Anointed To Teach God's Word

Classic Christian teaching from the holy Bible

Christ Our Sanctification # 2


Life On The Highest Plane

The Believer a Saint by Position

So the Word of God answers the above questions by showing us that sanctification is primarily a change in position and secondarily but of necessity a change in condition.

God tells us very plainly when, where and how the children of Israel were sanctified.

Numbers 8:17, “For all the first-born of the children of Israel are mine, both man and beast; on the day that I smote every first-born in the land of Egypt I sanctified them for myself.”

Lev. 11:45, “For I am the Lord that bringeth you up out of the land of Egypt, to be your God; ye shall therefore be holy, for I am holy.”

By the blood of the Paschal lamb they were redeemed in Egypt and set apart as a people for God’s own possession. By the cross of the Red Sea they were redeemed from Egypt and separated from other people for the Lord’s use. Even during the wilderness wanderings in which there was much of murmuring and rebellion they were, as far as their position before God was concerned, a sanctified people.

Just so the Cross of the Lord Jesus Christ marks the place of the believer’s sanctification; the blood of the Lamb of God is the means; and the moment in which the sinner puts his faith in that atoning blood for salvation marks the time.

Hebrews 10:10, “by the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.”

Hebrews 13:12, “Wherefore Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered with the gate.”

Acts 26:18, “To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me.”

God never acts apart from Christ. Everything that God does whether in creation or salvation He does through His Son. And everything that God does in Christ for man’s salvation He begins at the Cross. So our sanctification begins there. At the Cross the sinner becomes a saint. Every believer has been set apart for God’s own possession and use by the sacrifice of His Son. The believer is a saint by position. As in justification the guilty sinner is accounted righteous through the blood of the Cross so in sanctification the defiled sinner is accounted holy. By the sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ he “hath been perfected once for all.” In this objective aspect sanctification is absolute and complete. Christ Himself and Christ alone is our sanctification.

Hebrews 10:14, “For by one offering he hath perfected forever them that are sanctified.”

1 Corinthians 1:30, “But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption.”

Thus we see that sanctification in this aspect is not “a second work of grace” at some time subsequent to conversion; nor a result of any act of consecration or faith on the part of the believer; but that it takes place through God’s first and initial work of grace – the death of His Son – and is simultaneous with justification and regeneration. “The primary and fundamental idea of sanctification is neither as achievement nor a process, but a gift, a divine bestowal of of a position in Christ.”

In this positional aspect of sanctification all believers share equally: the youngest, weakest, and most immature is as truly and as much sanctified as the oldest, strongest and most spiritual Christian.

This fact we see in the spiritual history of the Corinthian Christians as given in Paul’s  epistles. These letters were written to rebuke and correct gross sins, outstanding evils, even fearful immoralities in the Corinthian church yet the Apostle writes to them as those that have been sanctified, those who are “holy in Christ.” While he tells them that he cannot write unto them as unto spiritual but rather as unto carnal Christians yet he calls them saints. Even though they are still in the wilderness as regards spiritual experience yet he considers them a people separated unto God for His possession and use. it is because they have been so set apart and given such an exalted position that he reproves them for their unholy condition.

1 Corinthians 1:2, ” Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ, our Lord, both theirs and ours.”

Their position as sanctified ones is the basis of his appeal for a corresponding condition of life. He reminds them that “fornicators, idolaters, adulterers, drunkards, and revilers, shall not inherit the kingdom of God” (1 Corinthians 6:9-11), and then frankly says, “and such were some of you” in the old sphere when you were wholly separated unto sin and wholly separated from God. But it is all different now for “you are sanctified” and are thereby set apart unto God. Therefore your condition should correspond with your position. You were once in the devil’s possession and use but now you are set apart unto God for His possession and use. You are saints; therefore live like saints.

1 Corinthians 6:11, “And such were some of you; but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.”

Are you a true believer in the Lord Jesus Christ? Then you are a saint. Have you put your trust for salvation in Christ’s shed blood? Then you are sanctified and set apart as one belonging wholly and only unto God. Are you “a new creation in Christ Jesus”? Then you are also “a saint in Christ.”

