Becoming Unglued

By Jon Bowles

3 December 2005

(PLAY FROM START)

When we moved down to Wales in the mid 70's, it was the tail end of the hippy movement of the late 60's. And there are still quite a few hippies. In fact, there are even to this day in this area around Carmarthen. It was the kind of center for the hippy movement of the 60's. Even now, there are still a lot of Tee Pee people. Are they still down in there that way? I think so. Certainly they were until a few years ago. I don't know if they're still in their Tee Pees at the present time with the cold weather, but they certainly were until fairly recently. But I know that, when we first moved down in the mid 70's, there was this movement generally; and not that many miles away from us, there was a commune. And the people there lived in this great huge Manor House.

In this Manor House, I happened to go down there for something. I don't know what it was. I can't even remember what it was I needed to go down to buy or something, or to find out about. I went up to the Manor House itself, and outside the Manor House were a whole range of old baths and old oil drums, these great big 50-gallon oil drums. All along the front of this Manor House were all these old baths and oil drums and old water containers of one description or another. It looked very, very strange.

I was talking to somebody there; and I said, "What on earth are you doing there with this lot?" And he showed me then the kind of workshop that they had; and what they did to make money was they used to buy old antique furniture, and then they would strip it. They would strip it using caustic soda, and the caustic soda was in these various vessels that were outside. It was very interesting. And I saw them sanding down the finished result and how you've got to be very, very careful because you tend to lighten the wood with the caustic soda. But he said one of the most important things is that, if you leave one of these pieces of antique furniture in the caustic soda for too long, the whole thing falls to pieces because, not only does it strip all the varnish off and all the grunge of the accumulated years; but, as it gets down a little bit further, it starts seeping into the joints and the glue that holds the whole thing together also gets stripped out. And the whole thing comes out of the bath, and it just falls apart in your hands. So you've got to then start to re-glue the whole thing back together again.

If you'll turn over to I Corinthians 10, what I want to do is to give a sermon that I gave as a Bible Study a few years ago about a particular word which you find within the Greek scriptures. In I Corinthians 10, we need to understand and remember something.

1 Corinthians 10:11-13 Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come. (12) Wherefore let him that thinks he stands take heed lest he fall. (13) There has no temptation [there is no trial]taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that you are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that you may be able to bear it.

Now this is an ironclad promise. In other words, we're not going to be put in a caustic bath until we finally come apart at the seams. It's a case where we will be tested. We'll go through trials. We'll have different difficulties. But it says:

1 Corinthians 10:13 [That you will not be tested] above that you are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that you may be able to bear it.

Now Paul was talking here about food that was offered to idols, and the trial they were going through at that particular time is that they literally could not buy meat. They literally, when they went out into the market place, they could not in good conscience buy meat; and they were looking for meat that hadn't been offered to idols. They just didn't know. And that is why Paul said that with the temptation, or with the trial, that there's going to be a way of escape that you may be able to bear it. And he was going to go ahead and describe the fact that, if you don't ask the question, as long as somebody doesn't say that it HAS been specifically offered to an idol, that they could eat it in good conscience. And that is the way of escape that they are able to have. But it is interesting that he is bringing out a principle here, that God does not tempt/test us.

This is a principle that he was bringing out before then going in and giving the solution to the problem that they had, and it is something that we need to understand when we look at the problem of trials and looking at this particular word. The word, if you want to write it down, is merimnao. The Strong's number is 3309. It comes from meros,and meros literally means a piece. You can find it in, again put this in your notes, I'm not going to turn there, but Luke 24:42{1} where it talks about Christ - "and they gave Him a piece of boiled fish and a honeycomb" when He was resurrected; and He ate it. And this piece of boiled fish, the word 'piece' is the word meros. When the soldiers, in John 19:23{2}, "the soldiers, when they crucified Jesus, took his garments and made four parts to every soldier or part, and also His coat. And His coat was without a seam." The word 'part' there is this word meros. It means a bit. Another one is I Corinthians:

1 Corinthians 13:9-12 For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. (10) But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away ... (12) ... now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.

The word part, all the way through there, is this word meros. So when we're looking at the word merimnao, it means to come to pieces. It means to fall to pieces - much as that furniture was put into the caustic soda, the joints were eroded; and the whole thing just fell to pieces, or would fall to pieces, if you like. The modern vernacular would be "to become unglued" because that is the way modern speech has gone. If somebody comes unglued, or becomes unglued, they fall to pieces emotionally.

