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But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord.  (2 Cor 3:18)







By David A. DePra





The One Elect


Complete in Christ


The Fullness of God in Christ


Hid With Christ in God


If Christ Be in You


The Family of God


The Devils Believe and Tremble


The Light of Men


The Light of His Life


Jesus Is Come in the Flesh


The Spirit of Anti-Christ


Is Jesus Accursed, or Lord?


Spiritual Gifts vs. Natural Gifts


Stewards of the Mysteries of God


Wrath Will Praise Him


Christ Made Unto Us All Things


What is Sanctification?


Holiness vs. Unholiness


Religious Natural Man


Walking in the Spirit


The Spirit of His Life


The Lusts of the Flesh


The Message of the Cross


The Essential of His Life


The Essential of the Cross


Willing to Do His Will


The Grapes of Eschol


The Perfecting of the Saints


The Unity of The Faith


Every Wind of Doctrine




Sep 1

The One Elect


According as he has chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:  Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will.  (Eph. 1:4-5)


     There is only ONE elect of God – Jesus Christ.  You will note that everyone else is chosen IN HIM – and that this election is unto, not salvation – that is already settled at that point – but unto a purpose FOR the saved: “that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love.”  The notion that God elects some to salvation, and other to damnation, and that this was settled before any of us were born, is not only nonsense, but heresy.  It is another gospel, and misrepresents the character and purpose of God through Christ.


     We are chosen, not – to BE in Him – but chosen BECAUSE we are in Him.  In other words, God must taken the initiative to draw someone to Christ (Jn. 6:44), and because God is doing it, that person will, “arrive,” (Jn. 6:37) at a point where they can either embrace Christ by faith, or refuse through unbelief.  If the person comes to Christ then they are IN CHRIST.  And if a person is IN CHRIST then they are chosen IN HIM for all of the plan and purpose of God that is in Christ.  All that God has given and is doing is IN CHRIST.  As the only begotten Son, He is the one elect of God.  The Father, the Son, and all who are in the Son – this is the plan of God in terms of inheritance.

Sep 2

Complete in Christ


For in him dwells all the fullness of Godhood bodily.  And you are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power.  (Col. 2:9-10)


     In Christ dwells ALL of the fullness of DIETY bodily – this is the correct translation and a direct statement to the effect that Jesus Christ, The Son of Man, is nevertheless fully God.  But Paul not only says that in Christ dwells all the fullness of God, but he also tells us that Christ dwells in US.  Thus, we are COMPLETE in Him.


     To be complete in Christ is not the same as being mature in Christ.  The saint has to grow in the grace and knowledge of Christ.  (II Pet. 3:18)  Christ must be formed in us (Gal. 4:19), and we must be formed together with Him.  (Rom. 8:29)  But none of that could happen unless we were already complete – have ALL -- in Him.


     Those words, “you are complete in Him,” carry tremendous ramifications.  Indeed, most of Colossians 2 is a warning against those who would suggest we are NOT complete solely in Jesus Christ.  This Truth means that the moment Christ comes to dwell in us we have ALL that God has to give.  Paul affirms by saying, “God has freely given us all things in Christ.”  (see Rom. 8:32)  It also means that there is NOTHING left to receive – if we are complete in Christ we do not continue to need to receive some other gift, or dimension of life, to come into the full purpose of God.  No.  IN CHRIST dwells the fullness of God – and Christ is IN US.  Now, He simply needs to be unfolded.




Sep 3

The Fullness of God in Christ


For in him dwells all the fullness of Godhood bodily.  And you are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power.  (Col. 2:9-10)


     Christianity is, “Christ in you, the hope of glory.”  (Col. 1:27)  This is because IN CHRIST dwells the fullness of God, and in the believer dwells Christ.  This makes us complete in Christ – not incomplete, or lacking, in any resource that God has for us.


     So much error in the Christian church is the result of neglecting or denying this one Truth – that the believer is complete SOLELY in Christ.  Instead, we have added additional experiences to Christ, saying only then do we have all that God intends.  We have mandated that believers belong to a church or to a group – saying only then can they be complete.  Or we have demanded obedience to laws and rules as the means of completing the believer.  No.  If Christ is in us, we are complete – in HIM.


     It is only because we are already complete in Christ that it is possible for Christ to be formed in us.  Since we are already complete in Christ, it is possible to discover, “all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge,” that are, “hid in Him.” (Col. 2:3)  You will note that there is nothing ADDED to Christ.  No.  All these things are FROM HIM.  He is all.