~Ruth Paxson~

(continued with # 3 – “The Believer a Saint by Condition”)

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Men Ought Always to Pray


Men ought always to pray and not to faint (Luke 18:1).

“Go to the ant.” Tammerlane used to relate to his friends an anecdote of his early life. “I once,” he said, “was forced to take shelter from my enemies in a ruined building, where I sat alone many hours. Desiring to divert my mind from my hopeless condition, I fixed my eyes on an ant that was carrying a grain of corn larger than itself up a high wall. I numbered the efforts it made to accomplish this object. The grain fell sixty-nine times to the ground; but the insect persevered, and the seventieth time it reached the top. This sight gave me courage at the moment, and I never forgot the lesson.
–The King’s Business

Prayer which takes the fact that past prayers have not been answered as a reason for languor, has already ceased to be the prayer of faith. To the prayer of faith the fact that prayers remain unanswered is only evidence that the moment of the answer is so much nearer. From first to last, the lessons and examples of our Lord all tell us that prayer which cannot persevere and urge its plea importunately, and renew, and renew itself again, and gather strength from every past petition, is not the prayer that will prevail.
–William Arthur

Rubenstein, the great musician, once said, “If I omit practice one day, I notice it; if two days, my friends notice it; if three days, the public notice it.” It is the old doctrine, “Practice makes perfect.” We must continue believing, continue praying, continue doing His will. Suppose along any line of art, one should cease practicing, we know what the result would be. If we would only use the same quality of common sense in our religion that we use in our everyday life, we should go on to perfection.

The motto of David Livingstone was in these words, “I determined never to stop until I had come to the end and achieved my purpose.” By unfaltering persistence and faith in God he conquered.

~L. B. Cowman~

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Christ Our Sanctification


Life On the Highest Plane

A People for His Possession and Use

The Christian is a new creation, in a new sphere with a new sovereign, living a new life, all of which speaks of differentiation and distinctiveness. The Christian is a marked man or woman. There is a distinct line of cleavage between the man “in the flesh” and the man “in the Spirit.” There is a definite boundary between “the world” and “the heavenlies” and the man who through redemption has stepped over that border line is thereby a sanctified man. Christ, the Saviour, has become his Sanctification.

The necessity for sanctification will be clearly seen when we remember that man was created for God’s possession and use but through sin he fell into the possession and use of satan. In sanctification God recovers His own and fits him for communion and cooperation with Himself.

Sanctification, as Scripture reveals, has a very vital relationship to the believer’s calling, position and condition. This is typified in God’s redemptive dealings with the children of Israel. Through His call to Abraham God chose and set apart a nation for Himself. With them He made a covenant by which they were to be separated from all other peoples upon the earth and were to become a holy people who would show forth the praise and glory of His name among the heathen nations. The children of Israel were set apart as God’s peculiar possession, under His sovereign control and for His exclusive use.

Deut. 14:2, “For thou art an holy people unto the Lord thy God, and the Lord hath chosen thee to be a peculiar people unto himself, above all the nations that are upon the earth.”

But the children of Israel were sold into the bondage of Egypt and became the subject – slaves of Pharaoh. That He might repossess His own God redeemed them and brought them out of Egypt and into Canaan. In position as well as by calling they became a separated people; God’s own possession.

Lev. 20:24, 26, “But I have said unto you, Ye shall inherit their land, and I will give it unto you to possess it, a land that floweth with milk and honey; I am the Lord your God, which have separated you from other people. And ye shall be holy unto me, for I the Lord am holy, and have severed you from other people, that ye should be mine.”

Numbers 3;13, “Because all the first-born are mine; for on the day that I smote all the first-born in the land of Egypt I hallowed unto me all the first-born in Israel, both man and beast; mine shall they be: I am the Lord.”

