Those in Christ are like Christ 0414

Those in Christ are like Christ

Whenever I challenge a Christian pastor to promote and defend the Biblical standard against current cultural norms and worldliness, they pull out Galatians and claim that we mustn’t offend people who are living within current cultural norms. They say we can’t see into person’s heart and we are saved by faith not works and you cannot see faith and therefore shouldn’t judge. The way this works out is that church becomes a social club that looks, thinks, and acts exactly like the world – sinfulness on display, condoned by all! The norm the church keeps is more visible than the Biblical one, so people are deceived to accept sinful worldliness with the church!

“I have given them Your word; and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one. They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth.” (John 17:14-17 NKJV)

Those in Christ are like Christ! I will accept your redeemer if you look a little more redeemed!

Most people misinterpret Galatians and the phrase saved by faith not of the works of the law. The Old Testament works of the law dealt with circumcision and observation of the ceremonial traditions of the temple. It does not deal with obeying God’s spiritual law. There are no works associated with God’s spiritual Law. Being Godly can’t save you. However, the saved seek to be Godly. Faith is a gift from God that drives us to be godly.

Lets look at the Book of Galatians:

God chose Paul to be an apostle to teach us the Will of God. Jesus came to deliver us from this present evil age.
(Galatians 1:1, 4, 5 NKJV)

There is but One unchanging Gospel that some are turning away from to a perverted one.
For do I now persuade men, or God? Neither.
Or do I seek to please men? No.
For if I still pleased men, I would not be a bondservant of Christ. (Galatians 1:6-10 NKJV)

“The Gospel is inspired by God
But I make known to you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached by me is not according to man. For I neither received it from man, nor was I taught it, but it came through the revelation of Jesus Christ. “(Galatians 1:11, 12 NKJV)

Paul was the apostle to the Gentiles.
(Galatians 2:3, 7-9 NKJV)

Paul corrected Peter, Gentiles do not have to be circumcised. Those in Christ satisfy all Old Testament ceremonial Law by being in Christ Jesus. Circumcision of the heart is faith to obey and honor God.

“We who are Jews by nature, and not sinners of the Gentiles, knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law but by faith in Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, that we might be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law; for by the works of the law no flesh shall be justified. I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. “(Galatians 2:16, 20 NKJV)

No longer i who live, but Christ lives in me. I obey Christ as my hand obeys my mind. My hand doesn’t choose to obey, it just does. This is the evidence of salvation.

Many Old Testament prophecies are fulfilled in Christ
“Now to Abraham and his Seed were the promises made. He does not say, “And to seeds,” as of many, but as of one, “And to your Seed,” who is Christ. And this I say, that the law, which was four hundred and thirty years later, cannot annul the covenant that was confirmed before by God in Christ, that it should make the promise of no effect.” (Galatians 3:16, 17 NKJV)

The “Proto-evangelium” given in the Garden of Eden to Adam, through the 62 paternal generations to Jesus and all the promises made by God to them along the way, Jesus is the Seed that fell on Good ground. The saved are in Christ or they fall on the path , hard ground, or the thorny ground, incapable of being fruitful.

The purpose of the ceremonial law for the church was to bring us to Christ.
“What purpose then does the law serve? It was added because of transgressions, till the Seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was appointed through angels by the hand of a mediator. Now a mediator does not mediate for one only, but God is one. But the Scripture has confined all under sin, that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe. Therefore the law was our tutor to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor. “(Galatians 3:19, 20, 22, 24, 25 NKJV)

It takes faith to believe in God and His justice. It takes faith to desire to reverse the curse and submit to God’s authority. Faith is a gift from God for those prepared by God to receive it. Those Baptized into Christ Receive this faith.

The Church contains the heirs of God’s promise to Abraham.
“For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise. (Galatians 3:26-29 NKJV)

Redeemed from under the curse by faith in Christ.
“Now I say that the heir, as long as he is a child, does not differ at all from a slave, though he is master of all, but is under guardians and stewards until the time appointed by the father. Even so we, when we were children, were in bondage under the elements of the world. But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, that we might receive the adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying out, “Abba, Father!” Therefore you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.” (Galatians 4:1-7 NKJV)

The hebrews were committed as a people to God, the sign of which was their circumcision. As a father trains His child with authority, the hebrews were trained by others acting as God directed. Some obeyed, many rebelled and were punished. They didn’t meet their father (God) but were trained by others. A child raised by a nanny or orphanage apart from daily contact with a loving father may grow up different than the father. A child adopted into a loving family, acts like the family out of love, not compulsion. That is the difference between the old and new covenant. One is forced to obey, but can’t because they don’t want to. The other naturally follows a loving father because they want to.

Ceremonial law satisfied in Christ.
“But now after you have known God, or rather are known by God, how is it that you turn again to the weak and beggarly elements, to which you desire again to be in bondage? You observe days and months and seasons and years. Brethren, I urge you to become like me, for I became like you. You have not injured me at all.” (Galatians 4:9, 10, 12 NKJV)

The ceremonial law was given to point to Christ. Once you are in Christ, you no longer need external direction to find Him. You are already there!

