I Have a Dream!
The Scriptures reveal God’s desire for a people fully yielded to Him and His eternal purpose. God is calling men and women today to be indwelt by His Spirit, conformed to His likeness, committed to His ways, obedient to His will, and devoted to His beloved Son. I have a dream! It consists of this glorious theme of Scripture that is so close to the heart of God. What are the elements of this marvelous dream?
I have a dream . . . of a family of beloved brothers and sisters, united to each other because they are children of God the Father. They find that their spiritual family ties transcend their physical family relationships since the latter is earthly and for time while the former is heavenly and for eternity.
I have a dream . . . of individual members who enjoy a rich relationship with each other because each one is vitally united to Jesus Christ the Head. They are redeemed by the same Savior, nourished in the same Vine, and enslaved to the same Lord.
I have a dream . . . of men and women who have come to know God the Father through Jesus Christ His Son. They have exercised a living faith in the crucified and risen Christ and trust in His sacrificial blood as their means of acceptance by God. They have genuinely repented of their sins, turned from their self-centered ways, and have come to God and embraced His perfect will.
I have a dream . . . of sincere people who have expressed their repentant faith in Christ by being immersed into Him, into His saving death, and into His body. They are therefore truly baptized, repentant believers. Their past has been forgiven. They now have new natures, new perspectives, new motivations, and new lives.
I have a dream . . . of a body of believers who have true, intimate, and meaningful fellowship with each other–sharing their lives, uniting their hearts, in the bond of love. They seek to be one in mind, soul, spirit, word, judgment, conviction, and purpose.
I have a dream . . . of brothers and sisters who are filled with and led by the Spirit of God and who bear His fruit in their lives. They seek to live in the power of the Holy Spirit yet avoid the abuses surrounding the Spirit’s activity in the world today.
I have a dream . . . of surrendered people who are absolutely committed to the revealed word of God as their norm of faith, life, worship, and practice. They believe it, read it, study it, memorize it, meditate on it, teach it, and obey it. Whatever it teaches will be their standard and whatever it condemns will not find a place in their corporate experience or private lives.
I have a dream . . . of a people who can distinguish between what is essential in Scripture and what is optional, what is permanent and what is temporary, what is of faith and what is of opinion, what is fundamental and what is incidental. They build upon the former while granting liberty in the latter. While taking the Scriptures very seriously, they have a balanced tolerance in areas not sufficiently understood.
I have a dream . . . of a community of believers who carefully follow the Scriptural order regarding positions in the body, including elders/overseers, servants, proclaimers, teachers, and others. They seek to express these functions as God grants the ability, but do not violate Biblical instruction in their outworking. Each believer is looked upon as a unique and valued member who serves others in the building up of the body in love.
I have a dream . . . of a fellowship of saints who are separated from the world and its evil ways and who seek to be holy in word, thought, and behavior. They carry out this separation in a practical way by renouncing the host of common but deceptive attractions of Satan and by living in absolute holiness before God.
I have a dream . . . of brothers and sisters who have a Scriptural view of money and possessions. They live frugally, work diligently, spend wisely, give sacrificially, and refuse to live selfishly and materialistically. This perspective pertains to automobiles, homes, furnishings, clothes, and every other use of their income. Love motivates them to share with those in need so that an equalizing influence prevails, without extremes of wealth and poverty. Their possessions reflect their pilgrim status on earth.
I have a dream . . . of a spiritual body in which husbands are loving heads and wives are supportive helpers, in which parents are caring protectors and teachers and children are orderly, respectful and obedient. Responsible men are employed in godly occupations; married women are diligent in homemaking; and children are trained in righteousness rather than exposed to worldly education. Homes are rich in hospitality and saints freely share meals, offer living quarters, and make Christ the focus of all domestic activities and relationships.
I have a dream . . . of brothers and sisters who have renounced lukewarmness and are living completely for the Lord. They are zealous for good deeds and active in sharing the good news of Christ with others. They are diligent in teaching His holy word. They have turned from a compromising and nominal lifestyle and have entered upon a way of life with Christ as its center and every thought is brought into obedience to Him.
I have a dream . . . of a body of people who live their lives with each other. Primary are their gatherings for encouragement, edification, teaching, and admonishment, but they also carry out these activities privately, one to one, for the building up of the body of Christ. They love, serve, admonish, and care for each other. They delight in praying, singing, and breaking bread–for the glory of God, the exaltation of Christ, and the strengthening of the saints.
I have a dream . . . of a people who are determined to simply be Christ’s body and God’s spiritual family. They have abandoned all denominationalism, sectarianism, institutionalism, formalism, ritualism, traditionalism, and every other enemy of the simplicity that is in Christ. They are content to simply be the people of God–wholly given over to His glory and honor.
I have a dream . . . of faithful saints who are willing to suffer for the cause of Christ. They have been willing to sacrifice family, friends, employment, home, marriage, possessions, money, comfort, and even health that they might fully obey God and follow the way of the Lord Jesus without compromise.
I have a dream . . . of saints who realize they are pilgrims on earth, people who are passing from this evil world to their heavenly home. They look on the things that are not seen rather than those which are seen; they live for that which is to come rather than that which now exists. Both individually and corporately, they manifest this eternal spiritual perspective which influences their daily life, their plans, and their relationships with each other, with the world, and with God. They are simply a colony of heaven awaiting the consummation of God’s eternal kingdom.
It is only a dream.
Do you share this dream with me?
Let us help to make this heavenly dream
a reality in our own lives
for the glory of God!