I heard a person telling of her conversation with the Lord in her kitchen. A housewife and mother, she engaged Jesus regularly in dialogue. Jesus would speak to her in the thoughts of her mind – as He does with all who will listen or learn to hear what He is seeding into our thoughts.
The main influence in our lives, if we have taken the issue of sonship/daughtership seriously, and even if we haven’t, is the influence of Christ’s Spirit seeding and speaking constantly into our being. He is incarnated in us. Sometimes this is a subtle steam of thought or it may be revelatory insertions into our consciousness. Other times it is more definite such as in a strong impression, a dream or a vision.
Her small talk was brief, but larger on the inside than the outside. Like the TARDIS the contents and power of her talk transcended normal limitations. Her words were fresh as a mountain stream because they were words of spirit and life. She was not an orator. She was not educated. But she was a someone who had made a thing out of companionship with Jesus. David had this with God in old covenant days. Anyone can have much more than this today. Since the cross Jesus is woven into our being.
We will never achieve such spirit and life while insulated from Jesus by the law or religion. We have union. This is our starting position. It’s union with God in a most innocent, uncontrived and joyous sense that that produces flows of wisdom and revelation. The thing is to live in this and not settle for the more obvious, yet spiritless motions of religion. Spirit and life is the difference between doing our best and the Kingdom of God.
KNOWLEDGE OF GOOD AND EVIL
I listened to another man preach once. There were many scriptures and I’m sure there was some point. But as to advancing the Kingdom, this was a sermon of ‘something and nothing.’ Under the old covenant regime of the knowledge of good and evil, anything goes. Anything religious that is. Fill up a space and a time slot with some words about virtue and we may think we have done well. Any snippet from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil can be offered with the best of intentions – but this advances the Kingdom of God not one not one jot or tittle.
Did you know that we can rant against moral evils and fulminate against sin, yet this has nothing to do with Jesus, His Kingdom or Father’s heart? This is because Christ’s message is not about refraining from evil and doing good. It’s Him as our life in every possible way.
It’s about possessing the life that is Jesus. Jesus never condemned people for common sinning. He was surrounded by sinners and sins of all kinds. Yet He condemned none. But He spoke words of severity to those who ignored Him, who failed to receive Him and be received into His life.
In this incarnated life, you are given Christ in you to manifest as you. Not a moral program. Jesus does not multiply the law. He multiplies Himself in you.
IT IS OR IT ISN’T
‘Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life’ 1 John 5.12 NIV.
You may have heard the typically dualistic words, ‘Hate the sin and love the sinner.’ Not only is this hypocritical. It is nonsense. It comes from a split life and the separationist outlook, so beloved by the moralistic adherent of the knowledge of good and evil. Let’s be clear. Sin is part of us. It’s part of our being. Our addictions are part of who we are. Jesus died for our person who sins. In living He does the same. Christ is your life as representative and as you. You are received as you are – received into His fellowship and oneness with Father. Jesus has received you into the fellowship of Father, Son and Holy Spirit as you are – not as you should be. It is here that you receive the unconditional love that you need to ‘be who you are.’ Such proximity to God – oneness in spirit and in truth drives out all that is poisonous and dead. What is not driven out in this life is covered by grace.
‘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.
The bottom line is not how much you have improved but your receiving Jesus as your life. The bottom line is that you belong and are include in His Life.
Dying to self and being alive to Christ is ours in our participation in His cross and resurrection. Not the least of this ‘dying’ is dying to self-effort and its sister, self-justification and its brother, judgment and condemnation.
SO NEAR AND SO FAR
I’ve been aghast at how easily and naturally people in Christianity can slip into knowledge of good and evil mode – probably because they have never stepped out of it. God did not come in Jesus to begin a new regime of morality and ethical probity. He came to offer life to the full by being THE WAY to a NEW LIFE IN GOD. Morality is not the way. Jesus is the way to oneness with God and a better morality. Even then He represents, not a kingdom of morality. He has included us in His KINGDOM OF LOVE. We are included in this kingdom. It is by living in this inclusion and taking up our oneness with God that we become like our Father and His Son.
‘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’ Col 3.3,4 NIV.