When Paul uses the words ‘Christ our life’ he means that Jesus Christ is totally everything in our relationship to God, ourselves and each other. This is the wider and more radical meaning of grace, speaking to our at-one-ment with God and the replication of His life in us as daughters and sons.
We live in obedience and grace not in order to be sons but because we are sons. ‘Now we are the sons of God’ is true following the cross and Pentecost in a manner in which it was never true prior to the cross. Then we were notionally sons. Today we are sons in spirit and in truth.
Jesus carried out His Father’s mission because He was a son. Not in order to be a son. In Adam we are never our true selves. In Christ we make constant progress into our real selves and our destiny to carry out the mission of the sons/daughters of God. Jesus was authentically Himself because He was in His Father. ‘Very truly I tell you, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does.’ This is probably not referring to a vision but to the fact that Jesus live in oneness with Father as a son, and as such His heart, spirit and soul expressed the nature and purpose of His Father. The cry of Christ, ‘It is finished!’ means Adam’s alienation and life in the flesh is finished in us. It means life in all forms of the law is ended and our living the life of Christ has begun. This is life in the Spirit. The latter is not the anointing. The gifts - as marvellous as they are – are not the achievement of the cross. Incarnation is the achievement of the cross and the gifts are the result. They grow from the soil of incarnation, in which we have been woven into God and God is woven into us. Incarnation is a done deal.
THE LARGER GRACE
Grace is the opportunity to be Christ’s life. Grace is never an excuse to live in ignorance or in addition to our own ideas. Neither is grace a reason to be boorish or live in the common illusions of the godless. Liberated from the knowledge of good and evil, we have the opportunity to live in the insight of God. We live in wisdom and discernment because God is in us and woven into our being. This is the mind of Christ.
The gifts and hearing God in visions and dreams are not the only way of knowing God, hearing God and ‘only doing what Father is doing’. The latter comes from the incarnation which is the spirit of sonship. Here we are talking life in the One Spirit which is the foundation of our living as sons and daughters of God. Living as a manifestation of God – Christ come in our flesh – is a more accurate ‘knowing’ of God and His will than some interpretations of visions and dreams founded on dodgy interpretation and misguided application *. We all have the inheritance of union with God. We live a fruitful life by not leaving this treasure in the ground.
‘But the person who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with him’ 1 Cor 6.17 NLT. Who is the person that is joined to the Lord? Answer: The person who lives in this belief.
“In perfect obedience, Jesus lived in the will of His Father daily. This obedience then becomes our obedience in Christ. We are not called to perform the will of God in and of ourselves, but with, though, and in Christ. We take part in His perfect obedience. The same goes for our prayer, our devotion, and every other aspect of our lives. We are wrapped up in Jesus Christ, in union with Him through the Spirit, and therefore, we share in all that He is. Jesus Christ’s vicarious humanity is a part of what makes grace so amazing. Grace meets us as we are, demanding nothing, yet supplying everything we need.” (1)
It's true that we have been received into Christ’s life and fellowship with Father. Our part is to actively agree with this fact and rest in the truth of it. I’t called ‘putting on Christ.’ ‘I die daily never means becoming a non-person. It means living in the resurrected Christ who lives the real you as you.
* Be sceptical of ‘god told me’ people’ who live inside the thimble of their own ideas and use these words to impress or control. Often they are counter to scripture and sometimes just plain nonsense. (1) Morrison, S. D.. We Belong: Trinitarian Good News (p. 89). Beloved Publishing. Kindle Edition.