Sunday 11 March 2012

Grace has a cross in it.

Timothy Keller's Foreword To:
Bonhoeffer :Pastor Martyr Prophet Spy
It is impossible to understand Bonhoeffer's influence without becoming acquainted with the shocking capitulation of the German church to Hitler in the 1930s. How could the"church of Luther," that great teacher of the gospel, have ever come to such a place? The answer is that the true gospel, summed up by Bonhoeffer as costly grace, had been lost.

On the one hand, the church had become marked by formalism. That meant going to church and hearing that God just loves and forgives everyone, so it doesn't really matter much how you live. Bonhoeffer called this cheap grace. On the other hand, there was legalism, or salvation by law and good works. Legalism meant that God loves you because you have pulled yourself together and are trying to live a good, disciplined life.

Both of these impulses made it possible for Hitler to come to power. The formalists in Germany may have seen things that bothered them, but saw no need to sacrifice their safety to stand up to them. Legalists responded by having pharisaical attitudes toward other nations and races that approved of Hitler's
policies. But as one, Germany lost hold of the brilliant balance of the gospel that Luther so persistently expounded—"We are saved by faith alone, but not by faith which is alone." That is, we are saved, not by anything we do, but by grace. Yet if we have truly understood and believed the gospel, it will change what
we do and how we live. By the time of Hitler's ascension, much of the German church understood grace only as abstract acceptance—"God forgives; that's his job." But we know that true grace comes to us
by costly sacrifice. And if God was willing to go to the cross and endure such pain and absorb such a cost in order to save us, then we must live sacrificially as we serve others.

Anyonewho truly understands how God's grace comes to us will have a changed life.
That's the gospel, not salvation by law, or by cheap grace, but by costly grace. Costly grace
changes you from the inside out. Neither law nor cheap grace can do that.

This lapse couldn't happen to us, today, surely, could it? Certainly it could.
We still have a lot of legalism and moralism in our churches. In reaction to that, many Christians
want to talk only about God's love and acceptance. They don't like talking about Jesus' death on the cross to satisfy divine wrath and justice. Some even call it "divine child abuse."' Yet if they are not careful, they run the risk of falling into the belief in "cheap grace"—a noncostly love from a non-holy God who just loves and accepts us as we are. That will never change anyone's life. So it looks like we still need to listen to
Bonhoeffer and others who go deep in discussing the nature of the gospel.

Timothy Keller

Chris Welch continues:
"They don't like talking about Jesus' death on the cross to satisfy divine wrath and justice."

With such a revelation of God as Father,
and His Everlasting nature as love,as manifest in the openhearted embrace of the Father in the Prodigal son story -
people are writing against "satisfy divine wrath and justice."

Brad Jersak and Gary Sigler to name two.

Reading and talking doctrines of Divine Retribution in leftbrain speak, such as we have inherited from Augustine are missing out on other simultaneous truths in the Spirit.

To understand the doctrine of God we are not called to read more. To spend longer in university. To take our left-brain down the leftbrain gym until we can exercise with the best of them....Marx, Karl Barth, Schopenhauer. We are called to walk inwardly. To say yes to God in our life. To experience what He means in John 17:21 by
21That they all may be one, [just] as You, Father, are in Me and I in You, that they also may be one in Us, so that the world may believe and be convinced that You have sent Me.

The question of the Cross concerns Union. We were included in His death that He might raise us up in Himself to receive within us, a Unity of Person, that is God Himself.

We experience Two burnt up totally, which is the complete destruction upon the works of the flesh in our life. But the second goat that was sent way into the wilderness in the Old Testament symbolises the second deliverance at the Cross. That our former person was done away with. That spirit centre, who is our real identity, was forever linked to the sin spirit in union, and had to be left in hell.Our new identity is again a spirit union, Christ linked to our spirit, a totally new creation.

God doesn't see death as we do.He constructed this universe as a safe one, by inventing the second death. Any rebellion in heaven led to permanent separation, so a death within a death made it safer for us for bringing forth a race of co-sons.

Doctrine with Union in it, is very different from doctrine that was cobbled up while still in a false believing system of "separation".  An angry "out there" God, that the devil would have us believe in since Genesis 3.

When God raised up first a generation of Pentecostals who believed in the Baptism of the Spirit in the 1900s, then brought home a second wave of such believers, of which i am a member, sweeping through the denominations with this Pentecostal revelation, ofcourse many saw this as a kind of Total Answer to the problems of sharing the gospel without power and signs.

But in actual fact it was to raise up a Jacob generation - a generation that would seek the Face of God as Jacob did,
to go down , down, further down,
to fully understand the nature of the problem since the Fall.

Like a whole generation of St Paul's in Arabia, not having, as did the first disciples, Jesus in His earthly form as Jesus of Nazareth to teach, we have relied on the Holy Spirit to lead and guide into all truth.

Solely proclaiming "The Kingdom of heaven is at hand" with signs and wonders following may have been what Pentecostals were called to do, and still do, and this complies with the activities of the early disciples while still learning, but the FIRST CHURCH itself was founded on a more permanent foundation. The disciples had had 3 years of exposure to Light regarding who they had thought they were and fully realising who they now were.
And this is the complete gospel which we now share.

