Imagine the original Pentecost. Imagine the preparation the participants had to go through. The God of the Universe was about to enter their space in an unprecedented manner. Should they not take it seriously?
Most churches don’t. Most ministers don’t. This is just fact. It’s the way it is. It’s the way it’s always been. God is out there somewhere and He has ideas on how to go about things and has even presented all generations since Pentecost with a written record and powerful historical happening as a reference and most Christians pay little or no attention to it.
You think God is concerned about that? How do you feel when you know you have the goods but are not acknowledged as such or welcome? Let’s say you’re really good at something (as most of you are) but next to no one cares about your craft/ability/knowledge or acknowledges it. Imagine, let’s say, a young baseball player who tears it up in high school and has a bright future but for some reason no scouts ever discover the lad or appreciate his talents. Somehow or another he is always under the radar. Let’s say there’s a young woman who has always been wonderfully skilled at art and has many wonderful paintings to her credit but for some reason no one ever notices. These two people have the goods but are effectively invisible.
If we multiply this scenario by some large unknown number we can get a handle on what it’s like to be human in this regard because the given description likely represents untold millions throughout history, especially the further back we go.
Most cultures and societies of the past had a limited understanding of human talent and also no outlets for their expression. Life is usually about survival. Rather than discovering one’s purpose, the higher priority is a tendency toward finding enough to eat and staying alive. For societies that branched out into new fields of endeavor, who showed more appreciation for unacknowledged human talents, say, like the ancient Greeks, additional opportunities arose. They were still limited, of course, and in time gravitated toward greater support for a few to the exclusion of others but at least the door opened wider.
It has only been maybe over the last two centuries or so that greater opportunities have arisen to make allowances for any number of personal giftings and talents. This was based on greater freedom and liberty and those few nations who allowed for freedom and liberty miraculously had a much greater preponderance of new levels of individual expression, inventions, in-depth knowledge on a great many subjects, and even entirely new sciences. Funny how that happened.
Imagine how so many Americans at present make no connection whatsoever between individual liberty and great accomplishments/prosperity. In other words, when the authoritarians, petty tyrants, and world class thieves get off a nation’s back, the people revert once again to living life to the fullest with much joy and peace, a great preponderance of individual accomplishment, and overall prosperity.
This ridiculous turn of events has also happened with regard to Christianity. The Dark Ages began due to evil “Christian” religionists engaging in their version of the following:
“But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites, because you shut off the kingdom of heaven from people; for you do not enter in yourselves, nor do you allow those who are entering to go in.” [Matthew 23:13]
The Dark Ages ended because a few brave spiritual giants, notably John Wycliffe in the late 1300s and two centuries later, William Tyndale, decided they would translate the Bible into English and set it free from the prison of Latin. In between those two, Johannes Gutenberg invented a printing press with moveable type. This invention was roughly equivalent to the internet of that day. Biblical knowledge flourished because Bible printing abounded. Christians gained much greater access to the Word of God. Also, literacy increased as did access to historical records. The first few valiant and courageous spiritual pioneers who got it going paid dearly, of course, but later generations were greatly blessed by their priceless efforts.
Later on, when the Lord began adding personal spiritual experiences that matched those of the Early Church it proved the neglected record within the Book of Acts, and consequently, real Christianity came alive. We had a precursor Great Awakening in the 1730s-40s in America that laid the spiritual groundwork for the eventual Declaration of Independence and the American Revolution, and the very creation of this country which proved the Lord was certainly involved. In case you’re wondering, God is always on the side of human freedom. He greatly appreciates it when people think like Him (what are the odds of that?). But notwithstanding the fact that we are all comparative dunces, we can still “think like Him” in general when we apply His attitude toward people. God loves us. He wants us to be free. This is actually the meaning of His Name. His desire that we be free should be obvious with all He has done, but the presence of sin and evil in this world mutes this truth and people either don’t acknowledge Him on purpose or lose sight of Him after childhood.
