We can operate in the authority of God and progress His Kingdom or we can engage in random good works and organized religious activities that have no bearing at all on the Kingdom of God. The difference between the Kingdom and everyday religion is spirit and life. This is the effect of hour lived-in union with God.
‘The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you--they are full of the Spirit and life’ John 6.63 NIV.
SIGNS OF LIFE
God can release his unlimited authority through us at any time. He released astonishing signs through Moses. Yet anyone who lives in Jesus has access to a level of spirit and life far greater than Moses or John the Baptist. We are called to live in the river of spirit and life Jesus opened for us. This is the interwoveness of ourselves and God.
‘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. This is already ours. But we must choose it and embrace it for it to be deployed in our person.
Grace and obedience is better than grace on its own. Our efforts can be blessed by grace when we work for God in ignorance of our place in Him. But the effects of grace and truth are infinitely more when we live in the truth of our union with God. Attaching ourselves to right belief is a form of obedience. The benefits in living in what Father has done through Jesus are excellent. Now He is our life. Today His righteousness is our righteousness and his authority our authority. By participating in His death and resurrection His life is expressed as us. Thus Galatians 2.20 is an expression of our new covenant union with God.
‘I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me’ Gal 2.20 NIV.
IN THE SPIRIT
In the spirit, Christ’s life is literally our life. His intimacy with the Father our intimacy with the Father and the Father’s love for Jesus the Father’s love for us. Thus our first priority as Believers is not to be overcomers in the accepted sense. It is to overcome in the sense that we live by the reality that Jesus is our life and our door to the Father. Believe this and God takes care of the rest.
‘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.
The new covenant is not a theology. It is God’s action for us and the result of the divine conspiracy. It is God expressing Himself to us in the now and us as a manifestation of the trinity. The new covenant is not some pesky thing that robs folks of their denominational identity or favorite doctrines – unless they have adopted ‘another gospel.’ It is the accomplishment of God in Christ. To believe and live otherwise is to allow ourselves to be robbed of almost all that has been gifted to us in Jesus.
The old covenant was a quid pro quo. The new covenant is a gift.
Whether Paul intended it or not I do not know. But the statement, ‘In Him [Jesus] we live, move and have our being,’ is an expression of the new covenant in which Jesus is the expression of God’s life in us and as us. We can live out this radical spirit and life or content ourselves with being consumers of religion and chickens when others choose to be eagles. Ministers and people do not exist to be cannot fodder for institutionalism. All living in the incarnation are His priests and kings.
EXHUMED FROM RELIGION
Christ your life is the new covenant in spirit and in truth. From here comes our ability to love and not judge. From here comes our ability to be a ‘being’ and not a ‘doing.’ From this grace comes our opportunity to grow into Christ’s fullness despite our imperfection and fear. Jesus is the door to our living in the RELATIONSHIP THAT IS GOD.
The life and power of God in us is a matter of degree. It flows when we move in the new covenant and dribbles when we live in the old. Live in the acceptance with God that is already ours; in the status that makes our words and acts alive with his presence. Union with God is the key to the anointing and is the anointing. Anointed speech comes not from time spent in study or a discourse in the mode of the knowledge of good and evil. Life is not found in the recitation of scriptures. All life comes from Christ in you. He is already there. Just live in Him!
Richard Rohr writes, “I do not find most Christians to be naturally more loving than those of other faiths. We just think we are! It’s rather disappointing to find this out, but it’s inevitable if you’re basically relating to this God out of fear.” (1) He’s not trying to be unkind. It highlights the fact that we need to live from union with God – we already have it – and not from religion or from our acquired version of the knowledge of good and evil. We can live an active life and vitiate ourselves and others. Or we can embrace Jesus as our life and see His life flow through everything we do. His burden is easy and the results of our efforts prolific when He is our life. This is the difference between the Kingdom and religion.
(1) Rohr, Richard. The Divine Dance: The Trinity and your transformation (Kindle Locations 714-715). SPCK. Kindle Edition.