“One of the things that we must learn if we are to live the victorious Christian life is the utter simplicity of it. How complicated we have made it!”
I guess the reason we make it so difficult is because we feel we must figure it out. Paul says in 2 Corinthians 11:3, “But I am afraid that, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, your minds will be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ” (NASB1995).
Isaiah 35 speaks to the glorious future that awaits a restored Israel. Roy refers to verses 8-9 and uses them as an analogy for the Highway of Holiness. He says the highway is “built up from the surrounding morass, the world. The only way to get to the highway is to go up a dark, forbidding hill- the hill of Calvary.” We cannot climb the hill by walking, but we must be on our hands and knees in brokenness.
“At the top of the hill, guarding the way to the highway, is the cross – standing so gaunt and grim. There it stands, the divider of time and the divider of humanity. At the foot of the cross is a low door, so low that to get inside one has to stoop and crawl through. it is the only entrance to the highway. We must go through it if we want to go any further on our way. This door is called “The Door of the Broken Ones,” because only the broken can enter the highway. Over the Door of the Broken Ones is sprinkled the precious blood of the Lord Jesus.”
What a beautiful picture of salvation! Once we have entered through the low door, the highway “stretches before us, a narrow uphill road bathed in light, leading towards the heavenly Jerusalem. Behind us is the cross, no longer dark and forbidding, but radiant and glowing. We no longer see Jesus stretched across its arms but walking the highway overflowing with resurrection life . In His hands, He carries a pitcher of the Water of Life.”
As we travel, we can easily fall off the narrow road into the slopes of darkness below. Our salvation cannot be lost, but we can lose our fellowship with the Lord when we trip and stumble in sin. We have a constant choice to keep being broken. It doesn’t happen just once! Every single day, “if someone hurts and slights us, we immediately have a choice: accept the slight as a means of grace to humble us lower or resist it and stiffen our necks again with all the disturbance of spirit that that is bound to bring. All throughout the day our brokenness will be tested.”
When we sin, “our cup is dirtied and ceases to overflow, and we lose our peace.” As soon as the Holy Spirit blows His divine whistle, we “look longingly back to the highway and see the Lord Jesus again.” As we humbly return to Him, we find that He is waiting there to fill us to overflowing once more. “Hallelujah! No matter where we leave the highway, we will always find Him calling us to come back and be broken again.”
“The secret is always to take sin to the cross, see there its sinfulness, and then put it under the blood and reckon it gone.” Oh what freedom and victory await us when we come to Jesus! “In order to break our wills to His, God brings us to the foot of the cross and there shows us what real brokenness is. We see those wounded hands and feet, that face of love crowned with thorns and the complete brokenness of the One who said, ‘not My will, but Yours, be done’ (Luke 22:42).”
Our hearts are like empty cups that Jesus longs to fill with His resurrection life. Revival is “simply giving Him each sin to cleanse in His precious blood, accepting from His hand the free gift of His fullness, and then allowing Him to do the work through us.” This work includes loving others, as we don’t walk this highway alone. As we saw last week, our relationships with others and our relationship with God are deeply connected. In fact, they are “so linked that we cannot disturb one without disturbing the other. Everything that comes between us and another – such as impatience, resentment, or envy – comes between us and God.”
If we don’t deal with these barriers, we will find ourselves walking in the darkness and hiding there. The result is living a lie! God wants us to walk in the Light. “The way back into fellowship with the Lord Jesus will bring us again into fellowship with our fellow believers, too.”
“So this is the highway life… It is just a life to live day by day, in whatever circumstances the Lord has put us.” When we are continually broken before Him, we find that He is always there to continually fill us to overflowing. “Our Christian life simply consists now of walking along the highway – with hearts overflowing – bowing the neck to His will all the time, constantly trusting the blood to cleanse us, and living in complete oneness with Jesus. There is nothing spectacular about this life, no emotional experiences to sign after and wait for. It is merely the day by day living of the life the Lord intended us to live.”
Chapter 4: Homework
Day 1: Deceitfulness of Sin
- Record 2 Corinthians 11:3 in your journal. Now read Genesis 3:1-8. How does this relate to 2 Corinthians 11:3?
- Read Genesis 2:16-17. What was God’s commandment to Adam? What would happen if he disobeyed? (this not only refers to eventual physical death, but immediate spiritual death).
- Read Genesis 3:1-8. In verse 1, how is the serpent described? What did the serpent say to Eve in verses 1 and 4?
- How can you see the serpent’s craftiness in having Eve question what God had said? His tactics haven’t changed. How have you seen this in your own life?
- According to Genesis 3:8, what did Adam and Eve do as a result of their sin? How does this relate to our study of light and darkness?
- The beautiful part of this passage is that God came looking for them even though He knew they had sinned and were hiding. Read Romans 5:6-11 and record everything you learn about us and everything you learn about God and Christ. How does this encourage you today?
Day 2: Simplicity of Christ
- Read 2 Corinthians 11:3 again. What was Paul afraid their minds would be led astray from?
- If you read the whole chapter, you will see that the Corinthian believers were being influenced by false teachers. All false teaching is a direct attack on grace. This reminds me of Galatians 1:6-7. What was Paul amazed by?
- Read Galatians 3:1-3. Why did Paul refer to the Galatians as foolish?
- Read Colossians 2:8-10 and Ephesians 4:14-15. How are these passages similar to each other? What do you learn about Christ in Colossians 2:8-10?
- What does Matthew 11:29 tell you about our Lord? When we get drawn away from the simplicity of Christ, we end up trying to carry our burdens ourselves. How does this verse encourage you to run back to Christ when you are weary and heavy laden?
Day 3: Purity & Power of the Gospel
- What does Romans 1:16 and 1 Corinthians 15:3-6 teach you about the Gospel?
- Read 1 Corinthians 1:18. What do you learn about the message of the cross?
- Read 1 Peter 2:2. How are we to desire the pure milk of the word and why?
- Read 1 John 3:1-3. What is the purifying hope? How does verse 3 describe Jesus?
- How does Acts 20:24 refer to the Gospel? What is the Gospel (word of His grace) able to do according to Acts 20:32?
Day 4: Transforming Grace
- Read John 1:1-18. and write down everything you learn about Jesus (the Word). What do you learn in verses 14-18 about grace and truth? Grace is not found in an ideology or philosophy, but in a person. Jesus is the Grace of God to us!
- Read 2 Corinthians 8:7-9 and 2 Corinthians 9:8. What do you learn about grace?
- Read Ephesians 1:3-9. What is our standing because of grace?
- Based on Ephesians 2:5-8, how are we saved?
- Read Titus 2:11-12. What does the grace of God do? Read Hebrews 4:16 and record it in your journal. What does Christ offer us through grace?
Day 5: Candidates of Grace
- Read 2 Corinthians 12:9-10. What do you learn about God’s grace? How do these verses compare with Isaiah 40:29-31?
- Read 1 Corinthians 15:10. How did Paul labor?
- Read 1 Corinthians 1:26-31. What makes a person truly a candidate for God’s grace?
- Read Psalm 25. Record in your journal how this chapter expresses someone in need of God’s grace.
- Record Isaiah 66:2 in your journal. Write out a prayer to God expressing your desire to have a humble, contrite spirit, and a heart that trembles at His Word.
Please note that unless stated otherwise, all italicized quotes that are not directly cited from an author or Scripture are direct quotes from the book, The Calvary Road, by Roy Hession.