PERSON, RELATIONSHIP AND KINGDOM LIFE
It is mostly supposed that if we have a position on something, then we have that thing. This is not so in the Kingdom Jesus began. Here truth is not an abstraction or a position. It is the person of Christ in you. It is relationship in which God in three persons lives in you. IN Christ you live in their fellowship.
The tree of knowledge is insidious in its variations and grossly effective in its dulling of genuine life. The Kingdom Jesus began is supremely a person and extravagantly Himself. To view it as a belief system alone and practise it as such is to have missed your inheritance completely: The inheritance that Christ is your life and that you are alive when you are in Him and half dead when you are in substitutes.
In her book Real Presence, Leanne Payne upholds the incarnation and urges us to live as the embodiment of His presence while warning of the tendency to live in various substitutes that religion offers. Religion and its components, Sabbaths, assorted legalisms and performance orientations. An irritated person once told me that he did not live in substitutes. But he lived the substitutes just mentioned.
REAL PRESENCE – REAL LIFE
In the new testament age God lives in you and manifests as you. He is the sole mediator of His spirit and life. Other things, as venerated as we have made them, are inert, lifeless and possess no power to nurture us as sons of God.
In the new covenant age we are not forced to live in positions – unless we so force ourselves. The essence of this age is that we and Father are one and more – that God and human beings are woven together in Jesus. The result of this is that we become privy to the revelation of what God knows and we become transformed by His presence in our being. We are one with life. We are participating in the being of the One who resurrects and anoints with everlasting life.
Stephen Crosby observes that, “As the letter triumphed, the Spirit withdrew and textualism ruled supreme. It was the time of the believer’s Babylonian captivity . . . The error of textualism is not doctrinal. It is far more subtle than that and much more difficult to discover, but its effects are just as deadly. Not its theological beliefs are at fault, but its assumptions. It assumes for instance, that if we have the word for a thing we have the thing itself. If it is in the Bible, it is in us. If we have the doctrine, we have the experience.” (1)
If we have the word for a thing we have the thing itself. Not really. We can notionally belong to the Body of Christ but be disconnected in actuality (spirit and truth) because we are still living in dead and separated Adam and His attempts to recommend Himself to God. If in Adam we are not in Christ. If we are a tare we are not wheat. If we are the body of death we are not the body of Christ.
Jesus warned us of tares – people who are not sons in spirit and in truth and who in reality have been lied to by temple money-changers betrayed by the Evil One. Paul spoke of the body of death that we are ensconced in, should we be so dilatory as to remain in old covenant Adam when we have a life in new covenant Jesus.
CHRIST YOUR LIFE
There is no law in the new testament age. Not of the Mosaic type. ‘The law’ such as it is the person of Jesus and our union with Him and our Father. Jesus described this succinctly when He said, ‘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. To realise this and embrace it is to live in our inheritance and participate in the fullness of Christ our life. Paul called this relationship with God in Jesus Christ, THE LAW OF THE SPIRIT OF LIFE that has set us free from the law of sin and death. Attached to the law we belong to the body of dead Adam. In Adam all die and remain dead. In Christ all are made alive and live in His spirit and life. This is living in the Body of Christ -the person who rose from the dead to minister what He had achieved: Our union, fellowship and interwoveness with the trinity and with each other.
(1) Crosby, Stephen. How New is the New Covenant?: Discovering the Implications of: Jesus is Lord (Kindle Locations 1227-1231). Stephanos Ministries. Kindle Edition.