Now, we find this word merimnao used in a good sense as well. Again, put it in your notes, I'm not going to turn there, but Philippians 2:20{3}, we find Timothy, where it's actually translated, how he should "care" for the people of Philippi. And the word care there, in other words, he was becoming unglued, coming to pieces about them in a positive concern. I Corinthians 12:25{4} there's another one where you care for one another. There's no schism. So there is a positive use in it. But normally, it applies literally to the way we use "coming unglued" or "coming to pieces" or "falling to pieces" over something. It's the same kind of word. Philippians 4{5}, where it says, "Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication" that word is merimnao. Luke 10{6} where Martha was careful and troubled, as opposed to Mary, she also is being described as merimnao. Matthew 6{7}, be anxious, don't give any anxious thought, or any thought (it actually says in the King James). It means give anxious thought. Don't come unglued for life or clothes etc. So that is also merimnao.

So there are different ways the word is actually used. And, as I said, about three years ago I gave a Bible Study on this particular word. It never was posted on the website because it was before we started setting up all the recording equipment and everything that we've got today. But I do feel like this subject is worthy of an adaptation of the Bible Study into a full-blown sermon, and that's what I'd like to do here today. And, in doing so, I want to cover the following areas and show how:

Becoming Unglued Over Physical Things: (PLAY FROM 9:47)

So let's have a look at this subject about being unglued over physical things, what are we going to eat and so on. The classic one is over in Matthew 6. Here we see the word used; and it gives an indication of what is being talked about, if you notice the context in verse 19:

Matthew 6:19 Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust does corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal:

Now, in the news analysis today, I was talking about the economic system that we're under and how corrupt it is at its very foundation and how it will not be part of the future economic system at all. It will be a totally different way of looking at things.

Matthew 6:20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal ...

So it's looking at this, and then in verse 22 it says:

Matthew 6:22-29 The light of the body is the eye: if therefore your eye be single [In other words, you're single- minded about things.], your whole body shall be full of light. (23) But if your eye be evil, your whole body shall be full of darkness. [If there's something wrong with it, even a speck, then the whole body is going to be full of darkness.] If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness! [The eye internally, therefore what you see.] (24) No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. You cannot serve God and[ (material wealth). [It's impossible.] (25) Therefore I say unto you, [merimnao - do not become unglued. It's the negative principle plus merimnao being used in this verse. DON'T BECOME UNGLUED FOR YOUR LIFE.]Take no thought for your life, what you shall eat, or what you shall drink; nor yet for your body, what you shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? (26) Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much better than they? (27) Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature? [Now notice, it says "which of you by taking thought", which of you by coming unglued? That is literally what it is talking about. Which of you, by falling to pieces, can go ahead and add a cubit to his stature? It just doesn't work that way.] (28) And why take you thought for raiment? [Why fall to pieces for clothes? Again, this word is being used there.]Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: (29) And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.

Matthew 6:31-32 Therefore take no thought,[Do not fall to pieces; do not become unglued.] saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? [What are we going to be covered with? There's more than just clothes there. It's a case of covering.] (32) (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knows that you have need of all these things.

Matthew 6:34 Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.

This section is talking of becoming unglued over physical things. Now, if we get our priorities straight ... If we get our priorities straight and we make sure we are working ... You know, there are scriptures such as II Thessalonians 3:10{8} that talk about how if any doesn't work then neither shall he eat. These scriptures have got to be put in place and tied up with scriptures such as Malachi 3:10{9}, that talks about proving God through tithing and putting it to the test - that the tithe is necessary, that we do work. But providing those priorities are put straight, we do not have to worry and fret over physical things. This is what is being said within these verses. And yet, so often, these can become a source of us becoming unglued, falling to pieces, over looking forward into the future on a physical front. Turn over to I Timothy 6. It elaborates a bit more, and it doesn't use this word.

1 Timothy 6:6-8 But godliness with contentment is great gain. (7) For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. (8) And having food and [covering]let us be therewith content.

Now the food, obviously, is what we eat. The covering, it's more than just raiment. The actual word implies more than just raiment. It also implies a home or a house or something. Certainly in the climate that we've got here, there's no way you'd want to be outside in the open air, sleeping under a bridge, even if you have got clothes. That is not what is implied here. It says, as long as you've got food and you've got covering, therewith be content.

1 Timothy 6:9-12 But they that will be rich [or will to be rich, or are striving to be rich]fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. (10) For the love of money is [a]root of all [kinds of]evil [as is better translated. It's a root of all kinds of evil]: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. (11) But you, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness. (12) Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto you are also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.

So he says "get the priorities sorted out, get the priorities in place." It's a case of making sure that the physical side of life, which is important, is put into its right context - that the priorities on the physical are put into their right context; and then we won't go ahead and fall to pieces or become unglued over the physical things.

