A BORN AGAIN LIFE
‘On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you’ John 14.20 NIV. This is the day that marks the start of our born again life.
Bob opined to me once that if people have religion at least they have some affinity with God. Maybe. One of the best ways of not knowing God is to make a god of religion. Why? It insulates us from union with God. Plant a tree in its polythene pot in the ground and watch it not grow. It’s a picture of life in the old covenant, the law and religion. Holy Spirit added to separation will not revive it – not for long. Holy Spirit draws our attention to Christ – the true Christ of God and our inheritance of union with God archived by the enterprise of the trinity.
Religion is the stuff of the knowledge of good and evil. Incarnation is the essence of Godliness and the foundation of the Kingdom of God.
All of life is holy. It has been sanctified and legitimated by the Christ of God who walked its streets, sailed its lakes, ate its food and died its death. ‘God so loved the word that He gave His only Son.’ It would be drawing a long bow to suggest that Jesus kept the Sabbath. He lived a Sabbath life.* He attended the temple, not to draw life from it but to impart to it His life and significantly cast out those who practiced sucking life out of others. Jesus lived from His Father. He was one with His Father being the son of God and one with His Father as a human being and the Last Adam. John tells us that Jesus was not only the Messiah but the Christ of God, the one who created the earth and the one in whom all rationality, sound thinking and genuine purpose is found (the logos).
In this hour your daily activities are sanctified and anointed by Christ as you.
In Jesus we are joined to God, one with our Father and one with the creation.
FULLNESS IN YOU
‘He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross’ Col 1.17-20.
Why do magpies warble on my veranda in the morning. Mainly because of the joy of being themselves. Also because I feed them. When Christ is our life we are fed with joy.
What is the chief quality of the trinity? Maybe joy. Because in joy is incorporated love, grace, righteousness and wholeness.
SPIRITUALITY IS NOT RELIGION
Spirituality is being fully human and fully alive through union with God. To live in union with God is to find life and joy in union with the creation. This is a sabbath life – a life that is not compartmentalised and confined to the religiosity of a day but a life that is all of life and empowered to impart spirit and life to every aspect of living in the world. It makes a difference whether we see our life in Adam or Jesus. In the law we are in Adam. In Christ we are in God and in His Spirit of oneness and joy.
“Spirituality is about honouring the human journey, loving it, and living it in all its wonder and tragedy. There is nothing really “supernatural” about love and suffering. It is completely natural, taking us through the deep interplay of death and life, surrender and forgiveness, in all their basic and foundational manifestations. “God comes to you disguised as your life,” as my friend Paula D’Arcy says so well. Who would have thought? I was told it was about going to church.” (1)
The most striking manifestation of the Holy Spirit is you.
If church is our life we can be a dead man walking. With Christ as our life we can impart life to church, to family, to marriage, to work and to ourselves - yet not be bound by an institution (or bound in any usage) because in God we are alive in our spirit. We reach the highest form of spirituality in loving people and life by being daughters and sons in spirit and in truth.
* A Sabbath is union and communion with God.
(1) Rohr, Richard. The Universal Christ (p. 212). SPCK. Kindle Edition.