We live in an age of tremendous privilege. There is no place we have to go. No thing that we have to do. No time that we must set aside and no special attire that we must wear – to be sons of God. There is no ‘all these things have I done from my youth’ that is relevant today. What is relevant, poignant and certain is that Jesus is our life and that we are in Him. We are one with God and one with heaven through the Spirit of Christ who joins heaven and earth in the Spirit of Sonship. As Jesus said, 'Only believe.'
'But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers. "God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth' John 4.23-24 NIV.
SPIRIT OF SONSHIP
God’s first priority is that we belong. His second priority is that in belonging we live out our life as sons in spirit and in truth. We are included in the family of God. Our part is to agree.
The Spirit of Sonship is not a doctrine but a life. It is Gods new covenant reality in you and as you. We need to know what the new covenant means. It means that we come to God not by the performing of rites or even by doing what is right. We come to God because He has drawn us to Himself in Christ which is to say we are now in Him. Jesus stated the essence of the new covenant to the Samaritan woman. Genuine worship occurs not because we grip some externality and give it a holy shake. It occurs from the union of hearts with Jesus in spirit and in truth.
Under the old covenant the rule was ‘obey and live.’ In the new it is you can now obey because you are alive in Me. The spirit of Christ's life is the truth of our sonship. While obedience and righteousness flow from Jesus there is something more expansive than this: The unlimited Life of God!
By living from religion we swat at gnats and swallow camels. Tied to law and performance this is the tenor of our existence. Gnats are our futile attempt to find sacredness in externalities. The camel is that we are doing this in the name of God.
Our inheritance is more than obey and live. It is you are alive in Me and you have my infinite life.
AGREEING WITH GOD
We can affirm the glory of Jesus in private prayer, in exulting in the first snow of winter or the first buds of spring. One can delight towards and with the Lord at the antics of birds on a wire. This is worship. A life lived in Jesus and towards Father is worship. To exemplify worship and obedience is to be a daughter or a son. We can perform acts of kindness in His name and to Him. In Christ, one with Him and one with heaven we will be truly a daughter, genuinely a son. As such we will be laboring with the joy of being who we are rather than as a square peg in a round hole. If this is not immediately the case it is something that we will head towards. As Jesus draws us into Himself we become more the persons we genuinely are.
Jesus' manifest presence is his life as you. Nowhere does the Bible say that the manifest presence is something that occurs only in church or in a praise and worship service. Father says the earth is His foot stool. David encountered Him in the fields. The open door of the new covenant means that we not only have access to our Father in heaven but Christ lives in us.
YOUR GLORY REVEALED
There is nothing as satisfying as doing what you were born to do and nothing more authentic than this as a form of worship to God. Personally I find joy in the fact that Christ is my life. He's not a foot note. He is The Book and my story is in Him. We can exult in a 'Jesus Life' because no matter what, it's all going to end well!
FRUITS OF GRACE
The fact that we are continually graced by Christ’s life and washed by His blood affords the opportunity to advance into His fullness. The sinner who is being remade in the image of Jesus is a more rounded, pleasant and hope filled person than one who is attempting to live from the law or some weekly fix in church. The former finds love, legitimacy and identity in Jesus and hence is like Him. The latter is bound in striving to get Jesus to do what He has already done and assemble an identity in herself. One produces grace and peace. The other anxiety, failure and judgment.
The fruits of the Spirit are the result of Christs life in you. Not some new testament set of ‘do goods’ that we might do to attract God.
There is infinite scope in Paul’s statement, Christ your life. There is infinity in Christ. He is healing, wholeness, purity, wisdom, integrity, guidance and obedience. He is love, the guarantee of your place in Fathers arms and the first born from the dead. He is the guarantee of your eternal life and the fulfilment of the dreams originally placed within you.
The Jesus who was with the disciples is with you always, right to the end of the world. He is with you beyond the death of your body and accompanies you in the transition to your new body of heavenly origin. He lives in you and surrounds you with His Spirit, so that as He was in the world of dust and disciples, so are you!
PEACE AND JOY
In the new covenant, Jesus is both in us and our life. The heavenly family make their home in us because we believe in Jesus. Jesus warned us about 'false christ's because they are more common and subtle than we think. There is nothing we have to do to draw the presence of God among us. Jesus promised to be with and in us to the end of the world. Any practice or device we might rely on to make ourselves worthy or bring Christ into our presence is a false Christ. He is with us, in us and our life. We praise Jesus because He is God, because He is our salvation and the lover of our souls. Praise is a declaration that He is God and we are daughters and sons. Praising His name dims our flesh to enable us to experience His presence in our Spirit. Praise says you are our God and we are your people.
'Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father; the one who confesses the Son has the Father also. As for you, let that abide in you which you heard from the beginning. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, you also will abide in the Son and in the Father' 1 John 2.23,24 NIV.
AGENTS OF THE NEW CREATION
Jesus as the living word is the true nature of the universe. Alive in Him each day and releasing His Spirit into the physical and social world we multiply new creation life. His life in us is a discipline and a privilege. In conformity with His Spirit our life is the life of His resurrection. His life in our marriages and families, in our work and leisure changes the world. Christ in you is much more than a weekly sermon or a praise and worship fix (which can be more about us than The Lord). Let's not imagine that we can live according to the world system all week, sings songs and wave our arms on Sunday and multiply the Kingdom the following week. New creation living is Jesus in us and Jesus as our life.
The first work of the Holy Spirit is repentance. The second is obedience. Holy Spirit effect Jesus obedience in you. True worship occurs when Jesus's is our life, when we live according to His ethics and are filled with His compassion and love; when His Spirit brings us into conformity with his person and we are people of life and peace. This is not an onerous pursuit of externalities. It is His life as ours.
'The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace' Rom 8.6 NIV.