Enlightenment is not agreement with a proposition. And it’s more than understanding. It’s not just a Buddhist thing although it is spiritual gift because it is of the Spirit of Christ in you. It’s the sharp sword that cuts through humbug posing as the Kingdom of God. Enlightenment is the function of a Person.
‘For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart’ Heb 4.12 NIV. This Word is Christ in you.
The words of God are not God. Jesus declared that the scriptures testified of Him. Of Fundamentalists - Thomas Torrance observed that - “Instead of being open to th[eir] objective pole.. [the] reference in the continual self-giving of God and therefore continually revisable under its control, they are given a finality and rigidity in themselves as evangelical beliefs, and are clamped down upon Christian experience and interpretation of divine revelation through the Holy Scriptures. Thus, they are endowed with a fixity at the back of the fundamentalist mind, where they are evidently secure from critical questioning, .. but [also] on the part of a divine self-revealing which is identical in its content with the very Being of God himself.”
Many fundamentalist assertions are not enlightened in this sense. They are closer to the binaries and dualistic categorisations we find in the knowledge of good and evil. Fundamentalism appears as black and white truth but is often without substance because it is ‘words without being.’ Anything of substance is joined to the being of God through the person of Jesus Christ. This is why the fundamentalist can assert belonging in the Body of Christ while living in a separation mindset. This results in words without being and words without substance.
Infinite life is what we had before the fall and what is ours again now in oneness with Christ. We have ‘being in Christ.’ We have the substance of sons because we are in God and living in this state of belonging and oneness.
‘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
Stagnation replaces the new and living way when one lives from words rather than THE WORD who is reality and the light that illuminates reality.
Being is knowing, union with God as our life. Living in the life of God we see how to see and we know how to be.
Enlightenment is ours when we are part of God and He is part of us. It’s a state of being one with the light of the world. One can be a Bible scholar and have no enlightenment or be a simple yeoman and have it in spades.
SEEING IN FATHER’S LIGHT
If our life in God is a contract between us and God, it’s not a life in God. If our experience is that we have never entered the abundance of the life that has been prophesied over us it is, it may be because we have not repented of our religion.* We just circle this mulberry bush in the expectation that the gifts added to what we always assumed was the truth will bring us spirit and life. Living in the separationism of the law, it will not.
We cannot see the Kingdom of God until we are born again, For many Believers this means dying to religion and becoming resurrected into Christ as their life.
SPEAKERS OF SPIRIT AND LIFE
I know of no fundamentalist teacher who is an apostolic theologian. It’s uncommon for law-based teachers to be sources of wisdom and revelation because what they share is neither the wisdom or the life of God. They have drops of life rather than rivers. This is because revelation comes from rootedness in God. Not rootedness in ‘certainties’ and passed down beliefs.
If the letter kills, the Spirit gives LIGHT. This is the property of our union with God that is now ours in Christ. Enlightenment leads to revelation and revelation to enlightenment. In the new covenant we and Father are one. As such the new covenant person is not only one with the trinity but one with logos – the logic and nature of the creation. Jesus is the way to both spiritual discernment and creative understanding of all that is.
We can live out of our supposed certainties and get a following amongst the naïve. Yet there are certainties that are life-giving: Such as Christ is our life and we are the expression of the indwelling trinity – if we believe.
The Christian Message was never a religion. It’s union with God.
* Gregory Boyd, in Repenting of religion observes that much Christianity is a modified version of the knowledge of good and evil.