Touch Not The Unclean Thing
Brother Burt Clendennen noted after hearing in English what his wife was praying in tongues when he was dying of a heart attack; that the Acts chapter 2 miracle, or promise, or victory is in the hearing! Brother Clendennen also spoke of the American that heard the two preachers in England, and said of the first, Parker, that he was the greatest preacher he ever heard, and of Spurgeon that it was the greatest Christ he ever heard; the hearing is what is important.
Jeremiah spoke of the people walking after the imagination of their evil hearts and not hearing. Ezekiel spoke of hearing and not doing;
Ezekiel 33:31, 32 And they come unto thee as the people cometh, and they sit before thee as my people, and they hear thy words, but they will not do them: for with their mouth they shew much love, but their heart goeth after their covetousness. And lo, thou art unto them as a very lovely song of one that hath a pleasant voice, and can play well on an instrument: for they hear thy words, but they do them not.
So hearing the anointing on the preacher of the Word is not as important as everyone hearing the Word spiritually and receiving, as God gives it to you, and to do it! God has brought us out; begin hearing and doing, that He might bring us in.
How many of you have read, heard, and received strengthening from Jericho March? The church has been profligate or prodigal in not hearing, and then in not doing. We are often hindered by the distractions that the enemy places in our life and stopped from prayer, the Word, from ministry, etc. It is good if we can come into a service and feel the presence of God in a greater way, but we are not reaching the fulness that God wants us in. We should be walking in His abiding presence, bring Him with us, and feel no difference or change in that presence. We should be constantly “in” Him, in His presence, and that is the constancy we must be seeking in our prayer lives as well. What doth hinder me?
In the scriptures in Acts 14 after Paul’s being stoned and left for dead, Paul returned to all the places from whence the persecution and attack came. What was his message? To confirm and exhort, and we see confirmation of the persecutions that the godly will suffer;
Acts 14:22 Confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.
It might be easy to attribute this to Paul’s being full of the Holy Ghost, but if being full of the Holy Ghost is the only ability that is needed to overcome tribulation, why would the Spirit have led Jesus into the wilderness to spend 40 days fasting and tempted of the devil? There is first the battle against the carnal nature that must be won, to be equipped for the spiritual battle. In the Stanley Frodsham prophecy, Jesus notes that He first suffered the temptation, and then the persecution. It will be no different in our lives.
The Jericho March acknowledges the spiritual need to change, and declares to God the willingness to change. But the church today must repent and return to the spiritual battle, and in hearing and obeying God. We need to recognize the hindrances and not walk in the sin, and complacency, and repetition of the flesh;
II Corinthians 6:17, 18 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.
We are exhorted here to come out and be separate, and not remain part of the former things we walked in. The children of Israel came out of Egypt and were separate, remaining in their “base camp” if you will, and not dispersing into the world. Have you become a base camp Christian? The secular definition of a base camp is a location to provide supplies, rest, shelter, and communications for exploring, reconnaissance, fighting, hunting, or climbing. God will be our all in all if we base our selves in Him, trusting and following His guidance completely. It is only with and through Him that we can truly find and climb our spiritual Mt. Everest, or find and conquer our spiritual Promised Land. If we trust and walk with Him, God promises to receive us, and be our Father; it is only this way that we become His sons and daughters. Our exploring, fighting, or climbing must be “in” Him.
For the children of Israel their base camp was frequently moving at the direction of God, following the cloud by day and pillar of fire by night. The camp moved only when God directed. Do you allow God to guide you and move your base camp? Or can you see that your base camp has become fixed in repetition, complacency, or the flesh? The children of Israel followed God, remained separate, and received the provision of God (manna, quails, water from the rock, deliverance in battle). But they not only touched the unclean, but brought it into the camp! Their lack of faith and their wickedness kept them from the Promised Land for 40 years!
In the first verse of II Corinthians chapter 7 we are told there is filthiness of spirit as well as the flesh. You may be purposing to walk in cleanness, but have you really learned what is unclean? We often do not even recognize the uncleanness and carnal nature of our flesh. With the scriptures we have often visited, John warned us of the things of the world;
I John 2:15 – 17 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.
The lust for the things of the world will leave walls in your spiritual life that can destroy you if you do not recognize and remove them. We see in the last sentence of these scriptures confirmation of the consuming fire that will cause the earth to pass away, but if you are in the will of God you will abide the fire. If not, the things of the world will be as the thorns in the parable of the sower;
Matthew 13:22 He also that received seed among the thorns is he that heareth the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful.
Has the care of this world choked your spiritual walk? Peter also exhorted to avoid the lust of the flesh;
I Peter 2:11, 12 Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul; Having your conversation honest among the Gentiles: that, whereas they speak against you as evildoers, they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation.
Peter declares that the unclean things of fleshly lusts war against your soul! Let us consider further examples of some of the unclean things in the law;
Leviticus 5:1 And if a soul sin, and hear the voice of swearing, and is a witness, whether he hath seen or known of it; if he do not utter it, then he shall bear his iniquity.
Have you read this in the past and wondered how a person could be sinning just by hearing swearing; because who could tell exactly when someone would do it? This scripture is one that is the basis in our courts for requiring people to testify if they are a witness. You can be punished for obstruction of justice or contempt of court if you do not testify (except against yourself or your spouse). Under the law the people of God were not to allow wickedness in their midst. Growing up in the 1960s, the FCC controlled the airwaves with an iron hand; there was no foul language, no insinuation, and if a married couple were shown in their bedroom they would have twin beds. Many people in those days would rise up and stand against allowing movies to be shown in their town as being pornographic. Those movies would be considered mild today. You are not to accept it, hide it, or ignore it, but you must stand against the wickedness. Do you stand against the swearing, lust, or wickedness, or do you just accept it as commonplace? What is our spiritual message in the physical example of the law?
