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Seven Baskets Full
by George Hawtin

Treasures of Truth Vol. 19, "Seven Baskets Full":  The Six Statements of Malachi by George Hawtin

 

The prophet Malachi was sent by God to preach to the remnant of Israel who had returned from the captivity of Babylon. It was indeed a grave and troublesome time for them, for, though they had followed Ezra and Nehemiah out of the bondage, sorrow, and night of their captivity, even the blindest men can see that there was not a spirit of national revival among them by any means. The Spirit of God had burdened many with a great longing to leave Babylon and return to Israel now that the opportunity was afforded them, but though many had willingly left behind all they possessed in that kingdom of captivity to return in hope to their native land, the evidence suggests that only a very few of them had any true understanding or delight in the things of God. Perhaps it is too much to expect that a people who had been in captivity for a period of seventy years, deprived of their worship and forced into the corruption and idolatry of the Babylonians, would have much understanding of the plans and purposes of the true God. Those brave souls who follow the true God regardless of Baal or the gods of Pharaoh or Nebuchadnezzar are always in the infinitesimal minority. God never leaves Himself without a witness. He always has his remnant who has never bowed a head nor bent a knee either to Baal or to any of earth's systems. We may have to spend days in travel to reach them, for they are always scattered to the four winds, unrecognized by the world and frequently unknown to each other as were the seven thousand in Elijah's day.

As literal Israel in the days of Ezra and Nehemiah returned from the literal Babylon, so today spiritual Israel is returning from a spiritual Babylon to that Zion which God is now preparing for His own. The parallel is this: As they returned in much blindness and misunderstanding among the many who are now leaving the dreary traditions of the past with all the slavish forms of religion and monotonous ceremony. When Israel came out of Egypt, they were not ready to enter the land of Canaan, but with rebellious minds they groped in the wilderness and in their hearts often turned back to Egypt. So also it is now. But he who putteth his hand to the plow and looketh back is not fit for the kingdom of God. When Jesus said, "As it was in the day that Lot went out of Sodom, so shall it be in the day of the coming of the Son of man," He added these significant words: "Remember Lot's wife." Let none of us be like unto her who turned her eyes from the mountain before her to look with longing and regret toward that city of destruction from which she had so recently escaped. It is not the fact that we start the journey to the celestial realm that is important. It is not that we continue in the way for a week or a month or a year. The thing that really counts is that we continue year after year pressing on through mists or rain, o'er crag and torrent, through darkness and troubled seas, through misunderstanding and resentment until we reach the goal and seize the reward, the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. The world is full of spiritual "drop-outs", people who ran well or "also ran", but because of adversity were hindered in the race and turned back as a dog returns to his vomit or a sow to her wallowing in the mire. Let us look diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble us, and thereby many be defiled; lest there be any fornicator or profane (worldly) person as Esau, who for one morsel of meat sold his birthright, for we know how that afterward, when he would have inherited the blessing, he was rejected; for he found no place of repentance, though he sought it bitterly with tears. Heb. 12:15-17.

The prize that lies before the saints of God who are leaving the blinding traditions of the past and who are on the march to Zion is much greater than the hope of the Jews who returned to Zion with Nehemiah or of their forefathers who left Egypt with Moses, for "ye are come to Mount Zion and the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, to an innumerable company of angels, to the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect, and to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling that speaketh better things than that of Abel." Heb. 12:22-24. Therefore, let us be sure we do not refuse to hear the voice of God, for, if those who refused to hear those who spoke on earth did not escape, how little chance of escape is there for us if we refuse to hear the One who now speaks from heaven? Then His voice shook the earth, but now He promises, "Yet once more I will make to tremble, not the earth only, but also the heaven." This means that in the final shaking all that is not permanent, that is, everything that is merely "made", will be removed and only the unshakable things will remain. Since, then, we have been given a kingdom that is unshakable, let us serve God with thankfulness in the ways which please Him, but always with reverence and holy fear, for it is perfectly true that our God is a burning fire. Heb. 12:25-28.

 To be continued....

 

Treasures of Truth, volume 2, "Seed for the Sower and Bread for the Eater."  Divine Revelation

 

The writings of George Hawtin and A. P. Adams are available from:

 

Treasures of Truth

P.O. Box 99

Eagle, Idaho  83616  USA

Links to more writings by George Hawtin:

www.kingdomlife.com/kingdom/hawtinwritings.htm

 

 

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