Then God commanded them to live as a people who belonged wholly unto Him. The separateness which He had wrought through their changed position was to be manifested through a changed condition. As a people in covenant with a holy God they were to live a holy life in the midst of altogether unholy nations and were to be God’s instrument in the conquest of the promised land.

Lev. 20:7-8, “Sanctify yourselves therefore, and be ye holy: for I am the Lord your God. And ye shall keep my statutes and do them; I am the Lord which sanctify you.”

The Believer a Saint By Calling

In the New Testament God says that believers are a chosen, called, and separated people. In Christ the believer was set apart as God’s own peculiar possession even before the foundation of the world. Every believer is chosen in Christ to be holy; he is called to be a saint; he is set apart to show forth the beauty, glory and holiness of His God.

Ephesians 1:4, “According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love.”

Romans 1:6-7, “Among whom are ye also the called of Jesus Christ: To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints; Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.”

1 Peter 2:9, “But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.”

Thus we see that every believer was chosen and called to be a saint and that  saint is one set apart as belonging to God and as separated unto Him for His use. Throughout Scripture this is invariably the meaning of the words “to sanctify” or “sanctification” whether used in connection with things or persons. That which is sanctified is something wholly set apart for God’s possession and use and when God lays claim to anything and separates it unto His use it is by that act “sanctified.” God’s undivided proprietorship of the believer lies enfolded in the very heart of the truth of sanctification. In the eternity of the past God called us to be His own possession. He said, “Thou art mine.”

The Believer a Saint by Position

When, where, and how is the believer sanctified? At what point of time, at what stage in spiritual experience, and through what means is the believer wholly separated unto God and set apart as the special possession of the Lord? There has been much confusion on these points that has led to bewilderment on the part of many and even delusion on the part of some.

But God’s Word is crystal clear on this theme as on all others connected with salvation if we keep to the Scriptural meaning and method of the spiritual experiences God intends we should enjoy. Let us never forget that God is infinitely more concerned about our entrance into the fullness of our inheritance in Christ than we can possibly be. How hurt and harmed is the separate, holy Christ by the mixedness and unholiness in the lives  of Christians. Then surely He would take great care that this wondrous truth of sanctification should be made very plain.

~Ruth Paxson~

(continued with # 2)

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Greatest Victories out of Apparent Defeats


Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ (2 Cor. 2:14).

God gets His greatest victories out of apparent defeats. Very often the enemy seems to triumph for a little, and God lets it be so; but then He comes in and upsets all the work of the enemy, overthrows the apparent victory, and as the Bible says, “turns the way of the wicked upside down.” Thus He gives a great deal larger victory than we would have known if He had not allowed the enemy, seemingly, to triumph in the first place.

The story of the three Hebrew children being cast into the fiery furnace is a familiar one. Here was an apparent victory for the enemy. It looked as if the servants of the living God were going to have a terrible defeat. We have all been in places where it seemed as though we were defeated, and the enemy rejoiced. We can imagine what a complete defeat this looked to be. They fell down into the flames, and their enemies watched them to see them burn up in that awful fire, but were greatly astonished to see them walking around in the fire enjoying themselves. Nebuchadnezzar told them to “come forth out of the midst of the fire.” Not even a hair was singed, nor was the smell of fire on their garments, “because there is no other god that can deliver after this sort.”

This apparent defeat resulted in a marvelous victory.

Suppose that these three men had lost their faith and courage, and had complained, saying, “Why did not God keep us out of the furnace!” They would have been burned, and God would not have been glorified. If there is a great trial in your life today, do not own it as a defeat, but continue, by faith, to claim the victory through Him who is able to make you more than conqueror, and a glorious victory will soon be apparent. Let us learn that in all the hard places God brings us into, He is making opportunities for us to exercise such faith in Him as will bring about blessed results and greatly glorify His name.
–Life of Praise

Defeat may serve as well as victory
To shake the soul and let the glory out.
When the great oak is straining in the wind,
The boughs drink in new beauty, and the trunk
Sends down a deeper root on the windward side.
Only the soul that knows the mighty grief
Can know the mighty rapture. Sorrows come
To stretch out spaces in the heart for joy.

