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Heavenly vs. Earthly

By David A. DePra

For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do. (Heb 4:12-13)

Perhaps the greatest need among God’s people today is the need to discern soul from Spirit – indeed, the great need is to discern OUR soul from HIS Spirit. But this is never going to be possible for any of us unless we see and know Jesus Christ – who dwells in us by that same Spirit of God. Thus, this great need is satisfied only if we know HIM.

It is impossible to know what is of our soul vs. what is of Christ unless we see and know Christ. Otherwise there is no standard; there is no light. If we try to sort these things out without a true knowledge of Jesus Christ we will essentially be using soul to discern soul. You cannot discern soul from Spirit by reading a, "how-to book," or by following a 1-2-3 step program. You cannot do so by merely applying Bible verses – although that is a great start. Rather, you discern your soul from the Christ who dwells in you by knowing that Christ.

This is essentially what is being stated in Hebrews 4:12. The Word of God – Jesus is the Living Word of God – must be introduced before there can be a division created between soul and spirit in us. This only makes sense. Before Christ is revealed IN US, there can be only a consciousness of, well, of US. There is no division or distinction at that point. But once Christ is revealed IN US, there is a distinction – His presence creates the division between OUR soul and HIS Spirit.

Now notice something else – and this is clearly indicated by this passage – once Christ, who is the Living Word of God becomes articulate, that is, revealed within – there remains the soul realm within. The presence of Christ in us does NOT eradicate the soul or flesh realm. No. It remains in tact as before. But now an entirely NEW realm is introduced in the form of a Person. He is the Treasure. We are the earthen vessel. We are not Him, and He is not us. There is a division between the Christ who dwells in us, and us. And seeing the distinction between the two – between OUR soul or flesh, and Christ – is the great need.

Discernment between OUR soul and HIM is actually going to happen the more we see and know HIM. Again – His presence will result in discernment. It is not the result of following bullet points. Thus, when we say that the great need is to discern between our soul and His spirit we are really saying that the great need is to KNOW HIM – for knowing Him results in this discernment.

This discernment is especially vital because it is a primary goal of Satan to try to get us to accept our soul power with all of its traits, and to get us to accept our emotions with all of their characteristics – it is the goal of the enemy to get us to accept THESE as the Spirit of God. The enemy wants to build in us a false Christianity – one that is based upon that which is earthly and of the flesh. He wants to build in us, not the new man in Christ, but one that is based on the old man in Adam. If Satan can present a counterfeit Christ to us – one that consists of those earthly elements that are found in natural man – he will easily deceive us. We will never know the real Christ once we accept a false one that is built out of the materials of our own soul and natural man.

Millions today have been deceived in thinking that their soul and natural man is the Spirit of God in them. They are living in a delusional and false Christianity that is based, not upon the true knowledge of Jesus Christ – not upon HIS LIFE – but it is based upon the natural life. And few realize what is happening to them.

Born From Above

Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother's womb, and be born? Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. (John 3:3-6)

If there was one thing that Jesus was trying to get across to Nicodemus, it was the need to be BORN FROM ABOVE. This is the meaning – not merely to be born again, but to be born again from ABOVE. But what exactly does that mean?

Jesus actually explains what it means. He said, "That which is born of flesh IS flesh. That which is born of Spirit IS spirit." In other words, Jesus was describing two completely distinct KINDS of births, resulting in two completely KINDS of human beings. Thus, we have to be born again in a way that is entirely OTHER THAN natural birth.

You and I were born OF this world – we are a product of the human race. We were born, "in Adam." This means that we are EARTHLY by nature. At the core, this means we were born of this world spiritually dead. There is nothing of God in us through human birth in Adam. Thus, we must be born from above – that is, we have to receive life that is not OF this world. To put it plainly, we have to receive from the OUTSIDE of us – from the outside of this world – a new life that comes to dwell IN US.

We need to catch the significance of that. Being born from above is not a matter of God giving us something that supposedly, "brings out the best in us." It is not a matter of getting a new religion. It is not a matter of, "turning over a new leaf," or of, "getting a fresh start." No. It is a matter of receiving FROM ABOVE – of receiving that which is NOT of this world. It is a matter of receiving what is NOT OF YOU INTO YOU. We receiving eternal life – but in a Person, Jesus Christ.

