The anointing is that dimension, that spiritual residue both gleaned and imparted from interactions with God. It becomes the defining difference in the relationships and circumstances of one’s life. While quite often wielded powerfully by eager, innocent yet uninitiated new believers, more often it is the subtle but underlying dimension that amasses from a lifetime of a consistent and disciplined reach and exposure to God’s Spirit and Truth while engaging with others in being exposed to its virtues.
The deeper the channels burrowed, the more subtle will be the potential for this dimension of God to impact and change the lives and circumstances it touches. On the other hand, too often it is the anointing that can be confused with the zeal for and aura of success that can result from human ambition and effort.
“Who among you is wise and understanding? Let him show by his good behavior his deeds in the gentleness of wisdom. But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your heart, do not be arrogant and so lie against the truth. This wisdom is not that which comes down from above, but is earthly, natural, demonic.” James 3:13-15
Years ago, I prayed through and scribed a piece I titled “The Fine Line.” It touched on an insightful truth that became a key part of the devotional that had resulted from a year-end practice of consecration and a reach for God best described by the words of John the Baptist regarding his response to Jesus that: “He must increase and I must decrease.”
Adapted from that “Fine Line” piece I wrote: “The ‘fine line’ will involve increasing subtleties of the distinctions between operating in the soulish realm and in the spiritual … from operating in faith versus presumption. The fine line distinguishes between being strong in faith and in forcing an issue. It is the difference between being controlling and speaking Life into a person. The fine line is being a trusted vehicle to speak the Word of the Lord, without having the words being tied to a personal need or for approval. The fine line is the subtle gap in recognizing and correctly interpreting deep truths versus over-spiritualizing. It is “the dividing asunder between soul and spirit” spoken of in Hebrews … the shade of distinction between operating by our own efforts and seeing the results from entering into His rest.”
“Something More,” Morris Ruddick, 2010, Xulon Publishing
Operating on the right side of the “fine line” is defined by, guided by and the result of the anointing.
The Balance Needed to Embrace the Anointing
In preparing His disciples for His earthly departure, Jesus began revealing to them that (John 16) what would follow would be the release of the Holy Spirit. He explained that the Holy Spirit would convict the world of sin, judgment and righteousness. He indicated that the Holy Spirit would serve as “the Helper” to believers and referred to this third Person of the Godhead as the “Spirit of Truth” and source of the anointing. He would point to Jesus, serving as the transcendent supernatural equalizer.
In grooming His disciples for the greater works to follow, Jesus stressed to them a handful of admonitions of Moses to be especially aware of: giving heed to hearing and obeying God’s voice; remembering God’s acts of intervening; adherence to His written word; and being alert to establishing opportunity for the disadvantaged within the community.
Then in raising the bar Jesus imparted specific warnings for those He was preparing with the mantles of leaders. These warnings included insight into being wary of the subtle and hidden backlash from within the religious systems (the leaven of the Pharisees), the political systems (the leaven of Herod), those misguided in their prophetic discernment, those among the brethren whose spiritual maturity and/or self-absorbed ambitions would result in them masquerading as kindred spirits …. and the deceitful influence that the entitlement of materialism can carry.
The unfortunate and sad reality in Christendom today is that those closest to the anointing … become subject to a super-subtle elitism … unconsciously separating themselves from those who they should be proactively preparing and mobilizing to spiritually nurture into higher dimensions and these greater works. This elitism and serious blind spot in leadership thinking has created vulnerabilities and susceptibilities, linked to the very dangers Jesus was warning His inner circle to be wary of.
If Jesus could suggest the goal of “greater works” than what He had demonstrated to His followers, should that not be the goal of those anointed for leadership. Instead, the model has digressed into the separation between the clergy and the laity … with followers whose dependency mode results in them being blindly-led sheep rather than the mobilized warriors like the Joshua generation, prepared to possess the land … or as Paul suggested to the Ephesians, whose mobilization would result in a glorious, activated church.
