PERSONHOOD FLOWS FROM THE TRINITY
Christ’s death and resurrection but our Adamic nature to death and resurrected us with the nature of the Father, the Son and Holy Spirit.
Easter signals the new humanity and the new us.
We can be truly human as individuals and in community when Jesus is our life. His life is not only the fullness of Himself in us, but His life is His belongingness and relationship as ours in the Family of the trinity. J Baxter Kruger highlights the importance of both our uniqueness and interwoveness with God with his exposition of the scripture, ‘On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you’ John 14.20. This is godliness and human sonship/daughtership in its completeness.
ROPE OF SAND
A legalised Christianity is a religion of externalities where the core of our being is seldom touched. Not touched because the law is an abstraction and not alive - because the law is actually a construct of the knowledge of good and evil and its innate separation from God and from our real selves. Law based christianity is not the Christianity Jesus birthed and is a gnostic aberration that vitiates the transformation of workers into daughters and sons.
Godliness is Christ our life which is the uniting of the self to God in God. God has joined us to Himself in Jesus Christ, undoing Adam and beginning the new creation in all for whom Christ is life.
Godliness is often thought of us doing ‘god-deeds’ and knowing about God. This is a small amount of it. Fullness of Godliness is found in oneness with God. Obedience is living in this oneness instead of in externalities. In oneness with God, we truly become daughters and sons of God – but never God’s ourselves. We grow in the fullness of sons/daughters of God but we do not become deities.
When Paul remarked that he did not even judge himself, he was referring to the fact that he was free to be Himself in Christ. Free because in Christ Paul was delivered from self-validation and free to grow into who he was as a son of God.
CHRIST IN YOU
The Light that inhabits every person is the presence of God incarnated. The actualisation of the Light is Jesus Christ. Jesus is the pointy end of all that is true about God and ourselves. He is the way, the truth and the life as the way in which we are made one with God and the way as the living revelation of our Father and of ourselves as human beings. To know God is to know Jesus and to know Jesus is to know yourself.
As immature Believers we may convince ourselves that we are Godly because we do the ‘five’ notional key behaviours esteemed by our church. (Some only have one observance that they think earns them ‘cover.’) But doing five good things or fifty five does not make us Godly. We should avoid making a ‘messiah’ out of a fundamental or denominational icon.
We are Godly when we agree that God’s nature is interwoven with ours in Jesus and we live in this reality. To agree with God in this is to allow Christ to become us.
HIDDEN IN PLAIN SIGHT
It would be fair to say that many Christians would not recognise incarnation as the core of our life in God, since so many live from a Christianised version of the knowledge of good and evil if not straight legalism. Indeed most have been so indoctrinated into the belief that godliness is doing/ not doing that they fear that this REAL PRESENCE in us and as us is not what it seems. But rather an infernal scheme to bring carnality in by the back door. It is of course a convoluted view to think that Christ our life is carnal, but keep in mind that the deceits of the knowledge of good and evil are always convoluted.
There is a new covenant that’s more than the Bible after Christ. We must live in it to participate in the Kingdom of God. Many Believers do not know that there is a new covenant, let alone an incarnation.
MYSTERY OF GODLINESS
Yet in the scheme of things set up by God for our glory, ‘God becomes us’ through the incarnation. We become one with God yet are truly ourselves – called perichoresis by the church fathers who got this right many years ago.
THE ACTUALITY OF GLORY
None need fear that Christ our life can be anything other than what it is: ‘HIS LIFE IN US. CHRIST’S LIFE AS OUR LIFE.’ This was Paul’s meaning when he wrote, ‘I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me’ and more forcefully, ‘I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing! Gal 2.21.
SONSHIP IS NOT A LEGALISM OR A SCRIPTUAL POSITION
Righteousness cannot be gained through the law because life cannot be gained in separation from God. Life comes to us because we and God are interwoven in our being. This is the spirit of sonship.
J Baxter Kruger writes, “Through the work of Jesus, we have been adopted into the Trinitarian life. The concept of perichoresis helps us understand what our adoption means for us. We could define perichoresis as “mutual indwelling without loss of personal identity.” In other words, we exist in union with the Triune God, but we do not lose our distinct personhood in the process. We matter. We are real to the Triune God.” And being real in God we are real to ourselves and to each other – multiplying real life.
This is the foundation of the new testament age and the engine of the new creation – the transformative power of God in us and the resurrection of Jesus multiplied in individuals, communities and nations.
YOU ARE NOT A THING
Taking our lead from the members of the trinity, human beings are not a static entity, never objects or mere functions of the law or laws. We live in a state of becoming defined by our uniqueness, by our belongingness in God and by the community of each other. Or we do if we live in a new covenant community. In the manner of real community, the trinity are known as they are by their relationship to each other and their distinctness as persons.
Just as God is community so are we in our being of body, soul and spirit. This spirit and life that is expressed in the diversity of marriage and family is sourced in the personal/communal nature of the trinity that is the life-hub of the universe. This is why to be alive we must seek God in the personal and never in abstractions, in observances and precepts that are impotent and without life. Life is in the Son and when the Son is in you - you have His life and the life of heaven.
Richard Rohr writes in similar vein to Baxter Kruger. “Divine Personhood and human personhood are reciprocal, mutually-mirroring concepts. God’s nature as relationship creates ours, and ours is constituted by this same bond, which is infinite openness and capacity to love.” (1) We become alive, loving and lovable people because God is in us infusing us with Himself. God is love.
(1) Rohr, Richard. The Divine Dance: The Trinity and your transformation (Kindle Locations 1305-1307). SPCK. Kindle Edition.