However, we do need to be clear about one necessity if we are to be born from above: We must relinquish our old life. Jesus said, "You must be born OF water and OF Spirit." To be born of water – and Nicodemus would have known this – was to be baptized. It meant to enter into a watery grave – symbolic of relinquishing one’s old life. In short, if we are to be raised with Christ, we must be baptized into His death. We cannot have two lives, or be two creations. No. "If anyone is in Christ he is a new creation. Old things are passed away. All things have become new."

Thus, what we see here is an incredible distinction between new life and the old life – between soul and spirit; between that which is of Christ and that which is of US. The two are not to be confused. They are of two entirely separate realms – indeed, of two entirely opposing realms. One is heavenly and one is earthly. One is of God, and one is of the flesh.

This is a distinction and a Truth that is shown all through the Bible:

And he said unto them, Ye are from beneath; I am from above: ye are of this world; I am not of this world. (John 8:23)

He that cometh from above is above all: he that is of the earth is earthly, and speaks of the earth: he that cometh from heaven is above all. (John 3:30-31)

The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Lord from heaven. As is the earthy, such are they also that are earthy: and as is the heavenly, such are they also that are heavenly. And as we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly. (1 Cor 15:47-49)

For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would. (Gal 5:17)

The joining of Jesus Christ to our human spirit IS the new creation in Christ Jesus. (I Cor. 6:17) This is the seat of salvation. It is what is born from above. It is essentially that which is heavenly – it is Christ in us – it is of the Spirit of God. But note that if the joining of Christ to our spirit is the new creation, note that everything OUTSIDE of that is not the new creation. No. Everything outside of our union with Christ remains earthly, natural, and of US. The great need is for us to discern the difference – and in order to do so we have to discern HIM.

The Purpose of God

Christianity is essentially heavenly in nature – sometimes the term, "spiritual," is used. Thus, Christianity – embodied in the Person of Christ – is not of this world. It came down from heaven when He came down from heaven in Acts 2 and through His Spirit began to dwell in people. Christianity is Christ in us. Christianity is HIS LIFE. And as we have read, HE is not of this world. He is from above. Thus, when we receive Him, we are also from above IN HIM.

But when we receive Christ, we don’t become Christ. Neither do we leave this body or natural realm. Not in this age. Thus, despite the fact that we receive life from above, we receive it as flesh and blood human beings. As noted, the new creation is Christ in us – Christ joined to us in Spirit – but all that remains outside of that spiritual joining is not born again. It remains earthly.

It is the purpose of God that Christ be our life. Get that. Christ is to be our life – life is not a thing God gives us. God gives us Christ in whom is all life. Christ as our life means that we are to be governed by His life – we are to know Him and to draw upon Him as the sole resource for all.

Contrast this over and again the purpose of Satan: To keep us in the old life. He wants us to be governed by that which is outside of Christ – the natural, the earthly, i.e., the flesh. There is a reason for this goal: The earthly remains the territory of Satan. Satan is the god of this world – he is the god of the earthly. Thus, to the extent that we set our minds and hearts on the earthly, to the extent that we trust in the natural, to the extent that the earthly is our life – we are living on HIS ground. He will have access to us – to the earthly aspects of our human makeup.

The old life in Adam is essential earthly. The primary characteristic is self possession. Self-ownership, over and against belonging to Christ, is the full expression of that which is earthly, alienated from God, and is spiritually dead. To the degree that live in that realm -- possess myself, trust in myself – not necessarily in immoral or evil way, but even in religious ways – to the extent that I make the earthly my life, I will be on Satan’s territory.

But you see, one need not proactively seek to live in the earthly to give ground to Satan. No. All you have to do is NOT live in Christ. Unbelief, blindness, and ignorance – all of these will be sufficient, because to the extent that Christ is NOT our life, we will default to the earthly. And the earthly is Satan’s realm.

Let’s put it plainly: If we do not know Jesus Christ we are going to be deceived. If we do not live from out of Christ, we will live from out of the old man. If we do not seek those things which are above, we will seek those things which are below. If Christ is not our life, then our life will be on a completely wrong basis – the earthly.

It is the goal of Satan, and the chief object of his deceptions, to take all that belongs to the natural and to the earthly, and to present it to believers and unbelievers alike in a RELIGIOUS package – he seeks to present it AS true Christianity. Satan wants to build in each of us an EARTHLY MAN – God wants to build us up in the HEAVENLY man, Jesus Christ. Thus, Satan will seek to deceive us into believing that the earthly man he wants to build IS the heavenly man. This is the great counterfeit – in short, it is the full expression of ANTICHRIST.

