Early and the Latter Rain
glad then, ye children of Zion, and rejoice in the Lord your God: for he hath
given you the former rain moderately, and he will cause to come down for you
the rain, the former rain, and the latter rain in the first month. Joel 2:23.
There is to be in the churches a wonderful manifestation of the power of God,
but it will not move upon those who have not humbled themselves before the
Lord, and opened the door of their heart by confession and repentance. In
the manifestation of that power which lightens the earth with the glory of
God, they will see only something which in their blindness they think dangerous,
something which will arouse their fears, and they will brace themselves to
resist it. Because the Lord does not work according to their expectations
and ideal, they will oppose the work. "Why," they say, "should
we not know the Spirit of God, when we have been in the work so many years?"
Because they did not respond to the warnings, the entreaties, of the messages
of God, but persistently said, "I am rich, and increased with goods,
and have need of nothing."
long experience, will not make men channels of light unless they place themselves
under the bright beams of the Sun of Righteousness, and are called, and chosen,
and prepared by the endowment of the Holy Spirit. When men who handle sacred
things will humble themselves under the mighty hand of God, the Lord will
lift them up. He will make them men of discernment--men rich in the grace
of His Spirit. Their strong, selfish traits of character and their stubbornness
will be seen in the light shining from the Light of the world. "I will
come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place,
except thou repent." If you seek the Lord with all your heart, He will
be found of you.
be no neglect of the grace represented by the former rain. Only those who
are living up to the light they have will receive greater light. Unless we
are daily advancing in the exemplification of the active Christian virtues,
we shall not recognize the manifestations of the Holy Spirit in the latter
rain. It may be falling on hearts all around us, but we shall not discern
or receive it.