Cosmically, new birth is the start of the new creation. Personally it is our birth from the false self to the true self. It’s a fact. We are a parody of our real selves in rebellion and unbelief. But we are shadow of our real selves in the old covenant law and religion. Jesus ended the un-you of shadows and faint reality of your person when He cried, ‘It is finished!’ He began the real you when He rose from the dead and spoke words of self -authenticity to those gathered: ‘Peace be with you’.
None enjoy deep peace chasing self-realisation in anything that is not Jesus. Divine rest for human restlessness is you in Christ and Christ in you. Here you are resting and ‘becoming’ in His being and in our belonging in Him.
The seeking of such rest in other entities and other things is at best futile and at worst paganism. Reality is Christ. The real you is Christ your life. As Paul urged,
‘Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.’ Your glory is to live as the created and redeemed you because Christ by His Spirit is sharing His relationship with you and manifesting as you.
BORN INTO UNION
“Paul actually says in several places that "our former selves have been crucified" already (Romans 6:6). The False Self is fragile and temporary and is thus already "over and out." Its death knell has already rung. It is just a matter of time until you touch the true, and the false falls away like clumsy scaffolding. This is probably why some saints were pictured holding or looking at a human skull.
It was not meant to be morbid but a way of picturing this shock of realization and the utter change of consciousness that follows. Once you experience the Real, the unreal is increasingly a mere diversion or entertainment, not substantial reality. Once you encounter the Risen Presence, you can rather easily let go of the past and the petty.” (1)
YOU ARE REAL IN CHRIST
The reality is Christ. This is more than a doctrinal assertion. It is His life as yours – the difference between living the shadow of religion and life as a daughter or a son.
Jesus urged that eternal/infinite life is ‘knowing God and Jesus Christ who Father sent’. God is a spirit and we can know Him in spirit and in truth. Because God is spirit we can participate in His life even when we have little of the truth. But worshiping in truth enables us to revel in all of His life rather than in just drops of it.
Because Jesus is grace and truth we are able to live in relationship to God when our version of truth is limited. However since Jesus is grace and truth His grace is a continuous invitation - a living way of growing into the truth of who God is and we as we participate in His life.
Christ our life – the reality of we and Father being one is quite different to lived out Christianity because it is not religion. It is raw union. It the union with Father Jesus had when He said, ‘I and the Father are one.’ Where Christ as our life is the Kingdom of God, Christ as Christianity is the shadow of the real.
LIVING FROM INCARNATION
This video, while on the topic of evangelism is excellent in its demarcation and revelation of the difference between living from Christianity and living as incarnated beings as manifestations of the personified life of the trinity.
(1) Richard Rohr, The Immortal Diamond, Kindle loc. 1659.