And what materials does Satan use to build this earthly man in us? He uses the earthly materials IN US. He will take all that remains in us of the old creation – he will take that which belongs to our earthly makeup – and fashion from those an earthly man that is a counterfeit for Christ in us. He will entice us through our personal desire for self-ownership to accept such a counterfeit. And if he is successful, in the end, Satan will have built, "the man of sin."

"The man of sin," does not appear to be a sinful man. Not at all. "The man of sin," will appear to be a divine man. He will sit within the temple of God – which is the individual, and then, by extension, the body of Christ – proclaiming himself divine. This is a religious deception – a counterfeit MAN. A counterfeit Christianity. It is antichrist – an earthly man offered INSTEAD of Christ.

God wants to form us together with Christ – this is His purpose in His people. Satan wants to form us together with a counterfeit Christ; the earthly – he wants us to become governed by the earthly. This is the battle. And it is why it is so essential that we know Christ.

The Cross

And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. (Gal 5:24)

The Cross of Jesus Christ – as applied in a personal experience by our picking up our Cross – is obviously God’s solution for sin. But it is also God’s solution for SELF. When we speak of the earthly, natural, or flesh, the force behind these is SELF; self-ownership. If I pick up my Cross and follow Christ, I will less and less be governed by SELF. The power of the earthly will decrease as there will be a greater release of the life of Christ in me.

In Matthew 16, Jesus clearly states that if we pick up our Cross and follow Him, the outworking of this will be that we will LOSE our life and FIND His. But if we will not pick up our Cross it means we want to SAVE our lives for ourselves. And the result will be that we will eventually lose all.

"Our life," is either going to be Christ, or it is going to default to Adam. We will either more and more find release in Christ, or we will harden ourselves in the earthly. The Cross is the key. Again, you must be born again from above. You cannot have two lives – in the end it is going to be the one or the other – earthly or heavenly. You will either be built up in the earthly man or the heavenly man.

If we want to find Christ we must LOSE all that is earthly. This doesn’t mean the earthly ceases to exist. It simply means that we do not possess the earthly, and thus, the earthly does not possess us. The earthly is not our life. Christ is our life. The necessity is therefore to pick up our Cross so that we might be set free from OUR life. Only then can we have ours.

The personal Cross means freedom from sin, yes, but freedom from the earthly. You cannot live in resurrection life – which is the heavenly life – without death to the earthly. But Satan would like to suggest otherwise. He would like to fashion a counterfeit resurrection life, a counterfeit Spirit of God, and a counterfeit Christ – using the earthly traits of man – and establish him as the purpose of God. Satan needs only to get people to neglect, deny, or water down the necessity of the Cross. If that can be accomplished, we will automatically default to the earthly, and never realize what is happening to us. That is deception.

If we seek to hold onto our earthly life, we will be seeking to hold onto that territory of which Satan is god. We will not be able to experience Christ in fullness. Worse, because we seek to hold onto the earthly, Satan will be able to deceive us by giving us exactly what we want – our earthly lives. He will more easily be able to build an earthly man out of us. And he will more easily be able to convince us that this earthly man is the Holy Spirit in us.

Christ is Our Life

Millions today are walking according to the flesh, but believe they are walking according to the Spirit. Many are living an earthly Christianity, all the while blind to the heavenly. Millions have embraced an earthly man and are blind to the heavenly Man. Satan has done great damage to the body of Christ. He is not going to win this war. But he is going to take many with him.

One way in which this great deception is manifested is in the fact that many Christian people continue to think that God wants to bless OUR lives. But God doesn’t want to bless OUR lives. Does that statement shock you? You have probably been told all your life that God wants to bless your life, and you have probably been taught many ways in which you can get Him to do so – even if the goal is to keep Him from cursing your life. You have likely read many passages in the Bible that state, in one way or another, that God wants to bless you. So how can I say that God does not want to bless your life?

I can say that because if you read scripture, you will find only ONE thing that God tells us to do with OUR life: He says to LOSE it. Now, does that sound as if there is any possibility that God is going to bless your life if you DON’T lose it? Hardly. If I seek to save my life for myself, Jesus states that I am going to lose the life I am trying to save. Does that sound as if God is going to bless what I am trying to save?