But the fact remains—God is good. He is great. He is loving. He is powerful. But He is also respectful of our preferences and choices. If people don’t want Him He never forces the issue. He is a gentleman. And for the record, while many people have been rejected and/or treated with indifference to some degree, no one has suffered in this regard as much as the Lord Jesus. Even when He was being led to His death, when so many were jeering and spewing their hatred, He soldiered on in love, looking at the great prize He was about to gain for us all. And it never mattered if only a few would accept His sacrifice on their behalf or if it was only one person. He still would have done it.
After His willingness to give so much, to give everything, why do the majority of those who refer to themselves as Christians refuse to do likewise? Every single Christian should be on his or her face before God pleading with Him for help to be the best he or she can be. We should all be asking for His full Light. We should all want to be real disciples as they were in the beginning. Instead, most want no part of such. They would rather present only a modicum of assent or service and never be inconvenienced. They desire just enough to feel they are okay and no more. Sadly, such Christians find a plurality of “ministers” to help them in their false Christian stance. Such ministers enable their understated rebellion.
Real ministers, however, tell the truth. They point repeatedly and directly to the full teachings of the Lord.
This was the attitude of the original 120 at Pentecost. They gave everything and wanted everything. They refused to settle. Pentecost was the dividing line. Those who crossed that line to the Upper Room experience received all the Lord had for them. These were a mere minority but such is always the case. Spiritually speaking, the “majority” is always wrong. Keep that in mind when trying to figure out why so many churches are dead, dull, and lifeless, or in other words, the very opposite of God and His intentions. There is no or little life in these places because the people there refuse to fully submit to the Lord. Though they have been falsely convinced they are right with God they are actually still uncleansed, still in sin, and still deceived by the evil one. If it were not so they would be filled with the life of the Lord and everyone would know it.
As the current Great Awakening proceeds, there will be a greater distinction between Light and darkness. Just as it is obvious to those who dwell in the light what the darkness is, many more will become aware of this difference. The kid who could play ball will understand that remaining in the wrong place will be a continued detriment to his ability to play. The wonderful young artist who no one appreciates will understand that changing venues will create opportunities. They will leave the dead spaces and venture into the wide open green pastures of freedom and opportunity where their talent can take off and shine. They decide they no longer care about the status quo or saving face, or remaining in a place of societal acceptance though their hearts die within them. They take a chance on God.
This is what the Upper Roomers did. They gave up everything to be in that place. They were rejected by everyone in their lives not there, including family members who didn’t want the truth. They likely lost jobs and professions. Their social standing was gone forever. From henceforth they were known as crazy, strange, weird, and peculiar. The same thing happens when a muted believer leaves the relative darkness and ventures into the fullness of God’s Light. He or she is welcomed with open arms by the Lord and those who dwell there but are castigated by former acquaintances who were only interested in homogenized Christian tradition in opposition to the Lord.
The Big Reveal has arrived. It will increase. Christians on the bubble must make a choice.
© 2020 by R.J. Dawson. All Rights Reserved.
Any one of us is worth more than the entire Universe. A single person, any person, is worth more than all the resources of every planet and every galaxy and every sun and star that exists.
Each one of us is worth so much to God and loved so much by God that He became one of us and gave His perfect life for each of us.
We hear this and read this all the time but it seems to barely register. It seems Christians in general may acknowledge this as a fleeting cold fact but never actually apply it or have it applied since so many still consider themselves next to worthless or completely expendable.
This is understandable in the context of a cold and cruel world. But if the same dynamic plays out in Christian circles among Christian adherents then it is obvious that something is seriously wrong with that particular brand or expression of Christianity.
In fact, such brands and expressions are not Christianity at all—not real Christianity. Unless the expression of love matches the expression of God’s love then such brands are fake.
There is no other way to say it.
Human beings do not have to be inherantly capable of matching God’s love, but only receiving it, possessing it, and expressing it. The simple fact that God’s real, wonderful, overwhelming, joyous, and powerful love does not exist in such places and among such people only proves that the Lord is not there because He is not wanted.
And if He is not there and not wanted, the entire place and process is nothing more than one more worldly expression of being without God and His love and is of no more spiritual worth than a meeting of atheists.
