The Mark Of God

Ian Johnson
 

If you are in the Kingdom of God today you will have seen that no matter which way you have tried to flow that the mark of God on your life has determined your destiny. You will also have seen that the Holy Spirit has gone to extra-ordinary steps and lengths to see the plan for your life fulfilled. Greatness in the Kingdom is not determined so much by what we achieve but by how much we have allowed the King to achieve in and through us. Our thinking almost always has been along the lines of the mother of James & John in the book of Mark but the Holy Spirit is moving us into Kingdom thinking.

It Is Not Mine to Grant Such A Thing But "It is for Those for Whom It is Prepared by My Father'

The Mother of James & John asked Jesus if her two sons could sit one on either side of Jesus when he came into His kingdom. Jesus answered and said it was not his to grant such a thing but "it is for those for whom it is prepared by My Father.?" (Mark 20)

Favour From The Father.Is Not From Deeds But Simply Because They Bear His Stamp or Mark.

Achieving greatness is not a matter of worldly promotion but it is a gift from God that comes from the realm of the spirit.As it happens both James & John have greatness not because of earthly connections and favours but because they both stood in the place of revelation and received much out of heaven.

GOD'S MARK

The mark of the Father sets us apart in ways we may not understand or even like, because to be marked is to be a partaker of all of Jesus including his suffering. This is not a popular thing to write in 2010. We like to quote verses like Rev 12:11 "They overcame the enemy by the blood of the lamb & the word of their testimony" But we leave out the bit that says "and they loved not their life even unto death"

In answer to their mother's question Jesus told them, "You don't know what you are asking! Are you able to drink from the bitter cup of sorrow I am about to drink?" "Oh yes," they replied, "we are able!" "You will indeed drink from


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it," he told them. ( Mark 20:22-23)

James died by being beheaded in a Roman retaliation to the new born Church in Jerusalem; so he drank the bitter cup of death. John lived to an old age and suffered many things in this life and so suffered the bitter cup of life and longed for death. Each; in their own way, paid a price for the mark of God on their lives. Each different from the other.

Joseph had God's favuor ,so that He Could save Many people alive.

The Mark of God is very well demonstrated in the life of Joseph seen in the book of Genesis 37 - 48.

Now consider Joseph.. In his early days he had favour in his fathers house.. Such favour saw him clothed in a fine robe and he didn't have to tend the herds like his other brothers. He was able to dream, dreams and be totally unhindered by daily life. But he had the mark of God on his life. His life was never really his own; God had a plan. Joseph was thrown in a pit, robed of his robe and position before his father, enslaved, falsely accused and thrown in prison. Had the call diminished? No Joseph carried the DNA of promise and calling from Abraham Isaac & Jacob every promise made by God to that family was alive and fully functional in essence even if it could not be expressed because of circumstances. A prison 6'x 7' could not stop the mark of God in Joseph's life. It was restricted from immediate activity, but nothing could restrict the heavenly communication and Joseph still functioned in another realm.

We place so much emphasis on earthly outworking in a works sense that we neglect what is happening in the Spiritual realm. One historical example is Lydwine of Schiedam (d. 1433), who endured numerous afflictions that kept her perpetually bedridden, She was once visited by the prior of the monastery of St. Elizabeth, which is situated near Brielle on the Island of Doorne. Lydwine gave him a description so detailed of the cells, the chapel, the chapter house, the refectory and the porters' lodge that the prior was astounded. "But how can you know all this?" he asked in amazement, knowing that she could not leave her bed. "My Father," she replied with a smile, "I have been there frequently when I was before the Lord in prayer
 

You see those who bear the mark of the Lord are not restricted by a cell or a bed. In life or in death the mark of God is what sets us apart. It is the blood of Jesus that has marked us so well. In the old covenant the saints looked forward to his arrival and we hold fast to the cross in retrospect.

The mark of God is like the mark on silverware it depicts the maker and declares its season. It identifies it and sets it apart. A silver goblet can be hidden in a basement for many years and to all intents and purpose be lost. But the moment the goblet comes out into the light it is clear to all that it bears a mark that sets it apart.

A vessel set apart is Holy unto the Lord, the temple vessels were called holy yet they could do no work to make themselves more acceptable to the Lord, they were holy simply because of the mark of the Lord on them. God has placed a mark on your life and in doing so has declared you Holy or set apart. In doing this he has not asked you to DO but simply to BE

The Potter Alone Determines The Use of The Vessel

As we still ourselves before the Lord and acknowledge His mark on our lives it is He who will find use for the vessel. The vessel can in no way instruct its master because it is subject to its masters desires. If he chooses to exalt one vessel in his display cabinet above the rest it does not negate the mark of ownership on all the others.

Francis Xavier was committed to the purpose of God most of his adult life yet it was only in a 10 year window of time 1542-1552 that he was used in amazing power and service. Were the other years of his life wasted? Not at all; he was set apart for that window of time and everything leading up to that time was aimed at that window.
The mark of God was obvious on his life all the years he was alive.

In this day and age many are looking for fame and honour and they become obsessed with doing as much as they can to fulfil the call. They join the mother of James & John in asking for favours from the Lord and the Lords response remains the same "You don't know what you are asking! Are you able to drink from the bitter cup of sorrow I am about to drink?" Your prayerful answer to Him should be the same as the disciples "Oh yes," they replied, "we are able!" We can say that because of the mark we bear, not because of a boastful desire to be famous. Marked vessels declare "and they loved not their life even unto death"