There is an aspect of the gospel that we must come to terms with. The Church must embrace the fact that Christ had preeminence in all things concerning us. Jesus was the first man to walk this earth sinless. He was a perfect sacrifice to the Father. It was by this that He could perform the holy atonement and be laden with the sins of the world. He then suffered in hell for three days and nights, after which He rose from the dead and revived the body that laid in the tomb.
He was resurrected from the dead just as we were by the operation of salvation. We have followed the example set forth by our big brother. We were dead in trespasses, and thus were quickened by the Faith of the operation of God. Now the life we live in the Flesh, it is not us that live but Christ lives in us.
The operation of Faith is the resurrection of Christ in our mortal bodies. However let us examine the significance of this. We have been taught at Easter to believe on Jesus Christ who died for the sins of the world and rose from the dead. He then ascended on High and is seated forever at the right hand of the Father; where He intercedes on behalf of the church. But has this become the extent to His ministry? To sit and pray? I would like to ask you a question that should be considered by all those who call themselves ‘Christians’.
Jesus indeed rose from the dead and His spirit endures forever; but what is the point in His rising if He did not intend to live again in the Flesh? We must all understand that it was the man Jesus who was raised from the dead. He was raised with a flesh and blood body just as ours.
36 And as they thus spake, Jesus himself stood in the midst of them, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you.
37 But they were terrified and affrighted, and supposed that they had seen a spirit.
38 And he said unto them, Why are ye troubled? and why do thoughts arise in your hearts?
39 Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself:handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have.
40 And when he had thus spoken, he shewed them his hands and his feet.
Jesus was raised in a mortal body and if this scripture did not seal this consider verses 41-43. And while they yet believed not for joy, and wondered, he said unto them, Have ye here any meat? 42 And they gave him a piece of a broiled fish, and of an honeycomb. 43 And he took it, and did eat before them.
The point I am trying to make here is that Jesus was raised as a man. We often get distracted by the many times He vanished into thin air while speaking to citizens of Isreal as He went along, this however was gifts of the Spirit on display. It was after His ascension on the Mount of Olives that He took on His glory in which He had from the beginning – He was The Word of God.
So let us examine a statement I said earlier - was the point of Jesus’ resurrection to go to heaven and to sit and pray? Jesus was made an omnipresent Spirit and His Ghost, lived on as the Holy Ghost. He became everlasting/eternal life. What therefore is the relevance of become life then ascending and staying in heaven where there is no death?
The truth is that the plan from the foundations of the world was that Jesus would live and die once, then after that He would live again in different bodies. Not just at different intervals, but many bodies at the same time.
1 These words spake 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:
2 As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him.
20 For the Father loveth the Son, and sheweth him all things that himself doeth: and he will shew him greater works than these, that ye may marvel.
21 For as the Father raiseth up the dead, and quickeneth them; even so the Son quickeneth whom he will.
Jesus was given power over all flesh, and the exercise of this power, is by raising any dead body He desires to, at salvation. We often say the old man is dead and that we are born again, but do we truly understand what this means? (Please look out for my salvation series to get a full understanding) But in order to be saved we had to literally die and be risen from the dead. We are however risen by the spirit of God, in fact the same spirit that rose Christ Jesus from the dead.
The Ghost of Christ has been given the power to live on, and walk in the bodies of men.
This is the true Faith.
However let us examine this aspect of Faith. In the operation of Faith we have put on the new man who is Jesus Christ. Now we all dwell within Jesus Christ, by the same Spirit. We have now become the subjects of a great Kingdom.
1 Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.
2 In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.
Jesus professed that His Father has a house in which are many mansions (dwelling places). Many Theologians posit that Jesus has become a construction worker and is building physical houses for each Son of God (which is probably the reason He has not returned as yet). Contrary to popular belief if we rightly divide the Word we will be able to discern the true intent of Jesus as He spoke.
John 14: 5-6
5 Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way?
6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life:no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.
The scripture is clear on this matter. Jesus went unto His Father, and the mansions were inside of His Father. The mansions refer to dwelling places in which the souls of men would reside. Scripture refers to this of the sealing of the Holy Ghost. We are inside God the Father.
Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.
Nicodemus could not discern that what He was beholding was not just an anointed person, but it was God Himself standing before Him in a physical and non-threatening way. The body joint with the Holy Spirit was the kingdom (or house) in which the soul of Jesus lived – it was the Kingdom of God. However for a kingdom to exist there must be a king and subjects. Who therefore are the subjects of this Kingdom?
We were predestined to be in God before the foundations of the world. We have been baptized into an eternal Spirit who knows no time. Therefore the moment Jesus stepped into the earthen realm, we were inside of Him. The kingdom of God is Jesus Christ, and the subjects are the souls of men in Him.
There is an aspect of Faith that is so relevant to us as Saints. We must understand that Jesus is a kingdom in which we reside. However this kingdom is not just a metaphor, but is a literal place in which we live. Consider the following:
12 Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light:
13 Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son:
We have been translated from the power of darkness into the kingdom of light. Satan attained a kingdom by the presence of his seed in the bodies of men. He was in all mankind by way of his spirit. He had bound the souls of men, and influenced the flesh and we lived in the flesh. The devil had become the king of the kingdom of men.
Satan produced the law of sin and death to thrive within our bodies. Thus making us captive to sin, because the body that gave us expression was by nature sinful. We lived in the kingdom of darkness. Now, we have been translated into the kingdom of light. This is a literal and physical translation.
7 Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.
8 The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth:so is every one that is born of the Spirit.
9 Nicodemus answered and said unto him, How can these things be?
14 And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven.
In the scripture above Jesus explains to Nicodemus how a man is born again. In order to be born again the soul must ascend to heaven. Jesus taught here that no man has yet ascended to heaven but Him. Meaning that the provision for the souls of men to ascend to the heavenly kingdom had not yet be realized because He had not gone to His Father yet.
14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:
15 That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
He must first die on the cross, resurrect from the dead that whosoever believeth on Him can themselves ascend. We ascend the moment we are baptized into the Holy Spirit. The new man is the Kingdom of the Son: it is the kingdom in which the souls of men reside.
4 But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us,
5 Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)
6 And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:
Jesus Christ having by the atonement paid for our sins in death later rose and revived His earthen body. Forty (40) days after He revived, He ascended into heaven. He however did not ascend alone, but we were in Him and presented unto the Father.
11 But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building;
12 Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.
Therefore when someone receives the Holy Ghost it is a manifestation in time of where we have been in the spiritual realm. This is confirmed in the following scripture.
1 Now I say, That the heir, as long as he is a child, differeth nothing from a servant, though he be lord of all;
2 But is under tutors and governors until the time appointed of the father.
3 Even so we, when we were children, were in bondage under the elements of the world:
4 But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law,
5 To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.
Here, Paul explains, that while we were in sin we were likened unto a prince prior to adulthood. Despite the great inheritance that dwells in his name, he remains subject to instructors and teachers even though he will one day rule. However when the He reaches adulthood He will rule and reign. Likewise we were bound to sin, despite us being predestined to be Sons. Our souls dwelt in the Holy Ghost from the beginning, therefore even when we were in sin, we were as princes under bondage to serve his master. But when we receive the Holy Ghost, it manifests in time who we truly are – the Children of God. Time also illustrates how we got into the Spirit and it is done so by adoption.
Therefore Jesus, has prepared a way that we may enter into heavenly places and we ascend there the moment we put on the new man. The new man is therefore a kingdom in and of itself. These bodies with the Holy Ghost in them becomes the mansions in which our souls reside. They are no longer under the laws that governed us when we were in the flesh; but to put on the new man is for that soul to enter into a different realm entirely.
This realm, has laws of its own. Even as laws ruled the body of sins, that it may produce sin the new man has laws that produce righteousness that it cannot sin. The realm of the Spirit is where that soul now resides. They are no longer living in the world, but are in the Spirit.
This is the Kingdom of God and it is ruled by the law of the Spirit of life. We are no longer slaves to sin as we were in the kingdom of darkness. Now, just as any citizen in any country we are free to choose whether we will obey the law or not, however the consequences of either decision are sure.
The Kingdom of the Son is a Kingdom of light and in it is no darkness at all. Therefore when we allow darkness, we are operating in this world. The only reason we would seek after this world is because that is where our affections lie. This is why the scripture encourages us to set our affections on things above and to keep a single eye, that our whole body may be full of light.
To walk in the flesh therefore means, to usurp authority over Christ’s body and to use it as your own. It is to operate as if you are living in the flesh. When we walk in the flesh the scripture says the darkness that we become is a great darkness, because we deny the light that we have become.
This is our Faith. It is the resurrection of Christ Jesus in these natural bodies, and the placement of our souls into heavenly places. It is a nature change for the soul, where he no longer is subject to the powers of darkness but is now free to serve the living God in righteousness. We have entered into a sinless world, and I am not speaking of the earth, but of the new man. He cannot sin and He will always remain faithful to holiness.
When we operate in the Kingdom that we now are, Faith is fruitful because Faith is obedience to the Holy Spirit. Christ operates in this world as a man, we are colabourers with Him however we reside in heavenly places. It is Christ who is in the flesh we are however in Him and are stewards of His body. It is Christ in us reconciling men to God through us. He has merged with our souls and uses our individual righteous personalities to manifest Himself on this earth. Christ is the man again, we are now spiritual beings who reside in the man He has become.
We are here to be tried and tested. Our test is being with Christ in this world and not of it. If we walk in the light we have overcome the world of darkness and this can only be done by remaining obedient to the Holy Spirit.