Message given on July 23, 1966
We do ask Thee Lord, to pick us up once more in the hand of Thy Spirit to refresh us and to revive us, and to carry us on, on toward the goal which was in Thy thought and heart in bringing us here. And do give to this hour something of really vital importance to Thyself in us, and then through us, in the Name of the Lord Jesus we ask this, amen.
We are going to resume where we broke off this morning, in this matter of the riches of wisdom and knowledge as in the all-comprehensive unsearchable riches of Christ. Before I continue may I just say this: that what I feel and believe the Lord is really seeking to do with us at a time like this, is to bring us into understanding of what a true Holy Spirit Christian life is.
None of us expect that we shall come into all that is being said at this time. It would be too great a burden upon us individually and all together to make that expectation, that you're going to reach all that is being said in one week. But it is important for us from time to time that we should be made to know, if it's reminded or shown for the first time, really what a spiritual life is according to the Word of God - that you may go away and that the Lord will have ground on which to work for all time to come to bring you into that. And that is why the apostle Paul said: "Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all spiritual wisdom and understanding." Now it is this spiritual wisdom that we are concerned with at this time - the riches of wisdom.
You will remember that we reminded ourselves that the chief connection of wisdom in the Word of God is the building of the habitation of God, the building of the house of God, that in Solomon, representatively and typically, the Old Testament, the summit of the Old Testament is found in Solomon and the building of the house. As David said: "Solomon my son is young and tender and the house that is to be built is exceeding magnificent for the Lord my God." The masterpiece of wisdom, and so it is in the New Testament. The masterpiece, not of time, but of eternity; not of earth, but of heaven. The masterpiece is:
The Building of God's Spiritual House.
And we are seeking to see something, if it be but a little, of what that house really is and the wisdom which builds that house.
I need, I think, hardly remind you that it has been the thought of God from the beginning, before He set His hand to creation, to have a place here where He Himself could dwell: "He came into the garden..." it was His thought, desire, and longing. The mystery of it, of course, is beyond us, "To dwell amongst men". And that was the governing thing in His speaking to Moses concerning the tabernacle: "Let them make Me a tabernacle; that I may dwell among..." and all this pointing toward the day when He would be present in the person of His Son, and in the corporate expression of His Son, the Church. Emmanuel - God with us - is the climax of everything, for when we reach the end of the Bible, the end of the Bible: "the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them." That's the last thing, so that the building of this house for God is the governing object of the dispensation, or this house by God, the Holy Spirit.
Solomon is referred to in a comparative way by Stephen who had seen, I think, at that time more than any other apostle had seen. He had seen what his great successor, his great successor Paul the apostle, came into fully. When Stephen said: "Solomon built Him a house, but howbeit God dwelleth not in temples made with hands. The heaven of heavens cannot contain Him." And yet it is His desire and pleasure to dwell with man.
And that is always the first test of whether anything is a true representation or expression of the house of God. Strip the idea and the language of the house of God of everything else and come right down to this, the heart: Is God there? Is that where you really meet God? Can you say that every time you touch that, you touch God? My, that's testing, isn't it? Testing for you and for me because, you know, the Word says: "Ye are a tabernacle, a temple of the Holy Ghost", and the quotation is in this context, "For God has said: I will dwell with them... Ye are a temple of the Holy Ghost... If any man destroys the temple of God, him shall God destroy." It is a very consequential thing isn't it? And it raises this issue for us personally.
When people meet us, come into touch with us, or when we pass amidst people, and are passed through this life, is it possible for people to say: "When you met that man, that woman, you touched God, you met God. There's something of God about that person!" I think we could have nothing more challenging than that. What is the influence and impact of our having passed through this world and this life? What registration do we make, and will abide with those who knew us and had anything to do with us? Will it be possible for them to say: 'Well, you know, that man, that man did have something, something of God about him (or that woman) and we came to sense something of God, know something about God by having come to know him, or her.' And the same must be true of our gathering, be it but a handful of two or three, or larger.
The only, only justification for our existing and talking about ourselves as the house of God, or any other term that means the same thing, the only justification, the only right that we have for meeting together, is that anybody who comes near that, comes in there, meets God! Meets God! Comes and goes and says: 'We have met the Lord today. We have been in the presence of the Lord today. The Lord has been there today.' It is a wonderful thing isn't it, when it is possible to say that! But oh, it does challenge us, and it will do a lot of things with us once we get hold of that conception, that truth, that reality of the house of God. Once it's registered in us we'll be reverent, we'll be reverent.
