Monday, June 21, 2010

Don't ... "Just do It"

John 16:12-15 “I have many more things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. “But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come. “He will glorify Me, for He will take of Mine and will disclose it to you. “All things that the Father has are Mine; therefore I said that He takes of Mine and will disclose it to you.

Romans 8:1-8 Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in the law of sin and of death. For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. For those who are according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who are according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace, because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so, and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.


Earlier today, a Christian friend asked about the Holy Spirit and what role the Holy Spirit should play in the church. His concern was that too much emphasis on gifts of the Spirit might take over his local church. "We need 91% more emphasis on the Holy Spirit, I replied."
"What do you mean; he asked?" I then quoted the research study I refer to in my post “A Hypocrite Under Every Rock” where 91% of Christians define themselves as self-centered. I am convinced that a primary problem in Bible believing churches is an over-emphasis (although critically important) on living a Christ-like daily life, and an under-emphasis on our position in Christ, abiding above, and the role of the Holy Spirit in guiding us moment by moment as we rest in Him.

I am convinced that all Christians are living their lives: ... one way or the other. The question is: where are you? Over 90% have received Christ as their Savior but have never been effectively guided to rest in the position that Christ has established for them at Calvary. Instead, they have followed the formula that has worked for them throughout their entire lives: education plus work or self effort. No criticism intended, but obviously, church leadership is often lacking here, also. From conversion on, we try the best we know how, to be the person that we believe Christ wants us to be, but unfortunately the teaching of the leadership of the Holy Spirit is for the most part left out. It is only natural for us to believe that we need to change and that we need to do it. “That’s how I’ve always done it” … so the joke goes. But in this case, doing it the way I’ve always done it, leads to frustration, increased sin, doubt, failure, a guilty conscience, separation from God, no peace, no assurance of salvation, and a Christian walk that is not leading others to Christ, but actually going in the wrong direction.

The truth teaches us: For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. Isaiah 55:8-9. Do you really think that you, or I, or anyone else for that matter, are capable of being transformed by the renewing of your mind, by your self effort? No, of course not … it is beyond our comprehension or our human ability. And of course, without the Holy Spirit guiding us, step by step, our old self is easy prey for our enemy. Have you even considered your perfect position before God? That is his way. You are positioned with Christ, the perfect redeemer, and your sins are forgiven past, present and future.
You are perfected in Him, here and now … for eternity.


When we abide above, we are resting in our position in Christ. There is no such thing as a guilty conscience when we are resting in Christ.
That is because you are resting in the fact that your sins have been paid for by Christ once for all and as a result your conscience is cleansed. “Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” The natural thing for us to do is to pray for forgiveness, but not stand on the promises we have in Christ, but rather allow our guilt to convert our faith to doubt which leads to a downward spiral of more sin, guilt, and doubt. We become hopeless in our own ability against lust, pride and Satan. Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of this death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth.

When you rest in your position, you are following God’s word, you are thinking His thoughts, and you are following His ways. You are walking under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. You are living the reality of who you are in Christ. He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on your behalf, so that you might become the righteousness of God in Him. You are still capable of sin in your flesh, but Satan’s power has been replaced by the power of the Holy Spirit, and your sin was forgiven on Calvary … and all of your sin was in the future. Jesus was fully aware of your failings when he chose to go to the cross for your sins. Therefore if you are in Christ, you are a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come … for the love of Christ controls you … so that you might no longer live for yourself but rather for Him who died and rose again on your behalf … so that you might become the righteousness of God in Him. Don’t misunderstand me; you obviously need to do your part in growing in the Lord. But, the advertising slogan “Just Do It” is NOT biblical, and although often effective in human achievement, God’s way is to follow the Holy Spirit and the Word and to humble all that you have learned in the world, all that you know, and all that you do, to Jesus and His truth. Your part is to listen to the Holy Spirit and to destroy speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and you are to take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ. 2 Corinthians 10:5.

I know you have heard it a million times, but “Just Do It” is a big lie of the world that leads you back to the worldly unconscious auto-pilot, that often results in bad decisions, and later on ... you are shaking your head, and asking yourself questions like: why did I do that, and how could I be so stupid? This is not a silly game of basketball. This is learning to live perfectly. The transformation of your mind and the moment by moment Christ-like walk that results in the promise of “His righteousness in you” becoming reality comes by way of the Holy Spirit … not good works, or just doing it better than the other guy. Transformation of your mind must precede good works in order for your works to be good in God’s eyes.


So … here is the key question for you: are you continually resting in your Christ-centered position, or are you striving in your self-centered condition? The first step towards never-ending peace and freedom in Christ is coming to the realization that you have a problem.
Okay, now … how can you move from your conditions in your flesh to your position in Christ … from self centered to Christ-centered? Pray for guidance, peace, and rest. Turn everything over to Christ ... out loud. Thank Him for all He has done for you, and for your forgiveness. Meditate on His word, especially on the positional truths, and all of His promises for you. Claim them as your reality, here and now. Pray for His power in overcoming your weaknesses. Claim His righteousness in you. Make note of all of the character qualities of Christ that are yours. Claim them here and now, in your daily walk. Declare victory over Satan and specific areas of sin in your flesh. Your role is to diligently catch yourself when your unconscious mind takes over, and you just do it the old way without thinking … instead, rest in your position … listen to the Spirit of Truth. Pray for His victory over your enemies. If your enemies win a momentary battle over you, have you somehow lost your salvation? Never … never … never! At every instant … Christ is interceding for you in the heavenlies, you have rest, peace, joy and grace in your position … from here to eternity.
Here is a Spiritual translation for you: Just Rest It!

I will call upon the LORD, who is worthy to be praised: so shall I be saved from mine enemies. Psalm 18:3
God bless you my friends, Bob

Pray to Receive Christ as Savior

4 comments:

  1. I really enjoyed reading this. Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Blessings and prayers,
    andrea

    ReplyDelete
  3. Thank you for sharing. Blessings....

    ReplyDelete
  4. Concur. I don't believe that we can come close to being what Christ would like us to be without letting go and being guided by the Holy Spirit. Our efforts are pitiful by comparison and often off target.

    ReplyDelete