Be aware that we need to teach the correct balance in this area, and that correct balance on future physical things. If I just quote from "The Wonderful World Tomorrow" booklet by Mr. Armstrong in chapter 7, towards the end of chapter 7, in that final chapter, describing about how Christ is actually going to do what He's going to do:

How will He do so?

First, by changing the nature of human beings; changing their outlook toward life, removing their lust and selfishness, their covetousness and greed that drives them onward toward material goals ...

Ask any segment of our modern-day populations what they desire most in life, and they'll almost invariably answer, "money"!

And that's true. As I've just brought out in the news analysis, it's an illusion. They're being brainwashed thinking along those lines.

Actually, they want the things money can buy. They know prestige and recognition come through the acquisition of material goods. They know most people evaluate other people by what they possess - by the kind of clothing they wear, the kind of home in which they live, the kind of automobiles they drive, and the material goods they possess ...

Christ said, "I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly" (John 10:10).
God wants fullness, abundance in every life.
But look at the material "successes" you've known.
How truly happy are they? As J. Paul Getty, one of the world's richest men, is reputed to have said, "I'd give all my millions for just one happy marriage!"

Now again, you contrast ... You know, we're looking at becoming unglued. So often we can get unglued about physical things. And we do not value knowledge we have been given. The knowledge we have been given about relationships between people is priceless. And somebody like Getty, I'm not sure whether he was, I guess he was the richest man of his day, he probably was, and yet he said he would give all his money away for one happy marriage. So he valued something that you and I have been given by God, that we have the knowledge and the tools available that the world simply doesn't have. And it goes on and it says:

In God's Kingdom, these commands of His will be obeyed. They'll become the standard for regulating commerce, business, finance, and the entire economic structure of the world. And all will be on the giving basis...

The giving standard will be followed in God's rule on this earth - not the grasping, conniving, striving, deceitful, clandestine, furtive, scurrilous, devious, cheating and lying chicanery that is commonplace in today's business world.

And it almost sounds as if Mr. Armstrong said all those adjectives and put all those adjectives in there because he's experienced personally, as most of us have, just that within this business world of today. Now we are going to have to go ahead and teach that. So part of the reason for understanding a different way of doing things, and we're going to have to get a group of human beings, in the future, in the World Tomorrow, and to show them and teach them the correct balance of physical things and not becoming unglued about physical things. And God is putting us through, sometimes puts us through, certain trials so we get our priorities in the right order so we can then, in turn, teach this ourselves also. So, then, these things are very important. So, on the physical area is one.

Becoming Unglued About Tomorrow: (PLAY FROM 19:56)

Secondly, unglued about tomorrow; if we turn back to Matthew 6 again, I did actually read this but it is worth going back there and just reminding ourself again ...

Matthew 6:33-34 But seek you first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. (34) [It says, don't become unglued, therefore]for the morrow: [for what is coming tomorrow, for tomorrow is going to take thought for the things of itself. That can get unglued over the things of itself. Is that, shall take ... for, 3309, yes. It's the same word again, merimnao, being used twice in that particular verse.]for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.

So again, we're looking at the need for day-type compartments, to fit any type of worrying that we do within the day. It talks ... Notice where we actually pray:

Matthew 6:11 Give us this day our daily bread.

Give us day by day. Not tomorrow, not in a week's time, not another year's time; but today. It is a concentration that we make sure that we concentrate and live in these day-type compartments. This is part of the key for handling this concept of becoming unglued, coming to pieces, over looking forward into the future. So many times, I mean the worst time of day for doing this is 3:00 in the morning, when you wake up and you think forward into next week or next year or whatever; and you think "What is about to happen?" And you have all these worries that are about to arise about 2:00, half past 2:00, 3:00, half past 3:00, or whatever it is in the morning. And then you get up in the morning, and it's a different scenario altogether. Even when we do fear things that are about to happen, in most cases the fears that we have do not actually materialize. They just don't, in most cases. If you'll turn over to Lamentations:

Lamentations 3:22-23 It is of the [Eternal's] mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. (23) They are new [these compassions of God are new] every morning: great is your faithfulness.

Even scriptures such as tells us not to let the sun go down on our wrath, not to allow ourselves to be angry over that day-type compartment. Get things sorted out straight away, while it is still today. This reflects that. I mean, why are we doing that? Because God Himself does that to us! It reflects the mind of God. God, as it says here, these compassions are new every morning. That we get up in the morning, we get on our knees, we pray before God, and we ask for forgiveness; and God will forgive us. That sacrifice of Christ can be applied. So we can become, so often we can become, unglued over the tomorrow; and we don't know what tomorrow's going to bring. We have no idea what tomorrow will bring. But to be like God ... Even looking back into Genesis, where Christ actually made the Earth, He did it in day-type compartments. You know, the first day He did whatever He was doing, and the sun and the moon. He thinned out the atmosphere; and He took the various stages day by day, right the way through. Another area, we can read over in Exodus 16. We again see day-type compartments emphasized. Here again, we're looking at the mind of God, the way God looks at things, the way God is getting points across to us. Here in Exodus 16, in talking about the manna:

Exodus 16:16 This is the thing which the LORD has commanded, Gather of it every man according to his eating, an omer for every man, according to the number of your persons; take you every man for them which are in his tents.