I'm tempted to remind you of that wonderful little sermon by Dr. A. J. Gordon, 'How Christ came to Church'. Have you read it? How many of you have read that? Ah yes, but that has so often challenged me and, I think I would like people to read that, (it only takes ten minutes) every time they gather together, just read it. He had his dream on the Saturday afternoon while he was preparing his sermon for the next day, that he dreamt that he was in his pulpit in the Clarendon church in Boston. And the door opened when the whole congregation was seated in the crowded church, the door at the back opened and in walked a stranger.
He said, "My eyes were drawn to that stranger, and I saw him turn to the usher to find him a seat. And the usher looked and led him down the aisle and found him just one seat and the stranger sat there." And Gordon said, "The service started and proceeded but I could not get my eyes off of that stranger, there was something about him that held me. There was a look on his face as though he had had some great sorrow." And he sat and he listened, he listened to the choir, he looked at the congregation, he looked at the ornate building, he looked at the pulpit and was taking it all in.
But then he said, "I could not take my eyes off that man, he held me all the time I was teaching. And I decided as soon as the service was over, I would, I would find out who that man was, I would make contact with him. And so I closed the service and made my way down, but before I got there, he was gone. And I said to the usher, 'That stranger who was here, do you know who he was? I did want to speak to him, do you know who he was?' 'Oh yes!' said the stranger [usher] 'Don't you know who that was? That was Jesus of Nazareth! That was Jesus!' 'Oh, I am so sorry I didn't speak to Him, make contact with Him. Why did you let Him go?' 'Oh,' said the usher, 'Don't worry, He's been here today, He will come again.'"
And then Gordon went back. He said he thought: "Jesus of Nazareth, being in my church, in my service? What did He think about our congregation? What did He think about our choir? What did He think about my preaching? Jesus of Nazareth! What did He think about it all?"
Well, out of that, of course, came Gordon's two books, first, his life of the Lord Jesus, "He Has Been Here Today" and then his other one, "He Will Come Again" the second coming of the Lord. But, I mention that, it's just a parabolic way of presenting what I'm trying to say. You see, it's the presence of the Lord that makes the house of God, not all these other things, not even the congregation. It's the presence of the Lord, and if that's not true, then that's not the house of God. Well, that He might dwell amongst us, that's the idea - to be found where we are. And that people should say, "You know, I met with a certain little company in such a place today, or I went to such a place and I met God; I met God!" You can't be frivolous, you just cannot be frivolous, you cannot be careless if that is true.
Well, let's get on. This is what is meant by this thing that God is seeking to build by the Holy Spirit today. Then we went on to say that it is the house of God as the embodiment of the truth. It is in its nature the truth. To the woman: "Neither in this mountain nor in Jerusalem" - neither... nor... but: in spirit and in truth. It is not a geographical location. It is not necessarily here or there. Neither, nor, but, and the great but comes right down on "In spirit and in truth". That is the house of God: in spirit and in truth!
We were pointing out that the Lord Jesus came as the very temple of God Himself with the intention to extend His own person, to gather into Himself a corporate organic relatedness of born-again believers, in order that He might in Himself, and therefore in them, undo the historic lie. Undo the historic lie: "Hath God said? God knows. Thou shalt know... Yes, you may have a wisdom independently of God, and if you have it, well, that will be the realisation of yourself and of everything, if you have that wisdom. That will realise everything!" A lie right at the inception of human life, and you know as well as I do that that lie is working out to destruction. We stand almost holding our breath of what's going to happen next in this world because of this lie that man has sufficient wisdom to fulfil and realise his own destiny. Oh, the satanic lie of humanism and all such ideologies. The embodiment of the truth is the house of God; you and I individually and together to embody the truth because Jesus says: "I am the Truth, the Truth!" - the Destroyer of this lie, this basic lie in man, in the creation, in the whole world system, this deception.
