Friday, October 4, 2013
The Anointing, Respectfully Considered
In the Old Testament the anointing was for the King. It was for the priest and prophet. It was designed to commission and to set apart for holy, God-directed purpose. It was not earned. It was bestowed.
In Psalm 23 we have the image of the shepherd anointing the sheep's head with oil. In a very practical sense, in the hot eastern summer, this act relieved the sheep of the peace-threatening, life-threatening attack of insects upon the eyes and nasal passages. This resulted in calm, comfort and order for the flock. Can not the same be said about the settling influence of the Spirit?
Consider Isaiah 61 and the wonderful outworkings of the anointing. In Luke 4 Jesus announced that His ministry was all about the same things:
18The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,
19To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.
20And he closed the book, and he gave it again to the minister, and sat down. And the eyes of all them that were in the synagogue were fastened on him.
I would also draw your attention to Peter's sermon to the Gentiles of Cornelius' house at Acts 10:37,38:
37That word, I say, ye know, which was published throughout all Judaea, and began from Galilee, after the baptism which John preached;
38How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.
This confirms that the marvelous miracle service of Jesus was the result of the obedient submission of a man to the anointing of God for power, doing good and overcoming the Devil. The same anointing is available to the humble and dedicated believer today. What a promise! What an opportunity!
Is it not said in the Revelation that we are made kings and priests unto our God?
I often hear reference to a believer or minister who is "much anointed". The context sounds the same to me as if one were referring to a professor who is "much published" or a soldier who is "much decorated" or an actor who is "much celebrated". Certain God-given talents have been enhanced by training, education, experience and single-minded dedication.
But the anointing is NOT a commodity to improve self. It is not a spiritual "power drink". It has to do with dying, as did the ingredients of the holy anointing oil prescribed to Moses (Exodus 30).
The name Christ or Messiah means "anointed one". If we would have this appointment, this anointing, we must have Christ, and we must have cast away self-reliance and the distractions of the world, the flesh and the devil.
Believer, I exhort you to dedicate yourself to Christ, to the "anointed One and His anointing". Who knows what fruit may come?