THE MIRROR 2
Jesus is the expression of Father’s character. And of yours. To see Jesus is to see yourself. Jesus and not the law is the mirror of your soul. As the Son of Man He is who you are and who you are becoming. Becoming by the Spirit of Sonship. The message in these pages is based on the assumption that Christ Himself is our life. This may seem strange, if like many we have absorbed the idea that Christ is about religion and religion is about doing good and not doing the bad. Then again we may have embraced a religion that is essentially performing for Christ. Our message is not that. Our message is that Christ’s life, by the Spirit, is our life and that His life in all of us is the new creation.
When we make the transition from religion to Christ our life, we have been born again. Until we make this jump we have not. Being ‘born again’ is not a change from an immoral life to a moral one. It is the change from you being your life to Christ being your life.
‘Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me’ John 6.57 NIV.
Gregory Boyd and others have observed that many Believers (I suspect most) live in a Christianized version of the knowledge of good and evil rather than in the Christ. (In Christ is not living as a Christian. It is Christ’s spirit manifesting as you). So dimmed is the importance of the risen, incarnate Christ in most of us and so lost on us is the meaning of the Lord’s Table that many of us live in good conscience from a Christian performance orientation.
For many, the Lord’s Table is about the cross, when in reality it is about the banquet of His life becoming our life. The Lord’s Table is the sign of a greater reality: Incarnation - our Father, the Son and Holy Spirit alive in you - including you in themselves and transfusing you with their life. You might be surprised how many, not a few of who would think of themselves as seasoned believers, or even theologians, who have missed this simplicity and live each day in their own version of the knowledge of good and evil with Jesus’ help. But that’s not what His gospel is. It’s His life as your life in every way.
Coming from religion we may well regard such assertions with suspicion. It seems too simple and too good to be true. But the gospel of the Kingdom is simple, profound and true because it is Christ writ large in you, in the church and the social structures of the world. If you have ever wondered why the progress of the Kingdom has appeared sluggish the answer is here. The kingdom has been impeded because we tend to live in His stuff rather than in Him.
LOOK FOR LIFE WHERE IT IS
According to Jesus, John and Paul the Kingdom is Christ in you, Christ your life and Christ the One (the logos) by whom all things hold together and have their true purpose and function. This is to say that the Son is Creation in Person as well as Redemption, resurrection and the upwelling of life for the physical, spiritual and social realms. He is the means by which all lesser things have spirit and life. It is in His person that the world finds resurrection and re-creation.
‘He is before all things, and in him all things hold together’ Col 1.17 NIV.
The implication is that there is no life at all in any created thing; no life in things, beliefs, behaviors or philosophies. And certainly no life in the knowledge of good and evil. Even the good has no life unless it is done in God. Good things done in an old covenant mind-set purvey no life. Christ alone is life and we are alive as life-givers when in His life-giving Spirit. All things are under Jesus’ feet and in all things He holds the supremacy. These lesser things come alive when they are a function of His being in and through us. The creation comes alive when we touch it with Him. When Christ is our life we discharge rivers of spirit and life.
‘When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory’ Col 3.4 NIV.
YOU AND FATHER ONE
We were made to live in God. Thanks to the cross, the resurrection of Jesus, Pentecost and the life of the trinity incarnated in our being He has graciously positioned us in Himself and made us His habitation. The gospel of the Kingdom, as opposed to gospels of self-effort and try harder attitudes is PEACE. It is one of rest, of agreeing with what God has done on our behalf, yet stepping positively into this as the reality. We are called to live the reality of Christ rather than living in the shadows of good works. The reality is Christ. Out of this reality comes the fruit and the authority of the Kingdom.
‘Jesus replied, "Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them’ John 14.23 NIV.