Man is living in a deception. He is a deceived creature. The heart of man is deceived, deceived. And this lie needs a lot of breaking up. It has too many aspects, of course, for us to comprehend or even mention, but anything that is not real, is not true, and anything that is pretence, pretence or make-believe... I got myself into a lot of trouble once when I changed 'make-up' for 'make-believe'. That is what it is - something that you are not, something put on to give an impression which is not true. It is not you. That's Jezebel, Jezebel started that, you know. I was shocked last week when the economic problems of England were being dealt with in Parliament and it was announced as to what were the exports of Britain were, and amongst them so many million of false eyelashes. One of the great exports! My, what have we come to! And all for make-believe! Well, forgive me sisters, I am not out for, you know, dealing with those things as such, but there is so much in the system which is unreal, untrue, make-believe, artificial, pretence, and what other words can I command to say the same thing? And in Christianity in its organised form there is so much that is pretence: pretending to be something, putting on something make-believe, and it is not true. It is hollow. It's not true. We have a very religious manner during an hour or two of service, you see, but it is not true, it's outside. Really, it is no more true than in those realms where it is most pronounced.
I remember once, during the first World War I was in Malta, and I went to the festival of Corpus Christi in the cathedral in Valletta. And you know, they had been marching around the town with the seven expressions of the cross; these great, these huge representations of the cross in life-like figures. They were marching all around all the morning and sweating under this thing, and then they all came into the cathedral for the festival of Corpus Christi. And I was there, sitting on a chair. Then the priest, the bishop, came and elevated the host, and they all went on the ground, and because I didn't, they turned and looked at me as though something was going to happen to me, that I'd fall through the bottom in the judgement of God. They said: 'Kneel down, signor, kneel down!' But I didn't kneel down. I sat where I was, and then it was all over and we went outside, and we were not outside five minutes before these people were all at one another's throats with their knives out, in the most awful scene of carnage and quarrels and feuds; and not an hour after all this! Now, that's an extreme thing, you see, an expression, but dear friends, see how hollow and unreal religion can be! And if it is in a more modified form it can be, you know, what we believe to be very devout... it is in the soul. It's all of the artistic and aesthetic temperament. Unreal.
And do you know that there are several things in the Bible which are said to be an abomination to God? And if you look into your New Testament, in the Gospels, you will see that the thing which was most abominable to the Lord Jesus was hypocrisy. Oh, He could bear with a lot of things. He could bear with a lot of things, the sinners, the harlots, and all that and bear it patiently, but bring Him into touch with hypocrisy and He was moved to His depths. The most vehement words of denunciation, the most awful things that came through His lips, were against, "Ye hypocrites! Ye hypocrites!" Why? Because He had come as the very embodiment of Truth, reality, utter transparency without a shadow or vapour of what is suspicious, and doubtful, and questionable. And so His whole being revolted against the lie, and, strangely enough, in religion.
No, the house of God is that, is that, you and I must be that. God help us to be clear, transparent, no guile, no deception, no falsehood, no pretence, no make-believe, with nothing that is not the genuine thing. I started by saying that we are here to know what true Christianity is according to the Spirit, and that's it, that's it: "in spirit and in truth". That is, it is not ritualistic, it is not sacramentarian, it is not any of these things which people think make up the church. It is in spirit: pure, clear spirit and truth. God help us.
Well, that's it. You see, spiritual wisdom, spiritual wisdom is something so contrary to worldly wisdom. So contrary to worldly wisdom, worldly wisdom cannot fathom this thing, cannot get a hold of this thing; its wisdom is altogether a different type of wisdom from spiritual wisdom.
And if I can illustrate, many years ago I knew an old wit, he was one of those, you know, people that come - not many of them, we could do with a lot more of them - we call them eccentrics; but they are something different, something, if you like: peculiar. And I knew a man like that. He had a wooden leg before the days of artificial limbs, and he was stomping along with his wooden leg, and you could hear him a mile off. He was living in a country town and he went into the market place one night, one evening, and there was a great crowd. And in the midst was an infidel, an infidel jeering at God, laughing at God, making fun of the idea of such a being as God, making the people laugh with his jokes about the idea of God, and so he went on.
And my friend listened until he was finished, and then he went up to the infidel and said, "I wish you would come along and see me tomorrow morning and we will have a chat." "Oh, yes, I will come!" Very well. The next morning the infidel went along and found my friend sitting in his garden under a big oak tree. A big oak tree. Now I must go back, because the infidel in his ridiculing God the night before, had said: "Well, look, here is an idea. This will show you how silly God is, if there is one. Here is a mighty oak tree, a massive thing, of hundreds of years old, and the only fruit that God can put on that majestic tree is a little acorn! Here is something almost like a weed crawling on the ground, and God puts on that watermelons; great big watermelons! Now", he said, "if there was such a person as God, do you think He wouldn't put the wonderful big fruit on the oak tree and the little acorn on the crawling weed?"
