GOD SEEKS WHAT HAS PASSED BY
By Apostle Richard Wright
“There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven -- A time to give birth, and a time to die; A time to plant, and a time to uproot what is planted. A time to kill, and a time to heal; A time to tear down, and a time to build up. A time to weep, and a time to laugh; A time to mourn, and a time to dance. A time to throw stones, and a time to gather stones; A time to embrace, and a time to shun embracing. A time to search, and a time to give up as lost; A time to keep, and a time to throw away. A time to tear apart, and a time to sew together; A time to be silent, and a time to speak. A time to love, and a time to hate; A time for war, and a time for peace. What profit is there to the worker from that in which he toils? I have seen the task which God has given the sons of men with which to occupy themselves. He has made everything appropriate in its time. He has also set eternity in their heart, yet so that man will not find out the work which God has done from the beginning even to the end. I know that there is nothing better for them than to rejoice and to do good in one's lifetime; moreover, that every man who eats and drinks sees good in all his labor -- it is the gift of God. I know that everything God does will remain forever; there is nothing to add to it and there is nothing to take from it, for God has so worked that men should fear Him. That which is has been already, and that which will be has already been, for God seeks what has passed by.” (Ecclesiastes 3:1-15)
What God is going to do; this “new thing” that God is doing; this present apostolic reformation that is underway, is only that which God has already done. God is seeking that which has passed by; therefore there will be a restoration of what God has already done. It will be a time of the reformation of His Kingdom government. “Thy Kingdom come. Thy will be done, right here in our time and in our place...right now in our ministries, in our relationships, in everything that will cause us to be the examples that the whole world needs to see and experience”. (My translation)
It is my prayer that none of us get so involved in our own programs and “ministries” that we do not give priority to that which God is desiring to reform in us. You cannot call it “refreshing”, “revival”, or “restoration” any longer, it is a corporate thing with God and it is now called an “apostolic reformation”. If you merely revive something, then it just sits there in a revived state. If you restore something, it is nice to look at but may not be functional. If you reform something, you have changed it and given it new life. God now has us in “reform school”. This is what God desires for those in ministry today.
Ecclesiastes 3:15 again says, “That which is has been already, and that which will be has already been, for God seeks what has passed by.” That which has passed by is the Hebrew word RADAPH and means “that which has been pursued and persecuted”. Many cannot stand the persecution that comes with the preaching of an uncompromised Word; one that demands change (reformation) and begin to water down their message until the persecution stops. This is a good example of restoration without reformation. When Ezekiel prophesied to the valley of dry bones, they came together and appeared to be restored, but there was no life in them so he was instructed to prophesy to the breath (life) and they were reformed.
We cannot merely pick up new terminology and say we believe, but we must continue to press for reformation until we see the Spirit, character, and nature of Christ formed (reformed) in the Church (the people of God).
There are more and more apostolic ministries beginning to come together. This means that there will be more processing of apostolic patterns, doctrines, revelations and reformation reality and it will be a “corporate” thing, a “kingdom” thing and a “family” thing. We must move on into this thing which has previously passed by, and we must do it together.
All ministries and “churches” who are embracing the apostolic reformation must actually begin to see themselves as patterns of apostolic reality. Emphasis on factors such as leadership, character of ministry, lifestyle Christianity, reformation mentality, global perspectives, finishing spirit and the demonstration of apostolic patterns must become a strong reality. God’s order must be reformed in His Church! This does not come just because we preach and teach this, but it comes because we believe and live it!
“For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; And the government will rest on His shoulders; And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace. There will be no end to the increase of His government or of peace, on the throne of David and over his kingdom, To establish it and to uphold it with justice and righteousness from then on and forevermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will accomplish this.” (Isaiah 9:6-7)
He is the head and the government is to rest on His shoulders. The shoulders are plural and are located between the head and the body. They are actually at the head of the body. The head has actually entrusted His government to His shoulders and expects the shoulders to embrace, enact, monitor and supervise His divine order of things in His Kingdom!
“Then they will rebuild the ancient ruins, They will raise up the former devastations, And they will repair the ruined cities, The desolations of many generations.” (Isaiah 61:4)
The combination of words used here implies the activity of rebuilding, making new and establishing. It describes restorative activity that is intent on changing the face of the present system. It assumes that the present state of things has in fact fallen into ruin and disrepair and that the failure is deep, the product of many generations.
This is not a time for Christian “fads” or things only dealing with the surface feelings of people. This is a time when God will be reaching deep into vessels to reform us from the inside out.
God is seeking what has passed by!