"If it is disagreeable in your sight to serve the LORD, choose for yourselves today whom you will serve: whether the gods which your fathers served which were beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you are living; but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD."Joshua 24:15(NASB)
When one turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. (2 Corinthians 3:16,17)
Liberty from what? Well, if we turn to the Lord, and are occupied with Him in the way we have indicated, the Holy Spirit sets us free. It may be you are struggling, striving, fighting, wrestling, praying, pleading, longing, yearning, asking the Lord to set you free from condemnation, free from fear, from those paralyzing bonds in which Israel was when the glory appeared. Do you want to be free from fear, from dread, from terror, from condemnation? What are you doing to get free? There is one simple, direct way, namely, to be occupied with the Lord, to turn to the Lord. Get Christ as God's satisfaction in your view, and cease trying to satisfy God yourself. Faith in Christ is all God's requirement. How deeply true were His words, "Apart from Me ye can do nothing." "Abide in Me. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in Me." That is only figurative language, which means be occupied with Him, set your mind on Him, dwell in Him, rest in Him, abide in Him; or, as Paul would say, "Gaze on Him, behold Him," let Him be the object of your occupation, and the Spirit will make you free.
More than that, this beholding of Christ means that the Holy Spirit changes you into God's likeness: "Beholding... we are changed." It is not said, "Behold, we begin to change ourselves," and we embark upon self-transformation with all its struggle, and conflict, and battle. We are changed by the Lord the Spirit. Be occupied with Christ, and the Spirit takes up the matter of transforming into His image. Be occupied with yourself, and you will see that the law of conformity to type operates. If you are the type, then you will conform to that type. If Christ is the type, then the Holy Spirit will conform you to His likeness. Then this being occupied with Christ means that the Holy Spirit makes us sufficient as ministers of a new covenant. I do not think that ministry is such an onerous thing after all. We need to come back to the simplicity and the spontaneity of ministry. Be occupied with Christ, and the Holy Spirit will show you more and more in Christ with what to be occupied, and as He makes that livingly real, you will have something to give to others.
Walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma.
Having been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever. § Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth. § Unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. § Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit. § Your word has given me life.
The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul; the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple; the statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes.
I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one. Whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My name, I will do it … And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever—the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you. § There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all. § When you pray, say: Our Father in heaven.
Brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way …, let us draw near.
"Come unto Me. . . and I will give you rest" (Matt. 11:28).
We rest in the One upon whom the universe rests.
"I find when I sit down with people quietly to have a talk that they begin at once to speak of the trials of the way. And after that, if I say, Suppose we change the subject and talk of the things of God - then I find that they can talk of nothing but His mercies to themselves, but it is all His temporal benefits they talk of. And they go no higher than this. How few can say, The Father has shown me wonderful things lately about the Lord Jesus Christ." -J.B.S.
"In everything ye are enriched by Him' (1 Cor. 1:5). The favor of the Father is given to us in His Beloved Son, and in everything we are enriched in Him. If we are not happy it is because we have lost sight of the favor given us in the Lord Jesus. In our foolishness we turn to the world or look into our own hearts, instead of keeping our eyes upon the Lord Jesus, the risen and exalted Man in whom the Father has given us His favor." -C.A.C.
"The Lord Jesus Christ, as Man, has glorified the Father on the earth. The Father rests in that; as Man having accomplished redemption, He has passed into the heavens, now to appear in the presence of God for us.' It is the glorified Lord Jesus who gives abiding rest to our souls, and not what our thoughts about ourselves may be.
"Faith never thinks about that which is in ourselves as its ground of rest; it receives, loves, and apprehends what the Father has revealed in His Word, and what are His thoughts about the Lord Jesus, in whom is His rest." -J.N.D.
"Take My yoke upon you. . . and ye shall find rest unto your souls" (Matt. 11:29).
