We can learn about God from our parents, our church, our Christian school and Christian conferences. Our best learning comes from the truth seeking function of our heart. Our heart will resist perversion of His nature that come to us from the mixed messages of the above. Our heart will seek out that which is fulsome and true about God. Or not.
Hearts can resist false gods and mistaken husbands. Hearts can seek to make their way from veils and thickets even if they have been subject to subtle brain washing and tendentious socialisation.
Hearts can be beaten up by toxic religion or rendered inert by everyday religion that has been formed in the factory of the knowledge of good and evil instead of in the heart of God. God simply is. The I AM of God is more real than any notion of Him and it is in this I AM that our hearts are directed to come alive, to revive and pump new creation life into our spirits, souls and bodies.
Religion can be toxic when it is all about manipulation and control. It can be subtly abusive should it be the expression of distorted views of God in the guise of truth. There is nothing so numbing to the human soul than bent views of God.
‘False christs’ are more common than we might imagine. The true view of God is found in the person of Jesus Christ. Even then our quest must be to know the real Jesus and be liberated from any ‘religious Jesus’ who is a construct of our own minds and religious up-bringing. This is a key point in C Baxster Kruger’s book, Patmos and also in the writing of Thomas Torrance.
The latter writes,
“On the one hand, then, faith is characterised by a certainty of conviction which derives its force from the truth of God himself thrust upon it, but on the other hand, faith is characterised by an open, ever-expanding semantic focus which answers to the unfathomable mystery and inexhaustible nature of God.” (1)
God is not contained in definitions and neither are we. We are explained and realised in Him through Jesus Christ.
God is who He is and at the same time cannot be limited. Similarly with us, when we are in God, which we are when we agree that we have been received into Christ’s life. In Christ we as sons start the journey of becoming a being – a son – who lives without limitation in the spirit of sonship. It’s not only eternal life that is found in knowing God. It’s the authentic, infinite life of sons of God in spirit and in truth.
NON-KINGDOM EXISTENCE A characteristic of religion is its expression of the knowledge of good and evil is compartments, boxes, divisions, bottles, separation of times and sacralisation of places. Religion specialises in distinctions in regard to places and times. But there is no sacred and secular in the post cross age. Christ is all and in all and His quest is to draw all that exists into Himself. ‘And this is the plan: At the right time he will bring everything together under the authority of Christ--everything in heaven and on earth.’ He is doing this now at the hand of the sons of God and will complete it at the great culmination.
GOD IN YOU, WITH YOU AND AROUND YOU
“Sir,” the woman said, “I can see that you are a prophet. Our ancestors worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem.”
Woman,” Jesus replied, “believe me, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.” John 4.19-24 NIV.
What is spirit and truth? It is you in God and God in you. It is your interwoveness with the God who loves you. It is you realizing that ‘I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you’ John 14.20 NIV.
YOU ARE INCLUDED
Jesus has opened the door to union with God. He is the Door. Most of the world has not entered in. Our message to these is that ‘they belong’ so that in believing in Jesus they will come home and find life in His Name. Our message to Believers is that we belong. We are already positioned through Christ in fellowship with the trinity. We are not separated and striving with Jesus help to win acceptance. We already are accepted in Jesus and owners of the love Father has for Jesus. We are included in Jesus relationship with our Father, and Holy Spirit.
The cross rendered the entire separated world one with God. Our mission for unbelievers and ourselves is to agree with the truth of the incarnation: Christ in us. Christ by His Spirit as us. We live to receive the reality into our being that Jesus has already achieved. We and our Father are one. We and the world are becoming one by the One Spirit. We are colleagues of Jesus bringing all who will have life into the togetherness of Jesus.
‘And this is the plan: At the right time he will bring everything together under the authority of Christ--everything in heaven and on earth’ Eph 1.10 NLT.
LIFE GIVING EMBODIED SPIRITS
All life-giving spirituality draws us into the vision of God. We do better to live from the vision of original life than from original sin. Jesus came to undo every form of death and liberate us from the most subtle and the most blatant lies – many of the former are embedded in common, standard christianity and its separationist assumptions.
‘The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you--they are full of the Spirit and life’ John 6.63 NIV.
‘The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full’ John 10.10 NIV.
“It was not the Fall of Adam, therefore, that set God’s agenda; it was the decision to share the great dance with us through Jesus. Adam’s plunge certainly threatened God’s dreams for us, but that threat had been anticipated and already strategically overcome in the predestination of the incarnation. Jesus Christ did not become human to fix the fall; he became human to accomplish the eternal purpose of our adoption, and in order to bring our adoption to pass, the Fall had to be called to a halt and undone….Jesus is not a footnote to Adam and his Fall; the Fall, and indeed creation itself, is a footnote to the purpose of God in Jesus Christ.” ― C. Baxter Kruger, Jesus and the Undoing of Adam.
(1) Torrance, Thomas F.. The Trinitarian Faith: The Evangelical Theology of the Ancient Catholic Church (T&T Clark Cornerstones) (p. 22). Bloomsbury Publishing. Kindle Edition.