The goal of “greater works” pivots on the extent that leadership has mobilized the anointing among their followers.
Mobilizing the Anointing
Over the course of my life-journey with the Lord, there were two pastors whose influence stood above the rest and imparted the change and impact needed for me to walk into the anointing and mantle the Lord had prepared for me … in reaching for these “greater works.” Doing so, made each of them to be “targets.” One of those pastors came within the early part of my walk with the Lord, while the other was in a more seasoned segment of my journey.
The pastor in the earlier part of those days prayed each week for his sermons “to be hot off the wire.” The richness of his anointing deeply touched the full range of his audience, from new believers to the most seasoned and mature … each uniquely requiring a reach beyond themselves. Because of the anointing, his messages were replete with Life that became personal to every segment of those listening, rather than being the type of information that tickled ears. I cannot remember a time of listening to the messages he imparted that the anointing did not touch me in a unique, personal and very strong way. Simultaneously, his messages carried a depth that required further prayer and meditation to capture the extent of the riches that the anointing from his teachings possessed.
That’s the way it was with what Jesus imparted not only to His inner circle but to the broader audiences who came to glean from the Truths He shared. He illustrated the wisdom of this approach with the parable of the sower … and the need for the spiritually hungry to reach higher and harder … that their spirits might absorb Truth as the good soil that becomes the fertile seedbed for what had been sown.
What this unusual mix of the incredible dynamics and subtleties tied to the anointing pivot on will be the fine-line choices made over the course of one’s life …. choices of operating in the soulish realm versus the spiritual … between operating in faith versus in presumption. While it was clear that Peter was among the chosen of Jesus’ inner-circle during the course of His earthly ministry …. and even into His days on earth following the Resurrection … Jesus was consistently on Peter’s back, raising the bar tied to this fine line reality and distinction of the cost of operating in the anointing … because the cost was everything.
Activating the Anointing
The pastor whose influence changed the course of things in the more seasoned part of my journey possessed an anointing second to none I have ever worked with … and I have served as a consultant to both some of the most respected ministries and multinational corporations of my generation. Yet, it was that very factor that drew me to him … the depth of his anointing … that resulted in not just his love as a pastor, but his trust and then desire for me to become a part of the leadership of the ministry that he birthed and pioneered.
More often than not, when we sat down together, something connected and we wound up praying … and in so doing, the Lord was always brought front and center into our interactions. And it came with a dimension that exceeded the combination of what he and I brought to the plate individually, both in the natural and the spiritual. It was during those precious years under his pastorate that SIGN was birthed, that the Joseph-calling message was defined, that the God’s economy program developed and that the doors opened globally to impart this message to the persecuted brethren in over two dozen nations around the earth.
So it is, that when one fully embraces the Person of the Holy Spirit, that the interaction defined by the anointing establishes the framework of decisions and actions that bear on melding a unique identity, purpose and destiny that will redefine the trajectory of that person’s life. This unique framework will be accompanied by an array of gifts, both spiritual and natural that together will continually, over time, enhance these dimensions of one’s identity, purpose and destiny.
The anointing is what triggers the fine line between what we too often glibly refer to and conveniently tap as love and the depth and action incorporated in compassion. It is reflected by those in Acts who were willing to risk their own lives to rescue Paul in holding the rope in rescuing him from those seeking to kill him (Acts 9:25).
Understanding the Times and Holding the Rope
The book of Acts is replete with stories of miracles, of the supernatural that accompanied the remarkable acts accompanying the growth of the early Church. Yet in more cases than not, these miracles were linked to both the risks and rescues resulting from persecution; from prison and the throes of death of those leading these strategic actions of growth.
One such action was that of those risking their lives to save what at the time was the questionable life of Paul from the gathering persecution. These actions preceded and led to Paul’s three years in Arabia, where he gleaned the gospel he imparted through communing with the Holy Spirit.