Many of us have been trying to get God to bless the life He tells us to lose. We are trying to live the Christian life on an entirely wrong basis. We think that Christ came to service and populate our lives with things and blessings. We think that if we do the right things, and believe the right things, that God will be so pleased that He will pour out His blessings upon us. This is a simple way of putting it, but many Christian people live exactly this way – they still think in terms of God blessing THEIR life. He won’t. He tells us to LOSE our lives.

I will not get far until I eradicate from my vocabulary and thinking the phrase, "MY life." If I am in Christ, I was supposedly to relinquish MY life. I was supposed to lose MY life. In short, I don’t have a life anymore that belongs to me. Not only do I have HIS life – but more, Christ IS my life. Thus, if we want to talk about God’s blessing, we need to understand that God will bless ONLY Christ. Indeed, God’s blessings are actually complete. God has already wrapped up all that He has to give in His Son. To the extent that Christ is our life, and we come to live in Him, are those blessings possible.

This one Truth ought to clear up much confusion and answer many questions in the lives of God’s people. Christian people cry and pray and beg God not only for blessings, but many of us simply ask God to do what He has promised. Then nothing happens and we wonder why. The answer is often that we have NOT lost our lives – we are not picking up our Cross. It is only the mercy and long suffering of God that explains why He sometimes helps us regardless of our ignorance. But in the end, if we are asking God to bless and affirm US – OUR lives, our efforts, our plans -- He won’t.

Now, perhaps you think I’m saying that God won’t bless independence, rebellion, or a refusal to pick up our Cross. Of course He won’t – but I’m not talking about that. If I am walking in such open error I am wasting my time trying to move God to bless me. But for most of us, the problem isn’t rebellion, but rather, ignorance, and blindness. We have no discernment between OUR lives, and the Christ who is to be our life. In fact, we think that our life is the life of Christ.

This blindness is no minor point. In fact, it is the very deception of Satan. Satan wants to blind us to the fact that Christ in us is OTHER THAN US. He wants to blind us to the fact that there is a division between Christ and our natural man. Many professing Christian people today – without necessarily putting it in words – think that Christ is an addition, an adjunct, to be a blessing upon THEM. They think that God wants to bless the life they continue to possess.

This error is smattered all through Christian teaching and terminology. For example, people speak of eternal life as a THING, or a classification, that God gives them. Some think that if we believe on Christ that God responds by injecting us with something called, "eternal life," or that He gives us the Holy Spirit to help us live OUR lives better for God. For some, this goes as far as to suggest that Christ died to bring out the greatness or the best in me. Or, that the Spirit of God is given to help me achieve my goals – some make this more religious by saying that the Spirit of God is given to help me achieve God’s goals FOR HIM. In addition, we talk about things such as sanctification as the outcome of God acting upon us and doing something to us to make us holy. Lost in all of this is the fact that Christ is our life – which changes everything.

Eternal life isn’t a THING God gives us. Eternal life is Christ in us. Sanctification is not a thing God does to us. Sanctification – as well as righteousness, wisdom, and redemption – is Christ in us. (see I Cor. 1:30) In short, everything that God has to give is found IN CHRIST. And therefore, the only way to come into these realities is to lose our lives and find His life.

Note this simple fact as stated by the apostle Paul in a number of places:

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ. (Eph 1:3)

You will note that these spiritual blessing are said to be FINISHED – God HAS blessed us with all – not SOME – but ALL spiritual blessings. So why don’t most Christians seem to experience these blessings? We forget the last two words of the verse: IN CHRIST. All that God has to give us is IN CHRIST – that is, they are hidden and wrapped up in the Person of His Son. Paul said God HAS blessed us with these blessings if we have already received Christ, because those blessings are IN CHRIST. But many Christians have failed to experience these blessings because we have not come to experience the Christ in whom those blessings live.

Are you and I continually asking God to bless us? The blessings of God are found in Christ, and in Him alone. If Christ is in us, then God would say to us, "Look to My Son. Depend upon my Son. Grow to know My Son." In short, as Christ is formed in us – see Gal. 4:19 – the blessings will be formed in us. Or, to put it another way, as we are formed together WITH Christ – see Rom. 8:28 – we will be formed to fit the blessings.

If all of the blessings of God are IN CHRIST, then Christ must be OUR life if we are to experience the blessings. And the only way for Christ to be our life is if we LOSE our lives. Thus, God does – God HAS – blessed us with ALL blessings. But we will not be able to experience those blessings if we continue to hold to OUR life. Only if we lose our lives by picking up our Cross will we find Him as our life – and come into all those blessings that are found IN HIM.

