I am looking at The Voyage of the Dawn Treader on Netflix at the moment. Lucy is seen wishing she is as beautiful as her sister. Aslan appears and urges her to always be herself with the words, ‘Don’t run from who you are.’
There are many diversions from genuine self-hood. They can come from parents, significant others, ourselves and misguided religious guides. Jesus will always nurture you to be you and assist you to be who you were conceived to be and who you are becoming in Him. In Jesus you never become someone else. You become the son/daughter that you are in spirit and in truth.
Satan was able to delay the vision of God to have daughters and sons to share God’s life for a time. But when the fullness of time came the door closes on Adams’s reality. A new door opened in Jesus Christ that is called the new creation Kingdom of God.
With an adjustment to the narrative, Satan diverted attention from the truth that Adam and Eve were already ‘as Gods’ – because they were sons and daughters of God.
The Father of Lies sold them the illusion that they were less than who they were. Note that there is a one letter difference between lie and life. It’s the same today with ‘tinkered gospels.’ Alter the gospel slightly and it’s not Christ’s Gospel and it does not deliver life. It smothers it.
The same delusion is in place today, sold in many instances as orthodox Christian belief, it assumes SEPARATION and defines religious enterprise as overcoming that separation with the help of Jesus. BUT WE ARE NOT SEPARATED. The ripped curtain of the temple indicated the re-union of human beings with God.
Church Father’s called the illusion of separation THE GREAT DARKNESS and this is what it is. IT DENIES THE CROSS.
Thousands of people living in separated mindset from God when Jesus has already incarnated the trinity in them and placed them in the trinity. We either live in this darkness – the fog of a watered down gospel or Christ our life.
BEYOND A BEGGARS GOSPEL
We can live in a beggars gospel or in the Gospel of Jesus. “To borrow from the great Karl Barth, ‘God refuses to be God without us.’ Inclusion is the family secret of the universe. As Jesus said, “the Father loves the Son and shows him all things that He Himself is doing,” and “I only do what I see my Father doing.” They always dream and work and bless together. It is the divine way of being. And the Father, Son and Holy Spirit always include us in what they are dreaming and doing and saying, in their lavish love and creativity, in their music and laughter and joy, and redeeming genius.”
Since the cross this is your way of being and our way of being. It’s the ‘being’ of the Body of Christ. WE ARE INCLUDED.
NO RELATIVISM HERE
We may think that theology is an academic pursuit in which there are multiple opinions of roughly equal validity. This may be true of theology from a human perspective. But good theology is what God thinks. Theology to be grounded in anything of real worth needs an anchor that is more than pluralism with a religious taint. It needs objectivity that comes from the truth as it is in God. What we call ‘theology’ may range from ‘cunningly devised fables’ on the one hand to a current rendering of ‘the apostle’s doctrine’ on the other.
IT’S NOT OBSCURE
Christ is our life. That’s the gospel. How we live that life is up to us. There are as many fruitful ways of living this life as there are sons of God living in the Spirit. But there is only one Gospel. Choose any gospel other than the good news of Jesus and the apostles and we are neither of Christ or of His Body. But we may well be of the body of death.*
A genuinely life-giving rendering of the gospel of the Kingdom will always be an expression of the truth through informed people - and not just any people but persons who have a passion for life as revealed by the truth that sets people free. If we are more interested in a life and identity in our own religio-ethnic community, we will not be candidates who discern life to the full.
AND IN THE DARKNESS BIND THEM
A careless attitude to truth or an attitude that twists truth into error is no kindness to people or to God. Such contortions warp who God appears to be and hence how we view ourselves – which has been the whole point of the great darkness - that malevolent slander against Father leading to the degradation of the human race. Degraded because we believed the lie that we were not already as Gods as children of the trinity - the sons of God.
NO CHURCH FACTORY
A passion for Jesus is a passion for life. Indeed there are some who have a passion for life who do not know Jesus’ name – yet they recognise His qualities because He is incarnated in them. Nevertheless there are theologians with an apostolic mantle who are less concerned with propping up a Christian Industry and fostering factories of Christian product and more concerned to see that everyone enters into their inheritance of life without limit.
REVELATION NOT CONFORMITY
In this context Ray Anderson remarks that, “They have all these kinds of answers, and each of those were theologies, they were current theologies. Jesus probed deeper: “But who do you think that I am?” – you have experienced me. Peter finally dared to blurt out, “You’re the Messiah, you are the one we’ve been waiting for.” Then Jesus said to him, “Blessed are you, flesh and blood does not reveal it to you, but God who is in heaven.” In other words, he said, “Peter, you’re right, but you will never know why, because that’s a revelation of God.” (1)
There’s revelation that comes from the religious spirit and revelation that comes from Jesus. Anderson’s point is that revelation comes from the real God in interaction with real people – people who live, move and have their being in Jesus. Not from people who have made a life in faint gospels and other gospels because they get status from their belonging in them.
Anderson implies that there is a difference between the juggling of words and concepts and the interwoveness of life with the life of God in person. This is why one may speak of being part of the body of Christ with confidence while existing in a very faint degree of real union because we are a creature of the law and a spokesperson of ‘the letter’ – so that the closest we get to the reality of union with God is notional talk – but never union in spirit and in truth.
You can experience Jesus. You can eat Him. Until He is actually our life, we can speak words but not words of spirit and life. We competently minister the life of God when we and Father are one. We are one when we believe and live from the fact that Christ is our life. Jesus called this REALIZING. ‘You will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you’ John 14.20 NIV.
THOSE WORTHY OF LIFE
The undiluted gospel is spurned by people already dead, dismissed by those whose self-made treasure is prized above the pearl of great price and critiqued by those whose self-made entitlement made from religion and institutionalism is their daily stale bread. But it is seized with delight by those with a passion for life – which means a passion for Jesus.
* Paul’s use of the words ‘Body of Death’ referred to the old covenant and the law in particular and the pre-cross culture that flowed from Adam’s fall in general.