Wednesday, September 17, 2014

The true DNA of the Believer (eternal redemption 3)

Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.  Hebrews 9:12

We are in a series about our eternal salvation in Christ. As I've said many times if salvation isn't eternal then it is only a mere temporal salvation. Praise be to the Most High God that it is an eternal salvation He purchased for us. 

Who do we think we are?

How we think of ourselves in Christ is the key to living the victorious, abundant life of Christ. 
For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.“Eat and drink!” he says to you, But his heart is not with you. Proverbs 23:7
Right thinking is the key to success. Agreeing with the Word of God is what produces right believing which in turn produces right thinking. We need to think right about who we actually, already are in Him. 

Are we simply forgiven sinners?

Too many get this impression about who we are in Christ. We see our great sin before we trusted in Jesus and therefore after we turn to Him we still think of ourselves as that sinful person. We may even say we believe we are righteous. At the heart of the matter is how do you define and apply this righteousness? Let me elaborate.

Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Romans 5:1 ESV

Many accept and even promote the truth that we are justified by faith. That is literally declared righteous by faith. They even affirm we are declared right only by belief in Him and trusting in Him. Afterwards though, they insist you must maintain or produce a life that is outwardly flawless.

Justification is a beautiful gospel truth. Take the English word and it is the simple beautiful gospel message. Justified, Just-if-I'd never sinned. Being declared righteous is not fully what happened when we became new creations in Him though. This is just partially what occurred.

Not just "declared" righteous but actually made righteous! 

This is the great, glad news! This is who we really are. It's not complete to believe you are just declared righteous but still a sinner by nature.  No, you are actually declared right and then made righteous in Him. You see the full message of grace is not just that you have been set free from the weight of the Old Covenant Law and totally forgiven all your sins. It must also include the reality of our being made a completely brand new creation. We are completely new in Him. 

This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun! 2 Corinthians 5:17 NLT
  For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. 2 Corinthians 5:21

What about the flesh?

We are made completely new. The old is completely gone. It is wiped away. So what about the flesh? What about a sin nature? To say that believers have a sin nature is an unfortunate tradition brought about through some poor translating in certain Bible translations on the Market.

Some teach that the reason we still mess up as believers is because we still have a sin nature. That God's new life within is fighting this daily uphill struggle with an opposing nature we still possess. Is this truth? Of course not. For more info I highly recommend reading after Ryan Rufus on this subject here.

Why do we miss it so often then? Its because we have the flesh to contend with on an ongoing basis. The flesh though isn't you or your body. Your body is the temple of God. It is good because God made it. The flesh is simply a mind set. It is a thinking process that is contrary to the Word of God. I am not suggesting we can't live victorious over the flesh. We can through Him and His grace. We don't have to miss it at all, ever. 

Andrew Farley says it so well. The flesh is simply the policies of the former administration. We used to think and feel and believe a certain way before Christ. Now that we are completely new and that is our true DNA, conflict may arise when those former policies wish to dominate our thinking and urge us to act on them. Knowing though what the flesh is and how it operates brings us into a place of victory. 

We have the victory through our new creation.

We operate in victory over these fleshly thoughts and ideas when we identify with our new nature. We can choose to identify with who we actually already are. Doing so brings change, lasting change within us. 

So this is the answer to the objections and concerns raised by some, who believe that if we teach that once we are born again and made a new creation, nothing will ever change that or remove it, we give people an open license to live in unbridled lust and sinfulness. If you want to dwell in the midst of evil and corruption and wicked lust and can rejoice and celebrate it I suggest you get born again and receive the righteous new nature in Him. 

Knowing I am forever secure in Him and can never renounce it or walk away or "sin it away," becomes a motivation for devotion to God. Once we realize we have a completely new nature from above it removes this fear of licentious living. We no longer need to keep God's people in fear and anxiety about their security in Him. 

Teaching people they can lose it or renounce it produces anxiety in their relationship with God. It can create a sense of drawing back from God. What if I ever get weary? Could I renounce Him? What if I miss it to many times? I struggle with this sin. Will He keep forgiving me? These types of thought processes are the direct result of traditional, legalistic and law minded teaching designed to keep the Saints from wandering and under the control of Church leadership. Reject these thoughts and philosophies. Rest knowing you are forever safe and secure in His hand.

So who do you think you are? You are the righteousness of God in Christ. You aren't just declared right but actually made righteous. You have a complete new nature that desires a passionate relationship with our Father God more than anything. We are forever secure in this love. Rejoice in this wonderful knowledge.

I pray this article has blessed you and I pray that God pour out His lovingkindness upon you all this week. In Him...


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