My friend knew what he was doing when he invited him to come. He was sitting under his oak tree and they began to talk. It was at the time when the acorns were beginning to fall, and an acorn fell right on the top of the infidel's head, and my friend said: "Get down on your knees and thank God Almighty that that was not a water melon!"
Well, I am not wanting to make you laugh, but sometimes you get home your point with a story. The wisdom of this world, you see, and the wisdom of God, they're so different. Spiritual wisdom is so different from natural wisdom. They are as remote from one another as the heaven is from the earth.
The Lord is needing to teach us spiritual wisdom and understanding, for only with that can His house be built. It is going to be the embodiment of truth and the embodiment of His wisdom in a mystery. In a mystery. When Paul was making this great comparison between the wisdom of this world and spiritual wisdom, in his first letter to the Corinthians, he said: "The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God, neither can he know them. They are foolishness to him," he said, "he that is spiritual judgeth all things, but he himself is judged of no man." He is an enigma to this world. He is unfathomable to this world. Of course, you know that, don't you? If you are the Lord's, you know that the world cannot understand you a bit! It's like that. It is a hidden wisdom. "We speak the wisdom of God in a mystery", said Paul, in a mystery. And it's that wisdom that we need to know for building up, for building up, for building up one another, building the house of God. But I must hurry on, this old clock!
The next thing is that the house of God is the expression of:
The Livingness of God.
Livingness is an essential and primary feature of the house of God. Livingness. You see, the house of the living God, the house of the Spirit of the living God, the Spirit who is the Spirit of Life. The hallmark of what is of God is livingness. It's a test again; a test of you, of me, a test of our meetings, our local companies. What is the effect of contact with us? The effect on people coming among us? Are they able to say even at least, at least able to truly say: "Well, I didn't understand all that was said. I couldn't grasp all that they were talking about, or the preacher was talking about, but the thing that I found there was life! Life! Something answered to a deep desire in me, a deep need in me. Life! Those people have got the secret of life!" Life, livingness, and that stands not only in the days of Christ, and in the days of Israel's spiritual declension, but that stands in Christianity today, Life as over against, and opposed to, mere formality.
Formality! The blight, and I can call it nothing other, the blight of crystallisation. Do you understand what I mean? God does something, moves in Life, notice is taken of it, but it's not long before men take hold of that and crystallise it into some thing static: "This is how it is to be done; this is what you are to believe", and before long the compass is boxed: of teaching, of truth, of how to do it. In assembly life: "This is how we do it. And if you don't do it this way, well, you don't belong to us, to us." Oh, the curse of such a phrase, I've met it again and again: "He doesn't belong to us. He doesn't belong to us." And what they mean is, "He doesn't come within the strict orbit of what we believe, and what we practice, and how we do it." The whole thing has been crystallised, and set, and fixed. The dead hand has come upon the thing of God. That is the history of Christianity, isn't it? Again and again when God moves, man takes hold of it and systematises it and says: "This is it!" And immediately the Holy Spirit's liberty is quenched. The Holy Spirit's prerogative to do as He will, and make innovations if He wants to, is not allowed. It's not allowed.
Now, there is a liberty which is licence, I am not talking about that. And there is that abominable thing of trying all the time to have innovations, to do something unique and unusual to make an impression of life. That's not what I am talking about. But dear friends, this matter of livingness means that the Holy Spirit is perfectly free there to make His own order, to check us up on our fixed things and break through our bounds, our limitations, our strictures, and do something unusual. Something unusual. That, of course, was the difficulty of the great transition from Judaism to Christianity, and poor James had a bad time over it. And even Peter had a bad time over that. This transition, where the Holy Spirit has taken things in hand and has struck against rigid tradition, and called upon them to do things that they would never have done unless they had surrendered to the Holy Spirit. Livingness, you see!
Oh, this incorrigible tendency to legalism! Legalism is not only the Mosaic law and Judaism, it's a persistent tendency all the way along to reduce things to a form and order - man-controlled. Man-controlled, bring it down there, and then it isn't long before the element of exclusiveness arises, and if you don't do it our way, you are outside the pale. You're outside.