Sep 4

Hid With Christ in God


You are complete in Him…for you are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.  When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall you also appear with him in glory.  (Col. 2:9, 3:3-4)


     Christ has not merely given us a new life because He died, but He has given us HIMSELF – if we are in Him, HE IS our life.  This is how we are complete in Him.  Everything is within life, and nothing is outside of it – and the Person of Christ constitutes the very life of the believer.


     It is difficult for most of us to get away from the idea that because of Christ we are given a thing or classification called LIFE.  Or that because of Christ, we are given a thing called, “forgiveness.”  But in reality, we are given CHRIST HIMSELF.  We are joined to Him and have become ONE with Him in spirit.  (I Cor. 6:17)  Thus, it is IN HIM that we have life – HIS LIFE – indeed, in Him we have all things freely.  (Rom. 8:32)


     If Christ is our life then, “we are dead and our life is hid with Christ in God.”  Practically speaking, this means that we are dead to living from out of ourselves.  We are no longer the source of anything.  But rather, we are alive to living by faith FROM OUT OF Christ – He is our resource for all things spiritual and material.  Much of the work of the Spirit of God is geared to showing us we are dead and that Christ is our life, and in teaching us how to live by faith in this reality.




Sep 5    

If Christ Be in You


And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.  (Rom. 8:10)


     This is another way of describing the separation in each believer between the new creature in Christ and all that remains outside of that new creation -- and remains carnal.  When we are saved, we are planted into His death – and we find that our body of sin is dead because of His death for our sin.  We are also planted into His resurrection, and this joining of our spirit with Christ makes us alive with Him.  The rest of the Christian life is a matter of us coming to walk in the Truth of these finished realities – we have to lose what is dead in order to find Christ as our life. 


     Note that all of this is the result of CHRIST IN US.  Until Christ is in us, there is no separation between life and death in us – but there is only death.  Until Christ is in us, there is no means by which we can be set free from untruth, because there no Truth in us.  In Christ are all things that are of God, because all of the fullness of God dwells in Him.  What an amazing Truth:  God is in Christ and Christ is in us.  The plan of God:  The Father, the only begotten Son, and all of those who are in the Son.

Sep 6

The Family of God


For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,  Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named.  (Eph. 3:14-15)


      God is not a family.  But God has a family.  Note that this means that God is NOT reproducing Himself by making us all, “little gods” -- and that this constitutes a family who IS God.  No.  That is the basis of some terrible heresy.  Rather, believers will never be God, little gods, or divine.  We are partakers of Divine nature -- not because we have been given a divine nature of our own --  but we are partakers of Divine nature only if we are partakers of Christ.  In short, there is Father God, then His only begotten Son, who became God incarnate, and finally, there are all who are IN the Son.  We are in the family of God only because we are in the Son, and the Son is in the Father.


     The phrase, “ye are gods,” (John 10:34) must be taken in context from where it is quoted, Ps. 82:6-7:  “Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High.  But ye shall die like men.”  Clearly, this is just an expression – and the context shows it means, “children of God.”  This is verified by the rest of scripture.  A child of God is not a little god, but exactly as stated above, as one who is a child of God in Christ.  In short, He is the only begotten Son, and we are children of God only if we are IN HIM.




Sep 7

The Devils Believe and Tremble


Do you believe that there is one God?  You do well.  The devils also believe, and tremble.  (Js. 2:19)


     There is a common misconception among Christian people – perhaps unspoken – that if I believe the right things, that this is equal to being right with God.  But Satan and his demons know every doctrine of the Bible.  Satan quotes scripture – he knows what it says.  For Satan to deceive people with error, he has to know the Truth.  Thus. Satan, “believes,” the right things.  But has rejected the Truth.


     People gather together a statement of faith and assume that doing so means they have the faith of Jesus Christ.  Yet it is possible to do all of that and not even be saved.  Or to not really know Jesus.  For true faith is not merely belief in the right things or right facts about Jesus.  It is surrender and reliance upon Christ Himself.  This is what the phrase, “Believe ON the Lord Jesus,” means.


     It is possible to hold to sound Biblical doctrine, but to do it in an unloving or even militant way – to condemn others who don’t see the Truth you see.  Ironically, this is a great blindness TO Christ, all the while holding to doctrines that speak OF Him. But none of these kinds of motives are the outcome of faith, but rather, the result of unbelief.  God wants us to know and believe true doctrine.  But He wants us to obey it and know Christ Himself.  If we do, we may speak the Truth, but we will do it in love.

