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Thursday, October 16, 2008

Earthen Vessels

God ... has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us. We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed ... always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body. (2 Corinthians 4:6-8,10 NKJV)

And when they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.... Then Jesus came with them to a place called Gethsemane. (Matthew 26:30,36 NKJV)

Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory. (2 Corinthians 4:16-17 NKJV)

God used clay of the earth to form Adam, an earthen vessel to hold His breath of life. The same clay forms lamps to hold oil and produce light. When God anoints earthen vessels with the oil of His Spirit, the ignited oil produces light.

Gethsemane means "oil press." The Mount of Olives garden was likely the place where weights pressed flesh of olives to extract oil for light and anointing. In Gethsemane Jesus yielded His flesh—His will—to be crushed in death. That price purchased us for the Holy Spirit's anointing.

We too are pressed. "Hard-pressed." But we are not crushed, for Jesus was crushed on our behalf. To carry the dying of the Lord Jesus in our earthen vessels is to carry His glorious light and life. The Gethsemane we each face is a place to lay down will without losing heart. Its light affliction lasts but a moment. The weight of glory is eternal.

Lord Jesus, we do not comprehend the full weight placed upon You in Gethsemane. Thank You for bearing a crushing load we will never know. Thank You that we do not face death's separation from the Father. Thank You for the anointing of Your own precious Spirit, Your seal upon us until Your return.

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Copyright 2008, Anne Lang Bundy

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