To the point, during times of persecution and judgment, it will be the rescue actions of those crossing disputed boundaries, making the risks and holding the ropes that will give rise to relationships and assignments that trigger the transitions for greater opportunity and works and the expectation of miracles.
Jesus noted that when the Holy Spirit came, He would guide those engaged and reaching for more … into ALL TRUTH. Embracing and yielding to the Holy Spirit is not just to mobilize and activate, but to coordinate … the unified moves of the Body described in Revelations. The awareness of that reach is what will tap a realm beyond the safe places in the natural. It is sad that we live in a day in which the reach for Truth has been countered by those who have boiled down these realities into microwavable tidbits … safe tidbits. For those stirred to make a difference, it is far deeper and it comes at a cost. Defining one’s identity, purpose and destiny is not mobilized or activated passively or from sitting in pew.
So it is and will be, that when the undiluted anointing is coupled in the context of a unified, purposeful community of believers, the combined anointings interact in a way to result in the exponential …. a multiplied impact from the engagement of these combined anointings.
Recognizing the Burning
There is a dimension to this interactive engagement fueled by the Holy Spirit. It is described by the two disciples, who did not recognize that they were with Jesus when on the Road to Emmaus. Then, upon their arrival with the others and in the breaking of bread their eyes were opened to it being an encounter with the Resurrected Jesus as they observed: “Did our hearts not burn within us, when He was with us and He opened the Scripture to us?”
Maximizing this dynamic of hearts that burn when interacting together in Spirit and Truth was the Early Church’s practice of meeting from house to house to break bread and to pray interactively together. When crossing community boundaries, this practice of meeting together and praying interactively, powerfully strengthens and builds one another up. It anoints Jesus’ command “to go into all the world.”
The history of God’s people, together with the prophesies from both John’s Revelations and the book of Daniel suggest a time before us of persecution and conflict … in what will likely be a wartime setting. Jesus uniquely understood the reality and intensity of the persecution and conflict to be faced by the early church. Not unlike the days of the late 1930s when the storm clouds of evil were gathering, we need to recognize the signs of the times and the growing schism taking place across the globe between good and evil … embracing both the burning and the command to go.
Boldness and the Boundaries and Authority of the Anointing
One of the greatest blindspots among the mature and the faithful in today’s toxic spiritual environments is the aura of success. Without understanding the boundaries tied to the specifics of the authority and timing of the anointing, this factor has been a serious contributor to premature and unnecessary casualties. The thread needed to safely dispel this blindness is wisdom and the fear of God. It taps the fine line needed to advance.
A modern day moniker to the Matthew 28 command “to go into all the world” comes from the popular 1960s TV show Star Trek … to go boldly where no man has gone. Yet, when you study out the scriptural variations of being bold, most relate to speaking, preaching and writing. Yet there are specific instances in which boldness of faith is admonished. The contexts imply a need for maturity, wisdom and the fear of God. (Eph 3:12; Phil 1:20; 1 Tim 3:13; Heb 10:19; 1 John 4:17) Hebrews 10:19 admonishes entering with boldness the holy places … but only with the protection of the blood of Jesus.
Such are the boundaries and the need for preparation to insure the required authority in crossing those boundaries. Not the least of such preparation, in avoiding presumption and high levels of deception is the consecration tied to the specific guidance given by the Holy Spirit.
Prior to the time when God opened the doors for opportunity in Vietnam, I was very active in Israel. Serving as a founding board member on two such ministry boards, my assignments in the Land of Promise for several years involved a minimum of two to three trips there each year.
In one of those assignments, after serious prayer, the board determined that a strategic opportunity existed at one of the archeological sites, what scripture refers to as a “high place” that had been built during the reign of Solomon. I received a word concerning a proclamation to be made and it was determined that as a board, we would visit this site, and while the board was quietly praying, I would voice this proclamation. The event took place as planned, without any particular fanfare.
