If our religious lives are conditioned by the law, everything we see and attempt to ‘know’ will be perceived in the letter – including the things of the Spirit – whether we intend to do so or not, because it’s who we are. In a manner of speaking we become what we behold.
I group of theologians were talking about seeing the Spirit. One of them used the example of one of those dotty pictures that are just dots until we see the ‘whole.’ The whole is more than the sum of the parts. But not when we live from the law. The parts are assumed to be the whole until – until we are born again.
This latter statement can cause offence when it is assumed that we are born again. But actually no one is born again, who is still living in the old covenant and its contractual, law culture. It’s easy to be offended should it be asserted that there is a higher and richer realm of spirituality that is available to us but which we have not entered. This is why it is our privilege to live in life instead of living in religion. This is what they said,
[The Magic Eye] “Once you get it, you can look all over the place, you don’t have to focus anything. You can keep looking everywhere and you’re amazed at all the things you see, and then just as suddenly, the smallest distraction, boom, it’s gone again, and you have to start all over trying to get back into that frame of mind. EC: That’s a marvellous analogy of the Christian life and how it’s easy to go on manipulating the symbols rather than participating in the reality.” (1)
The reality is Christ. But reality is not assertions about Christ. Reality is union with Christ. This brings us to the matter of ‘knowing’ which in the Kingdom is synonymous with Being. Not any old ‘being’ but being one with God.
How do we know what we know? Descartes asserted that we know by thinking: “I think therefor I am.’ Paul asserted that we know truth when our being is in God. Jesus declared that He is ‘knowing and that light and life are known when He is our life, our way and our truth. The knowing of reality is found in union with Jesus. Not in knowledge about Jesus. This is because genuine knowing is an attribute of being in God. Not being in the knowledge of good and evil.
Truth does not exist because we have cited a string of scriptures. Truth is and a thing is true because we and Father are one. Arguably all life lived in separation from Father is in some way a lie. Particularly is it a lie when we are offering separation as a ‘gospel’ because we have resisted entering our new covenant inheritance with God. We are competent to minister the Kingdom of God in the new covenant union and not competent to minister the Kingdom when we are not.
Your job is less to give a dissertation on a topic and more to release spirit and life on that occasion. How? By being one with our Father. This is the difference between mere ‘speaking’ and the release of spirit and life.
‘The words I have spoken to you--they are full of the Spirit and life’ John 6.63 NIV.
We can live a life in Christianity. We will have a degree of fellowship with God but not the same kind of companionship that is enjoyed by those for whom Believers and Father are one.
We can live from a Belief System and have an intellectualised association with heaven. We can also live from union – which is to live from our inheritance of sonship. This inheritance is the same quality of fellowship Jesus has with the Father and Holy Spirit.
‘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.
We can attach ourselves to a belief system and see this as a relationship with God. It can be but it is an insulated relationship – a bit like having sex clad in several over-coats. We can live an intellectualised Christian life, take a stand on certain issues and do some good. Then pass to our grave having never lived in our inheritance of ‘I am in you and you are in me.’
A subdued, anesthetised and insulated relationship with God is most often the result of conditioning in the law and old covenant separationist assumptions. The law and a connection to it forms a mindset that is religious yet anti-spiritual and ultimately anti-human – a form of godliness that denies its spirit and life.
Our mind-set determines how we see the world and how we see ourselves. On the deep level this is called epistemology - our concepts of what we understand as knowledge. What we have construed as ‘knowing’ shapes what we think is real. The person shaped by the law thinks religion is real. She cannot escape the letter no matter how much she promotes the spirit. The new covenant person is a life-giving spirit because she lives in the spirit of Christ. Christ is her.
The law-sculptured person thinks her religious life is real when it is but a shadow. The Jesus born person knows that Her life is real because she lives in reality. The reality is Christ. But not Christ as a minister of religion or custodian of a belief system. This is Christ as you.
We can think ourselves into un-life or think ourselves into life to the full.
That which is real to us determines how we will manifest. Shaped by the law we will manifest religion and be convinced that this is the godly life. Incarnated in Christ we are not just shaped by Him. We are the expression of Him. Our inheritance is that in this age we can be the manifestation of the trinity. We are this in potential. We actualize this when we believe it and step into it.