 

~L. B. Cowman~

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A Perfect Oneness Effected


Life On the Highest Plane

Christ Our Life

The spiritual history of a believer could be written in two phrases, “Ye in me” and “I in you.” In God’s reckoning Christ and the believer have become one in such a way that Christ is both in the heavenlies and upon earth and the believer is both on earth and in the heavenlies. The Church without Christ is a body without a Head; Christ with the Church is a Head without a body. The fullness of the Head is for the body and the body is “the fullness of him that filleth all in all.”

Colossians 2:9-10, “For in him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily, and in him ye are made full who is the head of all principality and power.”

Ephesians 1:22-23, “And he put all things in subjection under his feet, and gave him to be head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fullness of him that filleth all in all.”

Could God tell us more clearly that in His divine purpose He means for the fullness of Christ to be the fullness of the Christian? It is a staggering thought! Its plain import is that you and I and all other Christians are to bring Christ down from Heaven to earth and to let men see even in us who He is and what He has done and what He can do in a human life. It is to have Christ’s life in such a perfection of likeness that men see Him in us and are drawn to Him in faith and love. It is to be such a oneness of life that one’s human personality is but a vessel in which the beauty, holiness and glory of the Lord Jesus shine forth in undimmed transparency.

But here I hear the murmur of a doubting Thomas, “Except I see this Christ life more perfectly in my fellow-Christian or experience it more fully in my own life I will not believe it is possible!” All I can say in answer to this is “I believe because I have seen.” For six weeks I lived in a Heaven upon earth in a Chicago boarding house, incredible as that may seem. It was run by a little woman who weighed about eighty-five pounds and who was kept from falling into a heap upon the floor by a brace which was worn night and day. She had lived upon the third floor for two years with no outlook but the blue sky above and a patch of green grass a few feet square below. But her eyes shone like stars, upon her face was a smile that intense bodily suffering, straightened financial circumstances, few social contacts, limited opportunities for enjoyment of God’s great and wonderful world, had not been able to remove, and mirrored in that face was a light that one never seen on sea nor land except where the Light of the world dwells in undimmed brightness. Christ was Life of her life.

A young Chinese man who had been a Christian less than two years came one day for a bit of Christian fellowship. From a godless life he had been very marvelously converted and transformed. Christ had in deed and truth become all and in all to him. After he left the house that day a gentlemen who saw him for only a brief moment said, “Who was that young man? I never met any one who so instantly compelled me to think of Christ as did he.”

A Christian business man lay dying in a hospital. Friends called to comfort him and they left feeling that they had not only been taken to the very door of Heaven but even that they had seen the King in His beauty. Christ had been the Life of his life in health and continued to be so in sickness.

A young woman of nobility and wealth was on the  road that led into worldliness and ease, when she met her Lord. Captivated  by His mighty love and power, even as was the apostle of old, she too said, “Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?” The answer was, “I would go through you to carry the Gospel to China.” For nearly thirty years she has been there without a furlough, working and praying through the cold of winter and the heat of summer, with only an occasional vacation of a week or two. In more than twenty places are groups of worshipers of the true God and many hundreds have been eternally blessed through that life crucified, buried, and risen with Jesus Christ. You say, “She must be old, worn and haggard.” Far, far from it. In her beautiful face is all the joyous gladness of youth and yet all the wondrous peace of the twilight years of a life lived in the constant and conscious presence of the living God. Even a stranger immediately recognizes in that life something more than human; something that belongs to another world than this. Christ is the Life of her life.

