The new Covenant was never an afterthought. It is The Plan that God had in mind from the foundation of the world. The fall resulted from Adam’s acceptance of the twin lies that Father was not enough and that Adam and Eve were not enough. Living by the knowledge of good and evil is the result of leaving truth to live in a lie. To live from the law is to perpetuate the lies of the fall.
Everything about the fall is separation from God. Everything about the Kingdom Jesus began is our interwoveness with God and His interwoveness with us in Jesus Christ. All crooked religion assumes our separation from God and offers itself as the solution for the attainment of union with God.
BELONGING, COMFORT AND JOY
Jesus urged that we live in the light of our oneness with God. He said, ‘Realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you’ John 14.20. Jesus’ passion was that all who believe would enjoy the interwoveness with Father that was His interwoveness in the trinity.
‘Just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me’ John 17.21 NIV.
There is nothing contrived about trinitarian love. It is love personified. This is the God is love than manifested as the cross. In Jesus it is love imparted to our being. When this love is manifest as us it can be seen that it is not an externality, not an affectation or a religious discipline but that it is seen to be real. This is the difference between love as an expression of Christ our life and love as the affectation of a duty. Too often as Gregory Boyd points out, Christians do not love each other because they are living in a Christianised version of the knowledge of good and evil – separation from God.
Since the cross none are separated from God. God has made the two one. Hierling ministries present key beliefs as a way to undo separation. There are Christian cultures that promote themselves as the way to undo separation from God. But Jesus has undone Adam’s separation and our separation. The Lord’s Table is a representation of what is: Our union with God.*
The old covenant was ‘obey and live’. The new covenant is ‘I am your life.’ No separation between real and ideal. Reborn in radical grace, you are becoming the expression of Christ. Grace in Christ you become your real self by advancing from glory to glory. The fruits of the Spirit are not some new testament version of law. They are the effect of Christ as you.
MYSTERY OF INIQUITY
One might think that the oneness with God that is our inheritance in the post cross era, would be eagerly embraced by all. Not so with Believers who have made a religion out of the law. They correctly perceive that if the new covenant is real, then their faith community has no reason to exist. They continue to defend the delusion, rather than embrace the living truth. They are unwilling for their beliefs to become nothing in order that Jesus will become everything.
The new covenant is a state of being. The new covenant can be expressed in the words ‘Christ our life.’ Or in the words of Galatians 2.20,21 - “I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me. I do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness comes through the Law, then Christ died needlessly.”
NEW AND LIVING WAY
There is no law in the new covenant living way. No law because the trinity is incarnated in us. This is Christ come in the flesh as opposed to law/religion come in the flesh. The livening sacrament of daily life is now the Believer living in the joy of communion with Christ and as the manifestation of Christ. No layer of religion is required between God and the sons of God. We are incarnated.
The new creation was front of mind with God before there was a creation. The fall did not take God by surprise. The fall was anticipated and incorporated into the plan before the creation – so that the new creation declared by John in his prologue was anticipated as part of the first creation.
“Torrance argues that atonement can be seen in terms of a ‘reordering’ of creation. This applies not only to the human person but also to the entire creation.. Torrance notes how the universe requires ‘redemption from disorder’. [He writes] ‘In the whole human life of Jesus the order of creation has been restored; in the midst of our disordered, sin-disrupted existence, there has been lived a human life in perfect order and proportion to the Will of God…
This is the order of redemption which reaches back to the original order of creation and far transcends it in the amazing purpose of the divine love, as the order of the new creation.
By means of the life of Christ, and especially his resurrection, re-order was achieved out of disorder. In a similar way to Irenaeus, Torrance considers redemption to entail the restoration and perfection of the God-given order in which the cosmos came into being.” (1)
There is no anti-nomianism in the incarnation. How can there be when Christ’s life is our life and we become not words but a living word.
When Paul speaks of the law of the Spirit of Life He is speaking of this order. An order than is personal, an expression of the trinity, an order that is inclusive and an order than is love and joy personified. This is an order that springs from the creative power of deity.
It may be noted that the created order is an expression of the trinitarian God – of God’s being and relationship. Redemption and the new creation is similarly an expression of the trinity and of Christ – His acts flowing from His being as part of the God-Head. We are drawn into fellowship in the Holy Family because Christ who is God is also one of us and we participate in real time in this fellowship because the One Spirit has woven us into the being of God and woven Godself into us.
* The foundational issue is not sinning/not sinning. It’s not performance. The issue is inclusion and belonging. You are included because you are included in Christ: Fact. This is your status. The healing of your soul, the straightening of your spirit and forgiveness and deliverance from your sins and addictions, engulfs you in your baptised of union with Christ.
(1) Myk Habets, Theosis in the Theology of Thomas Torrance