Sep 8

The Light of Men


In him was life; and the life was the light of men.  (John 1:4)


     How does a person receive LIGHT – which is the true knowledge of God in Christ JESUS?  John says that the LIGHT is in His LIFE.  Sure.  Jesus is a Person who is both the LIGHT and the LIFE.  Both are found in Him alone.  Or, to put it another way, if Christ is in us, He is our life.  And this is why it is then possible to grow to know Him.


     Paul used a phrase that captures Jesus as both light and in the believer:  He said, “I travail until Christ be FORMED in you.”  (Gal. 4:19)  In the original language, the phrase, “formed in you,” means, “to be inwardly realized and expressed.”  That shows that if Christ is in us as our life, that God wants to bring us into a realization of Him.  I that happens, Christ will not only be our LIFE, but what will emerge from Him is also a growing LIGHT, or knowledge of Him.  


     Resurrection life in Jesus Christ is not a static life.  Once Christ is in us, His life will seek to push through our natural makeup until Christ is manifested.  Of course, we can abort this process, but it is nevertheless the will of God to form Christ in us so that He can be known.  This is really the meaning when Jesus promised that the Spirit of God would, “guide us into all Truth.”  If Christ is alive in us, then the light of Him can emerge.




Sep 9

The Light of His Life


In him was life; and the life was the light of men.  (John 1:4)


     The Light of the world, Jesus Christ, is also The Life.  Thus, since Jesus Christ is a Living Person, it is correct to say that His Light and His Life are ONE.  If you want the Light of God you have to have Jesus Christ as your LIFE:  “This is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ.”  (John 17:3) 


     One of the great errors of Gnosticism that infiltrated the early church, and remains today, is the idea that knowledge, or light, is a THING to obtain – and that doing so will get you closer to God.  In a Christian context, this would be the error of saying that the more you know about Jesus, or about doctrine, the closer you are to God.  Or it would be to say that you cannot abide in Christ until you first find some secret, hidden light.  No.  Scripture makes it clear that, “all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge are hid IN Christ.”  (Col. 2:3)  Thus, light is not a THING to obtain separate from Christ so that you can abide in Him.  Rather, in order receive light, we must FIRST abide in Christ by faith.  Then, as we abide in Him for all our life – He will also be our light.  IN HIM is life – and that life IS the LIGHT of men.


     All that God has for us is found IN HIS SON.  And God has freely given all things in Jesus Christ.

Sep 10

Jesus Is Come in the Flesh


Hereby know you 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 you have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.  (I John 4:1-4)


     The Bible as a whole is the written standard for Truth.  But in the Bible there are given several direct tests for Truth, and this is one of them:  “Jesus is come in the flesh.”  This test for Truth is actually saying that the very definition of Christianity is the basis for all Truth:  “Christ in us,” (Col. 1:27) – i.e., the Truth of Jesus Christ as one in spirit with flesh and blood human beings who are born of God.  All that is of the spirit of God will tell the Truth about the relationship of the Living Christ with flesh and blood.


     Gnosticism, against which this test is given, taught that Jesus did not become a real human being – the Word did not BECOME flesh.  Rather, they taught that Jesus merely appeared as a man.  Gnosticism taught that God would never have anything to do with the material world, let alone actually become one of us.  As it pertains to the saint, this would mean error will deny or distort the Truth of Christ in us – error will make it mean something it does not mean, or minimize it; blind people to it in favor of something else.  The Spirit of God will always bring out the Truth of the Jesus Christ who lives in us. and continually reveal Him to us, in us, and through us.


     Note the tense:  Jesus Christ IS COME in the flesh.  It is because Jesus Christ DID come in the flesh dwelt among us – that now, He IS come to dwell in us:  Christ in us, the hope of glory.  God once became man so that God could now live in man.




Sep 11

The Spirit of Anti-Christ


…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… (I John 4:1-4)


     The spirit of antichrist will always distort or deny the Truth of Jesus Christ IS come in the flesh.  The definition of Christianity, “Christ in us,” (Col. 1:27) will either be twisted, or believers will be blinded to the reality of Christ within.


     One common ploy of the enemy is to distort the separation between the Christ who is in us and our natural man. Despite the fact that we are joined to the Lord and one spirit with Him (I Cor. 6:17), we are never Christ and Christ is never us.  Likewise, Christ is the source of all – we are not the source of anything.  But there are many teachings today that suggest that Christ died to bring out OUR greatness, or that God wants us to, “look like Jesus.”  No.  God wants US to come under the work of the Cross so that CHRIST might be made manifest. (II Cor. 4:10)  We must be made conformable to His death, so that HE might be seen through us – this is the Truth of Christianity.

