ONE FOUNDATION ON WHICH TO BUILD
In Christ the separation that Adam began was undone. There was no ‘body of Christ’ before the cross as there had been no Christ and no incarnation. The Body of Christ exists because Jesus manifests by the Spirit as His people. But it’s more than a description. It’s a state of fellowship and belonging. Following the at-one-ment wrought by the cross human beings gained the companionship Jesus enjoyed with His Father and the fellowship that the members of the trinity enjoyed with each other. The Body of Christ is much more than a positional statement. It’s a description of our being in God.
We can live with Hagar or we can live with the Free Woman in Christ. ‘Hagar stands for Mount Sinai in Arabia and corresponds to the present city of Jerusalem, because she is in slavery with her children’ Gal 4.25 NIV. Hagar stands for those whose present inheritance is belonging in the Body of Christ but who do not live in this fullness because they are in separation and slavery with Hagar. They have left their ‘talent’ in the ground.
OBSCURING THE TRUTH
Should we ignore the apostles teaching we insulate ourselves from the life that is ours. By living in an old covenant mindset we obscure what it ours – like planting a fruit tree in our orchard without removing the polythene pot that it came in from the nursery.
What exactly is ours? Our inheritance is union with God. This is the inheritance luxuriated in by the sons of the free woman but not experienced by the sons of the slave woman – not because they have no access but because they do not believe..
We can accurately speak of the Body of Christ with a post-cross mindset in the context of our new covenant union with God. Some do not know there is a new covenant and think godliness is doing everything they happen to read in the Bible. They do not know that the new testament in not just a division in the Bible but the account of Christ our life as opposed to the inferior status of Adam our life.
Here’s a piece of information that is tangential to our topic yet relevant. Adam in a manner of speaking ‘sanctified’ the tree of the knowledge of good and evil making it a ‘way’ to a distorted mode of ‘godliness.’ Jesus was crucified on this ‘tree’ but in doing so He turned the cross into the tree of life. The cross is the line in space and time that separates, separation from God from union with God.
‘May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world’ Gal 6.14 NIV. Which world? The world of separated Adam.
‘In one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility’ Eph 2.16 NIV. What body? The body called ‘this is my body given for you.’
‘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 1.20 NIV. What things? The undoing of all things separated from God by Satan’s lie and Adam’s fall.
The truth of the incarnation was established largely by Athanasius and established as sound doctrine by the Council of Nicaea. “Thomas Torrance observes that “It was characteristic of Athanasius that he conceived of the union between Christ and the members of his Body as established by incarnation and atonement, since .. for Athanasius atonement had to be understood as having taken place within the incarnate Person of Christ as the one Mediator between God and man.
What the Son of God became in his incarnation and what he has done for us in his redeeming activity are essentially one – that is why, Athanasius pointed out, the apostle spoke of the incarnation (ἐνανθρώπησιζ) of Christ and his high-priesthood (ἀρχιερωσύνη) as having functioned together. That is to say, ‘Christ in us’ and ‘Christ for us’ are completely interlocked in the oneness (ἕνωσιζ) that lies at the core of the Church as the Body of Christ.” This is about the Communion that is God becoming God’s union and communion with us.
YOU CREATE YOUR REALITY
Satan succeeded in degrading man and the world by suggesting a false reality. We need to be clear on this because what is real for us is what we think is real even if the reality we have absorbed is a lie.
If we remain under the law - in the misunderstanding that our post cross life is the old covenant adjusted by Christ - the incarnation is neutralised. For us the Messiah has not come in any meaningful way as Paul warns in Galatians 2.21 when He declares that for such Believers Christ died for nothing. We have missed the point and the actuality of the gift of the infinite life that is Christ in us. We will have continued in our own way of separation, walking in the ‘great darkness’ that is the chief deception and most successful Satanic ruse of the post cross age.
Reality is Christ – the Christ of God as revealed in the teaching of Jesus and the apostles.
(1) Torrance, Thomas F.. The Trinitarian Faith: The Evangelical Theology of the Ancient Catholic Church (T&T Clark Cornerstones) (p. 266). Bloomsbury Publishing. Kindle Edition.