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Are You Excluded?

From notes of Charles Wesley

For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel—not with words of human wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power. For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written: “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate.” (cf. Isaiah 29:14)

Where is the wise man? Where is the scholar? Where is the philosopher of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not know him, God was pleased through the foolishness of what was preached to save those who believe. Jews demand miraculous signs and Greeks look for wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified: a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, but to those whom God has called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. For the foolishness of God is wiser than man’s wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than man’s strength. 
1 Corinthians 1:17 through 1 Corinthians 1:25
Charles Wesley writes...
One is a Christian who has received the Spirit of Christ, the Holy Spirit. One is not a Christian if he or she has not received Him. It is not possible to have received Him and not know it! It is written, “In that day, you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you” (John 14:20). This is that “Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him; you know him, for he dwells with you, and will be in you” (John 14:17).

The world cannot receive Him, but utterly rejects this great promise of God with blaspheming [profanity, swearing, cursing]. But every spirit that does not confess this is not of God. Such a spirit is of the antichrist that denies the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. The antichrist denies the indwelling Holy Spirit is the privilege of all believers. The antichrist denies this blessing of the gospel, this inexpressible gift, this universal promise, and this criterion of a real Christian.

Some people will even condition their objections with comments like:
“I do not deny the assistance of God’s Spirit. I only object to this inspiration, this receiving of the Holy Spirit, and being aware of Him. I only object to this feeling of the Holy Spirit, and this being moved by the Spirit, or being filled with Him. I deny these have any place in sound religion.”
In denying only these, you deny the whole truth, promise and testimony of God. The historical church [believers since the time of Christ on earth] knows nothing of this devilish distinction of the work of the Holy Spirit. The historical church plainly speaks of feeling the Spirit of Christ, of being moved by the Holy Spirit, and knowing and feeling there is no other name than that of Yeshua [Jesus], whereby we can receive life and salvation.

The church teaches us all to pray for the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. We are taught to pray that we might be filled with the Holy Spirit. Every presbyter [ordained elder, pastor, minister] of the church claims to have received the Holy Spirit by the laying on of hands at ordination. Therefore, to deny any of these is, in effect, to renounce the whole Christian revelation.

We need not wonder about this when we realize that the wisdom of God was always foolishness to men. So we need not wonder that the gospel mysteries continue to be hidden from the wise and prudent in our time. As of old, this belief in the Holy Spirit is almost universally denied, ridiculed, and exploded as mere frenzy or fad. Those who believe it are still branded as madmen and fanatics.

This is that falling away which was to come. It is that great apostasy of all orders and degrees of men, which we find has spread over the earth. “Run to and fro in the streets of Jerusalem, and see if you can find a man,” a man who loves God with all his heart, and serves Him with all his strength.

See how our own country mourns and suffers under the outpourings and overflowing of ungodliness! See what crimes of every kind are committed each day, too often with impunity. Many sin with a high-handedness and glory in their shame! They brag about their acts. Who can count up all the oaths, curses, profanities, blasphemies, all the Sabbath-breaking, gluttony, drunkenness, revenge, the fornications, adulteries, and various uncleanness, the frauds, injustice, oppression, and extortion that covers our land as a flood of evil?

And even those who have kept themselves away from these grosser acts are not innocent. How much anger, pride, sloth, idleness, softness, effeminacy, self-indulgence, covetousness, ambition, thirst of praise, love of the world, and fear of man is to be found among us?

How little true Christianity there is! Where is he who loves either God or his neighbor as Jesus has commanded?

On the one hand, there are those who have not so much as the form of godliness. On the other hand, there are those who have the form only. One is the open sepulcher [tomb or crypt] the other is the painted [white-washed] sepulcher. In any public gathering, including our own churches, one part is Sadducees and the other Pharisees. One part has as little concern about Christianity as if there were no resurrection. The other part makes Christianity a lifeless form, a dull round of external performances without true faith, the love of God, or joy in the Holy Spirit.

I wish to God that I could exclude all of us from this charge. My heart’s desire and prayer for you is that you may be saved from this overflowing of ungodliness and excluded from this group. But are you excluded? God knows, and our own consciences know otherwise. You have not kept yourselves pure. You are also corrupt and abominable. There are but few who understand God and worship Him in spirit and in truth.


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