Sep 12

Is Jesus Accursed, or Lord?


…that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed: and that no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost.  (I Cor. 12:3)


     Paul is referring to something that was common to heathen religion and idol worship – which would have been familiar to the Greek Corinthians.  In those heathen religions, an “accursed,” person was one who was devoted to destruction by the worshipper into the hands of a pagan god.  The sacrifice was devoted to the wrath of the angry god as a substutute for the worshipper – in other words, once the pagan god accepted the blood of the accursed sacrifice, any wrath or punishment could be lifted from the worshipper.


     Now, if you are honest, you recognize that this is exactly the kind of redemption that many Christian people believe – except they paste on the scheme the names of Jesus as the sacrifice, and the Father as the God.  Many believe that Jesus was the accursed sacrifice, devoted to the wrath of God as a substitute for us, so that God could then lift from us that wrath, and forgive us.  And yet this is precisely what Paul says is NOT the Truth – indeed anyone who teaches it cannot be speaking by the Spirit of God.


     The Truth is that Jesus is Lord – and the context is the Redemption.  Jesus did not become accursed – He did not die to bear God’s wrath so that His wrath could be averted from us.  Rather, Jesus bore OUR SIN.  Yes, He bore the judgment for sin for us, but having done that, was raised out of that death.  This made Him Lord of all.


     Note that there are two completely contrasting pictures of the Redemption involved here – because there are two contrasting pictures of God Himself.  Did God SO LOVE the world that He gave Christ to die for us so that we could be saved from our sin?  Or was God SO MAD at the world that He gave His own Son so we could be saved from His own wrath?  Two different gospels.  Two different Saviors.




Sep 13 

Spiritual Gifts vs. Natural Gifts


     Natural gifts are of the natural birth – that which is born of flesh IS flesh.   (Jn. 3:6)  But spiritual gifts are of out from the birth from above.  It is good and right to take a natural gift and offer it from ourselves up to God -- and let God use it to His glory.   But a spiritual gift is not given from ourselves to God.  It is given of God to us.  God GIVES spiritual gifts.  They are not of the natural makeup.  They are of Christ.


     Now, of course, when a gift operates through a saint, it operates THROUGH the saint.  The Spirit of God does not BYPASS us.  But this is why there is often confusion.  The spiritual gifts are not from out of natural man.  There are merely through us.  The spiritual gifts are outward expressions of the life of Christ through us by the Spirit of God.  Their purpose is always to build up others in Christ – the purpose of the Spirit of God, according to Jesus, is to testify, glorify, and bring us into a knowledge of HIM.

Sep 14

Stewards of the Mysteries of God


Let a man so account of us:  As the ministers of Christ, and stewards of the mysteries of God.  Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful.  (I Cor. 4:1-2)


     In the first century, a steward owned nothing.  But he was in charge of his master’s possessions.  A FAITHFUL steward would be faithful to his master – he would treat his possessions according to this fact – that all belonged to his master.


     FAITHFULNESS, before it means anything else, speaks of a RELATIONSHIP.  If I am faithful, I have to be faithful to some standard or person.  Thus, a minister who is a, “faithful steward of the mysteries of God,” is one who is first faithful to God Himself – everything he does emerges from that -- and this results in that steward never taking ownering over what belongs to God, but always freely giving to others – as God directs -- what God gives to him.


     Faithfulness, as noted, is never taking personal ownership over that which belongs to God and using it for myself.  To say that positively, faithfulness is allowing what always belonged to God to continue to belong to Him – I treat His possessions accordingly with reverence.  This definition of faithfulness is also the definition of holiness.  A faithful steward never puts the hand of flesh to that which belongs to God.


    Scripture tells us that we do not even belong to ourselves.  (I Cor. 6:19)  Therefore, the faithful steward will not take ownership over even himself.  This is the RELATIONSHIP with Christ which ought to govern all – I am faithful over THINGS because I am faithful to the One who is Lord of all.




Sep 15

Wrath Will Praise Him


The wrath of man shall praise thee: the remainder of wrath You shall restrain.  (Ps. 76:10)


     Some have made this verse to mean that if God allows evil then evil is God’s will.  That is error.  Evil is never God’s will.  But it is often God’s will to allow evil – it is often God’s will to allow that which is NOT His will.  This is not a contradiction.  A sovereign God is perfectly free to allow that which is against His will.  The free will of humanity, and the eternal purpose of God, demand this.  