The Evidence of God

Christians by the millions also look to the earthly part of themselves for heavenly evidence. We continue to believe the error that Jesus Christ came to fix up our flesh and natural man. We think He died so that our earthly man might be changed to look like Jesus. This is all wrong. Jesus did not die to fix up our flesh. He died so our flesh could be crucified in Him, setting us free from the power of the flesh. He did not die to make our earthly man look like Jesus. He died so that our earthly man could be crucified in Him, and so that HE could be made manifest through our crucified humanity. In short, we are never going to find evidence of God in any part of our earthly man. The evidence of God is Christ – Christ in us is the only evidence of God there is.

If we receive the witness of men, the witness of God is greater: for this is the witness of God which he hath testified of his Son. He that believeth on the Son of God has the witness in himself: he that believes not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son. And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. (1 John 5:9-11)

Looking at our natural man, and trying to find evidence in our behavior that Christ is in us – looking at our emotions, temperament, and soul and trying to see a Christian – this is nothing more than a disguised faith in ourselves. We want to use this evidence in ourselves to comfort ourselves that we are OK with God. No. Again – Christ in us is separate from us. The heavenly is not the earthly. We must look to, and rest in, the Christ who is in us. In Him alone is life. He IS – to us – wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, and redemption. We are not going to find that kind of evidence in our earthly. It is only in Him, the man of heaven.

Christian people continually try to make their emotions, feelings, psychic life, and the rest of natural man, look and act like they think Jesus is supposed to look and act. And then when we cannot achieve this goal, we get under condemnation and fear, thinking that we must be sorry Christians. The problem here is not that our natural man will not behave. The problem is that we expect him to, and put our faith in such nonsense. Our natural man is not Christ – the natural is OUTSIDE of Christ. Christ is not our natural man. Thus, we need to shift our life and our faith away from natural man – for the natural is put under the Cross. We need to LOSE – in the sense of leaving alone in the Cross – all that is earthly. Our life needs to be Christ.

The Gospel of Satan

One constant lesson that we find in the Old Testament stories is the pattern among the saints of trying to bring to pass the promises and blessings of God through EARTHLY and natural means. Abraham tried to birth Isaac through natural means. God wanted Isaac through a miracle. Jacob tried to obtain the promised inheritance through stealth and cleverness. God would have brought it another way. Moses tried to start a rebellion through murder. God had other ideas. I could go on and on. But if you gather all of these up, you find the same error: The people of God trying to bring to pass through earthly means, and on an earthly level, what can be brought to pass only through the heavenly, on a heavenly level.

In the NT, there is the same error, and the warnings are given throughout. Christianity is about Christ in us – Christ as our life. It is about God’s purpose, and His work of making us a heavenly people who He can carry along into that purpose for now and the eternal ages. But instead, the church has, for the most part, made Christianity about US. Instead of Christ AS our life, we have made it, "our life ABOUT Christ." Instead of God calling us into HIS purpose, and our being formed together with Christ for that purpose, we have made it about US calling upon God – we would not say for OUR purpose, but often it is really that – we call upon God to bless our purpose that we are trying to accomplish FOR HIM. And finally, instead of our being formed together with Christ, we have formed a god in our image – making Him someone who caters to, affirms us, and seems interested in little more than making us feel good.

But you see, all of this is merely evidence that Satan is at work. John the apostle gives us this clear, "test for Truth," in his first epistle – but it has been overlooked:

Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: And every spirit that confesses not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world. (1 John 4:1-3)

John states that the Spirit of God will ALWAYS confess – which means to REVEAL -- that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. In other words, the Spirit of God will reveal, yes, the Truth that Christ has come to dwell in us. But in doing so, the Spirit of God will reveal the Person of Christ who is IN US. (see Gal. 1:16) This agrees completely with what Jesus Himself said about the purpose of the Spirit in John, chapters 14 thru 16. The work of the Spirit of God is to reveal Christ to us, in us, and then, through us.

Contrast this over and against what John says about the spirit of antichrist. He does mention anything that the spirit of antichrist will confess. No. He simply says that the spirit of antichrist will NOT confess that Jesus is come in the flesh. In other words, it really doesn’t matter what substitutes for the reality of Christ in us – the fact that Christ in us is NOT preached is sufficient to antichrist. Why? Because once the Truth of Christ in us is hidden from us, there is no foundation. There is nothing that can be built.