A little girl of eleven years of age lay dying. She deeply and dearly loved her Lord and as He came to take her home she seemed fairly transfigured. She called father, mother, brothers and sisters to her and with the very love of Christ filling and flooding her little heart she plead with them to meet her in Heaven. An older sister who loved that child as she loved no one else went from that room crushed but with her heart steeled against her sister’s Christ. Out into a life of reckless worldliness she went but ever haunted by the face of Christ and the voice of Christ as she had seen and heard it in her little sister. Two years passed by but the vision of His face and the sound of His voice were not dimmed and finally that cold, resisting heart was melted into such love of the Lord Jesus that she joyously accepted Him as her Saviour, and her life was marvelously transformed. Christ was the Life of that eleven year old child.

Is He the Life of your life? Could this be said of you?

“Not I, but Christ be honored, loved, exalted,
Not I, but Christ be seen, be known, be heard;
Not I, but Christ in every thought and action,
Not I, but Christ in every look and word.”

The thought of living such a Christ-life could well make us tremble and fear did God not make it so clear that He does not expect us to live it in our own strength and power but that in the gift of the Holy Spirit. He has made ample provision for our growing conformity into the image of His Son and for a continuous renewal of Christ’s life within us. It is the Holy Spirit who brings the fullness of Christ’s life in the heavenlies into our life on earth.

2 Corinthians 3:18, “But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are transformed into the same image from glory to glory, even as from the Lord the Spirit.”

Ephesians 3:16, 17, 19, “That he would grant you according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man; that Christ may dwell in our hearts by faith; … That ye might be filled with all the fullness of God.”

“There’s a Man in the Glory
Whose Life is for me,
He’s pure and He’s holy,
Triumphant and free.
He’s wise and He’s loving,
Tender is He;
And His Life in the Glory,
My life must be.
“There’s a Man in the Glory
Whose Life is for me,
He overcame satan;
From bondage He’s free.
In life He is reigning,
Kingly is He;
And His Life in the Glory,
My life must be.
“There’s a Man in the Glory
Whose Life is for me,
In Him is no sickness:
No weakness has He.
He’s strong and in vigor,
Buoyant is He;
And His Life in the Glory,
My life may be.
There’s a Man in the Glory
Whose Life is for me.
His peace is abiding;
Patient is He.
He’s joyful and radiant,
Expecting to see
His Life in the Glory
Lived out in me.”
~Ruth Paxson~
(continued with # 1 “Christ Our Sanctification (A People for His Possession and Use”)
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The Living God – Able to Deliver Thee


O Daniel, servant of the living God, is thy God whom thou servest continually, able to deliver thee? (Daniel 6:20).

How many times we find this expression in the Scriptures, and yet it is just this very thing that we are so prone to lose sight of. We know it is written “the living God”; but in our daily life there is scarcely anything we practically so much lose sight of as the fact that God is the living God; that He is now whatever He was three or four thousand years since; that He has the same sovereign power, the same saving love towards those who love and serve Him as ever He had and that He will do for them now what He did for others two, three, four thousand years ago, simply because He is the living God, the unchanging One. Oh, how therefore we should confide in Him, and in our darkest moments never lose sight of the fact that He is still and ever will be the living God!

Be assured, if you walk with Him and look to Him and expect help from Him, He will never fail you. An older brother who has known the Lord for forty-four years, who writes this, says to you for your encouragement that He has never failed him. In the greatest difficulties, in the heaviest trials, in the deepest poverty and necessities, He has never failed me; but because I was enabled by His grace to trust Him He has always appeared for my help. I delight in speaking well of His name.
–George Mueller

Luther was once found at a moment of peril and fear, when he had need to grasp unseen strength, sitting in an abstracted mood tracing on the table with his finger the words, “Vivit! vivit!” (“He lives! He lives!”). It is our hope for ourselves, and for His truth, and for mankind. Men come and go; leaders, teachers, thinkers speak and work for a season, and then fall silent and impotent. He abides. They die, but He lives. They are lights kindled, and, therefore, sooner or later quenched; but He is the true light from which they draw all their brightness, and He shines for evermore.
–Alexander Maclaren

“One day I came to know Dr. John Douglas Adam,” writes C. G. Trumbull. “I learned from him that what he counted his greatest spiritual asset was his unvarying consciousness of the actual presence of Jesus. Nothing bore him up so, he said, as the realization that Jesus was always with him in actual presence; and that this was so independent of his own feelings, dependent of his deserts, and independent of his own notions as to how Jesus would manifest His presence.