     God allows sin.  But by definition, sin is AGAINST the will of God.  Therefore, it is folly to say that sin IS the will of God.  Psalm 76:10 is simply declaring that God will have the last word.  He will eventually make even wrath or rebellion against His will to praise Him – even if it does nothing more than prove that the will of God was the only Truth, and the only way to life.  The wrath of man may take it’s best shot.  But in the end, God will be praised.

Sep 16

Christ Made Unto Us All Things


That no flesh should glory in his presence.  But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:  That, according as it is written, He that glories, let him glory in the Lord. (1 Cor. 1:29-31)


     Passages like this one are intended by God to show us that Christianity is not a matter of us being made to look like Jesus.  Rather, it is a matter of us being crucified so that the Christ who is in us might be seen.  God does not make us, or give us, THINGS like wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption.  No.  God gives us Christ, who is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption.  This is so certain that Paul says, “He that glories, let him glory in the Lord.”  In short, this is Christ in us – it is not us trying to be like Jesus.


     Religious man always tries to do from out of himself, in himself, and through himself, what only Christ can BE and DO through Him.  Why?  Because he has side-stepped the Cross.  The Cross will crucify ALL of that – we must lose our natural self to the Cross, in order that Christ be manifested as our life.  Obedience will be the natural outflow of Christ as our life – we will not be trying to make Him our life through human effort. 


    The person through whom Christ is manifested is not TRYING through human effort to look like Jesus.  Rather, the person has left themselves alone, and is abiding in the Vine by faith.  Someone once said that those who manifest Christ the most are aware of it the least.  This would always be the result of losing one’s life to Christ – we would no longer be trying to be something – even if we say it is for God.   “Yet not I, but  Christ…”




Sep 17

What is Sanctification?


     Sanctification is Jesus Christ in us, coming to be seen through us.  (I Cor. 1:30)  It is NOT us made to act like Jesus.  Sanctification happens as the outcome of our choice of faith.  But that choice of faith is not so much that we read about Christ and try to be like Him.  Rather, we lose our lives, and find Him as our life.  The result is not human effort, but His life flowing through us – and we move with Him.


     Sanctification is, of course, holiness.  But holiness means that I belong to God, and not to myself.  Thus, holiness is not a matter of me taking ownership over myself in an attempt to be like Jesus.  That is of the flesh even if I convince myself that I am doing it FOR GOD.  No.  True holiness is the result of leaving myself – indeed, losing myself – to Christ, that He might be in me all that He desires.  In short, sanctification is HIS LIFE being seen through me, which is impossible, as long as my life – even if it is religious and well-practiced – is in tact.


     One of the greatest hindrances to real santification is not sin, but religious man alive and well, trying to sanctify his own life.  Jesus Christ in us is the only holy life.

Sep 18

Holiness vs. Unholiness


     “Holiness,” “sanctification,” the name, “saint,” all come from the same Greek root.  That root means, “to be set apart for God’s use.”  In more modern terms, this simply means TO BELONG TO GOD. 


     The SAINT is a person who belongs to God – we are not our own, but are bought with a price.  (I Cor. 6:19)  Normally, what this means is that we must not sin.  We must not use ourselves for anything that is contrary to the will of God.  But whether we realize it or not, it also means that we must not belong to ourselves at all.  Jesus told us we must lose our lives to Him – this would mean we belong to Him and are therefore holy.  But this also means that if we do not lose our lives fully to Him that we continue to belong to ourselves.  This would be unholiness.  


     It is possible to continue to belong to yourself in a religious way – trying to make yourself look like Jesus; trying to be what you think you have to be to get something from God; trying to bring yourself into spiritual maturity through your own efforts.  Most people who do these things think that are doing God’s will.  But what they are doing, and how they are doing it, is secondary.  The real problem is that they have never lost their lives to Christ – and thus they are governed by the spirit of self-ownership.  This is unholy.


     The spirit of self-ownership is unholy because, by definition, I don’t belong to God, but to myself, even if I say it is for His will.  And if that is the case, I cannot be holy, because the basis of my life is on an unholy foundation.




Sep 19  

Religious Natural Man


     Religious, natural man owns himself – and it is out of that self-ownership that he tries to live for God.  Then he laments when God won’t help him.  Indeed, it is even possible to offer to God a faith, simply because we think doing so will get something from Him.  None of this is Christianity.  Indeed, it is the outcome of being blind to the Cross; of neglecting the Cross; or of refusing it.  The Cross applied in the personal life will absolutely expose and bring to an end all of the attempts of natural man to live for God. 


