CURSED BY ANOTHER GOSPEL
‘As we have already said, so now I say again: If anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted, let them be under God's curse!’ GAL 1.9 NIV. This is not God being an ogre. It is a description of what happens when we cut ourselves off from Jesus’ gospel with a gospel of our own. It’s the same as spraying your vine with Round-up. (1)
When Jesus said, ‘This is My Body given for you.’ He could have said, ‘This is my life to be your life.’ He made at-one-ment, incarnated Himself into our being and baptised us in the Spirit. Thus who and what Jesus was is multiplied in all who believe.
HIS LIFE AS OURS
When Jesus said, ‘This is My Body’ He was speaking of the meaning and purpose of His incarnation among us as God in human flesh. That’s your flesh, spirit and soul. Radical grace is His only grace. It’s His life as ours.
‘His body’ includes His life of teaching, His being our Messiah, His atonement for us and His person vicariously as us. The mystery and the mastery of the incarnation is that God is woven into us and we are woven into God. But we must believe it to possess it so that it is our reality in spirit and in truth. There is no law of Moses here. Just the law of the Spirit of life and God’s penchant to draw all into Himself in harmony and love. But none of us are compelled to be drawn. We can live out of an old covenant mindset if we choose. But Paul was quite firm in describing the results as a curse: The curse of one’s ‘other gospel.’
SONS ND SLAVES
A son is the expression of our Father. A slave is a caricature of the law.
Jesus, the Christ of God is more than an example. He is the revelation of our Father and the representation of who we are as sons and daughters of God. The genius of the incarnation is that by His Spirit in us the qualities of God become us. Thus Christ comes in your flesh, incarnated in you by the Spirit. Thomas Torrance writes,
“ In His incarnate life, death and resurrection the Son of God established a binding relation between his divine reality an humankind; he not only bridged the gap between the creature and the Creator but triumphed completely over the separation between man and God due to human sin and alienation.
The resurrection of Christ demonstrated the fact that all division between man and God has now been removed in atoning reconciliation through the blood of Christ. Moreover, the resurrection of Christ in body demonstrated that the saving work of Christ on our behalf was fulfilled within the concrete reality of our actual human existence, and in such a way as to set it upon an entirely new basis in the regeneration or renewal of human being in the risen Lord.
That was the great message of forgiveness proclaimed at once by the apostles on the day of Pentecost and sealed by the gift of the Holy Spirit in baptism.”
STATE OF BEING
Thus the words body of Christ are not just a theological position or a notional assumption. They are not to be interpreted as an abstraction of the knowledge of good and evil, for they are none of Adam and all of God. The words refer to those for whom Christ has come in their flesh. They live not from the law. They are the reality that is Christ and the trinity alive in those who believe. ‘Body of Christ has nothing to do with the law and everything to do with incarnation – of Christ as our life.
The person of Jesus is real and active in your life because - by the Spirit Jesus, along with our Father and Holy Spirit express their themselves in you. Yours is not an attempted copying of the law or the character of Jesus. Your life is His life being expressed in you.
(1) We have lost our belonging in the one loaf because we have made our own loaf.