“And they said unto me, The remnant that are left of the captivity there in the province are in great affliction and reproach: the wall of Jerusalem also is broken down, and the gates thereof are burned with fire” (Nehemiah 1:3).
When Nehemiah heard what condition the remnant of Israel was in, who were living in Judah, he wept and fasted. He was deeply grieved over the condition his brethren was living under. The wall of Jerusalem was broken down and the gates were burned with fire. The physical affliction the Jews in Judah were living in is a type of spiritual affliction many sincere believers live in today. I need to tell you that the burden Nehemiah had for his brethren is similar to the burden I have for the church of Jesus Christ, who are my brethren. As Nehemiah was distraught over the remnant in Judah, I too am distraught with the condition that many Christians have to live under. I am not talking about the disintegration of our society here in America, I am talking about the famine of the word of God, and the lack of the Holy Spirit that is in so many churches today.
There are many people in the church today who probably don’t care much if the church is shallow and lacking the presence of God. Some prefer it that way because the presence of God and a strong word brings conviction. However, in many of these churches there is a people, a set apart people, a remnant, who desire a deeper relationship with the Lord. I believe with all sincerity that these remnant believers are some, if not the most neglected people in the church. As we hear so many lectures on how we must accept people and come down to their level, and how we appoint people to greet new faces, the remnant are quietly being ignored. As the emphasis is to preach simple salvation messages over and over again in some churches, the remnant believers are starving for some meat. As you continue to read this article, you may start to see that you may be one of the remnant, if you don’t already realize that.
Remnant believers want more, but so often they don’t quite understand what that more is. People in church around them might seem to be rolling with the flow, but in their own heart there is a dissatisfaction. This lack of contentment in remnant believers can actually make them feel bad for feeling so dissatisfied. They know that they should be more appreciative of what God has done for them. They know they have been saved and washed by the blood of the Lamb. They know they have been given a brand new life and even life more abundant. They know that they ultimately deserve hell, yet they are given eternity in heaven. So they feel bad when they find themselves looking for something more. They sense something is not quite right. Actually, what is really going on in them is that Holy Spirit is being quenched by carnal halfhearted Christians and churches, and the seed of Christ in them wants to bust out and grow. It is hard for any Christian to grow if they are in an environment that discourages growth.
The discontentment that remnant believers have is right and good because it is just a symptom of a longing for a deeper relationship with God. They are appalled with the low life living that is so often being offered. Miller Brewing Company is located in Milwaukee. They make a beer called Miller High Life. Let me tell you friends, drinking beer and alcoholic beverages is not the high life. It is the opposite, it is the low life. It has destroyed millions upon millions of lives. Walk around Milwaukee and see all the drunks wandering around and know that there is nothing high about that life. Knowing the Lord and pursuing a deeper relationship with Him is the high life. Christians live the high life, or at least have the potential to do so.
“He maketh my feet like hinds’ feet, and setteth me upon my high places” (Psalm 18:33).
Again I want to say, remnant believers desire something more, but many don’t quite know what it is. If they are gathered in the midst of the merely religious, the discontentment they may feel is because they desire a closer relationship with God. If they are in a dead church, they desire abundant life. If they are in the midst of doubters, they want to be where there are those of strong faith. If they are amongst those who water down and short change the word of God, they want to be where the truth of the word is elevated and proclaimed.
Today it seems if you desire to live a holy righteous life, there are many so-called Christians who will accuse you of legalism or trying to earn your salvation. If you try to believe the Bible for the simple truth it is and live it out, you have those who say that you don’t understand the Bible correctly because you don’t know the Hebrew or Greek of a word or sentence. I am not against that kind of study, but isn’t our Bible already translated from the Hebrew and Greek for us? I have no problem with looking up these words for a little deeper understanding, but I have never found any word that was translated incorrectly.
Through my experience, I have seen one thing that really stirs the heart of remnant believers. It is coming to the realization of just how true the word of God is. They come to realize the unifier that truth is. They come to realize just how much the truth sets free. Remnant believers are the one group of believers who are truly like-minded. It is because they love truth so much, the Spirit of truth constantly reveals the truth to them; therefore they don’t come up with their own interpretations of the word. They believe the word as the Spirit of truth teaches it. If they believe something in the Bible incorrectly, they have a humble teachable spirit to be corrected. They don’t spit and sputter, trying to hang onto their own interpretation of the word of God. I love when remnant believers get in a discussion on spiritual things and one of them, from a sincere heart, says something that isn’t accurate. Then another remnant believer gently corrects them with a simple application of clear scripture and the attitude of all is, “WELL, THAT SETTLES THAT!” It takes a genuine humble heart to love the truth enough to allow yourself to be openly corrected. That is what is lodged in the heart of remnant believers.
Remnant believers do not need, nor do they want all the fancies and frills, gadgets and gizmos that the church offers today. They may feel a little disconnected with their church when they depend on these things. The remnant can’t seem to quite get on board with these things and they feel they are being a little contentious. What it really is however, is they just want more of the Christ they are being deprived of. They are offered all kinds of carnal techniques to accomplish spiritual things, but all they want is the presence and the power of the Spirit. It is right for remnant believers to want to come out from amongst her. Sometimes they just don’t know how.
This is what is in the heart of remnant believers. ARE YOU OF THE REMNANT SORT?