Exodus 16:18-19 And when they did mete it with an omer, he that gathered much had nothing over, and he that gathered little had no lack; they gathered every man according to his eating. (19) And Moses said, Let no man leave of it till the morning.

In other words, it was a daily thing. It was food that was coming to the Israelite nation. It was a picture of the spiritual food. And you eat it and you deal with it in the day in question.

Exodus 16:20 Notwithstanding they hearkened not unto Moses; but some of them left of it until the morning, and it bred worms, and stank: and Moses was wroth with them.

And so it goes on and it says the only day it wasn't so was the Sabbath day; and they actually went from Friday, right the way through to the end of the Sabbath. All right, from Friday morning right the way through till Sunday morning. But the manna was new every morning. This food was new every morning. It was a day-type compartment that God was giving every single day, day by day, all the way through the 40 years in the wilderness; and also emphasizing that the Sabbath was different. The Sabbath, it was something that was set aside - to one side. But each day was a different day. Each day you had to go out and gather. Each day you had to deal with whatever food you needed for that day.

And so when it says to us "Don't take anxious thought, don't become unglued for the morrow, for the morrow will take thought for itself," it's just extending the principle. It is a principle that as human beings, that that's the way you need to work. And again, here is something else that we need to take with us - learning in this life right now, in this world, taking with us into the future, into the World Tomorrow - so that we can help people, human beings, in the World Tomorrow to deal day by day with their own tasks because this is the way that human beings work and operate best: Day-type compartments.

Unglued During Specific Future Events: (PLAY FROM 26:06)

Another area where people are going to be coming unglued obviously is that certain specific events are prophesied; and within those events there are going to be cases of people coming to pieces over them. Or the tendency is going to be there. And there are warnings given where this word merimnao is used so that that doesn't happen. If you turn over to Revelation 12, we can see certainly an indication that this is not just talking about things that happened way back when.

Revelation 12:13-17 And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man child. (14) And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for [3 ½ years], from the face of the serpent. (15) And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood. [And we find in Revelation 17 how waters are equated to people. So it's an army of some description that's going to be cast out.](16) And the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed up the flood [or the army of people] which the dragon cast out of his mouth. (17) And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.

Now that's the end of the Church age, or the Church as it exists within Satan's world. It then goes into chapter 13, which deals with the false system. These two systems are going to come head to head within the story flow of Revelation. So it's clearly talking about the fleeing. You're talking about Laodicea, in verse 17; and in this case you're looking at how tribulation and persecution occurs. And right until the Church flees, and right until that time and as the Church is fleeing, it appears that Satan will actually be persecuting the Church and will be casting this flood of people out after the Church.

Now if we turn over to Matthew 10, we find some instruction. Again, remember we're looking at the principles that God is giving us, the understanding that God gives us, as to how to handle certain things. Now here Christ is talking to the disciples. He's sending them out, and they are to go ahead and do a certain job. You do wonder, when looking at Revelation 12, why does Satan cast out? Why do these people, this flood, go after the woman? She's got to have been saying something. There's got to be something there that the Church is recognized, the Church is recognized as a people. And again, he goes back and persecutes the ones that are left of her seed. So again, the Church is understood, the Church is known. And if we're saying the things that we're saying and having to say about the European Union and the way in which that European Union is progressing, and how it will come to be the very Beast power that will be overthrown by Jesus Christ and will be attacked by the Asian hordes from China and so on, you can see why it gets up certain people's nose. You could certainly see that. But here in Matthew 10, we're looking at a principle applied, where the disciples were being sent out, and they were being told to go ahead and say the things that are necessary to be said.

Matthew 10:16-20 Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be you therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves. (17) But beware of men: for they will deliver you up to the councils, and they will scourge you in their synagogues; (18) And you shall be brought before governors and kings for my sake, for a testimony against them and the Gentiles. (19) But when they deliver you up, [Do not become unglued. "Merimnao" is being used in this section also.] take no thought [do not become unglued about] how or what you shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what you shall speak. (20) For it is not you that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaks in you.

Now here is a principle we're looking at - a principle of the way in which we do not become unglued because we understand that God will give us, in that same hour, He will give us the words necessary to speak in that hour. He talks in verse 22:

Matthew 10:22 And you shall be hated of all men for my name's sake: but he that endures to the end shall be saved.