“The Son of God, who loved me, and gave Himself for me.” Galatians 2:20
We have to battle through our moods into absolute devotion to the Lord Jesus, to get out of the hole-and-corner business of our experience into abandoned devotion to Him. Think Who the New Testament says that Jesus Christ is, and then think of the despicable meanness of the miserable faith we have - I haven't had this and that experience! Think what faith in Jesus Christ claims - that He can present us faultless before the throne of God, unutterably pure, absolutely rectified and profoundly justified. Stand in implicit adoring faith in Him, He is made unto us "wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption." How can we talk of making a sacrifice for the Son of God! Our salvation is from hell and perdition, and then we talk about making sacrifices!
We have to get out into faith in Jesus Christ continually; not a prayer meeting Jesus Christ, nor a book Jesus Christ, but the New Testament Jesus Christ, Who is God Incarnate, and Who ought to strike us to His feet as dead. Our faith must be in the One from Whom our experience springs. Jesus Christ wants our absolute abandon of devotion to Himself. We never can experience Jesus Christ, nor ever hold Him within the compass of our own hearts, but our faith must be built in strong emphatic confidence in Him.
It is along this line that we see the rugged impatience of the Holy Ghost against unbelief. All our fears are wicked, and we fear because we will not nourish ourselves in our faith. How can any one who is identified with Jesus Christ suffer from doubt or fear! It ought to be an absolute pæan of perfectly irrepressible, triumphant belief.
In that day you will know that I am in My Father, you are in Me, and I am in you.
There is one phrase in the new testament that is highly significant for all believers. It is a prepositional phrase or an expression that deals with position, place and purpose. It is a term that that the apostle Paul has adopted as his own peculiar trademark. It is the little group of words: ‘in Christ’ : ‘in Him’ : ‘in Christ Jesus’ – and it is also found in the phrases: ‘in Whom’, ‘by Whom’ and ‘of Whom’….
For the believer, the meaning behind this phrase is perhaps one of the most precious. This little, almost insignificant term cradles in its arms a most powerful meaning. ‘In Christ’ indicates a close, intimate, living union with our resurrected Saviour – Jesus. ‘In Christ’ is a positional truth that is found in scripture, and applies to all Christians.
All believers whether old or young, male of female; Jew of gentile – all are “in Him”. Whatever people group; both bond or free; new or seasoned saints – all are ‘in Christ’. It was Jesus Who told his disciples of the forthcoming union – with Himself. His death was drawing close and the disciples were confused; confounded – afraid. They knew that some significant event was looming and they knew not what it was.
The Passover supper was eaten; feet washed and Calvary’s cross loomed ever closer, but He told them of a coming day when the Spirit would be sent – to indwell them: In that day you will know that I am in My Father, you are in Me, and I am in you, John 14:20
The disciples knew of the holy Spirit of God, Who empowered prophets and kings. They knew of the glory of the Lord, which filled the temple – before it’s departure, but the indwelling spirit of God within – was an entirely new and puzzling concept.
In pastread more
Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus
Christ came to earth as a man and in obedience to God, voluntarily emptied Himself. He did not cease to be fully God, but put aside His right of deity for a time. He obediently set aside all the privileges, prerogatives and power of Godhead. In accepting God’s position of manhood, He utterly depended upon God – demonstrating a perfect life of humble obedience to the Father in every realm.
Every sign, miracle and work of grace was performed by the Father through the Son. Every action, attitude, move and motive showed a man submitted to the Spirit of God. This is the impossible perfection God demands for all His blood-bought children. This is the unattainable ideal way to live that God demands for all His disciples – and His disciples (those who are under discipline) are to learn this Christ-life.
God first brings His bond-slave to a realisation that His standard unachievable.. that Christ-likeness is unattainable through the efforts and attempts of man. He makes us understand that this is impossible apart from a miracle of God within. This is a lesson we learn over decades:- that self must decrease to nothing. But it’s a hard fought fight against the flesh, which so often leads to despair. This has been the experience of countless godly men throughout this dispensation.
John the Baptist cried: He must increase but I must decrease – John 3:30. Christ in His ministry to Israel encourages: them to learn of Me. Matthew 11:29 – but Paul exhorts us to think with the mind of Christ in all things: Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus Philippians 2:5. We are simply to learn Christ – to live the way that Christ lived.
And so it is with all believers who desire to live godly – until Christ is all in all in me. A point of crisis.. illumined by the Spiritread more