A gospel of complete Union.
Shared by the power of the Holy Spirit.
With much more self-knowledge of how the Bible describes us, and how we work as human beings.

In a nutshell we have lived the opposite of Proverbs 3 5-6 which tells us to:
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not rely on your own insight.
In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make straight your paths.
We have instead trusted wholly on our insight, which produces a "false seeing" with our soul as the centre of our universe. Not only is our soul not geared to being the centre of our universe. It is NOT either. For the falseness is brought about by the fact that we are spirit at our centre. This is who we really are. Our soul is  just the way our spirit can manifest itself outwardly through our body. What we thought of as a self-powered soul was just a FRONT. Behind this cover, the actuality is Satan usurped our spirit as container for God's Presence, and now controls and energises all those who live according to their "own way".

So the "own way"...isn't entirely. How many times have you intended to go only so far in a direction, only to observe yourself careering downhill like a runaway train? How many people have been murdered as a result of a smaller tif?
How many babies have been born, when the original idea was a kiss and a cuddle?
How many, like a friend of mine, have gone to prison on someone's false evidence, because the other's story hardened and hardened and they wouldnt back down from their lie?

Christianity is the return of a human to his planned identity, the identity of one who is really spirit.Where we differ from Buddhism, or other Christian groups is that we see the need for a death on the Cross. We take up our Cross and follow Him.

We are like that seed which falls into the ground, breaks open, then reforms with a whole new fruit bearing identity. It is a miracle. It is NOT just meditation. It is meditation on Spirit fact. The death of us on a Cross, and the resurrection of us in Jesus Christ three days later.

Once in heaven Christ was anointed as King and Priest for an intercession to bring everything outside of Christ , manifestly INSIDE of Christ, and to return the whole done deal to the Father.

God then gave His anointed Son AGAIN for the second time as Head over the Church, that they as a kingdom of Priests functioning with Him in the Melchizedek order, would cooperate with Christ in His commission. For this purpose Christ has shared His anointing oil with His Bride in the form of the Baptism in the Holy Spirit.

Any doctrine of grace in the Church has to comply with this self-giving commission Christ has placed upon us.It has to comply with all the descriptions the Bible makes about us in relation to God: Master/ Servant,Bridegroom/ Bride, Vine/ Branches, Divine Power in earthenware pot.....and so on

The means whereby this grace is transplanted in us complies with what Hebrews calls the Heavenly Tabernacle. So all the aspects that were made strictly according to pattern in the Old Testament, have heavenly realities in the Spirit that they describe. We see one notable one when the Veil was supernaturally rent in the Temple as Jesus own Body Temple of flesh was being torn on the Cross, and a totally New and Living Way was opened for us, instead of the mere ritual beforehand.

Apart from prayer and singing, it is interesting that the only rituals left in the Church are entirely to get our inner eyes focussed on who we now are....and the way we are made is to begin in the flesh!  Baptism in water, and the bread and wine, remain just about the only outward form, while we impart Spirit to Spirit with one another.

Other groups of Christians , in rightly pointing out our access to God is complete now, because the veil has already been torn, dont realise there is also a growth process equally as real in order to "EXPORT" the total Holy of Holies reality of our born again spirits into the rest of our existence. All this occurs because of the very threefold action described in Revelation 12:
and they overcame him

By the Blood of the Lamb
By their Word of testimony...(based on this total victory of the Lamb)
And by loving their lives not unto death.

The first "loving our lives not" occurs as we experience the soul severing double edged sword of the Word piercing to the division of soul and spirit (Hebrews 4). This is Sooooooo painful. Do not not be kidded. You feel like you are dying on your insides. But it is the separation of our souls in practice from wrong misuse by Satan, to right use as a vessel for Jesus Christ.
The second " loving not our lives " results in our self giving of our new Christ identities for others, or in outpoured operations or commissions by the Spirit of God as we get into Word of faith commissions.

Simultaneous to this negative seeming process, is the outpouring of more grace upon us and through us, in our situations, and those we are commissioned to fight the fight of faith for.I dont like dwelling on the death side for two reasons.
It's the devil's plan to get Christians stuck there. When God's plan is resurrection experienced!
Secondly, as we see with Christ's was ONE DAY in 33 years folks, and 3 days later  Jesus was up and out for ALL TIME. It's the devil's ruse to make us DEATH conscious.

It is spiritual circumcision. THAT's ALL.
I had a natural one....and the operation ended!!! I never talk about it. I dont regale friends with it. It didnt last months on end. It was one operation. Then I left hospital.

As we enter the realm of Spirit, we see in the Spirit. Clearer and clearer. We dont talk guff anymore. The Cross is real death and real resurrection. I dont entertain a lot of talk in my Havant Church regarding the Cross. It's just religion. I tend to just walk out now.

Real death doesn't take 30 years before a single member of the congregation feels he can go out and minister. That's religion. And as more people come through in the Spirit, we can take churches like Havant by the scruff of their neck to the real Cross and not just the religious one, so that soon they are ministering in power round the whole region.

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