“Moreover, he said that Christ was the home of his thoughts. Whenever his mind was free from other matters it would turn to Christ; and he would talk aloud to Christ when he was alone — on the street, anywhere — as easily and naturally as to a human friend. So real to him was Jesus’ actual presence.

 

~L. B. Cowman~

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A Perfect Oneness Effected


Life On the Highest Plane

Christ Our Life

Christ Jesus was made like us that we might be made like Him. In the incarnation there was the union of Deity with humanity that in regeneration there might be the union of humanity with Deity. When the Holy Spirit begat in the believer a new nature He opened the door to a living, organic union between Christ and the Christian which will exist through the ages upon ages to come. Christ and the Christian are eternally one. The exalted Christ lives now to bestow upon us in all of its fullness His own triumphant, joyous, holy life.

To be a Christian is nothing less than to have the glorified Christ living in us in actual presence, possession and power. It is to have Him as the Life of our own life in such a way and to such a degree that we can say even as Paul said, “To me to live is Christ.” To be a Christian is to grow up into Christ in all things: it is to have that divine seed which was planted in our innermost spirit blossom out into a growing conformity to His perfect life. To be a Christian is to have Christ the life of our minds, our hearts, our wills, so that it is Christ thinking through us, loving through us, willing through us. It is increasingly to have no life but the life of Christ within us filling us with ever increasing measure.

But I can hear some modern Nicodemus say, “How can these things be?” How can I live in such a life in my home where I receive no sympathy nor help but rather ridicule and scoffing, and where I have for so long lived a sinful and defeated life? How can I live  a truly consistent Christ-life in my social circle where there is scarcely a person who ever gives Him a thought and were His name is never mentioned? How can I live “in the Spirit” in a place of business where I am surrounded by those living altogether “in the flesh” and where the very atmosphere seems surcharged with evil? How can I even learn to live the life more abundant when my membership is in a thoroughly worldly church where little is given to feed and strengthen my spiritual life?

As we are in Christ in the heavenlies so is He in us on earth. CHRIST IN US can life this life anywhere, and that is what He longs to do. This truth our Lord gave in germ in His last conversation with His disciples on earth. He had told them that He was going away from them and they were wondering how they could ever be true disciples apart from Him. The burden of this last conversation was to assure them He would be with them in a spiritual Presence far more real and vital than the relationship they had with Him up to that time. The same Life that was in Him as the Vine would flow through them as branches.

John 15:5, “I am the vine, ye are the branches; he that abideth in me and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit; for without me ye can do nothing.”

It was likewise the burden of our Lord’s High Priestly prayer on that last night.

John 17:23, 26, “I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; that the world may know that thou hast sent me; and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me … I have declared unto them thy name and will declare it; that the love thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them.”

“I in them” – these three simple but significant words close the prayer with that little inner circle in which He breathed forth the passionate desire of His heart for His own on down through the centuries. Now as well as then, it is the consuming desire of Jesus Christ to reincarnate Himself in the Christian.

The Apostle Paul in the revelation given him laid hold upon this precious, glorious truth and it is woven into the warp and wool of his experience, his preaching, and his missionary service. “Christ liveth in me” was the very acme of his personal spiritual life.

Galatians 2:20, “I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I that live, but Christ liveth in me; and the life I now live in the flesh I live in faith, the faith which is in the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.”

Phil. 1:21, “For to me to live is Christ.”

“Christ liveth in me” so that “To me to live is Christ” – there was nothing beyond this for Paul. Having the glorified Christ as his very life was all inclusive in Paul’s spiritual experience. This to him was life on the highest plane. 

“Christ in you” was the heart of his message to the churches. It rang out with clarion clearness in all Paul’s teaching and preaching. A cross section from any of Paul’s Epistles would reveal this truth written in capital letters.