And he goes on to discuss persecution. If you'll turn over to Luke 12:

Luke 12:2-5 For there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; neither hid, that shall not be known. (3) Therefore whatsoever you have spoken in darkness shall be heard in the light; and that which you have spoken in the ear in closets shall be proclaimed upon the housetops. (4) And I say unto you my friends, Be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do. (5) But I will forewarn you whom you shall fear: Fear him, which after he has killed has power to cast into hell; yes, I say unto you, Fear him.

In other words, fear God.

Luke 12:10-12 And whosoever shall speak a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but unto him that blasphemes against the Holy [Spirit]it shall not be forgiven. (11) And when they bring you unto the synagogues, and unto magistrates, and powers [do not become unglued] how or what thing you shall answer, or what you shall say: (12) For the Holy [Spirit]shall teach you in the same hour what you ought to say.

And be aware that anybody that goes ahead and resists that Spirit's speaking, it says: whoever shall speak a word against the Son of man it will be forgiven but whoever blaspheme against the Holy Spirit, it will not. So these people that will resist this word that will be coming out of our mouth are going to be in dire danger, if they knowingly resist it. And it can be used as justification to go ahead and warn them in that regard. It does say very, very clearly, don't become unglued! Don't fall to pieces when you are in this situation. Be able to just simply boldly get up there, because the Word that will come through your mouth will come from the very Spirit of God. We do not have to worry about that. There's an ironclad promise there.

If you turn over to Luke 21, we find this same principle therefore being applied.

Luke 21:12-15 But before all these, they shall lay their hands on you, and persecute you, delivering you up to the synagogues, and into prisons, being brought before kings and rulers for my name's sake. (13) And it shall turn to you for a testimony. (14) Settle it therefore in your hearts, not to meditate before what you shall answer: (15) For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be able to gainsay nor resist.

So this same principle is being applied here. Although it doesn't say ... Merimnao isn't being used here. Nevertheless, it's very clear from other sections where this same principle is being applied that we are not to become unglued. We are not to fall to pieces when we find ourselves within this situation.

Luke 21:16-20 And you shall be betrayed both by parents, and brethren, and kinsfolks, and friends; and some of you shall they cause to be put to death. (17) And you shall be hated of all men for my name's sake. (18) But there shall not an hair of your head perish. (19) In your patience possess you your souls. (20) And when you shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh.

Now there's the abomination that makes desolate. It's these things that seem to flow into the abomination that makes desolate, and that is one of the crucial. The days of Daniel is actually mentioned and brought within there. Now what is important, therefore, is that today, as we go through life, we need to be practicing how to not become unglued in certain areas. Sometimes we do need to find ourself before certain people. And if we pray to God and God gives us the help that is necessary, we need to understand that God is there. You can trust Him. We know that when these specific future events come up, we'll have gone through the various scenarios in our own life. If we've gone through the practice sessions, then we can proceed with total confidence knowing that this scripture, these scriptures, are here; and we can have that confidence and not go to pieces over the events that we find ourself in.

Unglued When We Lose The Center: (PLAY FROM 35:18)

See, the problems really are that we tend to lose the center. If you will, turn over to Luke 10. We've gone into the priorities and how the physical things ... So often we tend to put too much stock with the physical. But here in Luke 10 is the account of Martha and Mary:

Luke 10:38-41 Now it came to pass, as they went, that he entered into a certain village: and a certain woman named Martha received him into her house. (39) And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus' feet, and heard his word. (40) But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to him, and said, Lord, dost you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Bid her therefore that she help me. (41) And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, you are careful and troubled about many things ...

And the word careful there is merimnao. You're coming to pieces. You're becoming unglued. And the vernacular would be "Martha, you're becoming unglued about many things. You're troubled about many things."

Luke 10:42 But one thing is needful [Now the 'needful' is not just for Mary. The 'needful' there is for both these women. Where it says "one thing is needful," the indication is that Martha also needed to get her mind focused on the "one thing is needful." She needed to get her mind centralized again. One thing is needed.]: and Mary has chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.

The center is actually there. Now Mr. Armstrong does mention in an article10 in the Good News of August 85. I think it's posted on the www.getbackontrack.org website. I think it's even mentioned on the www.cogiw.org website, but we can certainly post it with the file. And right towards the end he says:

All spiritual power and strength must come from God. [That's where our spiritual power comes from. There's no other source of it at all] We can drink it in from Him only when we are IN CONTACT with Him - close to Him - in communion with Him!