Christians have this sense that there are times of coldness and dreariness that inevitably descend upon their undertakings thus revealing the need for occasional “revivals.” But a revival in any other sense means a resuscitation, which portends an advent of death or something close to it.
How does a Christian community die?
With reference to the early Christians, these ideas of Christian existence without God’s love, and existing at the point of death are not only completely wrong, they are a reflection of both surrender to the enemy and failed surrender to God. It is an indication of uncrucified fleshly humanity being in charge showcasing spiritually dead fleshly humanity and not the born again variety pulsing with the bountiful life of God. It is an indication that a spiritually dead human being and/or human beings are in charge. (Death begets death.)
Hence, the reason a person feels somewhat worthless within a Christian congregation is not because he or she is worthless to God, but that he or she is worthless to those in charge.
This is indicated by having such a person and the majority of persons there made to enter into a static location, sit down among a crowd, and above all things keep silent and keep his or her opinions to himself or herself. Only a few will have any allowance to actually participate. One will get to participate the most. That one and those other few will no doubt have few feelings of worthlessness. They know they must be special because they feel special. They have been granted the right to be something more than just an observer—an observing non-participant—a member of the audience—a mere face in the crowd.
“Oh no,” the few may say. “That is not true. God loves you!” they say.
But such words just don’t get it done. EVERYONE MUST PARTICIPATE, and if the unreal man-made structure does not allow for that then one must dump the structure and appropriate the organic method facilitated by the Lord.
We read about the great sacrifice the Lord Jesus made on our behalf. We know intellectually that He gave everything. It’s just that most Christians do not feel it. They may know it academically, but they do not feel it in their hearts. And after so many years they know it is their problem and no one else’s because no one else has an answer except to give them the same old unfeeling words that simply do not satisfy.
As a result an indifference takes hold spawned by the indifference of those in charge, who would rather that everyone sit down orderly and remain silent as a point toward proper control rather than address the issues that matter most to those with hurting hearts in need of the very love of God originally promised that never arrives.
They then began picturing God Himself as the one who is distant and unfeeling. Thus, the great sacrifice of a greatly loving Man proving His heartfelt love and concern for each of us is relegated to mere pictures on a wall (or in some cases much statuary), or a blurry image in one’s head.
Is it any wonder then that Christian lifers are those who have simply accepted that they will never see the great power of God they read about or His great love they wish they had, but instead force themselves to go through dead religious practices ad infinitum while possibly looking forward to heaven when perhaps they will at last experience all that the early church practiced?
If such a scenario plays out, the Lord will tell them they could have had it all before they ever got there. And that in fact it is the way He designed it! The kingdom of heaven brought to planet Earth by the Lord two thousand years ago is designed by Him to be heaven on earth!
But because of the Lord not being in control due to being shut out by the human controllers of most Christian brands and expressions, the heaven He desires to give us and the great love that goes with it in the here and now is denied.
Better we look good to the world and be in control rather than have some silly revival break out, they say. We certainly don’t want any Great Awakenings. How could we ever control that? It would be a nightmare, they say.
Well, I say all you Lord Jesus being in control deniers can go stick it in your left ear and the rest in your right ear and wherever else. You idiots have denied God’s people long enough.
And if my loyal readers allow me just one little phrase to get the point across, I also say to all the deniers of God’s greatest love, power, answers, and solutions—those who block God from filling hearts with His love that they may KNOW they are loved by God and FEEL His love—“Get the hell out of the way! Let God have His way!”
The great news is that we are in the early stages of a national Great Awakening that’s going to blow the doors off. The powers that be and the devil himself are mucho afraid because they know there’s nothing they can do about it. THE LORD JESUS IS GOD AND HAS ALL POWER IN HEAVEN AND EARTH! HIS ENEMIES KNOW IT AND ARE CONSEQUENTLY SCARED TO NO END.
The only chance they have, therefore, or have ever had, is to convince Christians that real Christianity is a lie, and most Christian controllers have bought the lie, and spend their time doing the devil’s bidding whether they know it or not, instead of obeying God.
