RENEW THE MIND
The greatest difficulty for a believer in Christ is to consistently renew the mind. As years pass by, many people come across your path and you either learn from them or they learn from you. However, you will notice that many may come for their gain, to only receive and will never give you the knowledge of the Lord that is in them.
Some will be in touch to receive from you and will abruptly disconnect the relationship with you when they find some other source. They are the ones who keep receiving but never come to the knowledge of the truth in Christ.
They gather from all, and teach all but the applications of the word of Christ are not displayed through their character. This is a leech spirit, (now I don’t mean an evil spirit). These, like leeches, suck the life of a believer especially those who teach the Word of God with revelation and power. They drain you of your time, gifts, money and resources.
Philippians 1:15-18 — Some indeed preach Christ from envy and rivalry, but others from good will. The latter do it out of love, knowing that I am put here for the defense of the gospel. The former proclaim Christ out of rivalry, not sincerely but thinking to afflict me in my imprisonment. What then? Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is proclaimed, and in that I rejoice. Yes, and I will rejoice.
The reality of a heart is open only before the Lord. He not only weighs your words but your heart, especially when you are a man or woman of God; one that serves Christ.
Paul experienced this first hand. But, his reaction to this was to rejoice because Christ was being preached. He understood the words of Christ that the wheat and tares must grow together until the separation.
1 Corinthians 3:13 — each one’s work will become manifest, for the Day will disclose it, because it will be revealed by fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each one has done.
Paul says that all our service, our ministry, our work for the Lord will become manifest. It will all be tested by the fire of the Lord. The kingdom work is a serious business. However, it is turned into a business for selfish gain and to exalt the Adam in us, instead of exalting the Last Adam-Jesus Christ.
RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD
In the Old Testament, from the beginning of creation, a relationship of the Creator is seen with the creation. In this instance, God who is the creator of all things knows us inside out. But, the creation is in the process of knowing the creator. This introduces a detached relationship with the Creator and often than not, this turns into a Master-servant relationship.
A religious spirit centers on getting people to be servants to God. Whereas, an evil spirit or a devil attempts to get a person to go against God. However, true Christianity, when understood correctly, is unique and different. It reveals the Fatherhood of God. The New Covenant is founded in this intimate relationship between God and man.
REVEALED BY CHRIST
True Sonship is revealed by Christ alone. Paul declared that sons who are being trained are managed as servants until they grow into spiritual maturity.
Galatians 4:1-7 — Now I mean that the heir, as long as he is a minor, is no different from a servant, though he is the owner of everything. But he is under guardians and managers until the date set by his father. So also we, when we were minors, were enslaved under the basic forces of the world. But when the appropriate time had come, God sent out his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we may be adopted as sons with full rights. And because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, who calls “Abba! Father!” So you are no longer a slave but a son, and if you are a son, then you are also an heir through God.
This is depicted in the Old Testament, however, it was not plain to the inner eyes of the heart at that time, and because of this reason, the Jewish idea of God continues to be cold and detached from the Christian understanding of God.
HAGAR AND SARAH
The Jewish people think of God to be a strict Judge or a grand King, and Christians know God as a loving Father. Paul gives us an understanding of Covenants by distinguishing between Hagar and Sarah. He calls old Jerusalem “Hagar,” and the New Jerusalem “Sarah.” Ishmael who was Abram’s son through Hagar was blessed but not approved of God as the heir. Isaac who was Abraham’s son through Sarah was blessed and also approved of God to be the only true heir.
The verses below give us a deeper revelation of the two covenants:
Galatians 4:21-31 — Tell me, you who want to be under the law, do you not understand the law? For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by the slave woman and the other by the free woman. But one, the son by the slave woman, was born by natural descent, while the other, the son by the free woman, was born through the promise. These things may be treated as an allegory, for these women represent two covenants. One is from Mount Sinai bearing children for slavery; this is Hagar. Now Hagar represents Mount Sinai in Arabia and corresponds to the present Jerusalem, for she is in slavery with her children. But the Jerusalem above is free, and she is our mother. For it is written: “Rejoice, O barren woman who does not bear children; break forth and shout, you who have no birth pains, because the children of the desolate woman are more numerous than those of the woman who has a husband.” But you, brothers and sisters, are children of the promise like Isaac. But just as at that time the one born by natural descent persecuted the one born according to the Spirit, so it is now. But what does the scripture say? “Throw out the slave woman and her son, for the son of the slave woman will not share the inheritance with the son” of the free woman. Therefore, brothers and sisters, we are not children of the slave woman but of the free woman.
CHRIST – NOT AN ANGEL
The writer of Hebrews also confirms that Christ did not come as an angel, but as the begotten Son of God. He was not just a faithful servant, but the Son of God. His relationship with the Father was not aloof, like servants, but intimate and personal.
John writes that anyone who does not have the Son-Christ living in them does not possess eternal life because life is in the Son. He also adds that whoever does not believe and confess that Jesus is the Son of God does not have the Father.
1 John 5:11-12 — And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.
The one who has the Son has this eternal life; the one who does not have the Son of God does not have this eternal life.
1 John 2:23 — Everyone who denies the Son does not have the Father either. The person who confesses the Son has the Father also.
CORPORATE SON IN HIS IMAGE
Judaism is based on an Old Covenant understanding of God. God’s final plan in creation is to build a corporate Son in His image and likeness. Jesus Christ is the express image of the Father and whoever receives Him, also receives the right to become a son of God. This is the crux of the New Covenant.
Hebrews 1:3 — Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high…”
John 1:12 — But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name…”
Sonship today has become more of idol worship. Many spiritual fathers gather around sons who will listen to them and not question them. Many want to be associated with big names and ministries and therefore come under the covering of a spiritual father. Whatever you do, know that the Lord looks at the heart and weighs its intent and motives.
The bottom line is this: If you are a father, you must be like Christ. If you are a son, you must be like Christ. I do not write these things to hurt or offend anyone but to make you aware that hat you call a spiritual father-son relationship could be wholly carnal.
Jesus was the prototype Son. His birth, life, death, and glorification shows us the way in which we must walk. That way which was hidden to man because of the flaming sword guarding it in the garden of Eden is now removed, and full access is granted to all who are in Christ today to come boldly to the throne of grace as sons and daughters.