We must live the new covenant to be sons in reality rather than in shadow. The new covenant is the fullness of what Jesus began. It is the Kingdom of God in spirit and in truth. The remarkable thing about the new covenant is that few have lived in it. What is it about the new covenant that separates it from the old? It’s union with God. Holy men and women of God were inspired by Holy Spirit in the old testament. But God lived in none of them – not in Enoch who walked with God or Moses who saw the hind-parts of God. Speaking of the new covenant Jesus declared: ‘Those who eat me will live because of me.’ Before the cross there had been no Son of Man to live from. But there is now. He is your life in every way.
‘If the new covenant is Christ our life not the new covenant is our religion as our life.’
The new covenant is summed up in the new beginning in The Son and the incarnation of the trinity in the Believer. Your Adam life of separation is dead. You Jesus life of union with God is up and running. Obeying Jesus’ teaching – that He Himself is our life - opens the door to our indwelling by God. Jesus says that Father, Son and Holy Spirit will make their home in us. And they do. Jesus said, ‘Unless you eat my flesh and drink my blood you have no life in you.’ When He is our life we possess the Spirit and life of God.
‘Jesus’ teaching is that He is totally our life. Jesus replied, "Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them’ John 14.23 NIV.
‘This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God’ 1 John 4.2 NIV. This is the core of Kingdom life and the essence of new testament living. Any addition or subtraction from this is sourced in the spirit of anti-christ.
Eating Jesus is symbolised by the Lord’s Table. This is less the celebration of His cross and more the celebration of His life as our life by the Spirit. The cross prepared the way for the ultimate fact of new testament life: God alive in His you! The excellent result of this is YOU ALIVE IN GOD!
The bread (Jesus), in the Spirit, becomes our flesh and blood. He becomes us. The Spirit of Jesus becomes our life and He manifests as our being. No figure here. This is spirit and truth. He is the bread of life. Our celebration of the Lord’s Supper declares what is already a fact. Jesus is our life.
The atonement is not only about Jesus as a substitute. The key to atonement is AT-ONE-MENT. The core is our life in God -the trinity in us and us in the trinity. The Believer is never alone. Christ lives in you and you participate through Jesus in the life of the trinity. You belong. You did not earn this. Jesus did. You did not set up the cross, the resurrection, Pentecost and life in the Spirit. God did. The divine conspiracy achieved it. This is your inheritance – the inheritance not of the law bound slave woman but our inheritance as sons of the free woman.
‘But what does Scripture say? "Get rid of the slave woman and her son, for the slave woman's son will never share in the inheritance with the free woman's son’ Gal 4.30 NIV. There is a choice to be made here. Under the law and old covenant we can either be a slave or a worker. Under the new covenant we are all sons of God.
STONY LAW/STONY HEART
The law of sin and death is the knowledge of good and evil generally and the Ten Commandments specifically. Paul calls the Ten Commandments the law that brought death.
‘The old way, with laws etched in stone, led to death, though it began with such glory that the people of Israel could not bear to look at Moses' face. For his face shone with the glory of God, even though the brightness was already fading away’ 2 Cor 3.7 NLT.
In the new covenant there are no laws on stone that we should live by. Nor are their rules on paper. The teachings of Jesus and the apostles cited in the new testament are not a new set of laws as I heard one pastor teach. I was sad for him as he had missed what Jesus’ cross achieved: His life as ours. Jesus did not replace one set of rules with a more sophisticated set. He replaced every variety of the letter with Himself. This is the truth: In this age you are the expression of Jesus.
‘Through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death’ Rom 8.2 NIV.
Jesus is our Friend and counsellor. We can hear His voice in our spirit and by words, visions and dreams. But His counsel is not our transformation. He is our transformation. We already know that when God gives a list we can’t do it. It’s not in us. But Jesus is. He is the righteousness that is us.
‘God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God’ 2 Cor 5.21 NIV.
Jesus is our righteousness. He incarnates Himself in our being and become the person we are. Jesus lives in us. Woven into our being He imparts Himself to us. Each of us become a living expression of Him. His life in us is both a transforming power and an invitation to go in deeper.
François Du Toit writes, ‘To see Jesus is to see yourself.’ This is a radical assertion. It circumvents all the religiosity of ‘seeking to be like Christ,’ of ‘living the Christian life’ and ‘being a Christian.’ Yet it is the unvarnished accomplishment of God for you. ‘Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world’ 1 John 4.17 KJV.
There is a real you - the you who was known and seen before the foundation of the world. This is the you who has been re-presented to you by the indwelling Jesus. This is the us we are becoming as we grow into the fullness of Jesus. No ticking boxes here. We are transformed into our genuine selves through Jesus who is our life.
God is never ‘who He is’ when seen through the lens of the law. And neither are you. You are you son/daughter of God in spirit and in truth because Christ is your life. Christ in you is not only the hope of glory. He is your continually revealed glory as a daughter and a son releasing God’s life where you are. In Christ you glorify Father by being you, doing what only He means you to be doing. How cool is that?! As Paul said,
‘For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is yourlife, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory’ Col 3.3,4 NIV.