—FAITH Dec. 30, 1971 No.154 A—DFO
P.O. Box 31, London WC2E 7LX, England or GPO Box 3141, San Juan, Puerto Rico 00936
1. (FAITH PROPHESIES:) IS IT NOT WHAT I ACCUSE THE FALSE SHEPHERDS OF? NEGLECT? NEGLECT OF THOSE THAT HAVE BEEN SCATTERED ABROAD AND WHO HAVE BEEN LED ASTRAY! Neglect that they did not seek them out nor find them, and bring them home and bind up their wounds. They did not try to save them from the wild beasts. Is not this what I have accused the false shepherds of? Is this not why I have taken away their place?
2. (TONGUES)...I AM VERY DISPLEASED WITH THEE, MY CHILDREN, BECAUSE YE HAVE NOT HAD THE COMPASSION ON OTHERS THAT I HAVE HAD ON THEE. Have I not been merciful unto thee? Have I not been long–suffering unto thee? Have I not shown thee much kindness and mercies even when in thine heart ye went very far astray? But yet I kept thee and I protected thee and I brought thee again and used thee to show the Way. Have ye not misled these? Have ye not led them to go astray?—In that ye have not cared for them as ye really should have. Ye have not really cared for My flock....
3. (TONGUES)...HAS NOT MY MERCY BEEN FROM EVERLASTING TO EVERLASTING? Has not My love been great? As far as the East is from the West, so far have I removed thy transgressions from thee. If I would reward thee according to thy sins, who would stand? IF I WOULD REWARD THEE ACCORDING TO THINE INIQUITIES, YE WOULD HAVE NOTHING. BUT I HAVE HAD MERCY ON THEE, MY CHILDREN. I HAVE HAD MERCY ON THEE. HAVE YE HAD MERCY ON THESE? The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much. Have ye prayed for these? Are they not thy responsibility? ...
4. (TONGUES)... WAS IT NOT THE ENCOURAGEMENT OF OTHERS THAT KEPT THEE? WHY SHOULDST THOU NEGLECT TO ENCOURAGE THESE LITTLE ONES WHO HAVE SO LITTLE STRENGTH? For I have succoured thee in a day when ye did not look for Me. I have borne thee, yea, I drew thee with My Spirit! Would ye that I dealt with thee according as ye have dealt with these? A GOOD SHEPHERD GIVETH HIS LIFE FOR THE SHEEP. DID NOT I LEAVE THE NINETY AND NINE TO GO AND SEARCH FOR THAT ONE LOST SHEEP THAT HAD GONE ASTRAY—that accidentally caught himself in the thorns and could not come home even when he wanted to. Did he not cry unto thee for a saviour? Did he not cry unto thee for a help when he was all alone and could not come home?
5. YE MUST SEEK THEM OUT AND BRING THEM HOME UNTO ME AND EVEN TAKE BETTER CARE AND KEEP THEM CLOSER THAN WHEN THEY WENT ASTRAY. Do ye have this love? Are ye My shepherds? Was there a sheep in the fold that those shepherds overlooked that strayed and went away scattered abroad? The good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep!
6. (Faith weeps and prays over the lost sheep:) JESUS! FORGIVE US, LORD, FORGIVE US! LORD, DO WE GET ANGRY WITH THEM BECAUSE THEY HURT OUR PRIDE, OR DO WE REALLY SEEK AFTER THEM WITH A HEART OF LOVE FOR THEIR SOULS? Do we seek for them because they have lessened our membership or because we dearly love their souls and care what happens to them? Jesus‚ help us! Lord, forgive us for not caring for some of those precious sheep! Help us not to be as the false shepherds! You didn't say they didn't take care of the ones in the Fold.—You said they didn't seek after those that were scattered! They didn't feed Your sheep!
7. YOU ARE SO MERCIFUL TO US, LORD! HOW YOU USED PEOPLE TO ENCOURAGE US TO COME BACK TO THE FOLD WHEN WE WENT ASTRAY! AND IF IT HADN'T BEEN FOR THEM, WE WOULD NEVER HAVE HAD THE COURAGE TO COME BACK, because it meant we were wrong in leaving! Myself, too, how you did that for me and Joshua when we could have ... because of our pride ... we could have been gone. It's hard to come back. If we hadn't been encourage by someone very wise ... We have been so foolish, yet You had so much mercy on us! But we knew so much more than these know! But yet You used a wise Servant of God to encourage us to come back to the Fold!
8. JESUS, JESUS! LORD‚ WE HAVE COME TO SEEK AND SAVE THAT WHICH WAS LOST! But if they don't come to our doorstep, we forget about them! If they don't come and sit in our Fold, we forget about them, not realising that some of them are caught in the thorns and they couldn't come if they wanted to, unless someone helps them and encourages them! They are pleading for help!
9. Jesus, forgive us for our hard-heartedness!—For thinking that we were so righteous and doing such a good job. O Lord, our love so misses the mark! We think more of our own self-esteem and our own accomplishments! Lord, we are nothing! WE ASK YOU TO FORGIVE US FOR THOSE LIVES WE HAVE FAILED! And we know we have failed them, Lord! We are so responsible for not warning our under–shepherds about their attitudes, Lord Jesus!—That I didn't really encourage them to be easier on their flocks, to manifest more tenderness and concern‚ and more patience and more love! Even more patience and even more love!—Because the poor lambs really hadn't had a chance! Some of them had never really tried‚ and we didn't help them all we could have, and we didn't really encourage them all we should have! Maybe it's because of our own self-righteousness or intolerance and our lack of love! Lord, forgive us!
