Monday, December 3, 2018

Born Free

The greatest desire within man has been the quest to rid himself of sin consciousness and live free of guilt, unworthiness, shame, condemnation and inferiority. To be free of these thing is the driving force behind all the major religions of the world. The Holy Spirit through the Apostle Peter tells us, "Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved." (Acts 4:12) The facts is, God has dealt with the sin problem in His Son Jesus Christ. He has put sin away by the sacrifice of His Son and has made it possible on legal grounds for man who is spiritually dead and in union with Satan, (John 8:44), to become a new creation by confessing, believing and receiving Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. In doing so, he immediately receives the very nature and life of God. (2 Corinthians 5:17, 21; 2 Peter 1:4) He may not know it, he may not take advantage of it, but it is true.

The downside of this great news is, sin consciousness has been permitted to rule over many believers and has been fostered, developed, and made a reality by ministers who have and continue to preach sin instead of preaching Christ and the new creation. Looking back to the Garden of Eden, we see that sin consciousness came with the fall, "...Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden." (Genesis 3:8) Sin consciousness creates the guilt, unworthiness, shame, condemnation and inferiority which causes people hide from God, because spiritually dead man cannot stand in God's presence. We see how God illustrated this fact in the Old Testament where the High Priest went into the Holy of Holies once every year, and then only when he was blood covered. The High Priest did not go into the Holy of Holies to worship, but to make a yearly atonement for spiritually dead Israel. (Leviticus 16)

However, the time came when God would deal with man's sin once for all. How? He made Jesus sin. Sin was not only reckoned to Him, His spirit actually became sin. Looking at the Prophet Isaiah we find that Jesus died twice on the cross, "And they made His grave with the wicked, but with the rich at His death..." (Isaiah 53:9) The word death in the Hebrew is plural, "deaths." On the cross when Jesus became sin He died spiritually. His spiritual death led the way for His physical death. The same happened to the first Adam. Adam's sin separated him spiritually from God and 930 years later his physical body wore out. The good news is, Jesus was, "made alive in spirit." (1 Timothy 3;16), "He was justified in spirit." (1 Peter 3:18), He was not left in hell or in the grave, "For You will not leave my soul in Hades, nor will You allow Your Holy One to see corruption." (Acts 2:27) and He was the first person ever born again, "God has fulfilled this for us their children, in that He has raised up Jesus. As it is also written in the second Psalm: You are My Son, today I have begotten You." (Acts 13:33) "He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation." (Colossians 1:15) 

God dealt with the sin problem and made man a new creation, gave him a new nature through Christ, because no man can stand right with God simply by having his sins pardoned. It would leave the old nature that produced those sins still in control of his life. But when a person becomes a child of God, "he is a new creation, old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new." (2 Corinthians 5:17) and at the same time everything man has ever done in his past life is remitted, wiped out as though it was never committed. (Acts 2:38) The Apostle Paul tells us, "For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast." (Ephesians 2:8-9) 

Notice, by grace through faith one is saved. God takes the sinner as he is. No matter how deep in sin he has gone, new birth will straighten him out. Many have been taught that a sinner could pray through, that he could repent until God would forgive him. All that is not scriptural. The truth is, God takes him as he is, full of sin, rebellion, and having the satanic nature. He imparts to him His nature and it is God's nature that drives out the old satanic nature and makes him a new creation. All the sins of that old nature are remitted instantaneously. The person stands before the Father as though sin had never been. The whole crux of redemption has one main end, that man might become the righteousness of God in Christ. (2 Corinthians 5:21) What does righteousness mean? It is the ability to stand in the Father's presence as though sin had never been, as free as Adam was before he sinned and as free as Jesus was in the resurrection.

Jesus tells us, "Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed." (John 8:36) When one becomes born again, they are made free by Jesus Christ the Righteous. The Apostle Paul tells us, "There is therefore now no condemnation to them that are in Christ Jesus..." (Romans 8:1) We are new creations in Christ. We are the righteousness of God in Christ. We are children of God. When God's Word says, "the just (my righteous ones) shall live by faith" (Romans 1:17) He is describing the person who has become a new creation and has been made righteous with God's own nature. This is not simply a legal righteousness, nor a reckoned righteousness, but the actual impartation of God's own righteous nature.

So, let us no longer permit guilt, unworthiness, shame, condemnation and inferiority have place. Let us no longer look at what we were, but what we are, "the righteousness of God in Christ." PTL...

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