Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Our inheritance in Christ: Made Equal with God

to open their eyes and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and an inheritance among those who are sanctified by faith in Me.’ Acts 26:18 MEV

In recent weeks we've been studying the inheritance we have in Christ. Many are unaware we even have an inheritance in Christ. They regulate any victory or fulfilled promise till the saints finally make it to Heaven. As for the here and now, let's hope we have good insurance, a good job, and a good doctor because we are in essence stranded here in this fallen world without aid or support from Heaven. 

 When we examine our inheritance closer we see that we are not alone. We are more than equipped to live this life on Earth in triumphant victory. We have seen in this inheritance we have the gift of no condemnation, no separation, and complete acceptance with God. We have received the blessing of the Lord. 

 Today, it seems good to share a rather controversial aspect of our inheritance in Christ. That is our sonship with God. The truth that those who believe are the children of God. Paul revealed it was God's design that we become the children of God

 What could be controversial about the truth that we are the children of God? The religious leaders of Jesus' day knew the full implications of sonship. See their words in John 5.

 The religious leaders knew sonship implied more than just having a Father in Heaven;

Therefore the Jews sought all the more to kill Him, because He not only broke the Sabbath, but also said that God was His Father, making Himself equal with God John 5:18 NKJV (emphasis mine)

Sonship brings with it equality. This is understandable when we think of earthly fathers and their children. When we attribute this towards our Heavenly Father it rattles so many minds of Christians everywhere.

 Wait brother John are you dare to suggest we are equal with God? Before you stone me allow me to elaborate further.

Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. Philippians 2:5-7 NKJV

 Jesus when He came to earth, manifested as God in the flesh, but didn't take His equality with God, humbled Himself and came in the form of a man and served. This same mind should be in us. We have dominion and authority based on our sonship and we should serve one another in love.

 When it comes to mankind, we are all created by God, saved and unsaved. There is no one superior and no one inferior. No one based on their ethnicity or national origin is "better" than or "more equal" than anyone.

 Yet even among us humans, there are those who excel in things others do not. There are those who exceed many others' abilities in athletics, science, mathematics, creativity, and talent. Does that make the star athlete better than say minor league talent? It makes them superior in skill level but not in identity. 

 What am I saying? I am declaring in this inheritance we are made the children of God. This sonship gives us certain rights and privileges in Christ. None of this is based on our performance or doing. It's all based on the redemptive work of Christ.

 In Christ, we have been made partakers of the divine nature. God has given us His Spirit to dwell within. We are the children of God by Faith. We are not just mere sinners who have been given mercy from a Holy God. We are now the very children of God, with God Himself indwelling us in the person of the Spirit. We are not inferior, worthless beings, we are the children of God.

 Let this mind be in you. It is not robbing God of His eternal glory and truth that He alone is God Almighty, the only One worthy of all praise and adoration and worship, to take our place as sons and daughters. We are not inferior worms in the dust. Because of sonship, we can come into the presence of God freely, without shame, guilt, or any sense of inferiority or worthlessness. 

 As a son, we have the privilege and right to feast at the King's table. We have freely been given all things that pertain to life and godliness. It's not that we are bringing God down to man's level. No, God has brought us up to sit with Him in the heavenly places. 

 In summation, we are made in the image of God. We are recreated as born-again children of God, made alive in Christ. This loving Father accepts us as His own. He made us partakers of the divine nature. He made our hearts his home. He has made us new. His Spirit is within. 

 He now accepts us as His kids and we have been made joint-heirs with Christ. 

16 The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified together. Romans 8:16-17 NKJV

 We are joint-heirs with Christ. This means how God sees Jesus is how He sees us. How He loves Jesus is how He loves us. How much Jesus is in right standing with the Father is how much we are. We are not inferior but in equal standing with Jesus. We have equality with God because of Jesus, celebrate it. 

Image by Ryan Morrison from Pixabay

Monday, March 22, 2021

Our Inheritance in Christ: The Blessing


to open their eyes and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and an inheritance among those who are sanctified by faith in Me.’ Acts 26:18 MEV

 We're continuing in our study of our inheritance in Christ. Did you know child of God that you have an inheritance? When Christ died and rose again He procured perfect redemption and gave us an inheritance that can't be done away with. The enemy cannot contest this will. It's ours because of Jesus!

