SIMPLICITY IN CHRIST

Advertisements

THE WAY TO LIFE

In John 14 Jesus told Thomas “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through me.”

When the Sabbath was drawing near a Roman soldier pierced Jesus’ side with a spear. We are told in John 19 “immediately blood and water came out.” But I wanted to share something else that came to me about this incident.

Way back in the Garden of Eden there were two trees. One was known as the “Tree of the Knowledge of good and evil” and the other was “The Tree of Life.” Adam was told not to eat of the Tree of the knowledge of good and evil but of course we know he did and subsequently Adam and Eve were kicked out of the Garden. Remember what Jesus told Thomas “I am the life.”

The Bible tells us after God drove Adam out “at the east of the Garden of Eden he stationed the cherubim and the flaming sword which turned every direction to guard the way to the tree of life.” In other words, there was absolutely no way Adam could get passed the cherubim to partake of the Tree of Life. If he had tried to he would have been pierced by the cherubim’s sword and died.

Some of you may have already caught on to what I am saying but for those that haven’t let me continue. The Bible says, “The wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus.” The only way we can ever hope to have eternal life is by way of Jesus Christ himself. The only way to obtain eternal life for us is by way of his death on the cross. Jesus said, “Unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.”

There was one other unimaginable event that took place when Jesus died on the cross. “Behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom…” So let me see if I can sum this up. The only way for Adam (man) to be able to partake of the Tree of Life was if he could get passed the cherubim’s flaming sword. Jesus is the way and when he died the way into the holy of holies was opened. Incidentally the curtain or veil just so happened to have Cherubim embroidered on it. Apparently the Holy of Holies was a representation of the Tree of Life and since the sacrifice of Jesus we are free to go in. When the Roman soldier went to make sure Jesus was dead he pierced his side with a spear. Could this all be trying to tell us Jesus took the piercing of the cherubim in order to open the way to the Tree of Life for man again?

Jesus said “I am the life no one comes to the Father (Tree of Life) but by me.” If Jesus hadn’t given his life to be pierced we could have never made our way to the Tree of Life and therefore we would have been doomed to live outside of fellowship with God. There is not many ways to Everlasting Life, but I thank God he did provide a way!

Written by Louie

TWO HEADED MONSTER

Have you ever heard someone say, “We have a sinful nature?” Maybe you’ve heard them say we have two natures. There is a popular teaching, in most church circles, that says we believers have the equivalent of two dogs living within us. There is a good dog and a bad dog that are always in a struggle with each other. This means sometimes the good dog wins and sometimes the bad dog wins. It all depends on which one you feed the most. I don’t think this sort of teaching is biblical.

After doing a little bit of studying I have come to the conclusion we have only one nature. Now there are two natures revealed to us throughout the Bible, but there is no indication we ever have both at the same time. For instance we are born with an Adamic nature which is sinful. This is precisely why Jesus said we must be born again so we might receive a new nature. Ephesians 2 tells us we are “by nature children of wrath.” As a lost person we used to “walk according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now works in the sons (children) of disobedience.” The other time the word nature is used in this sense is found in 2 Peter. We find out in this passage “through God’s precious and magnificent promises we may become partakers of the divine nature.”

Illustrations of us having only one nature are throughout the Word. Starting in Genesis we find there were two trees in the garden and Adam was told not to eat of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Of course we know he did, therefore we were subsequently born with his nature which became sinful. What I want you to see though is Adam did not eat of both trees. He had to choose, and it was an either or not a both and proposition. These trees represented two natures. The Tree of Life of course is Christ. The Tree of the knowledge of good and evil would then be the Law. The sinful nature came in when Adam believed the lie, and he was deceived into thinking he could rule himself independently.

Throughout the New Testament we find several ways in which our nature is illustrated. In Matthew 6 Jesus tells us “no one can serve two masters.” In John 8 Jesus confronts the Pharisees and tells them “you are of their father the devil” and his father of course is God. So we clearly see there are two fathers, and we are an expression of one or the other, but we can’t be of both.

As we move into what Paul taught us we find in Romans 5 there were two Adams, and we are either of one or the other; but we can’t be of both, simultaneously. Romans 6 teaches us that we are a slave and we have a master either sin or righteousness. We are always a slave with a master, but don’t forget Jesus said we cannot serve two masters. Moving on into Romans 7 Paul shows us we (humans) are like a wife. We are the bride of one husband either the law represented by the first husband or Christ who is the second. The law prohibits us being joined to both. From God’s perspective we are married until death do us part, and since the law (our first husband) will not die then we must. Death is the only way for us to end our relationship with the first in order to be joined to the second. God provided a way to crucify us with Christ, so we may now be joined to another which is Christ. My final illustration is of us being a vessel which is found in Romans 9. We are either “a vessel of wrath or of mercy.” So you see we are always a vessel, but we have been changed from one kind to another.

Finally we see in 1 John 4 there are two spirits. One is of God and the other isn’t. The scripture says, “Greater is he that is in you (Christ) than he that is in the world (Satan).” One is in us and the other isn’t. Both of them are not in us at the same time. We only have one nature. If we had two heads we would be a monster, and I don’t think that is what God intends for us.

In conclusion what I have discovered is Biblically speaking we can only express:

One Tree

One Master

One Father

One Husband

One type of vessel

And be of only one Spirit.

Written by Louie

ROAD TO FAMILIARITY

These are the simple facts of revelation (and we can follow their logic, as well as their tragedy and wonder):

What the Bible calls sin is, in one phrase, independent self. The created self was made to contain and express the Creator Self who is selfless love.

Instead, in the person of Lucifer, probably the created being nearest to God Himself, a new and horrible form of life came into existence: a created self who refused to contain the selfless Self of God but chose to live for and by himself. Lucifer was the sin-spirit, the spirit of self-love, self-seeking, and all the sins known to man that proceed from that.

The history of the creation of man in the Garden of Eden tells us what happened to our forefather. He was created to contain God in a living union, which was symbolized for him in the offer of “the tree of life in the midst of the garden.”

But as a human being with free choice, he could take another way—the way of self-love: symbolized for him in the other tree in the midst of the garden—the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

Deceived by the lying spirit of Satan, he received into himself the spirit of error rather than the Spirit of truth, and became a child of the Devil. Since then the whole human race is born with the spirit of self-centeredness in it. The Bible calls it “the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience.”

That we are all born and live under that domination is obvious, for we are all by nature egoists and self-lovers. Every breath we breathe, therefore, is sin—because anything less than God’s perfection is sin, and God’s perfection is perfect love. But such total love to God and our brother is totally impossible without God who is love living in us.

Excerpt taken from The Key To Everything by Norman Grubb