Christ our life is not onerous. Christianity may be onerous as a result of what we have made it - but the Gospel of Jesus and Paul is easy, light and enjoyable. This may cause some to fear the encroachment of cheap grace and others who live from a sense of entitlement to be offended that this is not mean enough. Austerity is precious to some because it confers on them an imagined merit.
You may have come across mediocre people who are leaders – leaders not because they brim with intelligent ideas but because they are dull enough to be no threat to a culture built on false assumptions or a lie. Such leaders can imagine that they are able when they are actually misguided and ineffectual. But they live in the delusion that they are capable because they have been appointed (by irresponsible people). This is a parable of false grace. Of grace that is confected by cherry-picking bits of law and selectively practising good works. Sadly in this mode our godliness is mediocre and our self-made grace ineffectual.
The gospel of grace is that Christ is our life – our life as grace’s acquittal of our guilt and our life by incarnation whereby we have oneness with God and take on His likeness.
Grace can look cheap if we are contained in an old covenant prison where it is up to us to jump through hoops to earn the belonging and acceptance that is already our treasure. Such is the latter day lie employed to sustain the fall beyond the cross.
Grace might be seen to be cheap if we are still operating in the mode of quid pro quo where I do something for Christ hoping He will do something for me. But this fails to take account of the new covenant in which I no longer obey in order to live. I am alive in Christ and positioned to obey since His life is expressed as my life.
The old covenant was obey and live. The new covenant is ‘You are alive to obey.’ Your inheritance is Jesus’ gracing us with unlimited grace and obeying in us. We can believe this. Or we can leave it in the ground with the attitude that ‘you are a hard man’ expecting us to live in the Spirit instead of living in the law.
You have become the obedience of Christ.
I AM OF GOD AND of YOU
Jesus is I AM in time, space and being. There is a state of being that flows out of the cross. In the cross I enter the life of God. I am in God, in fellowship with God and in a kingdom where there are no compartments. No little boxes where God is not or where God is more than He is at other times and places. God is. And God is in you. It is God in you that is the agency of God in the world: The new creation. God in you is the hope of heaven in the world.
ADAM IS FINISHED/CHRIST IS NOW
The age of Adam’s separation and compartmentalisation ended when Jesus cried ‘IT IS FINISHED!’ There is no sacred and secular today. (There never was) The Kingdom of God is a sacred life. Christ is not only your life. He has been restored by the cross to be the life of the new creation. In this creation Jesus draws all things into Himself, our Father and Holy Spirit.
THE FALL ANULLED
‘And this is the plan: At the right time he will bring everything together under the authority of Christ--everything in heaven and on earth’ Eph 1.10 NLT. When is the right time? The right time began when the curtain of the temple was ripped from top to bottom. This was the end of the law, the temple, the end of separation and the end of all compartmentalisations and false dichotomies multiplied by the knowledge of good and evil.
‘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 NIV. On the day that we embrace our interwoveness with God we will begin drawing the world into God’s life. We will be agents of the Kingdom of heaven and ministers of the new creation.
The new covenant generates huge fertility and potency. Here the life of the trinity flows through the sons of God into people and projects at every time and in every place. This resurrection life. Yes, this unlimited life, flows through you. The anointing of the Spirit without limit gushes through you because in Jesus, you and our Father are one.
In the new testament age all that belongs to Jesus is yours, particularly His relationship with our Father and the Spirit. This is the age of the spirit of sonship if we are astute enough to have it.
ALIVE IN SUPRLUS
Living in the generosity of heaven we can dispense with our poverty mentality and miserly expression of God’s life. We can do better than apportion six days of time leaving one day for God or nine tenths of our increase leaving one tenth for God. Jesus is our life and we are His. The notion that we have a bunch of secular time leads to our ministry at the weekend being a damp squib. Christian Kettler writes,
“My experience of grace has been so overwhelming that what James Torrance said many times has always remained true for me: “Unconditional grace means unconditional obligations.” (1)
But Christ our life is not an obligation. THIS LIFE IS INTUITIVE and an adventure in joy It is a natural outflowing of God in us. THE OUTFLOWING OF THE REAL YOU. In this mode where we and Father are one we will never come to the end of our lives and think to ourselves that we have never lived. When Christ is our life we are alive every day. (1) Kettler, Christian D.. The Breadth and Depth of the Atonement: The Vicarious Humanity of Christ in the Church, the World, and the Self: Essays, 1990–2015. Pickwick Publications, an Imprint of Wipf and Stock Publishers. Kindle Edition.