 We've seen through this inheritance we have received the gift of no condemnation, in this inheritance we receive the benefit of no separation, there is nothing that can separate the believer from God. We saw last time how we are accepted, highly favored, and honored because of Jesus' work. 

 Today, it seemed good to focus on one major aspect of our inheritance in Christ. In Christ, we have received the blessing of the Lord. So often, we struggle and strive to receive what God has already provided. We listen to ministries who put clauses and conditions on what God has already provided. We work hard trying to earn what can only be freely received.

 Hear the Good News, in Christ you are already blessed.

How we praise God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every blessing in heaven because we belong to Christ. Ephesians 1:3 TLB

 Let us give thanks to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! For in our union with Christ he has blessed us by giving us every spiritual blessing in the heavenly world. Ephesians 1:3 GNT

 Some of the religious traditional detractors will suggest because Paul said spiritual blessings then he must only mean spiritual things like forgiveness of sins but never provision or healing or deliverance. Not so, what Paul is saying is that all the blessings we ever need are first in the spiritual realm. We lay hold on our inheritance by putting a demand on the supply by believing with our heart, our spiritual man. 

 We know this because we don't always feel forgiven or Righteous. We don't always even look Righteous. Yet we know inwardly we are the very Righteousness of God in Christ. That blessing is spiritual then manifests in the natural as we mature in Christ. Our life begins to match who we are already inwardly. So these blessings begin in the spiritual realm and later manifest in the natural as we believe.

 So are you suggesting we don't do anything to receive the blessing? That there isn't anything we can do to increase the blessing in our life? No, I didn't suggest it I just agree with God who said it through His Apostles.

According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: 2 Peter 1:3 KJV

Everything we could ever need for life and godliness has already been deposited in us by his divine power. For all this was lavished upon us through the rich experience of knowing him who has called us by name and invited us to come to him through a glorious manifestation of his goodness. 2 Peter 1:3 TPT

We see here we already have all we need for life and godliness. For life is everything we will ever need in this natural world and godliness means we are already equipped for victorious living spiritually. Note we don't have to do anything but believe for them to manifest. 

 Now Peter did mention knowledge. That is the knowledge of what is ours through our inheritance in Christ. Traditional religion keeps us ignorant of all that's ours in Christ. Legalistic, law, and Grace mixing ministries either knowingly or unknowingly keeps us striving, struggling, and attempting to earn what we already have in Christ by our doing, our behavior, or our giving.

 Remember law and Grace mixture is any attempt to earn or achieve or merit what only Grace gives. It's trying to gain what is only freely received. What Christ procured and purchased on the Cross in the Finished Work is only received by Grace through Faith never on any actions on our part.

 Many fall into the error of mixture because they don't grasp what it truly means to be Righteous. Righteousness is divine acceptance, approval, and perfect right standing before the Father. We who believed received His perfect Righteousness in the great exchange. We are now as Righteous as Jesus. Righteousness is a gift we receive by Faith alone. It is not a work we achieve. 

 When it comes to material blessings many want to link provision with our giving and even with the practice of tithing. I have written extensively on tithing in the past you can find those links in the archive section of this blog. Let me briefly address this issue.

 If we look at Acts 15, we can clearly see this issue addressed and settled. Some misguided believers wanted to mix the Old with the New. They wanted to mix Law and Grace. They desired that believers keep the Law of Moses. This would include tithing. The Gentiles were never given the Law, so how could they have known anything about tithing?

 What did the Apostles conclude? They declared in a letter, some are requiring you to keep the Mosaic Law, but we gave no such command. There we have it. We as believers are not commanded to keep the Law. That would include tithing. Some would say but tithing was before the Law, well so was circumcision as a sign of following Jehovah and we aren't commanding that today.

 Apart from the tithe, still, others want to focus on our giving. They teach that Paul taught in 2 Corinthians that our giving is our seed and we sow it to become more blessed. Is this true? 

 This idea is rooted in the seed-faith message. This teaching infiltrated many charismatic and word of faith ministries. Instead of simply believing God's Word and speaking it (this truth I still strongly affirm), the focus became what you gave and how much you gave and how often you gave. 

 Placing stipulations on the blessing such as giving and doing turns the Goodness of God into a works and performance-rooted system of earning and achieving. The blessing then becomes a wage earned and not a gift of Grace. 

