Posted by: mybroom | April 25, 2013

CHRIST IN ME – part 1.

Colossians 1:26-27 “the mystery that has been kept hidden for ages… which is Christ is you“.

A mystery is like a journey of discovery into the unseen, it is like setting out for the last frontier as Kevin Costner did in Dances With Wolves ~ it is hitching up the wagons, saying goodbye to civilization and embarking on a journey into the unknown.

We get a sense of this in Eph. 3:8-9, Paul describes his ministry as; ‘the  administration of this mystery into the unsearchable riches of Christ’.

At the outset I would say; “if you have already fully grasped the unsearchable riches of Christ, then this journey is not for you” ~ this journey is for those who long for more, those who have glimpsed the distant horizon and are drawn to its mysterious promise, those who are adventurers and will not settle for the mundane safety of religion ~ those who want to know the unsearchable riches of Christ.

Not everyone can leave civilization; it is secure, predictable and comfortable…. not everyone can leave behind religion for the same reasons. Religion is the practice of self-generated activities in an effort to satisfy God ~ faith on the other hand is confidence that Christs activities have satisfied God already.

So my good friends, saddle-up, bid your good-byes, fix your eyes on things not yet seen, and hang on…. wagon roll, yeehaa.

The first hill we will crest as we leave behind religion is called ‘Self’… most cannot struggle over this first obstacle, and ultimately turn back to the comfort of religion. They don’t realize that this challenge is the hardest they will face on their journey… and beyond it lays the frontier, they don’t realize that once they have crested this hill, religion will have passed from view and the unsearchable riches of Christ will lay before them.

Religion has taught us:- my activities, my principles, my self-generated efforts have some currency here…. fact is; only the astounding work of Christ on the cross has the capacity to generate life ~ and He doesn’t want my best efforts, He wants my faith in His best efforts. At this point most people are still agreeing with me, but let me make this absolutely plain; Jesus doesn’t want us to do anything, good or bad, He wants us to believe!!!  John 6:29, “The work that God requires is this; To believe in the one that He sent”.

Our immediate response is to think of SELF as; “selfishness, ego, pride etc.” and that we must overcome it so that we can live a life of service and outreach. That would mean that we overcome the ‘bad’ part of self, so that we can get on with engaging the ‘good’ part. Wrong; Jesus killed the whole part of self, dead people cannot do anything ~ we have been crucified with Christ ~ we are incapable of doing anything of value.

I’m not saying that we should stop being decent, upright and honest people, it’s just that religion has taught us that our best efforts are somehow worthy of God’s response… and they aren’t, God only responds to the virtue of Christ (and our belief in it) ~ and that’s why Christ killed our human nature on the cross, and raised us up again… a brand new creation with His nature. Col. 3:3, “For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God”.

At this point the wagon train suffers a serious reduction in its ranks. This kind of thinking is enough to break a whole lot of axles and wheels, sending many would-be pioneers scurrying back to religion… where it’s much safer. But we must help each other to keep going, the prize of “Christ in me” is too important to allow a hill like ‘self’ to cause us to give up so soon ~ come on push through, you can do it.

To get this in perspective we need to understand something that religion never taught us; “The point of being a Christian is not to engage us into a life of Christian activities, good habits, and principles for living ~ it is to engage us into faith in the unsearchable power of Christ’s activities on the cross”. Religion has taught us that our activities (even those that have the most spiritual appearance) have value, but compared with Christ they are such meagre offerings ~ there is only one thing of value, the mystery of Christ… and He has made His home in me.

As we crest the hill of self, as we grasp that God doesn’t want us to do anything, as we place faith in the unsearchable wonder of Christ in me… a strange thing happens ~ we begin to walk in the Spirit, we begin to effortlessly do the good works that God prepared for us since the creation of the world ~ the vista of a brave new world comes into view, Life in Christ.

And all of this because we are resting in His work, and ceasing from ours.

cheers, Graeme

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Responses

  1. Liked this post. Going to go on and read the others. I am a poor example of a religious person, but instead this turned out for good, because I can only be a success with faith. I have this faith because I can’t do anything to earn it. This is so true of me and my situation.

    • Hi Robin,
      I guess thats the whole point, God never intended for us to be religious – just to be the objects of His love.
      cheers G


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