Oh, the Holy Spirit is much bigger than our conceptions! The Lord Jesus is far greater than our minds! His wisdom far surpasses all that ever we have yet imagined, and that is one of Paul's superlatives, isn't it: "Now unto Him who is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think" - I notice that most people put in the word "can" there, well, they may be right, we can ask God things, it's not in the Bible, it's nothing to stumble at, but beyond, exceeding, abundant, above, all that we ask or think! "I never thought of that! In my wildest moments I never thought of that! I have gone around this problem, and I have approached it from every point of the compass to see how it could be solved, and then the Lord came in with a point that is not on the compass and just like that solved it. I never thought of that! That was outside of my universe of imagination, and the Lord did it so simply!" A wisdom, a wisdom that is not of this world.
I close by reminding you that this Life, this Life of the Spirit, this Life of His wisdom, is a very sensitive Life. This Life of the Spirit is a very sensitive Life; it is! Anyone, anyone at all who lives in the Spirit, and knows anything about Life in the Spirit, really is a person who is sensitive; very sensitive. They are not hard and cold. I believe you know, and of course you do too, that the Holy Spirit makes gentlemen of us, and ladies. Perhaps you don't use those words in this country so much, you talk about 'men and women'. We mean something more than that when we speak of a 'gentleman' and a 'lady'. Yes, there's a female person and you can say, 'that woman', but you can say, or we do say: "No, she's a lady". Of a man, a male person, you can say 'that man', but you can say: "He is a gentleman." Do you know what I mean? I believe that a mark of the Holy Spirit is courtesy, courtesy: sensitiveness to what is proper, what is good, what is (may I use the word?) nice, what is kind, what is thoughtful; not riding roughshod over all sensibilities and hurting people.
You know, I believe, (and I got into trouble years ago for saying it) that I very often have felt that in making a present of a Bible I would also like to make a present of a good volume of etiquette. Forgive that statement, but do you know what I mean? Sometimes Christians can be so discourteous, so rough, so rude, so insensitive; isn't it true? And the Holy Spirit is not like that; He is gentle, He is kind, He is thoughtful, He is sensitive.
I remember going some time, some years ago, to a garden we have in London where rare plants are collected and cultivated. And I went and the curator took me round. And as we were going around and pointing out this and that, and telling me about these things, all the camouflage in nature, and so on, we came to a wonderful shrub, standing upright, looking so strong and healthy. And he stopped and he said: "Will you touch the leaf of that shrub as gently as you can?"
So I stretched out my hand and so, so gently I touched just the leaf, and the whole thing went down! The whole shrub collapsed to the ground. And he looked at me and said: "Do you know why? It is a plant of the jungle, and when some wild beast comes through the jungle and just scrapes against it, that shrub, it collapses, and the wild beast jumps out of its skin and rushes away." This, this sensitiveness is the salvation of that shrub from the ravages of the wild beast. Sensitive. Then I saw this shrub, after a minute or two, it come up again, you see. It came right up as before. A marvellous thing in nature! God's wisdom in nature. But there you are, I believe, you know, that we should be more like that as we grow older, more sensitive, more an expression of the Spirit who is easily grieved, it says: "Grieve not the Spirit." He is easily entreated, so sensitive.
You know, one of the most difficult lessons that I have found to learn is this gentleness of the Holy Spirit. In seeking guidance from the Lord with all my heart, I have poured myself out to the Lord for guidance on some matter, and I have expected the Lord almost to send an angel from heaven to open the heavens and speak out, and say it in unmistakable terms what I ought to do, and He never does it. But I have noticed that the slightest touch of something, just the slightest touch, this voice of gentle stillness, hardly perceptible... I have noticed it, not always taken note of it, but I noticed it. And afterward, either for my joy or for my sorrow, I have remembered. If only I had paid heed to that very gentle touch of the Spirit it would have saved me all this trouble! It is so gentle! You know, that's the way of education, spiritual education, to learn to learn how the Spirit quietly governs the life so that we in our own spirit have a registration: we have said something about someone, or to someone, and inside the Spirit very gently, not in words, rebukes. The growth in the life of a true Christian, the spiritual life, is just this: that you know somewhere quietly inside the Spirit has said: "That was not right. That was not true."