Colossians 1:27, “To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you the hope of glory.”

“Christ in you” was the very passion of his missionary service. Paul might employ different methods in his service for God, he might be all things to all men, but the end, the aim, the goal of it all was just one thing with him – that Christ Jesus Himself might be formed in each one who heard the Gospel message.

Galatians 4:19, “My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you.”

To be a Christian is to accept Christ as Saviour and to crown Him as Lord. But there is one step more: it is to appropriate Him as Life. As the works within the watch are the real life of the watch so the Lord Jesus within the believer is the real life of the believer. “The Christian life is not merely a converted life nor even a consecrated life but it is a Christ-life.” Christ is the Chrisitian’s center; Christ is the Christian’s circumference; Christ is all in between. As Paul has put it “Christ IS all and IN all.”

Co. 3:4, “When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.”

~Ruth Paxson~

(continued with # 1 – “A Perfect Oneness Effected”)

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Love



 

If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen?
-First John 4:20 (King James Version)

When you get down to the nitty gritty of your life, do you truly love others? Do you truly love those whom the world deems unloveable? Do you harbor any bitterness or anger at someone else?

John is challenging his readers with an important statement and an important question. First, the statement, “If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar:” So many of us say we love God. So many people today claim to love God, but they don’t radiate that love to a lost and hurting world. If we claim to love God, that love must be shown toward others. Now, his question, “For he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen?” How can we love God, whom we haven’t visibly seen, and not love others, who are made in His likeness?

Probably the greatest verse on love in the Bible is First Corinthians 13:8, “Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.” Charity means love. Paul says that “Love never faileth.” Love, true love, will never fail you. Then he goes on to compare things. “but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.” Look at Paul’s list here. In comparison to love, all these things shall faith. Prophecies, languages, knowledge will all fail, but love will never fail.

As a child of God, you have the love of God in you. The unconditional love of God. Are you showing that same kind of love to others?

~Think About It~
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Making Your Own Well?


 

For my people have committed two evils; they have forsaken me the fountain of living waters, and hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns, that can hold no water…But where are thy gods that thou hast made thee? let them arise, if they can save thee in the time of thy trouble: for according to the number of thy cities are thy gods, O Judah.
-Jeremiah 2:13 & 28(King James Version)

These verses from Jeremiah 2 seems to be pointed right at our world today. God is revealing to us that we have turned our back on Him, and went out and tried to make our own wells that will hold no water.

When God reveals Himself as the fountain of living waters, He is revealing our great need for Him. I did a search on Google to find out how long we can go without water. It ranges from a couple days to about a week. For the Christian, how long can we go without God in our lives? Not long. When God reveals Himself as the fountain of living waters, He is revealing that He is essential to our day to day life. Yet, as this verse tells us, many people try and dig out their own supply of water. It’s call cisterns. A cistern is a huge reservoir for holding water. We are not content with God, so we try and find some other things to satisfy us. God calls these cisterns “broken, that can hold no water.” Our efforts don’t work. Our efforts cannot bring what God brings.

Then, He says in verse 28, “But where are thy gods that thou has made thee? Let them arise, if they can and save thee in the time of thy trouble…” The “gods” we create, the ones we create to take the place of the One, True God, can’t do anything for us. God says, “Where are thy gods…let them arise, if they can and save thee…” The broken cisterns, the false gods we make can never take the place of God in our lives.

Have you turned your back on Him today? Are you trying to create your own cistern, your own gods?

~Think About It~
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Life on the Highest Plane

Christ Our Lord

This relationship of the believer to the Lord Jesus determines his position, his privileges and his possessions. To be in Christ is to be where He is, to be what He is and to share what He has.

The believer in Christ is where Christ is. Christ is in His Father’s immediate presence, He is at the Father’s right hand, He is in the Father’s sight; so is the believer in Christ.

Ephesians 2:6, “And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ.”

Colossians 3:3, “For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.”

