’s the hiding place from every stormy wind that blows.


The Gift of the Spirit

 

Today, we begin our study with Ephesians, the 4th chapter. Here’s this wonderful text that speaks about every wind. I want you to notice the special plan that Heaven has arranged to keep us from being tossed about and driven with every wind.

In the 8th verse it says, speaking of the ascension of Jesus:

…When He ascended up on high, He led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men. – Ephesians 4:8

The greatest gift that Heaven ever gave to this world since the birth of Jesus and His death upon the cross is the outpouring of the Spirit; and that’s what this is talking about.

Now notice how the gift of the Spirit is distributed in various gifts. The 11th verse:

And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers. – Ephesians 4:11

Here are the five major gifts of the Spirit of God. In 1 Corinthians 12 we are given a longer list in which miracles, gifts of healings, and tongues and others are mentioned. But in 1 Corinthians 12:28, we’re plainly told that God has put these gifts in the church. Now, I stress that for a reason that you will see more clearly a bit later. But the text is clear:

God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles… – 1 Corinthians 12:28

You know, a jeweler takes a stone such as a diamond and ‘sets’ it in a ring. It’s fixed there so that it doesn’t move about, so that it doesn’t fall out. God has ‘set’ these gifts in the church. The true gifts, of course, are put in the true church. And if you want to find the true gifts of the Spirit of God, you must find the true church, and to help us in that, God has given us a photograph of the last true church in Revelation 12:17; where it says the dragon is wroth with the woman (the church), and goes to make war with the remnant of her seed that do what? Keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.

Revelation 19:10 says the ‘testimony of Jesus’ is what? The spirit of prophecy. Do you believe you’ve found the true church? Are you sure of it?

“He gave some, apostles…” Where did He put these? In the church. “And some, prophets…” Where did He put that? In the church. “And some, evangelists…” Where’s that? “And some, pastors and teachers.”

Do you believe all that, or do you believe in running out to somebody outside the church to find some ray of light or some message from Heaven? Or is that a fair question? Well, you’ll see as we proceed with our study that it’s not only a fair question, it’s very relevant and very important.

Now let us see what God put these gifts in the church for – apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers:

For the perfecting of the saints… – Ephesians 4:12

Do you want to be made perfect? Well, here are some gifts that God has put in His church to get you perfect. I wonder if He put them all in (if we need them all), or can I just select one?

You know, there are people, friends, that don’t have a great deal of use for the Spirit of Prophecy. Personally, I need it in order to be made perfect. But there are other people that quote the Spirit of Prophecy right and left, but they don’t have much use for these other gifts of apostles, and evangelists, and pastors, and teachers. They talk about them as if they were the Scribes and Pharisees of Jesus’ time. They speak very disrespectfully of the work of the ministry. Personally, I need all five of these gifts to get me ready.

He gave some, apostles, and some, prophets, and some, evangelists, and some, pastors, and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ. – Ibid

‘Edifying’ here means ‘the building up’. What’s the ‘body of Christ’? The church. What is it that will build up the church? All five of these gifts, working together. And of course, the only way these gifts can do their work in my life is for me to listen and pay some attention. Is that right?

Now, let’s see how long we’re going to need them. The 13th verse:

Till we all come in the unity of the faith… – Ephesians 4:13

Have we arrived there yet? Well, then we still need what? Apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers.

Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine… – Ephesians 4:13-14

What is it that will enable us to be safe and secure from all these winds? Why, you can see, friends, it is the result of being built up by all five of these gifts. Isn’t that clear? Perfectly clear. And those who fall before this wind, or who go down before another wind, have only themselves to blame, for God has made full provision that we shall find a hiding place in Jesus and His church, for we are told that Christ and His church are inseparable.

That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive. – Ephesians 4:14

Paul, guided by the Spirit, recognized that there were at that time, and would be in the future, men lying in wait to deceive. The picture is that of ambush. How can you be protected? How can you be saved? “Ah,” he says, “you must listen to these gifts of the Spirit of God which Jesus in Heaven has sent down to His church.”

 


From One Extreme To Another

 

So far in our study of these various winds, we’ve studied three of them. We’ve studied the whirlwind of lawlessness which is soon to culminate in Armageddon. We have studied the hurricane of persecution which is soon to burst upon the remnant church and sweep away all whose feet are not anchored to the eternal Rock. And then, in our last lesson, what did we study? The icy winds of formalism.

Today, I study with you the burning winds of fanaticism. Now that’s about as far from the icy winds as you can get. Formalism and fanaticism are at two ends of the scale, and that doesn’t make either one of them very good. I don’t like an icy wind that freezes me, do you? And I certainly don’t want a burning wind.

Do you remember that dream that the Lord gave Pharaoh which Joseph interpreted? There were seven fat kine, and seven lean ones that came along and did what? Ate the good ones up. And then there were seven stalks of grain. They were full. But there were seven poor, lean, blasted stalks. Pharaoh said they were worse than any he had ever seen in all the land of Egypt, and there’s an expression there that’s very interesting: he said “blasted with the east wind.”

In Palestine and Egypt these burning, blasting winds came from the east and southeast. And this is the wind that I want to study with you – the burning, blasting, searing, destroying wind of fanaticism.