However, roughly six months later, I learned that the woman who had been the chief intercessor for this ministry, a very seasoned and mature woman of God, had died. Without any previous conditions, she had suddenly developed a malfunction of a minor valve in one of her vital organs. It was swift and unexpected. What I learned was that after our board event and proclamation at this archeological site that she had felt there was something else to be done … and on her own, she went and did it.
As already noted, this is one of the greatest vulnerabilities and blindspots among the mature and the faithful; when dealing with high levels of darkness. It requires serious humility and the fear of God in discerning and responding to the boundaries tied to the authority and timing of the anointing. Go boldly indeed, but not without ample preparation, humility, consecration and the spiritual backup needed to adequately discern and address any given assignment.
I tend to be drawn to people of courage, whose faith is genuine and pure. In like manner, I sometimes struggle with those whose pathways digress into the superficial, especially when those digressions result in operating as what might broach that of fools, flakes and phonies … even more so when making a practice of finger-pointing from their established “safe places.” Solomon, the wisest man to have lived, gave more focus in his Proverbs to describing fools than he did for what would be evidenced by wisdom. Interestingly, those who fell into the category of fools tended to be comprised more of those in higher levels of intellectual capacities. It can be a subtle shift in thinking that can impact even the elect.
“Jesus rebuked Peter saying, ‘Get behind me, Satan! For you are not mindful of the things of God, but the things of man.’ Mark 8:33
In sharing this story, my intent is not to withdraw from the opportunities to tangibly be a Light in darkness boldly, but to do so with the wisdom and humility that Jesus employed when sending His disciples out two by two. There is a wide gap between risk and recklessness. Indeed, faith involves risk, but a key dimension of grasping the extent of the anointing is the authority required from when seasoned anointings are combined and operate together.
Without the Holy Spirit and the anointing, traversing such dimensions can be foolhardy. It is enough that the early church penetrated levels of darkness that literally involved putting their lives on the line … but did so by maximizing what they did by the anointing.
Scripture indicates that it is the anointing that breaks the yoke. Somehow in considering the gathering storm clouds of the late 1930s and similarities in the realities of amassing evil in this current season, the admonition to “go into all the world,” carries implications of doing something more than cloistering ourselves in safe places. Jesus never suggested a risk-free, sanitized gospel. In going, we need to maximize the anointing and proceed with wisdom, humility and the fear of God. It represents the fine-line needed for these times.
So, in picking up from the message in my last post: “So consecrate yourselves, for the Lord is going to do wonders among you.”
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Morris Ruddick has been a forerunner of the Joseph-calling and God’s economy message, being an international voice for the higher dimensions of spiritual game-changers and intercessors since the mid-90s. As founder of Global Initiatives Foundation, the Strategic Intercession Global Network [SIGN] and designer of the God’s Economy Entrepreneurial Equippers Program and the Jewish Business Secrets YouTube series, Mr. Ruddick’s messages equip leaders and economic community builders with strategy where God’s light is dim in diverse regions around the globe.
He is author of “The Joseph-Daniel Calling;” “Gods Economy, Israel and the Nations;” “The Heart of a King;” “Something More;” “Righteous Power in a Corrupt World;” “Leadership by Anointing;” and “Mantle of Fire,” which address the mobilization of business and governmental leaders with destinies to impact their communities. They are available in print and e-versions from www.Amazon.com, www.apple.com/ibooks and www.BarnesandNoble.com.
Global Initiatives Foundation (www.strategic-initiatives.org) is a tax-exempt 501 (c) 3 non-profit whose efforts mobilize economic community builders imparting influence and the blessings of God. Checks on US banks should be made out to Global Initiatives and mailed to 3838 South Wabash Street, Denver CO 80237 or by credit card at https://strategic-initiatives.org/donate/
2023 Copyright Morris Ruddick — email@example.com
Since early 1996, the Strategic Intercession Global Network (SIGN) has mobilized prophetic intercessors and leaders committed to targeting strategic-level issues impacting the Body on a global basis. For more information go to https://strategic-initiatives.org