 Teaching that all our actions and our giving are seeds sown gets us reverting to some form of karma like existence. Where the Love of God doesn't guide our actions but the desire for a better future and for more and more good to come our way. It also produces fear and gets us back to Law, "do good get good do bad get bad."

 Paul likened giving as a seed in 2 Corinthians 9 only in the sense that as the whole body of believers give (he was addressing a specific church), the gift would multiply to those who received it. In other words, my gift of $50 given with the right motive to be a blessing is good but adding that to the amount the body will give is multiplication. In essence that one gift is like planting a single apple tree, but that gift coupled with others is like planting many apple trees.

 We are blessed because of what Jesus did. We look to Jesus' work never our own. Our blessings come from Christ alone never us. If the blessing comes from us and our doing then we have a place to boast, "look at what my giving, doing, and behavior produced."This replaces Grace and inheritance to a wage earned.

 In summation, in Christ, because of Christ alone and our trust in Him, we are blessed. The blessing is not determined or stipulated upon us by our doings but by Jesus Christ alone. Trust in Him and not your doing, your giving, or your behavior. Christ determined the blessing, He earned it and gave it to us, freely receive it. 

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay 

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

Our Inheritance in Christ: Accepted

 to open their eyes and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and an inheritance among those who are sanctified by faith in Me.’ Acts 26:18 MEV

 We've been in a series studying our blessed inheritance in Christ. When Christ died and rose again He granted us a generous inheritance that is available to all who believe right now. We don't have to die and get to Heaven to experience it. We can experience it and enjoy it here and now.

 We have seen so far that we have received the gift of no condemnation in this glorious inheritance. We saw last time we are no longer separated from God ever again. Spiritual death simply means separation from God. We were separated and now because of Jesus we are forever His and He will never leave or forsake us. We will never be apart from Him. 

 Today, it seemed good to continue this amazing study looking at our perfect acceptance in Christ. In the first chapter of Paul's Epistle to the Ephesians, he speaks of our inheritance in Christ. We who believed have obtained an eternal inheritance. 

 In this inheritance, we can see that we are found accepted in the beloved. Christ's work has made us acceptable to the Father. 

 to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved. Ephesians 1:6 NKJV

  To the praise of the glory of His Grace. His glorious Grace has made us accepted. This word accepted means to be honored and to be highly favored.

 God has bestowed divine favor upon us, His Church, His people. He has favored us and bestowed honor on us. We may not always feel so honorable or favored but nevertheless, we are favored.

 In this world system, to be accepted or honored we must achieve much. We have to also conform to their ways of doing things. The stepping on others to get ahead, the seeking the favor of only those the world system already esteems. We must keep striving and doing more and more even if it means neglecting friends and family to achieve favored status.

 Under traditional religion, we had to work harder and keep all the rules to be found worthy and favored. We struggled and strived to achieve a sense of acceptance from God and the ministries we were a part of. We sought acceptance and accolades from men by our works and performance.

 We didn't understand we were already highly favored and honored by God the moment we believed. We were trying to earn what was free. We were trying to achieve what was already ours in Christ.

 In our dealings with man, there is always someone who comes in the last place. Someone who is chosen last. Someone who won't qualify. In Christ, we are always picked first to be on Jesus' team. In Christ, we are never disqualified, we are chosen, we are loved, we are accepted eternally in Him.

 In Christ, we are accepted. We aren't rejected. We aren't disqualified. Even in our worst, we are still accepted. He isn't accepting our misdeeds or mistakes, He isn't accepting our sins and shortcomings because He reminds us those deeds aren't who we are, that's not our identity, He accepts us. He reminds us of who we are and whose we are. We are always found acceptable to the Father because of Jesus. 

 In summation, rejoice in the Good News. See yourself as He sees you. Highly favored. Loved. Honored. Acceptable to the Father. The enemy works overtime to get you to think you are unacceptable to God. He brings his shame and points to your sins and shortcomings. Resist the enemy and reject his lies. When he points you to your sins and shortcomings you point him to your Savior whose work is superior to any achievements of man. Child of God you are accepted in Him, it's yours in this glorious inheritance Christ procured for you. 

Image by Mustafa shehadeh from Pixabay 

Tuesday, March 9, 2021

Our Inheritance in Christ: No Separation

to open their eyes and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and an inheritance among those who are sanctified by faith in Me.’ Acts 26:18 MEV

We began a new study looking at our inheritance in Christ. In this New Covenant, child of God you have an inheritance in Christ. Some believers really don't know what belongs to them because of Christ. 

