NO DIFFERENT GOSPELS
Before the fall Adam and Eve enjoyed a Sabbath in God. Following the cross this Sabbath rest and communion was restored as a fact of our life. Today you live in The Rest of God.
The genius of salvation is that we are more than saved, more than declared not guilty. We are made one with God and more. Through Jesus our being has been interwoven with the being of God. When Jesus assured the disciples that He would be with us and in us He was describing this new state of being – this relational accomplishment that could never be accomplished in the auspices of law but which became ours in the awesome love displayed in the cross and the resurrection. C Baxter Kruger writes,
“It was not the Fall of Adam, therefore, that set God’s agenda; it was the decision to share the great dance with us through Jesus. Adam’s plunge certainly threatened God’s dreams for us, but that threat had been anticipated and already strategically overcome in the predestination of the incarnation. Jesus Christ did not become human to fix the fall; he became human to accomplish the eternal purpose of our adoption, and in order to bring our adoption to pass, the Fall had to be called to a halt and undone … Jesus is not a footnote to Adam and his Fall; the Fall, and indeed creation itself, is a footnote to the purpose of God in Jesus Christ.”
UNION WITH GOD A PRESENT REALITY
‘I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you’ John 14.20. This is the source of your life and the guarantee that nothing more is required other than you agreement and rest in what is and what God has done. He lives in you. C Baxter Kruger writes,
“That is the best picture of what the incarnation means when we look at in its true context. For that is what happened in Jesus Christ from his birth to his resurrection. The Son of God entered into our broken, fallen, alienated human existence. He took upon himself our fallen flesh. He stood in Adam's shoes, in Israel's shoes, in our shoes, and he steadfastly refused to be Adam, He refused to be Israel. He refused to be what we are.” In order that we can be who Jesus is.”
Jesus is not only in us and with us. To see Jesus is to see who we are. ‘Staying close to Jesus’ sounds good but it is not the gospel of the Kingdom. It is me helping me to do what Jesus has already done for me. The real gospel is more radical than this. It is Jesus is your life!
We need to stop exclusively applying the scripture below to the resurrection and receive it as our daily life in God.
‘And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you’ Rom 8.11 NIV.
If our spiritual formation has occurred in a legalistic framework we will find ourselves interpreting the spirit as the law and striving to live righteously under a law version of the new testament, which is to say in the order of the knowledge of good and evil. We will have bent the gospel of Christ to form another gospel which is no gospel at all.
Paul writes, ‘I am amazed that you are so quickly deserting Him who called you by the grace of Christ, for a different gospel; which is really not another; only there are some who are disturbing you and want to distort the gospel of Christ’ Gal 1.6,7 NIV.
But our joy and victory is found in the order of Jesus. Should we be laboring to sustain ourselves from the fruits of the tree of knowledge we will imagine that we can live a righteous life by hearing the truth and doing it – with Jesus help of course. But it does not bring victory. It perpetuates frustration. It has nothing to do with our union with God. It is not the life or the Kingdom that Father offers us. It is a version of the law in which we attempt to do right by ‘staying close to Jesus.’
But ‘staying close to Jesus’ is not the Kingdom of God. Christ our life is the Kingdom of God. Christ in you is His Kingdom as you.
Jesus spoke living words because He was alive in His Father. We are alive in the Father and the Holy Spirit when Jesus is our life. Jesus incarnate in us means heaven is incarnate in our being. Now the resurrection life of Jesus flows through all we are and do. The Kingdom of God is not about knowing. It is a state of being. Because of this, serving people Bible studies and discourses on truth changes no one. We change and conquer when Jesus’ life becomes our life by the Spirit.
‘I pray that they will all be one, just as you and I are one--as you are in me, Father, and I am in you. And may they be in us so that the world will believe you sent me’ John 17.21 NLT.
CHRIST ALL AND IN ALL
‘Keeping close to Jesus’ is another version of the law. You can no more do this successfully than you can keep the law perfectly. The Kingdom of God is not ‘staying close to Jesus’ any more than being saved is hauling yourself up to heaven with a pulley. The Kingdom is your belonging in Father. The Kingdom is the righteous life of Jesus in you that is becoming you. The Kingdom of God is not bringing ourselves into alignment with an ideal. It is God living in you bringing you into alignment with Himself.
‘Being close to Jesus’ sound nice. But it’s another gospel. In this age the Spirit of Jesus is in you and with you to manifest as you. Abandon separationist ideologies and live in the union with God that is already yours.
The Kingdom of God is not knowledge or information. It is Spirit and life. The union of Spirit and truth are never found in the order of Adam. They are expressed in us when we live in union with God in Christ. Righteousness is not an abstraction. It is a person and a life. Firstly it is the life of Jesus and secondly it is you filled with His Spirit.
In Jesus you not only get rest for human restlessness. You are delivered from the un-rest of striving to be worthy of God God, straining to be who you really are, clutching at dubious identities and m making religion out of externalities. Jesus is your Messiah , your grace, your Sabbath and your life in every way.
‘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.