     Jesus told us that there is only one thing we can do with our natural lives:  LOSE them by picking up the personal Cross.  Then abide in Christ.  Until we do we are going to try to live for God on the basis of ourselves.  But if we will lose our lives for the sake of Jesus by picking up our personal Cross, then we will find, and be able to live from OUT OF, Jesus Christ as our life.


     The blindness of the church to the essential of the personal Cross, coupled with the blindness to the fact that Christianity is CHRIST IN US – the two always go together – this blindness accounts for the spiritual sickness of the last two-thousand years.

Sep 20

Walking in the Spirit


If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.  (Gal 5:25)


     What does it mean, “to walk in the Spirit?”  It means to live from out of Jesus Christ as my life – drawing upon Him for all things.  If we are saved, we are joined to the Lord and made one spirit with Him.  (I Cor. 6:17)  But since Jesus Christ is THE LIFE, then if I am one with Him in spirit, then I am alive with HIS life – indeed, Christ IS my life.  (Col. 3:4)  Thus, to walk in the Spirit is to walk in that spiritual union with Him, living from OUT OF HIM by faith.


     Jesus Himself said that the purpose of the Spirit of God was to reveal HIM to us, in us, and through us.  His words to that effect are all through John, chapters 14 thru 16.  The purpose of the Spirit was never to create a Christianity, or a movement, centered around the Spirit.  (see John 16:13)  This has minimized the Person of Jesus Christ, and has blinded millions to the fact that Christianity is Christ in us (Col. 1:27), and that the purpose of God is to, “form Christ in us.” (Gal. 4:19)  Indeed, Paul stated, “Now the Lord is that Spirit…” (2 Cor 3:17)  All of this is important because many today have made, “walking in the Spirit,” a matter of something other than walking in Christ.  They have made it a matter of following leadings, signs and wonders, and what amounts to psychic sensations.  No.  The Lord IS that spirit, and to walk in that spirit is to walk in Christ – living from out of Him as our life. 




Sep 21

The Spirit of His Life


Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.  (Gal. 5:16)


     How do we, “NOT fulfill the lusts of the flesh?”  Not by turning in upon the flesh and beating it down.  Not by coming under laws intended to keep us from walking in the flesh.  Not through emotions, intellect, or any human effort.  The only way to NOT fulfill the lusts of the flesh is by, “walking in the Spirit.”


     Note that we step out of the flesh by stepping into the Spirit – rather than try to defeat the flesh.  This is because the victory is already won in Christ -- we are already dead to the flesh, and aiive in God.  The Spirit in which we are to walk is, “the Spirit of LIFE in Christ Jesus.” 


     Paul also said, “If Christ is in you, the body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit IS LIFE because of righteousness.”  (Rom. 8:10)  Note:  The body is dead and the Spirit is LIFE – because Christ is IN US.  Thus, to walk in the Spirit rather than the flesh means to step outside of ourselves – our natural life – and into His life which is in us by His Spirit.  The key to victory in the Christian life is not to win a victory.  No.  It is, by faith, to abide in Christ.

Sep 22

The Lusts of the Flesh


 Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.  (Gal. 5:16)


     In scripture, the phrase, “the lusts of the flesh,” refers to the nature of self-ownership and all of it’s working.  “Lust,” is a desire to own or control.  This lust is found, through birth, In Adam -- our old life seeks to own SELF.  The key to victory over this lust is therefore to LOSE the old life in Adam.  Lose your SELF to Christ, pick up your Cross, and all the power of lust that comes from the old nature it will be broken. 


     When Jesus Christ joins us to Himself by making our human spirit one with His Spirit, there is introduced another LIFE into our makeup – one that is God-centered, and therefore, totally contrary to the flesh.  Thus, the core issue here is not what we DO.  The issue is who is our LIFE – to whom do we belong?  It is absolutely impossible to walk in the Spirit, let alone walk free of the lusts of the flesh as long as I am seeking to possess myself.  I must LOSE my life and find Christ as my life to even get started in this matter.  Then I must abide in Christ as my life.


     Self-rule is the ground upon which all of the other lusts of the flesh can govern me because self-rule is THE FLESH -- is that old Adam nature.  It is from this self-rule that all other sin emerges.  But if I lose myself to Christ, then the old life – the ground upon which all the lusts of the flesh are built – will lose power.  I will be able to grow to walk in the Spirit of life in Christ.


     If we want the lusts of the flesh out of our lives, then we have to LOSE the life from which those lusts draw their power.  We can to put on Jesus Christ – in Him that victory is already won – and it is by faith that we enter into it.




