David the shepherd and king was a portent both of Jesus and those who live in the Son of God. But he was not equal to the latter. None of the old testament figures were. Even Moses and not even John the Baptist the Forerunner of Jesus enjoyed the inheritance you do. Any person for whom Christ is life is greater as a life-giving spirit, than all of these for one simple reason: The latter are incarnated with the trinity.
In the old testament many did great deeds for God. In the new testament all are capable of releasing spirit and life. What is spirit and life? It’s the multiplication of the spirit of the Father and the Son.
‘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.
GREATER THAN MOSES
So let’s be clear. Anyone for whom Jesus is life is greater than Elijah or Moses because he and she are a manifestation of Jesus and our Father. Years ago, as youth we had a debate. The topic was ‘That Moses is Greater than Paul.’ I can’t remember how the debate was adjudicated but I did not know then what I know now. I know that there is a new covenant that bisects history; that divides life in Adam from life in Jesus and separates the old creation from the new. In this age people of faith have the authority of Jesus – who had real authority and not as the scribes. But it’s not only about authority. It’s about life to the full. It’s spirit and life. Whatever we may like to surmise about the character of these two men of God it was Paul who carried the seeds of the new creation.
‘Until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ’ Eph 4.13 NIV. Attached to the law and the old covenant ‘fullness’ is beyond us.’
LIFE TO THE FULL
If sincerity where sufficient then we should give up teaching sound doctrine. If grace can cover ignorance then why bother educating saints? The fact is, grace is infinite in extent and is always the door to more life and never less. Grace is the opportunity for the fullness of the Kingdom to be revealed. Jesus lived to reveal the Father and still does. No need to live a shrunken version of yourself. The revelation of our Father and His Son reveals you in your fullness!
Religion is always based on some configuration of the knowledge of good and evil. As diligent and sincere as one may be, we cannot, in this position, minister the Kingdom of God. Sure we can minister a muffled version of it. We can put together examples of good and evil as homilies for people to embrace or eschew. We can manage a few drops of water here and there – but we cannot minister fullness. We mainly minister creeks of sand. We are unable to minister spirit and life because the law leaves us near God but not in Him or one with Him. In the old covenant the ground of our being and experience of God remains SEPARATION.
‘These things are being taken figuratively: The women represent two covenants. One covenant is from Mount Sinai and bears children who are to be slaves: This is Hagar. Now Hagar stands for Mount Sinai in Arabia and corresponds to the present city of Jerusalem, because she is in slavery with her children’ Gal 4.24,25 NIV.
OVERCOMING DEATH WITH LIFE
Jesus never ministered religion. He ministered His Father and Himself in the power of Holy Spirit. Jesus ministered life with authority because He and His Father were one. As a result, He was the channel of Father’s spirit and life. Today we have this union and are well able to minister in this fullness of spirit and life. Spirit and life is the difference between old covenant and new, Kingdom and religion and life and death. The letter always dulls and puts life to death even at its best because it exists in separation from God.
‘He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant--not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life’ 2 Cor 3.6 NIV.
It’s over 2000 years since God gave us the new covenant of Christ our life. Yet millions of Christians remain encased in an institutionalised version of the knowledge of good and evil either entirely or in a mixture of old and new covenant assumptions. Could it be that institutionalism with its Christian Industry is dependent on this living in the shadow rather than the reality of the new creation?
SPIRIT AND LIFE
Ministry, from an old covenant mindset - I’m speaking of talks and teaching - can be accurate and informative. But it’s devoid of spirit and life. Sadly those who minister in this fashion are unaware of this. Unaware because in the notional separation from our Father in which they live they cannot see – not spiritually. There’s nothing like an attachment to the law to make one a blind man walking. In the knowledge of good and evil and its relative, the law we have eyes that do not see and ears that do not hear.
‘Go to this people and say, "You will be ever hearing but never understanding; you will be ever seeing but never perceiving’ Acts 28.26 NIV.
To live in religion is to live in a diluted version of the law. To live from the law is to live in separation from God. In the law we are familiar with the externalities of God. Moses in the law saw His hind-parts. We see Him face to face. We see His fullness in the person of Jesus and are enlightened from within by Holy Spirit. But more than this we are transfigured by the presence of God come in our flesh. This is the origin of spirit and life that waters souls and refreshes tired spirits.