Christ has left the earth as His place of abode and now dwells in the heavenlies. The believer is in Christ, therefore even now while still on earth his real citizenship is in Heaven and he is a pilgrim upon earth for his real life is in Christ.

Phil. 3:20, “For our citizenship is in heaven; whence also we wait for a Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ.”

Hebrews 13:14, “For here have we no continuing city, but we seek one to come.”

Therefore the believer’s heart is set upon heavenly things; he values and seeks heavenly things more than earthly.

Colossians 3:1-2, “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.”

Do I hear some one say, “This is too high a standard for me; it is not only impossible but unattractive. I am on the earth and in this world, therefore why should I not live as though I were and enjoy what this earth and this world have to give me and leave the enjoyment of Heaven until I reach there?” Such is the reasoning of vast numbers of Christians and their lives are in full harmony with their reasoning. As some one has aptly said they have become Christians much as a man takes out a life insurance policy – something that does not in any way alter one’s manner of living but will be of use after death and is maintained with the payment of a yearly premium. With many a person becoming a Christian has made little if any difference in either his character or conduct. He is still of the earth earthy.

Is it not conceivable that God would have us become acclimated to our eternal home in Heaven with Christ during our transient stay on earth? If the atmosphere of Heaven is stifling to me here what will it be to me there? If the heavenly pleasures and pursuits are unattractive to me now, what will they be to me then? There is music in Heaven but it is not jazz or rock; there are pleasures there but they are not the pleasures of the ballroom, the card table, the drinking party, or the cinema; there are pursuits in the Glory land but not that of making money or a name or a place in society. Death is both an exit and an entrance all in one. For the believer it closes the door on earth to open one into Heaven. There is not one instant for preparation for that higher altitude. If my heart can’t stand it here how will it stand it there?

Or is it unthinkable that God would wish to open a window into that blessed realm of light and life to some wayward, worn traveler on the road of darkness and death through the Spirit-filled lives of believers on earth? In fact is that not one of His most effectual ways today of making known the beauties and excellencies of that other world? Does He not want to bring Heaven to earth that He may woo earth to Heaven? And how else can He do it but through Heaven-born, Heaven-filled men and women?

Again is there one so selfish, go grasping, as to wish to get all from God and give nothing to God? Is there one who would accept a pass from earth to Heaven provided only through God’s matchless grace and marvelous love, who still will spend all his time and substance in pleasure-seeking or totally involved in worldly pursuits?

No, God means that life down here shall be in harmony with life up there; that even while sojourning on earth we shall live a life partaking of the nature of Heaven, a life holy and heavenly in character and conduct.

In Christ Jesus the believer is what Christ is in the reckoning of God. Christ, the Head, and the believer, a member of His body, are one. Through this wonderful identification God looks upon us as joint heirs with Christ, entering into and occupying the same position and enjoying the same privileges as His Son.

Romans 8:17, “And, if children, than heirs; heirs of God, and joint heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.”

We are enfolded and environed by the Lord Jesus that God cannot see Christ today without seeing us. This moment as God looks upon His Son at His right hand He sees you and me if we are in Christ Jesus.

“Near, so very near to God
Nearer I could not be;
For in the person of His Son,
I’m just as near as He.
Dear, so very dear to God,
Dearer I could not be;
For in the person of His Son,
I’m just as dear as He.”
In Christ Jesus the believer shares with Christ all His possessions. Every spiritual blessing is ours, in Christ. Dare we believe it? All things are ours in Christ. Dare we act as though we believe it?
Ephesians 1:3, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ who hath blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ.”
Romans 8:32, “He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?”
1 Corinthians 3:21, “Therefore let no man glory in men. For all things are yours.”
God says in these and many other passages that the possessions of the exalted Christ are the possessions of the one united to Him by faith. Identification with Him in His death, burial, resurrection and ascension includes identification with Him in all the gain and the glory, all the privileges and possessions gained by Him through His passion. Christ’s victory over satan and all the forces of evil is ours and His present life of rest, peace, and joy is ours.
~Ruth Paxson~
(continued with # 6)
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