Warfare Guide for Cosmic Travel
Part fact – Part allegory
Realities of the Spiritual Realm
God is intent on achieving His purpose. When we understand what He is after, what He is focused on, we can align ourselves with that. It is the plum line that keeps everything else straight. If you have ever hung wallpaper, or built anything, you realize there must me be a line, a mark to align with to keep everything straight. God has a plum line for us too.
In today’s world, and indeed the Christian world, there are many venues and teachings, activities and issues that we can get involved with, causes we can crusade for, and even spend our life advancing. How do we gauge whether those issues, however true and noble, are worth the focus of our time and effort?
God’s eternal purpose – Christ
When we clearly understand God’s eternal purpose in Christ and how that comes into being in us personally and in the Church, we can determine what value we will put on other things.
God’s first concernis that Christ be formed in us, as our very life, so that we are together an ever increasing measure and expression of Him.
First, Christ is formed in us; Christ lives His live through us. Second, we corporately (the church) manifest that life to the principalities and powers. The church manifests the manifold wisdom of God.i
I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.ii
The Bible is clear that “all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God iii There is nothing good that dwells in us.iv The fall of man was complete and nothing good dwells in us! Nothing is redeemable! In fact, one of the most fallen parts, if a comparison is possible, is the mind. Sin has corrupted man to the core. The sentence … death!
For the most part, we realize we cannot stand before a holy God. I certainly knew I was a sinner. Somehow though we think we can receive God‘s forgiveness in Christ and then we are expected (at least we try) to live a holy life. Unfortunately, the presentation of an incomplete Gospel increases this belief.
The Word of God is clear that we cannot live the Christian life (read Romans 6-8). I often say that if Paul, the Pharisee of all Pharisees could not do it, why would anyone try? What he found was frustration and failure. What he wanted to do he could not, what he found himself doing was what he did not want to do. He cried out for deliverance from “this body of death.”v
In Roman torture, they would tie a dead corps on to an accused man and he carried the rotting body around with him! This is the picture Paul is painting. Romans chapter 8 finds him celebrating that the law of life in Christ Jesus has set him free from the law of sin and death.vi
Paul proclaims: I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.vii
On that basis, as a faith position, God works in us by His Spirit to make it true
in our experience.
Have you come to an end of your own striving yet? Are you frustrated enough to realize you cannot live the Christian life, and meet God‘s holy standard by your own efforts? God‘s answer was and is in the work of His Son in His death, resurrection and ascension. You were placed in Christ in His death, you were raised with Him in His resurrection, and you ascended with Him at His ascension. God placed you in Christ and everything is accomplished in Him.viii
Reckon (regard as) yourself dead and alive unto God in Christ Jesus.ix Recognize that His life is in you and that He will live His life through you as you put your faith in His Word. Do not look to yourself to live right before God, but expect that as you exercise faith in His Word, the Holy Spirit will manifest the power of His life in you.
You are to keep your eye on His promises (faith) and not on the results. God said it and He will accomplish it by His Spirit.
As you actively look to Him to live His life through you, you will see changes. Perhaps you will find responses to situations changing. You are less self-pitying, or not as self-defensive. The point is that you are changing, incrementally changing, by the power of His life, not your striving.
The work of the Holy Spirit
Once we fully commit ourselves to God, we will see God’s hand in our circumstances and environment in a very real way.
God will bring us to people, situations, trials, and suffering. We must trust it is His hand doing these things and not lightly remove ourselves from the circumstances. It is those things that God brings into our life circumstances, which do the work in us that could not be done in any other way.
It is a life of faith, which will be tested. It is faith in His wisdom, His love, and His faithfulness. We need to accept and submit ourselves to what He chooses for us.
Next – The end … or the true beginning – part 2
This is part 36 in the series – Warfare Guide for Cosmic Travel
Photo by The Broth3r