Sunday, December 28, 2014

Just a Thought "30"

Grace within a dispensation was one thing, a dispensation characterized solely by grace is something else altogether. Paul dispensed a message that the 12 apostles had not dispensed, and that message was different, and that message was geared to the Gentiles.

It is going to make a difference if we lump these messages altogether, we are going to be taking from one program, and trying to make it apply to another, when Paul clearly tells us that God’s power from high is working differently today.

The hope for both programs is the same, and that hope is a new body and resurrection from the dead unto eternal life. The saints of both programs are promised that hope, but the residential destinations promised the believers of the two programs are entirely different.

The earthly calling and the heavenly calling refer to the program to which believers have been called in their destinations. The Body of Christ is an expression denoting the point when God began to judicially join believers to his son, the Body of Christ is not about program, but about judicial position.

People’s natural inclination is to suppose that they must relate to God on the basis of a rule-keeping, but Paul wants to clear-up that type of thinking, he wants to eliminate it altogether, so he pictures the law as being the husband, in order to make his point.

What Paul is telling us is that the law has yet to find a faithful and obedient wife, the law was designed to be a condition-based relationship. It is impossible for anyone with a sin-nature to be a faithful wife to the law, everyone should be receiving the cursings right now, according to the law system, if the law-husband was still alive.

The law could have been a positive and prolific provider from the standpoint of a husband providing, of course, that the law could find a faithful and obedient wife, because the provision of the law was conditional; it was conditioned upon the faithfulness of the wife.

We got our good times, our happy times, our joyous times, but we have our sad times, and our bad times. We got times when we are very low emotionally, when we seem like we are on the bottom and we do not know where to turn or what’s happening next.

The whole creation is suffering while we are under the curse. The reality is that we will continue to suffer, health, wealth, and prosperity in this life as the popular money-mongering ministers of righteousness would have us believe today, it is just the opposite.

So, why do people have such a difficult time believing the apostle Paul when our apostle tells us that Satan’s ministers of righteousness, during this age of grace will in fact, be working within a religious framework.

Paul says in 2 Timothy 3 that there’s a form of godliness, a structure of godliness, and who will be working in that structure of righteousness in the last days of the age of grace, Satan’s ministers of righteousness offering people the song: Health, Wealth, and Prosperity.

Throwing out a fleece worked for Gideon, because God led people differently in time-past than the way he is leading today. God has not ceased leading those who are his, Paul tells us that, he is just leading in a different manner today.

God worked through signs and wonders in time-past to validate the authority of his message and his messengers. Today we walk by faith, not by sight, God’s word is complete today, but how may of us want to throw out that fleece in some form or fashion.

Gideon wanted to see the clear direction, are we any different today, we still want to see conditional direction, when it comes to areas of our lives, where we want God to show us that direction. Far too often the fleece we want to throw is the fleece called feeling. 

Saved in the sense of all the suffering circumstances that have been the thrust of (Romans 8) section all along; we are delivered from the suffering circumstances of this life by hope, we are going to get new bodies.

When we get our new bodies, we will be delivered from the suffering circumstances that adversely affect this sin-cursed world, in which we must dwell until we die or our meeting Jesus in the air occurs, whichever is first.

How many believers must endure the hardships that go along with this sin-cursed world, in which we must take part today, we all suffer together. The redemption of our body, a new body that no longer will be subject to the suffering circumstances of life as we know it, on this sin-cursed planet.

God sees us in Christ, and he sees us as being complete in our union with Christ, totally identified with Jesus Christ in every aspect of Christ’s life and relationship with the Father.

The Israelites are sinners and the Gentiles are sinners, whether we are a moral person or a very immoral person from human perspective, all have sinned and all are continually coming short of the perfection that belongs to God himself.

What a security we can gain, knowing what Justification has to do with God recognizing to be righteous. Throughout the ages, God has chosen to recognize as being righteous, those who would simply take him at his word.

To be justified is to be recognized as being right, to be recognized judicially as being right, or righteous. In the age we live in, God recognizes those who take him at his word concerning the price Christ became on their behalf to resolve God’s justice for their sins.

The moment we believe, God’s power from on high joins us to Christ and from that point on we have a brand new identification, again, from God’s perspective.

This identification is what Sanctification is all about, for us not by way of improved performance or sinful conduit elimination, but by way of new identification that belongs to all who God’s power from on high has joined to God’s son.

We are dead to sin, we have been dead to sin since the point of our belief, because Jesus Christ took our sins off of us, God is reconciled where our sins are concerned. To die in your sins, means to die with your identity in Adam, Adam in rebellion; to die with that identification intact.

We no longer have that identification once we believe Paul’s good news, because now we have a brand new identity. We are not to tell the lost that God can take away their sins, we are to tell the lost God has already taken them away, so that they might believe that good news message and be joined to the Savior.

It is not the non-imputation of sins that makes a person Heaven-ready, it is the imputation of the very righteousness that belongs to the Savor that makes us Heaven-worthy. We do not like to admit the fact that our human nature being what they are, we automatically rise up and rebel against that truth.

But Paul goes to great length to prove beyond any shadow of a doubt, that everyone of us are continually coming short of the standard of God’s perfect righteousness. When Paul mentions sin, he does so for the purpose of having every individual realize and admit that through out the course of our daily lives, we all miss the mark of God’s perfect rightness.

We all are satisfying the lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh and the pride of life, and we do it with everything we do. That is where we stand today, because we are all under sin, as Paul defines it. A person’s problem today, is not getting forgiveness for their sins, but that they need to learn about what God’s justification is all about.

God had to do for us, what we could never do for ourselves! God counts the faith of the one who agrees with him as to the reality of that person’s own unworthiness, and the fact that that person must be justified by God’s gift decree, God counts that person’s faith as being that person’s righteousness.

The old man and the sin nature are not one and the same. The old man speaks of our former identity with Adam, that identity is no longer true of believers sealed in Christ. The old man is a thing of the past, having been crucified with Christ, and the new man is the new identity belonging to every believer.

Yet, the old man continues to reside in our bodies where the sin nature is ever present, the battle against the sin-nature that Paul struggled with himself, on a day-by-day basis. Bring your practical state into harmony with your positional standing, this is Paul’s admonition for every believer in this age of grace.

Prayer was never given to change God’s perspective of our greater preference, prayer was given to change our perspective of God’s greater purpose. God’s greater purpose was not to strengthen our faith by altering our circumstances, God’s greater purpose is to allow us to demonstrate our faith as we remain strong, in spite of our circumstances.

The grace and strength God gives a person to endure that suffering is the strength of God he wants others to see in that person’s life, that is when God’s strength is perfected in your life.

That earthly kingdom program is no longer in progress, but on hold, we come to realize that God through his power from on high wants to stabilize every believer today, in a completely different way. Our patient endurance through suffering is a way of demonstrating our hope, and when our hope is put on display in the midst of our suffering, that brings glory to God. 

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