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Foundational Doctrine for Life in the Spirit
The Empty Tomb
God is Spirit
For most born again believers the subject of Life in the Spirit is like, explaining an illusionary magic trick. Many think that they can explain it, but can’t perform the trick themselves. They know that if they can agree to believe that it is possible then it separates them from a large majority of people who don’t, thus giving them a sense of heightened spirituality above the rest. But when asked how this is possible, the obvious response is, you must only believe. What is even more disconcerting is that their practical reality does not tie up with your spiritual belief. They are still plagued consistently by the cares of this natural life of provision and protection that occupies their conscience and sub-conscience existence. Over time however the notion of,”Life in the Spirit” becomes eroded by doubt and unanswered questions, to the point that it is reduced to a one hour worship time at Church on a Sunday morning. During this time they engage in singing, crying, speaking in tongues, shouting, and earnestly begging the Holy Spirit to touch them, so that they can have a taste of this glorious experience. Just a dose please God, enough just to keep the embers of this notion alive. Until they get around to actually prioritising it, as most valuable, it is an illusion. So Sunday morning Church experience becomes the high point of their week, until next Sunday. For many still, wrong heart conditions have had the seed of this truth, scorched by the sun (natural mindsets of logical reason), choked by the thorns of this world (self provision and self protection) and snatched by the birds of the air (the demonic).
What then is the seed of this truth? The seed of this truth is the foundational elementary doctrine of the Resurrection of the Dead. To say that many believers are immature is a known fact but to give the reason for their immaturity, are variations of opinions based on your point of view. But scripturally the answer is as clear, they have not been schooled and taught in the Elementary Doctrines of the Word found in Hebrew 6, Therefore leaving the elementary teachings about the Christ, let us press onto maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith towards God, of instructions of baptisms and the laying on of hands, and the resurrection of the dead and eternal judgement. Now the entire understanding of this subject is given to us by Paul inI Corinthians 15: 1-2 “Now brothers, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain.” Verse 12-14 “But if it is preached that Christ has been raised from the dead, how can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? If there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith.”
The heart of this principle is this, whatever dies a natural death, must be raised back to life, nothing, dies and fades into non existence. Life does not cease. Now let me qualify this because there are several words for life. Jesus Christ said, For whoever wishes to save his life (psuche or mortal rational soul life) shall lose it but whoever loses his (soul life) shall find it. (Matt 16:25) Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and the life (zoe, Gods Spirit life), he who believes in me shall live even if he dies and everyone who lives and believes in Me, shall never die. Do you believe this?” (John 11:25-26). The last word used for life is “biotikos or bios” which are natural life of plants and animals and all flesh. Jesus Christ came to give us “Zoe” life, to transform us from soulish and biological life into the highest order of life possible, the God Life or the Life of God. To have this life and to live in its environment which is the Holy Spirit is eternal life. John 17:1-3 These words spoke Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee: As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him. And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent. Here we are seeing the claim by Jesus Christ Himself to the exclusivity of the distribution of this Life. He goes on to say, I am the Way, the Truth and the Life, no man comes to Father but by Me. In order to come to the Father you must know the Son. To many who have received Him (as the Son of God), to them gave He the power to become sons of God. To know the Son you must become a Son. It’s always been about sonship never about membership. No man can come to Son(ship) unless the Father draws him.
John 17:20-26 Neither pray I for these alone (the disciples), but for them also which shall believe on me through their word(us who believe that Jesus Christ was sent by the God the Father). That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. And the glory which thou gave me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me. Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou loved me before the foundation of the world. O righteous Father, the world hath not known thee: but I have known thee, and these have known that thou hast sent me. And I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare it: that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them.
One of the priorities of the 11 remaining Apostles after the ascension of Jesus Christ was to replace Judas Iscariot, the scriptures are found in Acts 1:20-26. Why was it a matter of urgency for the remaining Apostles to replace Judas with Matthias? Why could they not just leave it at 11 or take both Justus and Matthias? It is not like there was an abundance of Apostles. The reason for assembling the number to twelve again was simply a judicial and legal practice that if 12 men testify to an account, then that account is irrefutable. It is where the American Legal system gets its Jury of Twelve practice. Acts 2:14 But Peter taking his stand with the eleven raised his voice and declared to them. (Vs 22-24) Men of Israel, listen to these words, Jesus the Nazarene, a man attested to you by God with miracles and wonders and signs which God performed through Him in your midst, just as you yourselves know this man delivered up by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, you nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men and put Him to death. And God raised Him up again, putting an end to the agony of death, since it was impossible for Him to be held in its power.
Peter then continues to add weight to his testimony by producing more evidence regarding the resurrection of Jesus Christ by recalling the testimony of a King namely King David. Now you must understand and appreciate what this meant in antiquity, as a defence for this matter. To have twelve men testify and then add more conclusive evidence of a reputable King, render for an air tight defence. Acts 2: 29-32 concluded the matter with verses 32, This Jesus, God raised up again, to which we are all witnesses. Please note that King David never physically saw the resurrection of Jesus in the natural but witnessed it by the Spirit and the Prophets. It is after this that we see the response of the people that were listening to Peter, the scripture says that they were pierced to the heart and said to Peter and the rest of the Apostles.”Brethren, what shall we do?”
Many uninformed theologians use the above scripture to argue for why Apostles or Apostolic Ministry have ceased, such short sightedness. If they would continue to read the scripture they would realise that King David's testimony of the Christ is gathered from the Old Testament account of Word and the Spirit. 1 John 5:5-13 This is he that came by water and blood, even Jesus Christ; not by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth. For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water (Word), and the blood (life in men): and these three agree in one. If we receive the witness of men, the witness of God is greater: for this is the witness of God which he hath testified of his Son. He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son. And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.
Revelation 1:17-18 And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last: I amhe that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death. Jesus Christ holds the keys to death and hell, if you are in Him then death and hell have not part of you who are in Christ. The life that you now live you live through Christ in the Spirit. He accomplished this for you so that you can live Life in the Spirit. Failure to walk in the Spirit is evidence that you do not beleive that Jesus Christ came in the flesh, was killed and was made alive again to bring you into that very same of experience. We have to be transformed in the renewing of our minds regarding this truth. Our problem is that all these great and wonderful truths are applicable to us but we still carry the memory of our old nature, which has become our default setting in the Culture of the Orphan, that we cannot reconcile them as our inheritance. So we wait for all of these promises to only manifest when we die and go to heaven.
Rom 6:4-5 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also of His resurrection.
Romans 8:11 “And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit, who lives in you.”
At this point I would encourage the reader to take the time to request your spiritual father to labour with you in laying a foundation of the Elementary Doctrine of Resurrection of the Dead.
Be Perfect, as your Father is Perfect.