Leviticus 5:2 – 4 Or if a soul touch any unclean thing, whether it be a carcase of an unclean beast, or a carcase of unclean cattle, or the carcase of unclean creeping things, and it be hidden from him; he also shall be unclean, and guilty. Or if he touch the uncleanness of man, whatsoever uncleanness it be that a man shall be defiled withal, and it be hid from him; when he knoweth of it, then he shall be guilty. Or if he swear, pronouncing with his lips to do evil, or to do good, whatsoever it be that a man shall pronounce with an oath, and it be hid from him; when he knoweth of it, then he shall be guilty in one of these.
Grasp the spiritual truth of the unclean things of these scriptures; in Jesus’ parable He mentioned ... the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches ... instead of unclean carcases. Our founding fathers fought and established our government to gain freedom of religion and worship. It has now become freedom of flesh. The wickedness has become so prevalent that the carnal or flesh is embedded and entrenched in the church! You can become jaded or blind to the sin. There is wisdom, patience, and perseverance needed to overcome in these things. What does God expect from us? Consider the following;
Malachi 1:11 For from the rising of the sun even unto the going down of the same my name shall be great among the Gentiles; and in every place incense shall be offered unto my name, and a pure offering: for my name shall be great among the heathen, saith the Lord of hosts.
God expects a pure offering, that will make His name great among the lost. How is His name great? He is made great in the fear of God, in the love, honor, and glory given to Him. Consider what the contrast is in the next scriptures;
Malachi 1:12 – 14 But ye have profaned it, in that ye say, The table of the Lord is polluted: and the fruit thereof, even his meat is contemptible. Ye said also, Behold, what a weariness is it! and ye have snuffed at it, saith the Lord of hosts; and ye brought that which was torn, and the lame, and the sick; thus ye brought an offering: should I accept this of your hand? saith the Lord. But cursed be the deceiver, which hath in his flock a male, and voweth, and sacrificeth unto the Lord a corrupt thing: for I am a great King, saith the Lord of hosts, and my name is dreadful among the heathen.
If you are doing the things in these scriptures you have lost the regard for the blessings of God, you have lost some of your fear and love of God, you have lost the regard that gives Him honor and glory. You have it in your ability to give God your best and fail to do so. What have you done with your witness? II Timothy 3:1 – 5 tell us what it will be like in these last days. As with the works of the flesh in Galatians 5:19 – 21, we need to know and avoid all of these unclean things, but let us consider just one of them. In verse 4 Paul wrote … lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God … Where is your priority? Every time you stick your nose into the unrighteousness of man or the flesh you snuff at the things of God. Are you accepting and ignoring of the uncleanness of swearing, homosexuality, adultery, fornication, hatred, lasciviousness, idolatry, etc. that the world offers as entertainment? Are you walking close to it and rubbing elbows with it? The Word says to Abstain from all appearance of evil (I Thessalonians 5:22). It does not just say abstain from evil, but from ... all appearance ... of it! What does the word abstain mean to you?
The scripture also mentioned weariness. Are you weary with serving God? It is again losing respect for His blessings;
Malachi 3:14 Ye have said, It is vain to serve God: and what profit is it that we have kept his ordinance, and that we have walked mournfully before the Lord of hosts?
Do you think it has been vain to serve God? If the blessings cannot be felt in your life consider the walls you have allowed that are stopping and hindering your place in Him. The promises are yours if you endure;
Galatians 6:9 And let us not be weary in welldoing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.
The scriptures below are not written about the heathen. They are written about those who have turned away from God’s calling, supported the wicked, and done evil. The choices are yours; what will you choose?
Isaiah 65:11 – 14 But ye are they that forsake the Lord, that forget my holy mountain, that prepare a table for that troop, and that furnish the drink offering to that number. Therefore will I number you to the sword, and ye shall all bow down to the slaughter: because when I called, ye did not answer; when I spake, ye did not hear; but did evil before mine eyes, and did that wherein I delighted not. Therefore thus saith the Lord God, Behold my servants shall eat, but ye shall be hungry: behold, my servants shall drink, but ye shall be thirsty: behold, my servants shall rejoice, but ye shall be ashamed: Behold my servants shall sing for joy of heart, but ye shall cry for sorrow of heart, and shall howl for vexation of spirit.
Look at the things that those that are unprepared will suffer; hunger, thirst, shame, sorrow of heart, and vexation of spirit. Can you relate them to the Laodicean church? These things are in our midst right now! Again consider Lot; the word says he vexed his righteous soul in Sodom. Are you walking as half-way Christians? Are you, as the scriptures above, walking with or supporting the wicked? You can become a partaker by association;
II John 9 – 11 Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son. If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.
Are you allowing these things in your life by your choices? Wouldn’t you rather eat, drink, rejoice, and sing for joy of heart with the servants of God? Hear God and repent, remove the unclean from everything you partake of and obey Him: the promises of God will be yours.
The 40 days of Jesus temptation began preparing Him for His calling. Take forty days without the bombarding of Satan’s entertainment; seek God and look for the changes God will make in your life. You will find yourself praying more, or possibly adding a Bible study, or fellowshipping more with God’s people. Walk in the Spirit, and you will not fulfill the lust of the flesh! And we know that to be led by the Spirit will make you a son;
Romans 8:14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.
What was the promise if we will make ourselves separate and touch not the unclean thing? II Corinthians 6:18 above promises if we will do these things, God ... will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty. Hear God and allow Him to begin purging the things of your flesh, and he will receive you.