Sept 23

The Message of the Cross


     The message of the Cross is NOT that I put my faith in the Cross.  It is not that I put my faith merely in a WORK Jesus finished two-thousand years ago.  The message of the Cross is about the One who died on the Cross and finished that work – my faith is to be in Jesus Christ NOW – faith that will abide in Him as my life.


     Jesus Christ IS Christ crucified.  Jesus Christ is the Risen Christ.  Thus, if we put our faith in the Person of Christ, we are putting our faith in all that He has done.  Indeed, today Christ Himself emobodies the Truth and power of His death and resurrection. 


     The death of Jesus Christ ENDED the old creation.  His death was our death.  When Christ died, all that separated us from God died in Him.  But that alone did not make anyone alive.  We are indeed, “reconciled to God by the death of His Son” – and any gospel that omits or minimizes the Cross is a false gospel.  But we are, “saved by His life.”  (Rom. 5:10)  Christianity is CHRIST IN US – now.   Christianity is new LIFE.

Sep 24

The Essential of His Life


If you then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sits on the right hand of God.  Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.  For you are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.  When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.  (Col. 1:3-4)


     Omit or water-down the Truth of the Cross – whether it be the Cross of Chirst, or the essential today of the personal Cross -- and you have a false gospel.  But there is also a way of turning the Truth of the Cross into the whole of Christianity.  Usually where this is done, there is much celebration as to what Christ accomplished on the Cross – and rightly so.  But often there is a blindness to Christ Himself – and a failure to recognize what the Cross made possible for each of us:  Christ in us, the hope of glory.


     Jesus continually said “I AM……”  Paul says, “Christ, who is our life…”  (Col. 3:4)  Paul travailed, “until Christ be formed in you.”  (Gal. 4:19)  Paul said, “We are saved by His life.”  (Rom. 5:10)  And finally, the root of Christianity is, “Christ in us.”  (Col.1:27)  All of this was made possible by the death of Christ – and our being personally planted into His death.  But the Christian life is ultimately a walk in His resurrection life.


     What is a Christian?  One in whom Christ dwells.  A new creation in Christ Jesus.  Yes, one who has been crucified with Christ, and one who is picking up his Cross daily.  But all unto HIS LIFE.  Paul said, “We are always bearing about in our body the dying of the Lord Jesus, so that the life also of the Lord Jesus might be made manifest.”  Thus, the Cross MUST be preached – Christ crucified is the answer for everything that is outside of Christ.  But the bulk of the NT is focused upon the Living Christ who is in us – how to walk with Him and come into the fullness of all that He is.




Sep 25

The Essential of the Cross


     The Cross was the end of the old creation, and thus, the end of the Adam race.  Through His death and resurrection, Christ has birthed a new race in Himself.  Thus, once we neglect or deny the Cross, we open the way for a false Christianity that is built upon and implimented by that old Adam race.  Most professing Christians would never directly deny the Cross of Christ.  But blindness to, or the refusal of, the personal Cross today, is a deniel of Him.  It will absolutely keep us on the ground of the old creation.


    Much of what is called Christianity today is the result of side-stepping the Truth of the Cross, and thus, NOT living from out of new life in Christ Jesus.  Religious people have created another gospel and another Jesus – fueled by the old life.  Some of this even appears spiritual – much emotion, supposed signs and wonders, etc.  But it is not of Christ.  It is of the soul realm of natural man.  This is the outcome of any supposed Christianity that minimizes the personal Cross.  There is no resurrection life – but only destructive substitutes based upon natural man.

Sep 26

Willing to Do His Will


If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself.   (John 7:17)


     If we want to know the will of God, we must be willing to do it.  Therefore, it is the heart of man – our willingness for God – that will either open the door for light, or keep us in darkness. 


     There are other ways to say the same thing.  If we truly want God and His will, are we willing to say, “Lord, do whatever it takes to bring to pass Your will and purpose in my life.”?  In other words, some of us may doubt whether we are willing to abandon ourselves to God, and we may have little idea as to how to do that.  But even if we doubt our willingness, we can, “be willing to be willing.”  Be willing to allow God to make us willing.  This might seem like a very risky prayer, but it is no risk at all.  The alternative is a conditional relationship with God, which is really unbelief. 


     Jesus also said, “The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light.  But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!”  (Matt. 6:22)  This is the SAME Truth.  Once God takes the initiative to bring us light – that same light will enable us to choose.  That choice does not begin by choosing a THING or choosing a PATH.  It begins by choosing a PERSON.  This is faith – a reliance upon God to be faithful if I am willing to abandon myself to Him.