You see it's a bike shop principle.{11} We don't "kind of" have the Spirit and therefore use it. We have access to God. That's what it's all about. If we have access to God and have communication with Him, then God gives us His Spirit as a river that flows from God into us and out of us again. It is the bike shop principle. If it's not going out in the right way, then we won't get any more. If we're not in contact with God, if that communication with God is broken down, then we haven't got the pipe, if you like. But it's not a static thing. It's not something that we have and must use. It's something that is flowing through us - when we have the communication right, when we have the outlet right. And it says:

We can drink it in from Him only when we are IN CONTACT with Him - close to Him - in communion with Him!

Otherwise, when the temptations suddenly assail you, no matter how hard you then try, or cry out to God for help, you are simply TOO FAR AWAY FROM HIM to get help!

It's a case of constantly being in contact with God, and doing it on a daily basis. And where we start to fall down, where we feel we're drifting away, then it takes fasting and prayer. It takes a certain degree of fasting. He mentions:

Sometimes it takes a siege of FASTING AND PRAYER - earnest, determined, persevering prayer - seeking God with all our might - with weeping - staying with it, DETERMINED, until we get through. Then we must keep in CONTINUOUS prayer.

This is another section from the same article. But he says, he goes on:

[We] cry out to God for help, you are simply TOO FAR AWAY FROM HIM to get help!

Spiritual training, to get and KEEP in constant vigilant condition to meet the foe of temptation and sin, requires continuous, earnest, persistent PRAYER!

This is why Mr. Armstrong, when he was asked, "How often do you pray? Is it once, twice, three times a day?" - he says, "It's hundreds of times a day." It is a continuous thing, that we are continuously in contact with God. This is why Christ was the Christ, the Anointed One. The Father was always with Him. The flow of that Holy Spirit, the bike shop principle, was always on the go. And it was that flow, that contact, that was always there.

Spiritual training, to get and KEEP in constant vigilant condition to meet the foe of temptation and sin, requires continuous, earnest. persistent PRAYER! That is why we are commanded to PRAY WITHOUT CEASING! TO KEEP IT UP!

That's how it's done. If we lose the center, if we somehow sever that link, then when things come along we become unglued - because, as it says here, this one thing is needful, this one center is needful; and Mary has chosen that one center. That's where she was going to go ahead and get the words that she was listening to.

Luke 10:39 And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus' feet, and heard his word.

And had that Word, which was coming from the very Spirit of God, flowing through Christ, listening to that Word; and that was her center. And this was what Christ brought out to Martha. Martha's center was different. Martha's center was on the physical things that she was having to do, the very serving; and she started becoming unglued. And so it is very important that we don't lose that center.

Turn over to Psalms 27.

Psalms 27:1 - A Psalm of David. - The [ETERNAL] is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the [ETERNAL] is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?

Remember, we've just been reading about how this becoming unglued is going to be a problem, a potential problem in the future. If our center is right, if our communication is right, if that Spirit is flowing through us the way it needs to; and when it's not, then we take the time and trouble that's necessary to get back on track again and start that communication with God again. And if we have not been praying, then we need to be praying. I think it's even in that same article. I didn't actually copy the whole article, HOW TO BE AN OVERCOMER.{10} Mr. Armstrong recommends that if we find that we haven't repented, then we need to lock ourself in a room and pray, and keep praying until we really do get through and we know, and we KNOW that we know, that we've repented, that we've changed from our way to God's way and that we have actually got through. That's what we've got to do, because that is the source of our strength. We do not have the strength ourself. The Holy Spirit isn't something in us; it is something that we are led by, through us. It is in us, it flows through us. It's the Bike Shop principle. It flows from God.

Psalms 27:1 - A Psalm of David. - The [ETERNAL]is my light and my salvation [my rescue]; whom shall I fear? the [ETERNAL] is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?

Who am I going to be afraid of? What kind of man is gonna be match enough for this Being that I'm plugged in to?

Psalms 27:2-3 When the wicked, even mine enemies and my foes, came upon me to eat up my flesh, they stumbled and fell. (3) Though an host should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear: though war should rise against me, in this will I be confident.

Now this is where our center's got to be, the same center that David says in this Psalm.

Psalms 27:4-5 One thing have I desired of the [ETERNAL] that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the [ETERNAL] all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the [ETERNAL], and to enquire in his temple. (5) For in the time of trouble he shall hide me in his pavilion: in the secret of his tabernacle shall he hide me; he shall set me up upon a rock.

Absolutely Rock solid, Rock center; and that is what the trust is in. That's where the center is. That's where we can make sure that we don't start falling apart. We start falling apart when we lose that center - when that center becomes something different, whatever it might be.

Something Mr. Pippy quoted last week, over in Jeremiah 17, is worth reading again.

Jeremiah 17:5 Thus saith the [ETERNAL]; Cursed be the man that trusts in man ...

Now that includes you and me, if we trust in ourselves and trust that WE have the Spirit of God; but we don't really go to God for it, that we don't have the Spirit flowing from God down to us by constant communication.

Jeremiah 17:5 Thus saith the [ETERNAL]; Cursed be the man that trusts in man, and makes flesh his arm, and whose heart departs from the [ETERNAL].

It is from the Eternal, through the very heart of man, that the strength comes.

Jeremiah 17:6 For he shall be like the heath in the desert, and shall not see when good comes; but shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, in a salt land and not inhabited.

We had this plant, the Rose of Jericho. Rose of Sharon is it? I thought it was the Rose of Jericho. Whatever. [laughs] Well, it's the Rose of Somewhere. And this particular plant, which was at the Feast, which Mr. Henderson brought. And that was a wizened old dried up looking hedgehog kind of thing. Heh. All these people who don't know what a hedgehog is. A little kind of ball. Anyway, it was a wizened up ball. But, when you put it in water, then it suddenly opened up and became green. And these plants are designed for desert conditions, and they sit in the dry and the heath.

Jeremiah 17:6-8 For he shall be like the heath in the desert, [like this Rose of the Desert] and shall not see when good comes; but shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, [in other words, in other areas where the water is, it hasn't come near this particular place]in a salt land and not inhabited. (7) Blessed is the man that trusts in the [ETERNAL], and whose hope the [ETERNAL] is. [where the center is right] (8) For he shall be as a tree planted by the waters, and that spreads out her roots by the river, and shall not see when heat comes, but her leaf shall be green; and shall not be careful in the year of drought, neither shall cease from yielding fruit.

And again, you can say, it's not going to become unglued because that flow is there. Isn't it? The trust and the hope is in God. That flow will be there; and, therefore, the center is going to be right.

God's Perspective is Forward - Unlike Ours: (PLAY FROM 47:23)

You know, the perspective--God's perspective - in trials is different than ours; and this is something that we need to understand. That when we go and we get our center right, and we therefore cease to be unglued about the situation that we find ourself in; the perspective of God is not the same as ours. Because, when we look at our trial, we look at where we are today; and we look back at how the trial actually began, and that's the trial. The trial to us is from the past, forward to today. We don't know what the future will bring. We've got to live in day-type compartments. We can't look into the future. But God can. And if we are in contact with God, we are in contact with a Being whose perspective of a trial He allows on His people, He allows on His children, (because that's what they are), you're looking from that point forward. You're looking not backwards at all. You're looking from that point forward. Because He sees the result of that trial, sees the fruit that will be produced by that trial; and therefore allows it to continue.

Turn over to Isaiah 46, and we see how this Being that we are dealing with is different from us.

Isaiah 46:3-4 Hearken unto me, O house of Jacob, [Now, who is he talking to? He's talking to physical Israel, the House of Jacob, Ephraim and Manasseh - England and America, the British (English) speaking peoples.]and all the remnant of the house of Israel, which are borne by me from the belly, which are carried from the womb: (4) And even to your old age I am he; and even to hoar hairs will I carry you: I have made, and I will bear; even I will carry, and will deliver you.

Now, He's got a plan for the physical nations of Israel, and we are part of that plan. Whether we are from Nigeria or Kenya or from any other area, it makes no difference. Whether we are physical Israelites or well, I was going to say merely spiritual Israelites; but we are all spiritual Israelites, and that is the more important thing. But there is a firm plan for physical Israel, initially, within the Millennium as the Model Nation. That's our first job.

Isaiah 46:5-6 To whom will you liken me, [This Being, Jesus Christ, who was the God of the Old Testament, who became Jesus Christ.] and make me equal, and compare me, that we may be like? (6) They lavish gold out of the bag, and weigh silver in the balance, and hire a goldsmith; and he makes it a god: they fall down, yes, they worship.

Be it Play Stations or be it X-Boxes or whatever the latest thing is; and they put all their accoutrements into it, and this is the latest gadget and gizmo, or their weaponry. Again, they lavish gold; they lavish silver. The contacts and everything else. They make their weaponry and they bow down to it; and they bow down to their silver and their gold and their money, which is not silver and gold these days:

Isaiah 46:7-10 They bear him upon the shoulder, they carry him, and set him in his place, and he stands; from his place shall he not remove: yes, one shall cry unto him, yet can he not answer, nor save him out of his trouble. (8) Remember this, and show yourselves men: bring it again to mind, O you transgressors. (9) Remember the former things of old: for I am God, [This is the true God, the One and Only True God.]and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me, [This is the One where the center is, and the perspective on trials is not from this point back. Notice what it says.] (10) Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure.