May I give you another incident, instance. Back at home, in all... this goes back years, I was with a friend of mine in Ireland, where I went for an annual convention. And he said to me: "You know, we had some special meetings recently, and we had So-and-so (mentioning a well-known servant of the Lord) we had him as the speaker." Now, I knew that this man's one message was the Holy Spirit. He never spoke on anything else but the Holy Spirit.
And my friend said to me: "We had so-and-so, and in a conversation between us alone, your name came up and I saw his face drop, and he said: 'Oh, I could never have fellowship with Austin-Sparks.'"
My friend said: "Why? Why? I know him very well. He comes here for our annual convention every year. The Lord is with him and uses him. Why? Tell me why!"
This dear man gave him eleven reasons why he could not have fellowship with me, and they were the most terrible things. You see, one, I give you an example, one was that "Unless Austin-Sparks baptises a person, they are not properly baptised. He teaches that, he says that." And eleven things, some of them worse than that.
Well, my friend said to him: "You know, I know that you are wrong. I know that you are wrong altogether, but why not write that in a letter to me, put them down and let me send it to him, and he give you his answer." Well, he demurred, and it was a long time before he could be persuaded to give the promise, but he gave a promise and went away, and presently he wrote the letter. Here they were all tabulated, and my friend sent it on and said, "Here you are old man, here's your chance!"
Well, I looked at these things, and I didn't know what emotion was going to be uppermost. I could have wept, I could have been angry. Oh, yes, all the emotions sprang up in me, for the whole thing was a tissue of untruth. I wrote back, of course, repudiating categorically, denying the truth of any of these things, but at the end of my letter to my friend, I said: "After I have said all of this, the thing that puzzles me, the thing I cannot understand, is that a man, a dear man of God can go up and down the country speaking on the Holy Spirit, and then he can tabulate so many things that are not true about another brother, and the Holy Spirit never tells him so! The Holy Spirit never says, 'That is not the truth.'" Yes, the Holy Spirit.
And I am not saying that it was a doctrine only with that man, but you know, you can say: 'I believe in the Holy Ghost', and you may believe all the teaching and truth and doctrine of the Holy Spirit, and be talking about it all the time, and the Holy Spirit never has a chance to say: "Look here, this and that that you are saying, that you are doing, is not the truth. That's false." This kind of Christianity is a very practical Christianity, friends. The Holy Spirit is very practical. He does not believe in our doctrines as such. He only believes in reality.
Well, I think, although I haven't finished, I have said enough for the present. You see, the house of God is this: it is where those who belong to it are very sensitive to the Holy Spirit. Life is a sensitive thing and we ought, whenever we, by word or deed touch something that is not true, not right, not living, we ought to suffer inwardly: feel it, know it, know it and have a bad time about it until we get it right and get the cleansing of the blood over that, and the Lord's covering pardon. We'll have a bad time - that is the way of spiritual growth. Thank God, there is another side, and it wouldn't do for me to close on the merely negative side. That is very positive, after all, and, you know, it is a lovely thing to have the Lord well-pleased. It is a grand thing (without congratulating yourself and patting yourself on the back and saying: 'What a good boy am I!') the Lord's smile can be upon you and you can feel: 'Yes, the Lord is well-pleased.'
Perhaps the grandest thing that could ever happen, or will ever happen to us will be knowing how full of faults, failures, and wrongs we are and have been, and the Lord will say: 'Come ye blessed of My Father, enter into the kingdom prepared for you.' Oh, I think, if ever we fall on our knees in utter adoration, astonished, bewildered adoration, it will be when the Lord, if ever it is said, says: 'Well done, well done good and faithful servant.' I have often said in years gone by that the epitaph that I want, the epitaph that I want to be written over my life is the Lord's words to Daniel: 'Oh man, greatly beloved!' Don't you want that? What could be better, grander: 'Oh man, greatly beloved!' It will be according to how we live the life in the Spirit, and so walk with Him who was meek and lowly in heart.
Lord, we commit this all to Thee. We are going to get up from these seats now, we are going out of this place, and what are we going to be occupied with next? How are we going to spend even these ensuing minutes? We do pray that if, if the Spirit has been present and speaking, His hand may keep upon us, that we will abide under the hand of the Spirit, while in joy and in gladness, blessed fellowship; nevertheless, in the quiet holiness of the presence of the Lord, well pleasing unto Him. Be it so, and accept our worship through our Lord Jesus, amen.