A Godly man teaches that Jesus accepts us to Himself as we are – not as we should be. He is right about that. But there is more to a life in Christ than ‘being accepted’. Of special interest to those brought up in legalism is the good news that our fellowship with Christ on a daily basis is a life and a state of being and not a minute by minute exercise in jots and tittles.
This is because God has reached out in Christ in the fullness of the God-Head bodily, to enfold us in God. There is no separation for those who believe in Christ Jesus because there is no separation in God. The members of the trinity are part of each other, yet entirely themselves. We have been included in God in a similar relationship that is the ultimate belonging and in doing so we become ourselves as daughters and sons.
The issue of the ages is not the law and compliance with it. The issue is the triune God and our inclusion in Him.
One can reduce the tyranny of jots and tittles by constructing one’s own grace (which is no grace at all) by seizing on iconic and isolated ‘godlinesses’ defined by our denomination. We can pin these to our soul like a badge without ever having a relationship with God that differs to the non-believer.
On the other hand we can live our daily lives with Christ knowing that He enjoys our company and that in Him we are in communion with the Communion that is God. This may be called a ‘real union’ as opposed to a superficial union.
Thomas Torrance distinguishes between “Considering union with Christ simply as a ‘judicial union’ but as a ‘real union’ which occupies the centre of the whole redemptive activity mediated through Christ as saving grace. Utilised in this way union with Christ is fundamentally related to both election in Christ and the concept of saving exchange whereby Christ gives to humanity what is his – his righteousness and filial status – and takes to himself what is not his own – our sin and alienation.” (1)
This may be seen as a bargain but a bargain that is different in nature to the contractual relationship that many adopt as a relationship with Christ. This is to say that we can have an enfolded relationship with God as an inter-woveness of being that is different to an accountants relationship with God. In Christ we are part of God because we are family.
(1) Habets Myk, Theosis in the Theology of Thomas Torrance, p.103.