Willie Jamieson - Gilroy I - 1974

I would like this morning to read the first three verses from the third chapter of Paul's letter to the Philippians.  "Finally brethren, rejoice in the Lord.  To write the same things to you, to me indeed is not grievous, but for you it is safe.  Beware of dogs, beware of evil workers, beware of the concision.  For we are the circumcision, which worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus and have no confidence in the flesh."  When I thought of coming to this meeting this morning, I wondered very much what I might be able to say that would be of benefit and blessing to one and all. 


This is the first convention I have had the privilege this year of attending.  I missed all the special meetings and have been living more or less all by myself the last six months of the year.  When I landed on the grounds a few nights ago, I couldn‘t help but think how different it was when I first landed in California.  As far as we knew, there was no one but my companion and me professing.  We were encouraged to believe God would work in us.  We started gospel meetings.  What a wonderful sense of joy and gladness came into my heart when I landed on these grounds. We don’t go very much on numbers, yet numbers tell a very big story.


These verses seem to be wonderful verses to give us the key note of how to become and remain useful and fruitful in God's family.  "Finally my brethren, rejoice in the Lord."  Every man and woman has something special in which they rejoice, above all else.  When we think of the wonderful privilege God has given us, our rejoicing is in what He is.  The older I become and the more I read my Bible, the more my thoughts are turned to the last night in the life of Jesus and to some of the things He said and did.  The 1ast thing we read of is Jesus praying to His Father for His disciples principally.  He gave a wonderful record of what He had done.  He looked at His Father and said, "I have finished the work that thou gavest me to do."  That was the greatest example God could ever give to the world.  He was the only man who ever walked the face of the earth without making one single mistake.  God spoke from heaven, saying, "Thou art my beloved Son."  Much has been said already about this example. 


The last thing Jesus prayed for the eleven was I have manifested thy name, etc. That gives us to understand the wonderful legacy Jesus left behind Him for those men who were to carry on the work of God.  Sometimes people ask us what the name of the Lord means.  It is difficult to explain it.  When we think of the love the Father had for His Son, we see that Jesus prayed for this when He was leaving them.  To me the word "name” there means "personality.” ”I have declared your personality."  Over and over again I have been led to check on what I have been preaching and the motive of my preaching.  All true preaching from God's true servants is declaring the name or personality of God our Heavenly Father. 


There is something so marvelous in the love the Father had for the Son.  It is impossible to explain why Jesus spoke like that.  How great was this love of the Father for the Son?  One thing comes to my mind for an answer - the creation.  God created with one purpose in mind, that He might get out of humanity a bride for His Son and those who would love Him the same as Jesus loved the Father. 

“I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare it that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them."  Is that what you are preaching?  Are you making it more clear to men and women what God is like?  God is the only one who can supply the need of the human heart. God created the world with the purpose of getting a family for Himself to live with Him for the countless ages.  This is the immensity and intensity of this love.  Jesus prayed that after He was gone what He lived for and what He taught would be heralded the world over.  Before He went back to heaven, He said, "All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth,” Matthew 28:18-20.  The greatest reason that God created the universe was that He might have out of it a family of Himself, men and women who would love Him the same as Jesus loved Him and would tell other men and women what that love consisted of.  Jesus said, God is love,” "He that dwells in love dwells in God and God in him."  It isn’t the servants--it is the love that prompts these servants that is the wonderful thing.


Every day we have the privilege of not only talking about God as our Father but knowing Him as our Father.  There is so much difference between knowing about a person and knowing the person.  Some people tell their congregations more about God than we can, but they lack the love that impelled God to give His Son.  We should measure ourselves by the degree of that love dwelling in us.  The same night that Jesus spoke that prayer, He said, By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples if ye have love one to another."  Our wonderful privilege today is to live so that love is being manifested and people anxious to know what is right in the mind of God can see it in the love expressed in our life.  One thing I would like to have above everything else is a deeper supply of that love that impelled Jesus to give His life. 


Quite a number of years ago, I was going to a convention in Manitoba, and there were about ten workers older than me going to that convention. When I looked over that list, I felt so small and insignificant and I said, "What would be the use of speaking where men like that had spoken before me?"  The voice of God seemed to speak this message, “If you can go and promote the love of God among the people of God, even though you can't say much or what you say can't mean much, this is the mark of true discipleship and it will help people in the meeting."  This love of God has been prevailing here, and He has poured out His Spirit on His people, and all in their testimonies thank God for that love that was poured out and that sent His servants and gathered them apart into this wonderful fellowship.  These verses say, Rejoice in the Lord.  It is an inexhaustible subject for no man can get to the bottom of the character of God, but God keeps revealing that character to us as we keep true to Him.  What I say I want to take to myself first of all, to endeavor to get a fuller measure of this love.  It will do more than anything else in the world.


There was a lady who was a widow with ten children when the youngest was just a baby.  She brought them up doing menial labor, but she never neglected giving her children a true example.  Everyone talked about that wonderful woman.  There was a man interested in child welfare who went to visit her.  He asked many questions and then as he was leaving, he said, "The last question is the most difficult to answer.  Can you tell me which one of your ten children you love the best? She said, Yes, I can answer that."  He didn't expect that for he had expected that for he had expected that she would say, “I love them all the same.”  She said, “The one who has been gone from home on a visit for a day or two, when he comes back home I love that little boy or girl more than all the others."  The man was leaving and she said, There is one I love better than that one."  He asked, "Which is that?”  She said, Sometimes a child gets sick and sometimes nigh unto death, and I have sat by the bedside night and day, maybe for two weeks, watching that little child.  When they turn for the better and by and by the child is restored, that is the one I love more than all the others.“ You parents understand that - how you sit by your child and when he is spared you are thankful and you think more of that child than you do of all the others.  Why do we tell a story like that?  It is a picture of the love of God.  Sometimes you fall sick in a spiritual sickness and are nigh unto death.  You can't do anything for yourselves and others can't do much for you, but the Lord brings you back to spiritual health again.  That is how He wants to deal with His children even at a convention of this kind.  Love is the hall mark of the children of God.


May these few words have the effect on our hearts to give us a deeper desire than ever to have compassion and love, not just to the ones whom the world thinks worthy but to the unworthy.  Sometimes we come to convention and are very sick and hardly feel worthy of a place in God's family.  God speaks and manifest Himself and gives us of that love and then doubt and fear and perplexity leave and we have a real desire to be true and faithful to such a Father as we have.  The reason it was pressed upon me to take part was to show you that your prayers have been answered and I am still on my feet, hoping I will be back at the front of the battle again telling the story of the love of God.  You know I am still alive and whether I have written or not, I am thanking God for you.