[SW238] 07/01/2016 message notes by
Reverend/Evangelist Susan J. Wynn ©2016
“A Near Country”
There was a country very near to me, but it took 45 years and a great humbling for me to see it!
Text: Hebrews 11:9 and forward
For Abraham, it was a far country, seen in the distance — a heavenly one.
Abraham did not see this near country, because it was not opened until God the Son died, rose, ascended and was glorified in heaven, sitting once again at the right hand of God the Father. Then the gates flew open for you to have heaven in your soul — the near country — while you eagerly await entrance into heaven itself! Hallelujah!
This country had come so very near to me that, had I known it existed, I could have touched it (Matthew 10:7).
But I did not know until I was humbled, and then I began to seek it, to seek God the Father and God the Son, on my face, crying out to Him.
The reward for diligently seeking Him (Hebrews 11:6) was to enter that near country.
But I must describe it to you!
It is abundant (John 10:10) . . .
— It is His life, life as God has it, in you, abundantly, until it overflows!
It is love-filled (Romans 5:5)
— You are filled with His love, which is incomparable to any other love that humans have ever experienced! It is the same love that God the Father has for God the Son!
It is power-filled (Luke 24:49)
— His power from on high, if you will stay and pray!
— His power to be His witness, to walk in this world as He walked in this world (Acts 1:8, 1John 2:6, 4:17)!
It is peace-filled (His peace, John 14:27) . . .
— Not as the world gives, but His own peace, in you, always, in every circumstance, peace that cannot be understood by the world.
It is an abiding peace that constantly flows, even when your husband is having a massive heart attack in an ER! I cried out, “Jesus, we are not looking at the circumstances, we are looking at You!”
It is joy-filled (His joy, John 15:11) . . .
— Joy unspeakable, beyond description (1Peter 1:8), sometimes overwhelming you like a wave, always on the rise in you, always in the depths of you — righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit (Romans 14:17)!
It is worship-filled . . .
— After my own personal Pentecost, I had a vision of myself standing before the throne, worshiping God the Father and God the Son.
The scene was full of light, indescribably pure light! I could see the silhouette of my body, arms stretched out, offering myself fully and completely to Him, a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing (Romans 12:1)!
The Lord told me, “Since you first saw Me, you have not looked away.” I couldn’t and still can’t — I was and am transfixed by His beauty, and filled with His love!
And worship simply flowed from me, from the moment I was filled with the Holy Spirit. And I understood what Jesus meant in John 4:23 when He said His true worshipers would worship God the Father in Spirit and in truth!
It is wonder-filled . . .
— The gifts of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 12:4-10) will flow from you unimpeded, for the benefit of others, because you are filled with the actual love of God (1Corinthians 13:1-3)! If I am not filled with His love, I am like a sounding gong or a clanging cymbal.
It is high, it is wide, it is deep and it is long . . .
— And you are able to comprehend (seize, possess, and eagerly take in) the depths of Christ’s love because God has filled you with His love, by the Holy Spirit whom He has given us (Romans 5:5, Ephesians 3:18)!
It is freeing . . .
— If therefore the Son makes you free, you SHALL be free, indeed, from slavery to sin, in the context of that verse (John 8:31-36)!
— It is a place of liberty, a wide space (Psalm 119:45)!
It is abiding and enduring . . .
— You abide in Him, vitally connected to the true Vine, receiving His life-giving Spirit (John 15:5), and God the Father and God the Son permanently dwell in the innermost part of you (John 14:23).
— The Helper, the Holy Spirit is with you forever (John 14:16).
It is BREATHTAKING!
— When I gave myself away, He took my breath away and replaced it with the breath of His Holy Spirit!
It is holy . . .
— Because the Holy Spirit makes us holy (we can do nothing!).
— So we may be presented to Jesus Christ as pure, as having no spot nor wrinkle, but holy and blameless (2Corinthians 11:2, Ephesians 5:27).
But this near country has another characteristic that I must tell you about
It is sparsely populated . . .
— Because it is not the broad path that most follow, but a narrow way, and few find it, perceive it and obtain it (Matthew 7:14).
It is disbelieved, and so it is not taught . . .
— Many teachers and preachers do not go in themselves, and they do not allow others who are entering to go in (Matthew 23:13).
— They teach that we cannot help but sin every day in thought, word and deed, but their statements reveals that they do not believe God when He says through Paul that we can die to sin by being crucified with Christ, and no longer be slaves to it but be free from it (Galatians 2:20, Romans 6:6, 11, 18, 22). Beloved, “filled but still sinning” is a contradiction in terms. He is holy, and when His Holy Spirit fills you, He purifies your heart so you are holy (Acts 15:9).
— Recently, I described this near country to a small group. I spoke of how I was a “tabla rasa,” a blank slate, having no idea that this country existed, and no exposure to any teaching at all regarding it. One believer said she had been brought up in the church and it was hard for her to grasp and possess this truth. She said it was better to find this country as I did, with no prior teaching. She testified that by my words and actions, she could see this near country, and that I had entered it.
Oh beloved, if you see this new country in me, it is because of what Christ has done in me! Join me in this near country, so near you can touch it!
There is an entry fee . . .
— Your whole heart (Romans 12:1)
— Your crucifixion (Galatians 2:20)
And there is a consequence . . .
— Persecution from the world, and from the church that does not know God the Father intimately, by experiencing Him personally (John 15:18-32).
But when you enter this wonderfully near country, all of those things won’t matter to you, because you will be vitally connected, in Christ and Christ in you (John 14:23)!
And you will be in this near country that is abundant, love-filled power-filled, peace-filled, joy-filled, worship-filled, wonder-filled, high, wide, deep, long, abiding and enduring, breathtaking, and holy!