10. LORD‚ YOU TOLERATED AN AWFUL LOT WHEN YOU SAT AMONG THOSE SINNERS AND IN THOSE GUTTERS WITH THOSE PEOPLE! Lord, we can't even see though some of the cigarette smoke, that those behind the smoke screen would even be worth it. Like the Pharisees who couldn't see not washing their hands! It's hard to love those that kept on smoking. But was that such a great sin? That's an outward sin—that's not a sin of the heart! It was an outward sin that was hard for them. The sins of our hearts are much worse in God's eyes than their cigarette smoking!
11. WE HAD SO LITTLE PATIENCE WITH THEM!—BECAUSE WE ARE SO RIGHTEOUS! We don't smoke, we don't drink! Lord Jesus, forgive us for being so self-righteous. We have come to be a light to these people and to set them free, Lord, and instead we have driven them farther away by our intolerance! They came in looking for love and we have turned them away. And maybe they have found more love out in the world than they found with us! They found more tolerance with the Jesus People than they did with us. LORD, FORGIVE US AND HELP US TO BE WHAT YOU INTENDED US TO BE, TO BE WHAT YOU ORDAINED US FOR! So that everyone of us can say that it was the love that kept us! It was the love that kept us—not someone yelling at us, not somebody's harsh words. BUT IT WAS THE LOVE THAT KEPT US! IT WAS THE CONCERN AND THE COMPASSION WE FELT IN ALL OF THE INDIVIDUALS THAT ACCEPTED US‚ WHEN WE KNEW THAT THEY ACCEPTED US EVEN IN OUR SINS! And they encouraged us to keep on going!—And these little tiny babies with so little strength, how we so quickly would just cast them out for the slightest offense! Lord, we know that we are guilty in that we cannot justify ourselves, O Lord, it's so easy for us to blame everyone but ourselves! Forgive us for not teaching them, for not warning them! it was the hardness of our own hearts!
12. ARE WE LOOKING FOR MEMBERSHIP OR ARE WE LOOKING TO SEEK AND TO SAVE THAT WHICH IS LOST? So many precious little ones! Have we done everything we can, or are we going to drive them away looking for the help that we can't give them? After all, aren't we the only ones who really love them? DID WE NEGLECT THOSE OF THE LITTLE FLOCKS WHO CAME SO FAITHFULLY EVERY NIGHT FOR OUR HELP AND OUR GUIDANCE AND OUR INSTRUCTION? Did we neglect them, Lord? Moses gave us that warning! Those faithful little ones! No place to go, no love! Nothing but us! They cannot yet come and be part of our membership, and come and sit at the feet of Jesus and hear His Words! O Lord Jesus! TEACH US THY COMPASSION LORD! You died between two thieves‚ Lord, and You even said, "This day ye shall be with Me in Paradise!"
13. SOMETIMES WE DON'T EVEN REALISE WHAT WE ARE DOING AND BEGIN TO TREAT IT AS A BUSINESS INSTEAD OF A MATTER OF LOVE WHERE THE GOOD SHEPHERD GIVES HIS LIFE FOR THE SHEEP! We were all gone astray when You gave your life for us! There was not one of us that deserved it‚ that was worthy of it! FATHER, I PRAY FOR THESE WHO HAVE LEFT US, THAT YOU REBUKE ALL THE POWERS OF THE ENEMY AND BRING THEM BACK TO US! All these precious little sheep! Show us what we can do to bring them back, Lord! Even when they know that they should come back, but they can't get away, Thy loving kindness and Thy tender mercies are forever. THERE IS NONE RIGHTEOUS, NO, NOT ONE! ALL WE LIKE SHEEP HAVE GONE ASTRAY! We have turned everyone to his own way and the Lord hath laid on Him the iniquity of us all!
14. Help us to be true shepherds: not to let them go too easily and carelessly, so we won't worry about them or feel guilty about them! HOW MUCH DID WE LOVE THEM? HOW HARD DID WE TRY TO REACH THEM AND LET THEM KNOW THAT WE LOVE THEM AND ARE COMING TO HELP THEM?
15. What is it that is in thine heart?... What is it that is in thine heart?... Search me, O God!—and know my heart! Try me‚ and know my thoughts. See if there be any wicked way in me!
16. "I WOULD THAT YE SHOULD KNOW, MY CHILDREN, MY THOUGHTS, MY LOVE! ... THOU ART SO IMPATIENT! IT TAKES PATIENCE TO BRING FORTH FRUIT UNTO GOD! I would that ye should return unto thy first love!—That ye should become as a little child! Learn of Me, for I am meek and lowly in heart! YE HAVE DONE WELL IN MANY THINGS, BUT IN MANY THINGS, YE HAVE NOT‚ BECAUSE YE DID NOT SEEK ME! Ye did not ask Me! For without Me, ye can do nothing! Without Me‚ ye fail and all that ye have right now could fail—without Me!
17. "FOR IF THE SHIP HAS NOT A RUDDER‚ IT ONLY DRIFTS, NEVER REACHING ITS DESTINATION! MY CHILDREN, IF YE HAD ASKED ME, I WOULD HAVE SHOWN THEE! If any man lack wisdom, let him ask of God who giveth to all men liberally! Thou knewest that the job was too big for thee!"