EXPERIENCING THE VERTICAL AND HORIZONTAL ASPECTS OF THE DIVINE FELLOWSHIP
Our vertical relationship with God is the most important relationship we can have. Our horizontal relationships stems from our vertical. The cross is both vertical and horizontal because we need both to live how God intended. Vertically, we have to have a connection and relationship with Christ. Here we find expressed two relationships which are vital for Christians: one's vertical relationship with God, and one's horizontal relationship.
Think about that for a second, because of Christ, we have peace with God Himself! Shalom includes the negative aspects of a ceasefire and lack of fighting along with the positive blessings of living in communion with our Creator.
So we get it now, right? Christ is our peace; between God and man stands Christ the mediator. This explains how the cross is vertical.
But what about the horizontal aspect of the cross? Christ is the peace between God and man. Because man has peace with God, man can now have peace with other men! Because Christ has forgiven us of our sins, we can forgive other men who sin against us.
You and I know the difference between the two lines - the vertical goes straight up and down and the horizontal line goes from side to side. Speaking of the Christian life, I want us to explore the importance of our vertical relationship with God. We can call this looking up.
We can call this having our eyes fixated on Jesus Christ. We can call this being God focused as we equate God being UP in heaven.
We can examine Heb. Our horizontal relationships stems from our vertical relationship or lack there of. Most of us are horizontally focused. What I mean by this is us focusing on the physical or present circumstances surrounding us.
We are often times fixated on the horizontal level or plane rather than the vertical plane. We allow the horizontal plane to affect and dictate our vertical relationship with God where it should be the other way around. We find ourselves examining this truth in the text mentioned above. Who is this guy anyway? King Hezekiah reigned in Jerusalem over Judah starting when he was 25 years old.
- Living Stream Ministry
It would be like having a 25 year old male running a country. There are some 25 year old's that are mature and other's that are not. Regardless of the age, it was quite the responsibility placed on his shoulders. King's in that time period were more viewed as a sovereign rather than having various branches of government. As you and I both know and understand from experience, age doesn't always define maturity. We see from our text King Hezekiah was very wise and mature beyond his years.
What made him such a good king as the text would indicate? King Hezekiah focused on the vertical relationship with God. With himself and then leading the people he was ruling over to do the same.
Vertical and Horizontal Relationships
Knowing the history of the kings of both Israel and Judah, many were bad kings and it seemed to get worse as time went on. As a result of the past kings not taking series their vertical relationship with God, they led people astray towards idolatry, which affected their vertical relationship with God and their horizontal relationships with others.
Under these kings that rebelled against God, there was constant peril and unrest with the two countries. What separated King Hezekiah from the rest of the pack is his stand he took to return to God; to get the vertical relationship where it needs to be.
Vertical and Horizontal Relationships – Breakthrough-TODAY
If you can picture someone you know who is a mover and a shaker, this was King Hezekiah. He cleansed and restored temple worship.
He restored the celebration of the passover. He organized the proper temple leadership where it was supposed to be. My point in relating this experience is that there is almost always an intimate feeling between the person who gets saved and the one through whom he gets saved. I cannot forget the female evangelist through whom I was saved. She will always be so dear and precious to me because through her I was brought into the divine fellowship.
Her preaching of the gospel to me was related to the horizontal aspect of the fellowship of the divine life. After receiving her word, I went to the Lord and was brought into the vertical aspect of the divine fellowship. Our vertical fellowship with the Lord is affected by our horizontal fellowship with others. If we do not have a proper relationship with those around us, it is difficult to have a good fellowship with the Lord vertically.
The reason for this is that the divine fellowship is one fellowship. Each day we should be in the divine fellowship, vertically and horizontally.
Most of us may think that we daily start this fellowship according to its vertical aspect, followed by its horizontal aspect.