 In the Old Covenant, God cut a covenant with man. Mankind was consistent in only one aspect of this covenant. They could never uphold their part. In the New, Jesus represented mankind and cut the covenant with the Father on our behalf. So in essence this New Covenant was made between the Father and the Son and we who believe are the beneficiaries. 

 We have seen that our inheritance includes the gift of no condemnation. Today, I want to reveal another aspect of our inheritance. There is no more separation for the child of God. 

 Sisters and brothers, there is nothing you can do to be separated from the Father. You're eternally sealed with the Holy Spirit. You been given the Spirit as an earnest down payment on your complete redemption and once for all salvation. Good news for those who have been taught we can lose or forfeit our salvation. This makes it clear it is eternally secure.

 Our society, due to the fall, is conditioned on separation. What do we do with children who misbehave? We put them in a corner for a "time out". What about when they get older? We suspend them from school for a short duration. What about when they are adults? If it's really bad we separate them by placing them in Jail or prison. Even in prison if they can't behave with the rest of the inmates they are separated further by placing them in a disciplinary segregation unit. 

 My point is not to rail against these institutions. It's not to tell parents don't put their kids in time out. In a fallen fractured creation, we need some methods to control unruly behavior to instruct and even to protect others. That said let's stay focused on the main point I want to make. That separation is conditioned in our minds. 

 When we see actions or performance that isn't up to the standard of perfect righteousness and holiness, we default to separation. Let me explain further by illustration.

When Jesus used Peter's boat and blessed him with a boat sinking harvest, here, what was Peter's reaction to the blessing?

When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, “Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord!” Luke 5:8 NKJV

 Peter saw the power of God, the Goodness of God which revealed to himself his own insufficiency. That is his own imperfections and shortcomings. His first response? Separation. He wanted to be separated from Jesus. He felt so unworthy. 

 When we sin or blow it, what do we do? We run from God. We run from the local church. We stay away from ministry friends and those we see as committed believers.

 Why? Because we are going back to the default. Separate. I am wrong so I must separate. Or the idea comes from the religious. Oh brother or sister you've sinned your sins have separated you from God.

 Many ministers teach that our sins stop God's hands from healing or providing or delivering or protecting us. Yet when Jesus encountered the sinner lost in their sin His response was to go towards that person. Jesus said He must needs pass through Samaria, where He ministered to one woman who was living in adultery. Jesus is what qualifies us to receive from God not ourselves. Our behavior isn't our savior, or provider or healer or protector, Jesus is!

 Child of God there is nothing you've done, are doing, or will do that will cause you to be separated from God. Paul declared that there is nothing that can separate us from the Love of God. No action from the enemy or from ourselves can separate us from God. 

 Christ's perfect shed Blood perfectly purchased and procured complete and total redemption. New life and peace have been made available to whosoever will accept this free love gift. Upon reception, perfect redemption, total peace, complete acceptance approval, and right standing are theirs forever. Never to be disconnected, separated, or out of fellowship with the Father. All of this because of Jesus and His great Love.

 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. Ephesians 2:13 NKJV

 There is no more separation. There is no putting the leper out of the camp. God is not breaking away or disconnecting from you. 

 You may be thinking, brother this sounds too good to be true. What about 1 Corinthians 5 brother? It does appear on the surface I am contradicting Paul or that Paul is even contradicting himself. 

 Let's use context to understand what Paul is saying here. Paul is addressing a specific issue. Paul is speaking Apostolicaly and Pastorally concerning a brother whose behavior is hindering the work and testimony of the ministry. The reason for strong words is because the brother was unrepentant and rebellious. In other words, he knew his actions were wrong and he was apathetic to the results.  

 For a short season, Paul instructed the brethren to not go down the same path he was on. In truth, God was never separated from him, but he was separating himself from God and His ways. What were the results when people refused to go down the same path he was on? He had a sudden change of mind. What people seem to overlook in this event is that not one place did Paul suggest he had lost his salvation or was in "time out" and God wanted nothing to do with him. 

 Let's rejoice in our inheritance. In Christ, we have no separation or disconnection from the Father no matter what. God is never going to leave us or forsake us. God is always with us, even at our worst. God sees all of our faults and flaws and failures and still He embraces us as His own. God is a Good Father and will never separate us from Himself. 