There will be a special place in hell for all those Christian controllers who refuse to allow the Lord Jesus to be in control of His own movement.
But great thanks to the millions who have seen through all the religious shenanigans and false fronts and refused to partake unless the Lord is the Captain. These people want God in charge and they prove it by allowing Him to be in full charge of their own lives. They have submitted the only thing they control to His control, just exactly as He commanded.
As a result, there are people on this planet who shine with the love and power of God because He has been allowed residence within them. When you get many of these people together in one place the roof goes off, just like it did in the Upper Room.
Again, for any unbelievers or doubters, check out what’s going on in other places in the world—great spiritual awakenings and happenings—and use it for reference toward what must take place in America, and is beginning to.
The only ones who have ever had the ability to stop the powerful movements of God are the faux Christians—the fakers—the ones who agree with the devil that great LIFE and LIGHT and a powerful spiritual expression of LIBERTY and LOVE are the last thing we need.
But He said to him, “Allow the dead to bury their own dead; but as for you, go and proclaim everywhere the kingdom of God.” [Luke 9:60] 
© 2014 by RJ Dawson. All Rights Reserved.
The Lord Jesus promises us an easy yoke. Think about that. The existence of an easy yoke implies the existence of its opposite—a difficult yoke, which no one really wants but many already have.
“Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and YOU WILL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULS.
“For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” [Matthew 11:29-30]
Rather than the counterfeit taskmasters we are used to or the dry, empty instruction of lifeless hirelings that do nothing for our hungry souls, the Lord identifies Himself as a gentle and humble teacher with a guaranteed promise.
He promises a light burden instead of heavy and hard to carry burdens and bleak servitude. He promises an easy yoke, signifying His teaching in the service of God instead of the scribal standard that never satisfies the soul. And He attempts to convince us to trust Him regarding His promises and our discipleship under His authority, that our hearts may be fulfilled and satisfied, and that we find the refreshing we seek.
His intention is to remove us from the fruitless instruction of others (“learn from Me”) and bless us with the spiritual rest and refreshing we need and desire.
He wants to take us back through the fog of countless incomplete and incorrect teachings and teachers to the beginning, to the foundation, to the well—to the answer. He quotes Jeremiah:
Thus says the LORD, “Stand by the ways and see and ask for the ancient paths, where the good way is, and walk in it; and you will find rest for your souls.” [Jeremiah 6:16]
There is another word in the original languages closely associated with the one used for yoke in the above narrative, and is used with reference to a yoked pair. It relates to a rough wooden yoke built for two farm animals standing side by side with their heads yoked together at the neck to work in tandem.
Could it be the Lord is also telling us to be yoked together with Him as in the above? If so, He has already placed Himself in one side of the yoke and is asking each of us to place ourselves in the other side. By this, He would also be saying He will never ask us to do what He is not doing.
Consider the implications of this arrangement—whatever the Lord may propose to do will instantly involve us doing it as well. He refers to it as His yoke, not ours. Yet, even in that, once we are yoked together He cannot force us to go along. We must make the choice to work with Him BESIDE Him. And because it’s an easy yoke, He will always consider a pace we can handle.
This is completely indicative of why Abraham was credited with righteousness. When he entered into covenant with the Lord, as pairing up with Him in a yoke, Abraham committed himself to work alongside the Lord and do whatever was required for the rest of his life. This is the commitment a real Christian makes.
Are we following the Lord within this arrangement? Yes, certainly. Though He is not geographically in front, He still leads, that is, until we learn to work with Him. At that point following Him becomes natural and second nature.
This is what the farm animals do. When a pair of animals is first teamed up they must learn to work together. It takes time and effort to synchronize themselves one with the other, and is much harder than it may appear. The two may fight and pull against each other in the beginning, and maybe even buck. And since the driver following behind wants strong and stout animals it is that much harder to get them on the same page.
For each animal, the arrangement is unnatural. It is difficult enough to be strapped to a plow but to be yoked to another animal as well and be expected to work is next to impossible. The physical strictures are beyond uncomfortable. The entire arrangement demands revolt, which includes yet another brutal cruelty—the callous commands of the driver holding the reins.
How can these two independent farm animals with minds and instincts of their own make such an unnatural set-up work? What if one lags? What if one is trying to set a stronger pace than the other can handle? What if one becomes obstinate like a stubborn mule and refuses to conform? Eventually one becomes the leader and the other follows along until the two arrive at a united and steady pace.
This can take quite a while. The driver must drive the team but also have enough patience to make it work. A good team is hard to put together, but once successful, a lot more work can be accomplished with a yoked team than with two singles.
Consider the pastoral scene before us two thousand years ago. The Lord Jesus was teaching disciples very familiar with the particulars of the illustration. These were rural and semi-rural men, most of whom made a living with their hands. They were in sight of the grainfields of Galilee and likely an existing team of yoked draft cattle working a field. The men would understand the spiritual significance of the Lord’s teaching by seeing the scene right before them.
Imagine, then, those in another rabbi’s school, or one animal in a tandem yoke. The Lord says any other teacher is essentially a mere hireling who has certainly not entered into a committed discipleship covenant with the student, and that a single draft animal in a tandem yoke meant for two is meaningless. In a spiritual sense, a single unyoked worker can certainly appear to work, but without the Lord can actually get nothing done:
“Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me. I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.” [John 15:4-5]
Now, considering the implications in the above passage, note in the following verse how the Lord perfectly modeled both the vine and branches figure and the yoke illustration:
Therefore Jesus answered and was saying to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, unless it is something He sees the Father doing; for whatever the Father does, these things the Son also does in like manner.” [John 5:19]
This is a perfect picture of the Father and Son being yoked together. The Father and Son, however, are not separate in the sense that two farm animals are separate, yet the two separate farms animals yoked together actually become one in an effectual sense regarding the work they accomplish. They pull together with the same exact strength walking at the same exact pace. They learn to work together so perfectly they instantly anticipate the other’s moves and make adjustments. If one animal suffers a misstep or an injury the other compensates for it. The two become a team working as one.
And He summoned the twelve and began to send them out in pairs… [Mark 6:7]
Now after this the Lord appointed seventy others, and sent them in pairs ahead of Him to every city and place where He Himself was going to come. [Luke 10:1]
As a tandem team of farm animals, so were these disciples. They were learning to work together.
The yoke teaching is thus:
(1) The Father and Son are yoked perfectly together.
(2) Each disciple individually must be yoked together with the Lord (Who is Father and Son).
(3) One disciple must be paired with another.
(4) Each pair must learn to work with each other pair.
The Lord was so successful in making all this unity happen He was able to gather 120 devoted disciples together in the upper room for the Holy Spirit outpouring of Pentecost! That’s not sixty pairs, though, but a single unit composed of 120 individuals. Each one of these were yoked with the Lord which made the yoking together of all possible.
It was the Lord Jesus, by His Holy Spirit, who provided the spiritual connective. This is also why the single fire which was manifested as the visible presence of God in the upper room separated into 120 parts, was distributed, and rested upon each disciple. This could not have happened if the 120 were not in spiritual unity.
This unity was so perfectly formed that the 120 functioned as a single ovum given life by the Spirit of God from which the entire Body of Christ would miraculously grow over the next 20 centuries. How did this happen and why does it rarely happen in comparison with all “Christian” expressions?
The key is in the apostle Peter’s address to the gathering crowd drawn together by the spectacle. Everyone in the upper room had already obeyed the directive later given by Peter or he would not have told the crowd to do something they had not already done.
Peter explained the prophecy of Joel and He identified the Lord as the Messiah and told them of His death and resurrection. He then revealed the yoking process designed to bind the people of God together:
“Therefore let all the house of Israel know for certain that God has made Him both Lord and Christ—this Jesus whom you crucified.” Now when they heard this, they were pierced to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brethren, what shall we do?”
Peter said to them, “Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” [Acts 2:36-38]
This is the secret. This is the answer. This is the easy yoke.
“For the promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off, as many as the Lord our God will call to Himself.” And with many other words he solemnly testified and kept on exhorting them, saying, “Be saved from this perverse generation!” [Acts 2:39-40]
A great many in the crowd did exactly that, which then continued the process of cell division and growth. By the end of the day the 120 had been multiplied to become 25 times as large!
So then, those who had received his word were baptized; and that day there were added about three thousand souls. [Acts 2:41] 
May your joy be full.
© 2014 by RJ Dawson. All Rights Reserved.
Please Take Time To Worship the Lord:
Real Life is the one thing lacking in the Christian experience of most, and it is the reason so many Christians are stacked up against the outside of the entry door to the Kingdom. Milling around without, not wanting to venture inside, they have set up transitory venues like so many crude wooden market booths constructed hastily against the outer walls. The door remains in their midst and every so often someone has the temerity to not only ask about it but want to proceed through it.
“We can’t have that!” the vendors all cry. Denominational Christianity always winces when someone wants to go deeper into a closer walk with God. They are all well aware of the real Spirit-filled experiences of others but have been so conditioned by their own reluctance and weakness, and also their cultural underpinnings to shun all things “Pentecostal,” that they successfully remain outside. The Lord continues to beckon all to the door however, as He always has. Large numbers of “I don’t think so’s” will not sway Him from His mission. The door of death has become persona non grata and down-to-earth Christians recoil at what would happen to their social standing if they followed the Lord through it.
The people on that original Day of Pentecost had the same concerns at some early point in their walks with God but had quickly cast off the doubts. They instead manned-up and courageously took a stand for God and the truth. They realized that something optimum must happen, that something very powerful and new awaited them on the other side, and that they must obey the Lord.
Gathering them together, He commanded them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait for what the Father had promised, “Which,” He said, “you heard of from Me; for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now. So when they had come together, they were asking Him, saying, “Lord, is it at this time You are restoring the kingdom to Israel?” He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or epochs which the Father has fixed by His own authority; but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth.” [Acts 1:4-8]
We all know what happened next. If only the Lord had arranged some other way that did not involve such boisterous expression and (crud!) speaking in tongues. What a terrible way to start the Church! Well, at least we can all be glad that it was over long ago, right? That it doesn’t happen anymore. That God has thankfully done away with it. That…
Well, the above is true, of course, for those who reject it and build church communities without it, and remove any and all people from their midst who actually do it. And there are other things behind that door of death, you know. The people outside hear stories of miraculous healings and strong manifestations of the very Spirit of God that never take place outside in the normal world. Some are always curious but are very concerned about breaking any social conventions and losing their standing among their fellows. I mean, what would people think, right? “Can’t do it, no sir. I’m stayin’ out here. Those people inside that door are freaks…”
For we also once were foolish ourselves, disobedient, deceived, enslaved to various lusts and pleasures, spending our life in malice and envy, hateful, hating one another. But when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared, He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by His grace we would be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life. [Titus 3:3-7]
There’s a Holy Ghost experience waiting inside the Kingdom. The Door of Death is always open. Real repentance removes our sin and all things that hinder, and prepares us for real Life. The 120 knew something incredible was going to happen, but no one could have imagined just how incredible.
Of the tens of thousands who followed the Lord during His ministry, only 120 followed Him all the way to the Upper Room. It was a command, of course, but not everyone obeyed. The majority never obeyed. You can be sure that at least a few hundred had severe second thoughts when the Day of Pentecost arrived. They had been the reluctant ones. The Lord had appeared to over five hundred at one time in His glorified state, but most of these experienced Pentecost outside the initial Upper Room experience. They refused to enter the Door of Death and thus did not understand that it was also The Door of Life. They stayed back and some even watched what was happening. They missed it! But many of them found their way to the streets below the Upper Room as Peter preached that initial message of the entire Church Age. They ran through the door and were a part of that original class of three thousand that turned Jerusalem upside down.
The moral of the story is that only a few are willing to be pioneers, leave all, and do all that the Lord requires, including entering the Door. They must experience real Life. They must show succeeding generations the Way.
© 2012 by RJ Dawson. All Rights Reserved. [Part 2 of 2]