But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.1 Peter 2:9(ESV)
Bless the Lord, O you his angels, you mighty ones who do his word, obeying the voice of his word! Bless the Lord, all his hosts, his ministers, who do his will!
“I have come down from heaven, not to do my own will but the will of him who sent me.”—“I desire to do your will, O my God; your law is within my heart.”—“My Father, if this cannot pass unless I drink it, your will be done.”—“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.”—It is not the hearers of the law who are righteous before God, but the doers of the law who will be justified.—“If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them.”—So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin.
Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind.
We have stopped evaluating others from a human point of view. (2 Corinthians 5:16 NLT)
The first and primary thing is the absolute necessity for knowing one another after the Spirit. “The love of Christ constrains us; because we thus judge, that one died for all, therefore all died; and He died for all, that they which live should no longer live unto themselves, but unto Him”; “Henceforth know we no man after the flesh.” That means that as far as we can see, we have not made what we are by nature the final basis of our relationships, of our expectations, of our judgments, of our appraisals, of our evaluations. It does not mean that we are oblivious of one another’s human nature. It does not mean that what we are in the flesh never strikes us; that we are to be totally insensible to the defects of one another’s nature. No! We shall always be sensitive. It is probably true that the more spiritual we are, the more sensitive we become to what we are by nature and to what others are by nature. Perhaps we shall suffer all the more because of the defects and imperfections, the strengths and the weaknesses of one another naturally.
Men of the world have but a very, very minute degree of the difficulty that Christians have of getting on with one another. They seem to be able to ignore and ride over one another’s difficult parts and make-up. It seems that Christians are much more alive to that sort of thing than others, and are touched by it more keenly. Of course, we can explain that along two lines. If we become spiritually sensitive the flesh is sensed very much more quickly; what is not spiritual registers itself upon spiritual sensitiveness. There is also the fact that we have an adversary to reckon with who is always seeking to make a lot of the imperfections and brings them up and hit us with them. He is at work in this matter of seeking to upset the relationships of the Lord’s people. He never tires of that. Not knowing one another after the flesh does not mean that all that realm will cease to exist for us, but it does mean that we shall look beyond that realm and we shall steadily seek grace and the help of the Holy Spirit to cultivate and develop a determination to look through what we are by nature to what there is of the Lord Jesus and of the Holy Spirit in one another, and to keep our eyes upon that.
Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world. § Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment. § I speak as to wise men; judge for yourselves what I say. § Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom.
He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says. § He who is spiritual judges all things. § Take heed what you hear. § I know your works. You have tested those who say they are apostles and are not, and have found them liars. § Test all things; hold fast what is good.
He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. And when he brings out his own sheep, he goes before them; and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice. Yet they will by no means follow a stranger, but will flee from him, for they do not know the voice of strangers.
That I may know Him. . . being made conformable unto His death" (Phil. 3:10).
The life that emerges from death is administered by a loving, nail-pierced hand.
"As with the seed that is buried once for all, but then disintegrated through a gradual process that sets free the new life, even so does our Father deal with our old nature by delivering it to death with the Lord Jesus once for all, and then bringing about its mortifying in detail through the circumstances of daily life, until the power of the old man has lost its hold on us." -L.T.
"We are going to have to learn death in order to know life. Redemption must be known first, and the ultimate effect will be death to sin, to selfishness; and all this is very trying. One might be tempted to say, All this trial comes upon me because I have not been redeemed. Not so; it is just because you are redeemed. We may seek to avoid the bitter waters of Marah, but our Father will bring us to them. He intends to break down what is of the old man, and then, in His own good time, He will pour in that which sweetens all.
"But because God has brought me to Himself, He is putting His finger on everything that hinders complete dependence upon Him, or my soul's full enjoyment of Himself. So count it not strange, though it be a fiery trial which is to try you; for the Father will have you drink of the very thing (death) that redeemed you." -J.N.D.
"Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus" (Phil. 2:5).
“I am debtor both to the Greeks, and to the barbarians.” Romans 1:14
Paul was overwhelmed with the sense of his indebtedness to Jesus Christ, and he spent himself to express it. The great inspiration in Paul's life was his view of Jesus Christ as his spiritual creditor. Do I feel that sense of indebtedness to Christ in regard to every unsaved soul? The spiritual honour of my life as a saint is to fulfil my debt to Christ in relation to them. Every bit of my life that is of value I owe to the Redemption of Jesus Christ; am I doing anything to enable Him to bring His Redemption into actual manifestation in other lives? I can only do it as the Spirit of God works in me this sense of indebtedness.
I am not to be a superior person among men, but a bond-slave of the Lord Jesus. "Ye are not your own." Paul sold himself to Jesus Christ. He says - I am a debtor to everyone on the face of the earth because of the Gospel of Jesus Christ; I am free to be an absolute slave only. That is the characteristic of the life when once this point of spiritual honour is realized. Quit praying about yourself and be spent for others as the bond-slave of Jesus. That is the meaning of being made broken bread and poured out wine in reality.
the Father has life in Himself, so He has granted the Son to have life in Himself.
How familiar we are with scriptures such as this: the Father has life in Himself. As we read through Scripture we so often glibly read and continue to read, with little thought as to its inner depth and its extraordinary significance.. with little understanding of its outer extremity or its massive meaning.
The Father has life in Himself. Nothing is necessary to God. He needs no food to nourish Him. He needs no water to sustain Him. He needs no air to remain breathing. He has no needs of cloths to keep Him warm or a home to abide within. He needs no friends to encourage. He needs no hope of Glory to rest in. He needs no scientific laws to survive. He needs no time, no heat, no light, no grace, no joy, no love – no life… God needs nothing. God doesn’t need you !! and He certainly doesn’t need me… !!
He is the All Self-Sufficient One. He is the High and Lofty One that inhabits eternity. All that God is and whatever God is comes from within Himself and no other. How different from the rest of creation for all things come from Him, and all things are held together by Him.. from the lowest form of life to the mighty cherubim and seraphim.. all have need of God.
The man that who curses God, needs Him to provide his blasphemous breath. The atheist that ridicules God, needs to be sustained by His power each day. The saint of God who desires to give His all to God can only cry.. all things come from You and Own Your own do I give You back.
The astonishing thing is that God in His self-sufficient wisdom and grace, has chosen to condescendingly work in and through His servants. but He has stipulated that His servants must be faithful and obedient. Butread more
Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you.
Paul the apostle to the gentiles had singleness of mind – he had a single mindset. In spite of his many problems and great difficulties, Paul’s mind was set on Christ. Search through any of his letters and discover how often he refers to the Lord. In his thought and in his conversation his heart and mind was set on the Lord. The Lord Jesus was the central thought on Paul’s mind.
Is your mind set on Christ, or are you a double-minded man – an unstable man? A divided heart and a divided mind – is one that has self placed at the centre. A single mind – is one that places the Lord Jesus in His rightful place.
Hosea points the finger of accusation at Israel, their heart is divided, he warns, while James reminds us that: a double minded man is unstable in all his ways, and the result is distress, disease, disturbance of heart and mind and soul. But a single mind and an undivided heart makes for sound mind and pure heart, and James tells you what to do to achieve this: draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners – purify your hearts, ye double minded. James 4:8
And Paul tells us how to achieve this:- set your thoughts and your mind and your heart on the Lord Jesus.. rejoice in the Lord and keep on rejoicing in Him.. let your gentleness be known to all men.. look to Jesus, knowing that the return of the Lord is at hand.. don’t worry about anything, and just cast all concerns on Him.. pray without ceasing and pray about everything and verbalise your heart to Him. Give thanks in all things knowing that all things work together for good. And Paul says that if you do this… the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.