Sep 27

The Grapes of Eschol


And they came unto the brook of Eshcol, and cut down from there a branch with one cluster of grapes, and they bore it between two upon a staff; and they brought of the pomegranates, and of the figs.  (Num. 13:23)


     Jesus Christ is our inheritance.  But there is a huge difference between spying out Christ and actually giving ourselves to Him.  There is an immense difference between eating the grapes of Eshcol, and actually entering the land by faith and living there.


     God’s light is UNTO salvation.  Light is conviction of the Truth so that we might have a choice before us -- between that light and the darkness.  But note that light is NOT salvation at that point for the unsaved -- light that is given does not equal light that is embraced for the saved.  No. Those, “who were once enlightened and have tasted of the heavenly gift…” (Heb. 6:4-6), are not those who were saved, but lost their salvation.  No.  They were enlightened and tasted, but refused salvation, or what God had for them.  You must have some light to be accountable for refusing it.  This is a certainty taught all through the Word of God.  God beckons us to, “taste and see that theLord is good,” but to be saved, we must, “eat and drink,” of Christ – that is, He must live in us.



Sep 28

The Perfecting of the Saints


And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;  For the perfecting of the saints…(Eph. 4:12)


     The KJV often uses the word, “perfect,” or, “perfecting,” in a way that is today outdated.  No one will ever be perfected on this age.  The Greek word in this verse, which occurs no where else in the NT, actually means, “the setting of a bone in place for the purpose of mending.”  See also Heb. 12:12 for a similar picture.


     If a bone needs to be set in place so that it can mend, then that is only because it is already OUT of place.  Thus, the purpose of ministry is to discern this and set it back in place.  But what does it mean for ministry to set the spiritual bones of the Body of Christ back in place?  Colossians 2:19 tells us the problem that this will correct:  “And not holding the Head, from which all the body by joints and bands having nourishment ministered, and knit together, increaseth with the increase of God.”  Believers in Christ are out of place when they are not, “holding fast to the Head.”  They are not individually and personally living from out of Christ, walking with Him, picking up their Cross daily, looking to Him alone as their personal Mediator unto God. Thus, it is the job of ministry to get those folks back into adjustment with Jesus Christ as individuals – which will result in the Body being brought back into place under Him as the Head.


     You will note the suggestion in this picture – the entire Body is not adjusted to compensate for a bone that is out of place.  No, the bone must be put back in place.  In short, ministry is to individuals, that they might hold fast to Christ.  Then, if they do, the collective individuals that are holding fast to the Head will comprise a healthy body.




Sep 29

The Unity of The Faith


Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ.  (Eph. 4:13)


      One of the tenets of the modern latter rain movement is based on the phrase, “till we come in the unity of the faith.” Their error is to take this as a promise that all will unite in Christ – under modern day apostles and prophets.  Indeed, they say Jesus cannot return until we do.  This is not what the verse is teaching.


     First of all, Paul does not say, “unity of faith.”  No.  He says, “unity of THE faith.”  In other words, the only real unity is unity in Jesus Christ; in the true knowledge of Him.  All other unity is unity in error.   Secondly, this unity will not be achieved through the unity of believers with each other – but through the unity of each believer to Christ Himself, which is the only basis for unity with each other.  That can happen if there is only one believer united with Christ.  Thus, this is already being fulfilled – without the need of a movement, or imposition by law.

Sep 30

Every Wind of Doctrine


Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:  That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive.  (Eph. 4:13-14)


     The reason believers remain children who are easily swayed and taken in by every new teaching that comes along is stated in this passage:  There is no knowledge of the Son of God. The only means by which we can discern error is if we know the Person who is the Truth.  If we don’t know the genuine article, we will never recognize the counterfeit when it comes along.  That is why it is the job of ministry to preach the Truth of Jesus Christ. 


     Christianity is, “Christ in us.”  (Col. 1:27)  The purpose of God is to, “form Christ in us.”  (Gal. 4:19)  This is what Paul is talking about in this passage.  But today many believers have never once heard about, “Christ in us.”  Many are completely blind to what it means for Christ to be formed in us.  Thus, they are easily swayed by some new angle that makes them feel closer to God, or that makes them feel good about themselves.  You have, “seeker friendly churches,” “purpose driven churches,” “contemplative prayer,” “getting back to our Jewish roots,” and whole movements like Word of Faith.  Challenge these and you will be labelled a negative trouble-maker.  But if we realized that Christianity is Christ in us, and began to know Him, all of these would be exposed for the error they are.  The Truth in Him is the solution for these problems.


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