And I want to tell you something, friends. When something is dead, it doesn’t make too much difference whether it died by being frozen to death or died by being burnt to death, does it? No. But interestingly enough, fanatics are quick to point out the difference between what they have to offer and the formalism that we studied last And it’s different, all right; there’s no question about that. It’s as different as a burning wind is different from an icy wind. But from every wind you and I are to be kept, and our hiding place is in Jesus:

And a man shall be as an hiding place from the wind, and a covert from the tempest…as the shadow of a great rock in a weary land. – Isaiah 32:2

You know, sometimes in journeying over the desert, travelers would encounter these burning winds. And oh, what a relief it was to come to the shadow of a great rock in a weary land, especially if there was a cleft in the rock in which they could hide. Thank God there’s a hiding place in the Rock of ages. Thank God, there’s a refuge from all these burning blasts, as well as from the frigid, icy ones

That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive. – Ephesians 4:14

Volume 5, page 644:

We have found in our experience that if Satan cannot keep souls bound in the ice of indifference, he will try to push them into the fire of fanaticism. – Testimonies for the Church, Volume 5, pg. 644

Isn’t that just like the devil? He plays that icy wind upon them to freeze them. But if they begin to get worried, if they begin to get concerned that they’re freezing up, he says, “Ok, if you don’t like that, I’ll give you something that won’t freeze you at all,” and he starts the burning blasts. And many succumb:

…If Satan cannot keep souls bound in the ice of indifference, he will try to push them into the fire of fanaticism. – Ibid

I wonder if there’s anybody reading this lesson that’s in danger of that? Somebody says, “Yes, I know Sister S or A or B or C, she’s very much in danger. I hope she goes through this study.” Or “There’s Brother so and so. He really needs this.” Well, while you’re thinking of that, Volume 5, page 305:

There is in human nature a tendency to run to extremes and from one extreme to another entirely opposite. – Ibid., pg. 305

So, if there’s anybody that has human nature, it would be good to take notes on this study:

There is in human nature a tendency to run to extremes and from one extreme to another entirely opposite. – Ibid

Think of it, friends. And yet, you can see how it would work. Here’s a man. He begins to get cold, and he realizes that an icy wind is blowing on him. What does he think he needs? Warming up. Well, he does, friends, but he doesn’t need to be burnt up. Oh, that God may save us from the fire of fanaticism!

May I tell you, friends, fanaticism is a curse that has afflicted the church of God in all its history. There were fanatics in Paul’s day. He had to write some of his epistles to deal with them. Read what he wrote to the Thessalonians, for example. And then as you come down through Reformation times…

Why, when Luther and Melanchthon were struggling to push the Reformation, fanatics developed there in Germany who kept talking about ‘the Spirit’, ‘the Spirit’. And they claimed that ‘the Spirit’ taught them what to do. They didn’t need Luther. They didn’t need Melanchthon. They didn’t need the Bible. Some of them even burned their Bibles to show they had gone so far in spiritual experience, ‘the Spirit’ taught them what to do. And those fanatics did more to hinder the Reformation than all the armies of Rome did.

Come on down to the Methodist revival under the Wesleys in England. Here, again, fanaticism reared its head and the burning blasts blew. But Wesley, led by God, rebuked those fanatics. Then in the Advent movement, both before 1844 and after, fanaticism reared its head.

Why, friends, it’s pitiful to call the roll of the different ones who were led by God to do certain things, and then went off into fanaticism. I think of S. S. Snow, the man that God used to bring to the Advent people in 1844 the light on the coming of Jesus in the autumn instead of the spring; the man that brought out the fact that it would be on the 10th day of the 7th month (Jewish time) – October 22, 1844 – when the Bridegroom would come. God greatly blessed his work during that year, but after the Disappointment he went off into the wildest fanaticism, claiming that he was Elijah the prophet.

Oh, my friends, do not think that this burning wind of fanaticism is something that the devil reserves for a few unbalanced minds. There’s not a one of us that is proof in himself against this. We need to hide in the refuge that’s provided – in Jesus and His church. We need the help of Christ through His Word. We need the help of Christ through these gifts: apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers.

In Volume 9 of the Testimonies, we’re given a statement concerning what the greatest protection against these spurious movements will be. Volume 9, pages 257-258. The name of this chapter is “The Spirit of Independence.” Fanatics are quite independent. Now, God wants us all to have the right kind of independence. We studied in our last lesson the great danger of becoming all put in a certain mold. Those who receive the mark of the beast will have one mind all regimented under the leading of satan. But while we guard against regimentation, we must also guard against the other extreme of individual independence to the point of fanaticism. That’s what this chapter is about:

Oh, how Satan would rejoice if he could succeed in his efforts to get in among this people and disorganize the work at a time when thorough organization is essential and will be the greatest power to keep out spurious uprisings and to refute claims not endorsed by the Word of God! – Testimonies for the Church, Volume 9, pgs. 257-258

Now, let’s look at that a minute. What does the prophet say will be “the greatest power to keep out spurious uprisings”? “Thorough organization.” What kind of organization is she talking about? The national government? Church organization. Do you believe in church organization? Do you, really? Well, we believe in church organization when it deals with people who break the Sabbath or who use tobacco or liquor or commit adultery, or something of that kind, but I wonder if that’s the extent of the power and the authority and the responsibility of church organization.

What did this say thorough organization was to be the greatest power in doing? Keeping out what? Spurious uprisings. What does ‘spurious’ mean? False, not genuine. What’s an ‘uprising’? Does an uprising come outside or inside? Why, it comes from inside if it’s an uprising, doesn’t it? Yes.

Here is something that will keep us from these spurious uprisings. What is it? Thorough organization. Now, it doesn’t say this is the only power, but it does say it’s the greatest power. Well, I need it, friends, and I thank God that God has put in His church apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers to help us on this very point

 


Join us next week, as we continue our study on “The Burning Wind of Fanaticism” – Invite a friend, and we’ll see you then… 

-Continue on to the next study-


 

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* This study has been adapted from classes taken by Elder W.D. Frazee.

1 Comment

  1. Bro. K

    Thank God for organization in the church! We need revival and reformation, Selected Messages Book 1, chapter 16-Calls for a Revival. This is why we need trusted servants to do Gods work in protecting in guiding the flock as did the patriarchs and prophets of old.

    God Bless