To put it another way, if Christ is not our life, what can be built that is of God? If we have not LOST our lives and found Christ as our life, what can God bless? Will He bless the life He has told us must be under the Cross; must be lost?

Here we see the GOSPEL OF SATAN. Read Matthew 16. When Peter told Christ that the Cross was not necessary, Christ said to him, "Get behind me, Satan!" He said that denying the need for the Cross was equal to desiring the things of man, and not God – we might say it is equal to desiring the life of man and not Christ. Sure. The gospel of Satan is that which would tell us that we need not lose our lives to find His. The gospel of Satan would suggest that Christ came so that we could have our lives, and that God would bless them. And this gospel is being preached everywhere today. It is the spirit of antichrist – for if we deny the Cross we deny the reality of Christ in us. We hold to our lives.

The Counterfeit

Talk to the average Christian today about CHRIST IN US and you will likely get a blank stare. Begin to tell the Truth about the earthly Christianity that so many are caught up in, and you will eventually encounter an animosity that will brand you a heretic and troublemaker. Especially within the charismatic and Pentecostal movements. Suggest to those folks that their supposedly walk in the spirit is really a walk in the soul or psychic world, and they will condemn you to hell. Suggest to them that they are being led by their own feelings and bias – suggest to them that they have been sold a counterfeit and they will mark you a cause of division. Tell them that theirs is an earthly Christianity and they will call you an agent of Satan. Well, look at the fruits. We are in an apostasy. No one cares about the Truth – indeed, many will oppose it if it is brought forward.

It is not much different in the non-charismatic churches. Tell them about the reality of Christ in us and they will think you are deluded. They will think that you are out of your mind or have a vivid imagination. Of course, there isn’t much they can do with the Bible verses such as, "Christ in you, the hope of glory." Except redefine the meaning into something that is a counterfeit.

The great counterfeit for Christ in us that Satan fashions is the Adam in us. The great counterfeit for the heavenly is the earthly. Indeed, since the earthly is the ground and territory of Satan, and since man without Christ, is by nature earthly, Satan needs only to BLIND people to the Truth to keep them IN the earthly. That is why antichrist simply needs to hide, distort, and blind people to the Truth of Christ in us. We will tend to default right down to the earthly.

Jesus said, "Except you be born again (born from above) you cannot see the kingdom of God." There is no use trying to argue with someone who is blind – but who thinks they see. They must first SEE they are BLIND. They then will cry out to God that they might see. Until then, they cannot see. In short, we have to begin to see that we have bought a counterfeit. We have to begin to see that we have been blind. We have to at least realize that there is more – there is a Christ and a Christianity that has been completely outside of our frame of reference – but which has been described in the Bible the entire time.

There is no way to discern the fact that I have accepted an earthly counterfeit until I begin to realize that it IS a counterfeit. There is no way to discern the false until I begin to see the REAL. We have to begin to see Christ. He is the Light. Then everything is laid naked and open.

The Heavenly Triumph

In the purpose and sovereignty of God, the heavenly is going to triumph over the earthly. Or, more to the point, The Last Adam has won the victory over the first Adam, and the ground of Satan, and is going to see His kingdom brought to pass. That kingdom is first brought to pass IN US – through the presence and Lordship of the Person Who is to be our life. Then, when God has determined it is enough, Christ Himself will descend.

God has a purpose and that purpose could be said to be gathered up in the kingdom of God. The kingdom of God is Christ in us – but also includes all that extends from Him, and all that is to be under Him as Lord. In this age, God is building in us that kingdom by building us in Christ.

Satan, on the other hand, through the spirit of antichrist, is seeking to build another kind of man – comprised of the natural, flesh, and earthly. And through deception, Satan seeks to establish this earthly man in each of US – by presenting him as the man God desires. Satan wants to convince us that our earthly nature – our natural man – IS the Spirit of God in us. If he can succeed, this earthly man will sit within what ought to be the temple of God. If people become hardened in such a thing, their own nature could become their own personal, "man of sin." This will lead to the corporate man of sin spoken of by the apostle Paul.

Make no question about it, God is going to win. Jesus Christ is going to be Lord of all. The question for us is which side shall we be on – the Lord’s or the Adam nature.

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