Some time ago on American TV a programme was very popular that in later years invaded, British TV. It was a programme that had some what of a cult following, a strange programme looking at issues in quite different ways. It created stranger looking creations, dealt with science on the edge of discovery and took it into fiction. Change, altered egos, altered physical forms as well as altered science. Not that I followed it but it was interesting and intriguing along with disturbing, it was in the ‘Twilight Zone’ where things were not as they seemed, in-between stages where things became de-stabilised, not belonging to the past or present, an altered reality.
Well it seems that you and I are those beings who have “…tasted of an age to come…”, we are to bring the order of God to our world (heaven coming to earth, the coming of the Kingdom of God) we too have been called to reside as “citizens” of another reality. We diligently bring about the realm of God in our lives and our surroundings only to realise we belong to another place… How on earth do we deal with that condition to be people of the “not yet”, the “coming age”, people of a Twilight Zone that is still seen dimly and yet has clear principles. Ways of life, life giving ways that have been explained to us by the life of Jesus, how to conduct your self, what should fill our hearts and minds, our response to being loved first, what is our response, having been shown generosity, grace, mercy.
This Twilight Zone you could call a time of transition, my questions is does it ever change? Is this way of living a way of continual living until Father Son and Spirit receive their goal in calling creation forth. A world filled with many sons, a world where Christ will fill all, where G O D’s first cause, G O D ’s ultimate aim comes to fulfilment and full-ment. Until then we are to be in contact transition, constant progression, constant change, in an in-between state in the Twilight Zone…
What is your Twilight Zone like? What does your zone make you feel like I wonder? imagine if you can young Samuel’s experience as he grows to be a prophet of God, seeking to faithfully serve God with many challenges around him, I am now learning to hear God, I do understand God’s ways, reaching and trying to know the inner workings, dealings of God, how does the kingdom work, what are lt’s secrets the order of God, works.
He had to deal with
The perplexing paradox of Eli
The incredible patience of God with a corrupt priesthood
Everything in Samuel wanting to responding to Eli’s righteous exhortations, whereas nothing in him corresponded to Hophni or Phinehas’s lifestyle
The challenges of maintaining sensitivity to the voice of God
His deepening pain over what he was hearing from God and what he saw in the nation
The growing awareness that God would not allow this situation for ever
The in the grief knowing that God would remove Eli, as well as his sons
He did not try to do God’s job, but held to the function God had given Samuel to serve Eli and the Lord in the temple
There is no reference to Samuel’s involvement with the loss of the arc of the Lord to the Philistine, nor its return to Israel. But his opening words show he was ready for that moment, he recognised the signal from heaven to initiate dramatic change in the nation.
1 Samuel 7:3 (NLB)
“if you are really serious about wanting to return to the Lord, get rid of your following gods and your images of Ashteroth. determine to obey only the Lord; then he will rescue you from the Philistine’s”
Despite the spiritual darkness of his time, and joined as he was to the failing Eli, Samuel was some one whose heart burned with passion for God. He kept faith in the covenant promises with and covenant purpose of God to his generation. He was sustained by a continuing prophetic revelation of God which kept the flame licked and burning in his heart
1 Samuel 3: 21-4:1
“on the Lord appeared again at Shiloh, because the Lord revealed himself to Samuel at Shiloh by the word of the Lord. Thus the word of Samuel came to all Israel”
If God had not had a word for Samuel, Samuel would not have had a word for Israel. What a fundamental lesson, but a fundamental insight that first the prophet requires a word, a voice, is sounded and only then when it has had its internal implication to that vessel the word should be spoken fourth. We must recognise the difference between the prophet, prophesying the word of the Lord situation and a person preaching the Word of God to a congregation. Although at times the prophetic may be in the preached word, is not always so.
When the prophetic word comes –
It provokes change in attitude or action, as does revelation. that is, its first sound is to the hearer to say I cannot stay as I am. Every utterance prophetically says I cannot stay where I am, I cannot stay as I am, it brings the power to transformation every twilight zone living.
It focuses the purpose of God so that you do not fall victim to forces that would love you to be deviated from the divine purpose
It carries with it was the essential to your establishing the gains already made, while propelling you forward to secure new gains. This is painted in a wonderful picture of Nehemiah’s urge to the people to carry a sword and a trowel, to protect themselves and what they have accomplished while they’re working to add whatever building.
It comes with passionate conviction and deep certainty of the prophet can say ‘this is the voice of God’, which enables the prophet to remain at rest above whatever appears to contradict the word he has become.
So today, in our generation we continue to see and have seen incredible changes, advances and threats in the world around us. In the West terrorism threats, in Africa in some nations dreadful medical threats, in many parts of the world economic threats along with advances like never before technology, medical, understanding, the accessibility to all knowledge to every person on a small mobile telephone. There is incredible progress in the realm of the spirit, in Revelation, in demonstration we are overwhelmed hourly by what God is explaining of this God given life, a life turned towards humanity. We are seeing incredible blessings in lives being set free, healing, deliverances, recognition of callings, restoration of the church, times of refreshing-revival reported from around the world. This is twilight zone…
While we are excited by Gods workings, we remain unimpressed with the calibre of Christianity inside the very communities experiencing these blessing listed above. Often, a person’s experience of the spirit is not balanced by the understanding of the life in the spirit-the experience of power is not matched by the needful perception of purpose.
Utilise our operation within the Twilight zone, we pray fervently, we teach faithfully that the eyes of people’s understanding might be opened (Eph 1:18.19, Col 1:28)
“…and for this purpose also why labour, striving according to Gods power, which mightily works within me. For I want you to know how great a struggle I have on your behalf… that their hearts may be encouraged, having been knit together in love…that comes from the full assurance of understanding, resulting in a true knowledge of God’s mystery, that is Christ himself, in whom are hidden all treasures of wisdom and knowledge…”
Our inability not to remain within the prophetic passion for God’s purpose has given us “Christianity of the trivial” out of the zone. Our faith has deteriorated into a competitive scramble of small-minded egotists trying to relate or gain a few more to their cause, as opposed to working in harmony to advance the kingdom, discipling God’s people and pursuing unity in the bonds of peace.
Our cry from within the twilight zone is that in every place people will rise as prophets with this passion
Luke refers to Samuel in this fashion Acts 3:24-25
“all the prophets were spoken, from Samuel and his successors onward, also announced these days. It is you who are the sons of the prophets, and of the covenant which God made with your forefathers saying to Abraham ‘ and in your seed all the families of you shall be blessed’”
As you live in your twilight zone heralding in a new order, enlarging your taste of the age to come, being the exact representation of God as God’s ambassador may you remember you are in the line of ‘sons of the prophets, and of the covenant’ therefore listen as a son, live in your daily life as ‘sons of the prophets of the covenant’, and finally discover again with a passion what the ‘sons of the prophets’ said and saw, live your Twilight Zone as an adventure.