Remember when Abraham was told by God that your people will serve in another land, will serve them for 400 years and they will come out? Remember that passage there? You imagine you are looking at Joseph. Here is this individual. If you want to just put it down in your notes, Psalms 105:18{13} where it talks about how Joseph had his feet hurt in the irons and the fetters. He was probably crippled. He'd gone ahead and given his interpretation of the dreams of the butler and the baker; and the baker had his head taken off; and the butler was then restored. That was a year, or a year and a half, before; and he was still there in prison. He was still crippled in prison. He'd been in prison because he'd gone ahead and done something that was right. Where was God in all this? You're looking at somebody there who was going through a trial, who was probably becoming unglued. And it would be natural and human for him to become unglued in such a situation.

But, you know, when you look at the perspective that God had in that trial, what was He doing? He was training Joseph for a certain position, a position of rulership, a position he would need to actually have, in order to fulfill an entire panoramic view of history where the nation of Israel would come from Jacob and the 12 sons would then come into that land of Egypt, would grow into a nation there and then be rescued, going all the way down into the Millennial rule and Christ and everything else that would have to take place. Here was this individual, who all he could see was the trial backwards. He saw himself in prison. He'd given his interpretation of the dream to the butler and the baker. They had come true. But he couldn't see his way forward. And in a matter of what? Even unto the day that he was actually called and summoned, he didn't know. And then he was called. He was summoned. He was transferred from being in the dungeon right the way through to being second in command in the most wealthy nation and the greatest nation on the face of the Earth at the time.

You see, God is looking from trial forward. We look at trial backwards. And if we get our center right, if the center is put right, we make sure that the center is right, we make sure that our contact is with God and that the Spirit of God is flowing through us, then from that center, from that perspective, comes a mindset that is not ours. It is not our own. And this is what is needed. When we get in our trials, it is exactly what is needed.

If we turn over to Hebrews 12, here he's talking about how:

Hebrews 12:6-8 For whom the Lord loves he chastens, and scourges every son whom he receives. (7) If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chastens not? [It's interesting in society then as opposed to the society today.](8) But if you be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are you bastards, and not sons.

So that really does reflect upon the way in which our society has gone.

Hebrews 12:11 Now no chastening for the present seems to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward [now notice, afterwards] it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby.

When we go through a trial, when God allows a trial to come on us, He is looking forward. He allows that to be there for the benefit that will be there of righteousness, which will be in the future. And, if we've got our center right, then we can understand at least that that is actually taking place; and that we can, therefore, not become unglued in the process. It's part of the lessons that we need to learn in this process of not allowing ourselves to become unglued.

Final scripture, Philippians 4. Here this word is being used, and it tells us a great deal. When we've been looking at the areas that are necessary, then we make sure that it's not a case of ... Let's make sure I've got all those points: that we're not unglued over the physical things that are there; that we make sure that we are not unglued for the morrow, for the things that are in the future; that there are certain specific future events that are actually mentioned that we can make sure that we are not unglued over, when we are called forth before rulers. It may well be that these physical things that we are going through now, that we, if you like, are having a practice run for certain things in the future. But the importance is that we do not become unglued by losing the center, making sure that center is there because God is looking at the trial forward. He is not seeing the trial backwards, which is the way that we tend to look at it in our trials.

But here in Philippians 4, it says:

Philippians 4:4-7 Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice. [In other words, rejoice in what God is doing, that He's working with us. He's working with each and every one of us.] (5) Let your moderation [Let your yieldedness; yieldedness to this working with us, in other words.] be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand. [He knows. Christ knows what's going on. He's working with His people, ready to have this people ready for the job in which they are going to be used in the future.] (6) [DO NOT BECOME UNGLUED for anything] Be careful [The word careful there is merimnao. Don't go to pieces over anything.] for nothing; [And this is how:] but in every thing [whatever trial you're going through] by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving [Now, just notice that - with thanksgiving. If you're thankful, then you've not got your mind on yourself. You've got your mind on that center. It's that center that you're looking at primarily. "With thanksgiving ... "]let your requests be made known unto God. [So you're praying to God. The center is on God in that case.](7) And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

It's not our peace. It's the peace of God. If the center is put right, if we've got that contact through prayer and we maintain that contact through prayer, then the Spirit of God therefore flows. Then this peace of God will keep our hearts and minds. It's not our peace. It's not just something you kind of work up. It's getting that center right. Making sure that the center is right. And so this is so truly important that we do not fall to pieces in a trial. We do not come to pieces like a bunch of furniture that's been put in caustic soda too long. We're not going to be tried above anything that we are able to bear. But in that trial, it says, don't come to pieces for anything.

Philippians 4:6-7 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. (7) And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.


Transcribed by JF January, 2006