Paul spoke of ‘My Gospel.’ It fell to Paul, a one-time Saul who had ministered death in the name of god to proclaim the ministry of life. John revealed the transformative power and fellowship of this gospel in the words, ‘I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you’ John 14.20 NIV. Paul is living proof that anyone who ministers death from a false gospel can be re-born as a life-giver.
MORALISM IS A FALSE GOSPEL
Ensure that you know what the cross produced. It does not produce a moral system which is what it would be if legalists has their way. It is not primarily a belief system although its fullness depends on right belief.
It’s not a modification of pre-cross life by Christ. It’s a disjunction. It is a Radically new and living way that is different to Adam’s way of death as a stone is from a laughing girl. Christ as the way the truth and the life is not a system of christianity even if that is all many experience it as. The mode of the new testament age is Christ as you, Christ as us. Incarnation is the trinity in you.
Law cannot help but be mean. Religions like Islam are severe for a reason. Versions of Christianity based on the law are only marginally better if they are any better at all. Any version of christianity where law is the key will have a tincture of meanness and a degree of condemnation as its core culture. Law will debilitate people with the kind of ‘grace’ that is an absence of spiritual discernment.
LOVE AND JOY
The cross marked the end of the ministry of death. The resurrection began the age of the ministry of life and Pentecost began the realization of Christ in us as the spirit of sonship. What is the key to Kingdom life and new creation expansion? It is Christ manifest as you; Christ manifest and incarnate in all so that the social structure of family church, commerce and nation is the manifestation of Jesus.
THE LAW AND BENT PEOPLE
Speaking of the ministry of death and the law, Michael Kapler writes,
“Now if the ministry of death, carved in letters on stone, came with such glory that the Israelites could not gaze at Moses’ face because of its glory, which was being brought to an end, will not the ministry of the Spirit have even more glory? For if there was glory in the ministry of condemnation, the ministry of righteousness must far exceed it in glory” (2 Corinthians 3:7-9). When it comes to the hundreds of commands and statutes found in the Mosaic law, which were the only ones written in stone? This is a red alert, and may come as a shock for those who haven’t heard this in church, but Paul specifically just referred to the Ten Commandments as the ministry of death and condemnation.” (1)
In Jesus we have His personal goodness and love pervading our being. In Jesus we also have His fellowship with Father and Holy Spirit.
The ministry of the Spirit is the ministry of Christ’s life multiplied in us. Not merely as morality but as life itself. Such life is life itself and life personalised. The ministry of life that is Christ for us and as us is the ministry of trinitarian life to our souls and spirits. This is the ministry in which we teach that we belong. Not because we have some form of entitlement but because God in Christ has given us this belonging and has given us Himself to be us and to become us as sons of God.
(1) Kapler, Michael C.. Clash Of The Covenants: Escaping Religious Bondage Through The Grace Guarantee . Kindle Edition.