If religion has any effect in making us sons then Jesus died in vain. The efforts of Religion to add an element of law and performance to the simplicity of Christ our life are energetic and convoluted. Because religion has adopted a gospel of its own, religion thinks it must be fortified, backed-up or ‘stiffened’ by reinforcing rods of law. So religion searches the scriptures and seeks out scholars who may suggest a some smidgeon of negating Jesus declaration - the assertion that He Himself is life, and that religion is not. Or then again religion may cast about for an old and dead way of weakening Paul’s gospel of Christ in you. We need to be clear. Jesus is not a new way of keeping the law. Neither is Jesus a clever way of living from the knowledge of good and evil. Jesus is the Way of Imparting God to Sons by the Spirit.
THE WAY AND THE LIFE
Jesus’ declaration about Himself and Paul’s gospel are unconditionally absolutist. Christ is entirely our life. Anything else is rubbish and dung. Correct theology understands this as the vicarious humanity of Jesus. Living in the Spirit of Sonship depends on living in Christ’s joining of ourselves to our Father. Living in Him we are everything. Living in the law/religion we are something and nothing.
This morning a friend of mine reported a strange anomaly. She told me about a friend of hers who lives from the law and claims to be a son. He’s not a son in the Kingdom sense. Neither is he a son in terms of ‘Now we are the sons of God.’ But he is a son of Adam. Should we retain the law, performance and old covenant mindset we are sons in the mode of Adam. But not in the living way of Jesus. We are sons in spirit and in truth when Jesus alone is our life. Sons of our Father, we we live in the apostolic mission of Jesus. We may not be apostles but we are apostolic. Like Jesus we represent our Father and we do what He is doing and finish our work.
“Being good” is not the key thing for the Christian. This is a lower order category. You have been made a son in spirit and in truth. Your first priority is to live in the sonship that is your inheritance. This is a state of being known as, ‘Now we are the sons of God.’ It is enjoyed by living in God - by living where you have been placed by no effort of your own! A holy life is the fruit of our sonship - not the cause of it. Transformation is the effect our being sons of God and the result of our being joined to His person. But the purpose of our joining is not so that we can be a moral Christmas tree. Its so we can be sons in spirit and in truth.
YOU ARE THE EXPRESSION OF CHRIST
The gospel of Jesus and the revealing of this good news by Paul is that Jesus is totally your life with no add-ons. The effect of living from Jesus plus bits of law is to negate your Christ life entirely and leave you with the illusion of your own godliness and a shambles of collected and patched together behaviours that you call ‘your life’ Even a bucket of Holy Spirit anointing will not help in this. This life in the Spirit is the inheritance of sons. It cannot be sustained from the pseudo-husband of performance or the false father of the law. Rootedness in the trinity make us sons of God in spirit and in truth. In the vine you are in Jesus and as a result tooted in the heart of God. You are a son and you do what sons do because you are a son of God. Not because you did a Buch of things that set you up and qualified you as a son. A tree is known by its fruit.