Two sons, one slave, one free
“Tell me, you who desire to be under the law, do you not hear the law? For it is written that Abraham had two sons: the one by a bondwoman, the other by a freewoman. But he who was of the bondwoman was born according to the flesh, and he of the freewoman through promise, which things are symbolic. For these are the two covenants: the one from Mount Sinai which gives birth to bondage, which is Hagar— for this Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia, and corresponds to Jerusalem which now is, and is in bondage with her children— but the Jerusalem above is free, which is the mother of us all. Now we, brethren, as Isaac was, are children of promise. But, as he who was born according to the flesh then persecuted him who was born according to the Spirit, even so it is now. Nevertheless what does the Scripture say? “Cast out the bondwoman and her son, for the son of the bondwoman shall not be heir with the son of the freewoman.” So then, brethren, we are not children of the bondwoman but of the free. “(Galatians 4:21-26, 28-31 NKJV)

The slavery of the bondwoman was sin, the choice Adam made in the garden to separate from God’s loving direction and have his own “wisdom”. Those who don’t meet God’s just standard are punished as a disobedient slave is. They are slaves to their master. Their master is sin and Satan. God promised to restore His relationship with The Seed of Adam, a particular offspring of Adam. That offspring died for us to pay our ransom and free us from our slavery to sin. By doing so we are not only free to follow Christ, but due to our bond of love, we become one with Christ, willing slaves of righteousness. It doesn’t feel like slavery, though. It feels like our loving family identity. Its who we are.

Christian liberty is from ceremonial traditions and slavery of sin
“Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage. Indeed I, Paul, say to you that if you become circumcised, Christ will profit you nothing. And I testify again to every man who becomes circumcised that he is a debtor to keep the whole law. You have become estranged from Christ, you who attempt to be justified by law; you have fallen from grace. For we through the Spirit eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness by faith. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but faith working through love. “(Galatians 5:1-6 NKJV)

There is a grand canyon of difference between circumcision and ceremonial laws and obeying God and being righteous. Liberty means freedom. Anyone who sins becomes a slave to it. Going back to temple ritual and ceremonial laws makes no sense if you are saved and safe in Christ. Therefore requiring a gentile to be circumcised as a convert to Judaism is required to do is clear indication of ignorance of what Christ does for the elect. The other equally nonsensical thing to do is to equate spiritual law (righteousness) to ceremonial law.
Most Christian churches today teach that it is wrong to uphold God’s spiritual law, because they refuse to separate ceremonial laws from spiritual laws. Some chaff at the term “law” that is part of “spiritual law”. The broad sense of the word “law” means:
” a binding custom or practice of a community : a rule of conduct or action prescribed or formally recognized as binding or enforced by a controlling authority”

God is the controlling authority. God’s spiritual law includes His view of What is Good and what is evil. Characteristics that God defines as Good is also called righteousness or being right morally. God is all Good and nothing evil. Everything against God is evil, Satan is the evil adversary of God. It makes no sense to claim to be in Christ but without remorse do or think of evil things. Its one thing in error or ignorance to momentarily stumble into sin. It is quite another to call Good a thing, thought, or behavior that God calls evil or unholy.
Ceremonial laws pointed to christ. Spiritual laws are the very substance, nature, and integrity of God. Jesus was circumcised to be the last Adam, perfectly obeying ceremonial laws as only He being God could. Jesus was Baptized with water and spiritually by the Holy Spirit and testified by God the father to be the only eternal Head of the Church, including every redeemed Jew and cleansed Gentile , each elect and saved from the wrath of God, by God, for the Glory of God!

Who hinders you from obeying the truth? No liberty for the flesh, but to love one another.
“You ran well. Who hindered you from obeying the truth? This persuasion does not come from Him who calls you. A little leaven leavens the whole lump. For you, brethren, have been called to liberty; only do not use liberty as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another. For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (Galatians 5:7-9, 13, 14 NKJV)

Every person who claims to be Christian but condones or lives in an unholy manner isn’t following Christ. As a little leaven leavens the whole lump, the visible church must uphold God’s righteous standard and discipline each and every instance of unholiness. If the Visible “church” you fellowship with won’t, you must discipline them or separate from them.

Other related passages
For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, (Ephesians 2:8 NKJV)

The elect are saved by God’s grace through faith. God does it all. Old and New Testament saints were saved by faith in God and God’s promises. The Old Testament Spiritual law revealed God’s will and standard. Old Testament ceremonial law pointed to Christ. It provided understanding how God will restore his relationship with the elect. Perfect compliance of both was required and impossible for sinful man. The problem wasn’t a lack of talent or physical strength, but a lack of desire or will to obey God. The spiritually dead have no saving faith in God. The temptations of the world were more than anyone can handle without God.

Many are told and believe that salvation frees us from the requirement to obey God, that saying a prayer or doing a ritual will obligate God to save them. Those who claim faith are given blind acceptance in God’s visible church without any requirement of evidence of a redeemed life. Consequently, the visible church of today appear identical to the world. It’s just one big sham.

Fortunately, the Bible makes other claims. That God chooses (elects) those He will save. That faith comes to the elect by hearing the word of God. That faith starts with spiritual regeneration and leads to repentance, forgiveness, and a redeemed will to obey God. Salvation initially justifies us blameless in God’s eyes, provides us with an indwelling Holy Spirit to guide and protect us through sanctification, and an irrevocable promise of Glorification and return to heaven and an eternity with God along with the rest of the sinless glorified church.

We are warned that Satan is like a wolf seeking to devour us. That love of worldliness is enmity with God. That bad company corrupts Good character. We are salt and light in a lost and dying world. We are commissioned to be in this world but not of this world, to bring the Gospel to those who by God’s power and choice are able to receive it. We are the Body of Christ commanded to love our neighbor as ourselves.

I welcome your comments either openly or in private. Most churches of today are carnal and worldly, incapable of glorifying God. They try to substitute worldly love and works for obedience to God, righteousness and Holiness. Its time to challenge the unholy and clean house!

In Christ,

AZ4Christ.wordpress.com

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~ by az4christ on April 17, 2014.

2 Responses to “Those in Christ are like Christ 0414”

  1. Reblogged this on az4christ.

  2. […] Those in Christ are like ChristIn “Apologetics” […]

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