Throughout Western Victoria and other country places there are colorful and magnificent murals depicting ordinary folks who have become heroes of social life. They are a monument to good character and triumph over adversity. Having been raised in a Wheat Town in Central Western NSW, I am familiar with silos, their purpose and the hustle and bustle about them at summer harvest. Silos are for storing wheat.
People don’t live in them although there are people who would be engaged sweeping and cleaning them in preparation for the next harvest. Silos are not for living in. Life is for living in. Without farm life and the rhythm of the seasons there would be no silos, no railway and no trains.
A LIFE IN GOD
Holy Spirit is God and part of the trinity. When we talk of the new covenant and our union with God that is secured in it we are talking about the new reality that emerges post cross: Our life as beings incarnated with the trinity. We mean the interwoveness of the self with God and God with the self – the formation of the Body of Christ as the manifestation of God and the real state of being that is ours called, the sons of God. A real state of being and real personhood is ontological – which is to say it is not just words, not an abstraction but being an expression of God is as real as you can get.
When we talk of being ‘spirit-filled’ and ‘life in the Spirit’ , we are not talking silos. We are not talking a compartmentalized life that is siloed-off and separate from our new life with God in The One Spirit. We are not talking something that is possible in a law/old covenant mindset.
If we are we are short-changing ourselves and on the way to inertia and torpor. Life in the Spirit is not just gifts. Life in the Spirit is union with God. It is the life in that we have stepped into as new covenant believers. This not our Adamic, separated life. It is our Jesus Christ life of union with God.* Here we live in what Jesus lived in: We do what Jesus and Father are doing because we are alive by the one Spirit with the result that we and our Father are one.
DRAGGING ONE’S FEET
It is necessary to clarify this because believers can too often attempt a life in the anointing and the gifts that is substantially old covenant. The result is the eventual suffocation of what began with brightness and fire. Plus the deployment of gifts that are tainted by the flesh and the manipulation of the Evil One.
Life in the Spirit is the effect of the new covenant, the result of our union with God and the branches and fruit that are the outgrowth of our new covenant rootedness in the trinity. Thomas Torrance assures us, “The Spirit is not just something divine or something akin to God emanating from him, not some sort of action at a distance or some kind of gift detachable from himself, for in the Holy Spirit God acts directly upon us himself, and in giving us his Holy Spirit God gives us nothing less than himself. Since God is Spirit, the Giver of the Spirit and the Gift of the Spirit are identical.” (1)
The soil of our life in God is never the gifts, prophecies or miracles, even if these are a sign of His presence. The cause of the infinite life that fills us now is our embeddedness in God. This is our place of experiencing God’s love, God’s healing and His tutoring in sonship. It is our place of being sons. (1) Torrance, Thomas F.. The Trinitarian Faith: The Evangelical Theology of the Ancient Catholic Church (T&T Clark Cornerstones) (p. 191). Bloomsbury Publishing. Kindle Edition. * If we retain ourselves in the law we are not one with God. (1) Torrance, Thomas F.. The Trinitarian Faith: The Evangelical Theology of the Ancient Catholic Church (T&T Clark Cornerstones) (p. 191). Bloomsbury Publishing. Kindle Edition.