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at 

Monday, March 1, 2021

Our Inheritance in Christ: the gift of no condemnation


 to open their eyes and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and an inheritance among those who are sanctified by faith in Me.’ Acts 26:18 MEV

 In our last study, we saw the good news that those of us in Christ have an inheritance. It seemed good to continue looking at our inheritance in Christ. Knowing who we are and what we have in Christ brings great comfort, and enables us to walk in triumphant victory in our daily lives.

 Did you know one of the greatest benefits we have in Christ is the great gift of no condemnation? Condemnation is an insidious lie of the enemy. It's the enemy pronouncing a damnatory verdict over your life. God is not judging you, child of God, it's the enemy lying to you attempting to get you to withdrawal from fellowship with God. To get you back to a performance-driven faith, and often to ultimately get you to go back to your old way of living, trying to ensnare you in a cycle of guilt and shame. 

 That is the enemy's scheme but God is greater and His amazing Grace has completely defeated the enemy! The Word declares God was in Christ annihilating the schemes, plans, and works of the devil. God's overcoming Grace, the power of the Holy Spirit within, and God's amazing Love empower us to daily demonstrate this destruction of the enemy! 

 I get so happy, excited, ecstatic, and overwhelmed with joy and rejoicing when I think of the Goodness and lovingkindness and Grace of our Good Father and our triumphant Savior, King Jesus! We have the victory over shame and guilt and condemnation. Grace is greater than shame.

Therefore there is now no condemnation [no guilty verdict, no punishment] for those who are in Christ Jesus [who believe in Him as personal Lord and Savior]. Romans 8:1 AMP

 This is the witness of Paul, revealing what belongs to us in Christ, see Jesus Himself promising this,

“I assure you and most solemnly say to you, the person who hears My word [the one who heeds My message], and believes and trusts in Him who sent Me, has (possesses now) eternal life [that is, eternal life actually begins—the believer is transformed], and does not come into judgment and condemnation, but has passed [over] from death into life. John 5:24 AMP

 We have received the gift of no condemnation. What if we sin? What if we keep sinning the same sin repeatedly? What if we don't go to church anymore? What if we quit reading the Bible? 

 Nothing can separate us from the Love of God. Nothing can change who we are and what we have in Christ when we believed. When we sin, it doesn't change our nature within. It doesn't give the enemy the right to attack us either.  

 Think of it, if you drove your car to a known high crime area and got out of your car with the keys still in the ignition and a crook took advantage and drove off with your car, did that thief have a "right" to take your car? Of course not. Now you made a foolish choice but that still didn't give the criminal the right, if you will, to steal your car. 

 So it is with sin. Sinning is a foolish choice, but unlike what religious leaders teach, your sin doesn't give the enemy the "right" to steal from you. In fact, your sin is none of the devil's business. Your behavior is between you and your Savior never the devil. 

 As for failing to read and study the Word, or not attending church, again, that's a choice you make but God isn't going to condemn you over it. I believe He will lead you into the truth. Prayer, Bible study, church attendance is a beautiful benefit of being in the Body of Christ. 

 God will correct us but never through the use of disaster, death, or destruction, and never condemning us. He leads us into the truth. What truth? The truth of who we are in Him and whose we are because of the Cross. 

 This is what Grace, Eternal Life, relationship with God, Christianity really looks like; my shackles are broken off. I am free and forgiven once for all time. No more am I bound by the chains of brokenness, shame, guilt, condemnation, sin, and spiritual death. I am free to run, to shout, to dance, to live rejoicing in Him. 

 What Christianity, Grace, and life in Christ are NOT supposed to look and feel like; my chains are gone, I better not screw up. I have a new chance at life, I hope I don't blow this. God took a chance on me, I hope I won't let Him down. God has done so much for me, I am so unworthy, I need to do more for Him. God is so faithful, I don't think I have done enough for Him. I hope I can merit His trust and gifts.

 Child of God, brothers, and sisters, let's rejoice in the Goodness of God. He has made us Righteous and we have no condemnation in Him. This is an amazing gift. 

 In summation, rejoice in your inheritance in Christ. Remember it's all because of Jesus. Jesus accomplished it all. He did it all. God is satisfied once for all time in the Finished Work of Christ. 

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay