United with Christ

God originally created mankind in the image of the Trinity (Genesis 1:6). Adam and Eve lived in an existence of body, soul and spirit in close fellowship with the Father (1 Thessalonians 5:23).

They enjoyed the same immortality, which Christ exhibited after His resurrection. Yet, when they believed Satan’s lies, they chose to ignore their spirit and to give in to the temptation of their human nature.

As a result, their spirit died, and we all reap the consequences of their choice. Knowing this before He created the world, God planned to become man as Emmanuel (Genesis 1:1; Matthew 1:23).

He paid the ransom for the sin debt of anyone who chooses to submit to His will rather than to our human desires or the devil’s temptations (Romans 4:25, 5:6; John 3:16-18).

The reason that God’s Spirit regenerates our spirit and sanctifies our soul is so that we will live in the divine life of Christ in us, rather than through our human life with its earthly thoughts and desires (2 Peter 1:4; John 1:1, 12-14).

This is possible once our spirit is Born Again. It is no longer we who live, but Christ who lives in us (Romans 12:2, 8:29; 2 Corinthians 3:18; Colossians 3:3-4). We live, move and have our existence in Christ alone (Acts 17:28).

We are united with Christ in our spirit, in the same way that Jesus’ humanity was united with His Godly nature, while He lived on this earth.

The life, which we live in this body, is lived through the faith of God’s holy Son (Galatians 2:20). We continue the work of Christ on this earth, and we do greater works as we function as His Body (John 3:3-6, 14:12).

We think, feel, speak and act in the will of God as we follow the leading of His Spirit through every decision we make, every word we speak and every action we take.

This affects our words and behavior in our vocation, marriage, extended family, neighborhood and church Body. We live as a city on a hill, and we never hide the light of Christ within us (Matthew 5:14-16).

Prayer:
Father God, thank You for sending Christ to redeem us from sin and its destruction. Thank You also for helping us to renew our mind through the washing of the water of Your Word (Ephesians 5:26). Since Christ set us free from sin, then help us to stay free from its demoralizing clutches (Galatians 5:1).

Teach us how to walk in the divine nature of Christ in us. Help us to live and move and have our being only in Him, so that we can walk in Your will, exhibit Your character and do the works of Christ all the days of our life.

Thought for the Day:
Since Christ abides in us by His Spirit, then even though our body will die because of the sin, which cursed this world, God’s Spirit gives us His life in our spirit, soul and body, because of His holiness. – Romans 8:10

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No Longer Condemned

Regardless of our struggles as Believers in Christ, no action on our part can separate us from the love of God (Romans 8:31-39). We are no longer condemned, because Christ set us free (Romans 8:1).

When certain sins continue to entice us, we can ask God to reveal the need in us, which they supply. He gives us wisdom on how to meet those needs in a Godly fashion, and we no longer desire sin.

All sin is rooted in unbelief, because whatever is not of faith is sin (Romans 14:22-23). Satan will even attempt to condemn us with shame for our lack of faith; yet, we can cry out to God, “I believe, help my unbelief” (Mark 9:23-25).

We reject the devil’s condemnation, and respond with repentance and surrender to the conviction of God’s Holy Spirit. As we strive to enter God’s rest, we abide in His peace and joy (Hebrews 10:4; Romans 14:17).

Choosing to refrain from running off on our own tangents, we reduce our need to cry out to God to find us and restore us back to a life in the center of His will (Luke 15:4).

Centering our life with our source in Christ in us, we do only those works, which God preordained for us to do (Ephesians 2:10, 3:17). We walk in the Spirit instead of in the flesh (Galatians 5:15-25).

We find our fulfillment in this life by walking the straight and narrow road (Matthew 7:14). We rejoice in the Lord always in every situation, because of His love and presence residing within us (Philippians 4:4).

Prayer:
Father God, thank You for providing for us the pearl of great price to pay the ransom for our sins and to set us free from Satan’s lies (Matthew 13:45-46). We rejoice in knowing that we are wholly Yours and that You have a purpose for our individual life (Ephesians 2:10).

Remind us that we no longer live, but Christ lives in and through us, directing our day and giving us the desire and the power to accomplish Your will for each moment (Philippians 2:12-13; 2 Corinthians 4:11). We give You all of the praise and glory forever and ever.

Thought for the Day:
Satan tells us that we will never measure up and be enough, but Christ died for us and reminds us that in Him we are complete. – Job 19:26; Colossians 2:10

More Than We Can Bear

Jesus brings us into right relationship with God, by bearing the ransom for our sins and giving us new life in Him both now and for all eternity (Romans 4:25; 1 Timothy 2:6; 1 Peter 2:24). We have more than blind faith that His love is ours.

Although God will not give us more temptation than we can resist, because He always gives us a way to repel it (1 Corinthians 10:13), there is no verse in the Bible, which guarantees that God will not give us more tribulation than we can bear.

In fact, God actually does give us more tribulation than we can bear. That may sound pessimistic and you may not believe me, but just look up the verse and see that it refers to temptation, not trials (1 Corinthians 10:13).

The good news is that God never gives us more negative circumstances than HE can bear, and He lives within us (Colossians 1:17; Galatians 2:20). He has compassion on us and is only a prayer away (Psalms 103:13).

We also have one another when we experience tribulation. God’s Holy Spirit orchestrates all of our lives as His Body. When we work together, each one doing his/her part (Ephesians 4:16), then we all flourish.

When one member of His Body suffers tribulation, we all suffer; and when one is honored, we all rejoice (1 Corinthians 12:26). There is no jealousy in the body of Christ. We strengthen one another and bear one another’s burdens (Galatians 6:2).

Prayer:
Father God, You are the one constant in our life. You never leave or forsake us (Hebrews 13:5). We can count on Your presence in our life to comfort, direct, encourage and abide within us. We love knowing You in a personal, intimate relationship. We hunger and thirst after a holier life and a deeper connection with You (Matthew 5:6; Psalm 107:9). Thank You for giving us a taste of eternity right here on this earth (John 17:3).

Thought for the Day:
We live in continual communication with the One in whom we place our hope; and He gives us strength to victoriously overcome the trials we face.

Our Union Life with Christ

John explains our union life with Christ as a branch on a vine. We cannot live a fruitful life without our intimate connection with Him. God is the vine dresser and He prunes us to make us even more fruitful (John 15:1-8).

Jesus prayed for our union with Him through His Body. He wanted those who believe on Him to live in unity with one another and with Him, just as He is in God, and God is in Him (John 17:20-24).

We enjoy the glorious union with Christ; and He calls us to live in unity with one another (John 17:25-26). This will only occur as we lay down our life for one another. This union life is a witness to the dying world around us that there is reality in our faith and practice.

God already crucified us with Christ, so that we no longer need to live by struggling in this life. We live a fulfilled life in Christ. We live by the faith of Christ, God’s Son, who loved us enough to give His own life in ransom for us (Galatians 2:20).

God calls us to walk in the Spirit and do the works He ordained for us to perform before we were ever born (Ephesians 2:10; Galatians 5:15-17). This takes all the guesswork out of life. We simply wait on God to reveal to us His divine purpose for each moment of our day.

Prayer:
Father God, You gave us Your Holy Spirit to dwell in our body, which is His Temple. Therefore, it is only right that we glorify You with our body and soul – our thoughts, choices and emotions (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). Remind us to obey Your Spirit’s direction through each moment of our day. Give us a true revelation of our union with Christ.

Thought for the Day:
Our union with Christ is a great mystery, but a reality nonetheless.

Overwhelming Love

Eros love is physical and human; Phileo love is what we feel for our friends; but Agape love comes from God. It does not depend on how we feel or even if we like the person or not. Agape is contingent only on Christ within us. God loved us while we were still vile sinners, and He calls us to allow Him to use us to love others in this same way (Romans 5:8).

We love God, because he first loved us and gave Himself for us as a ransom for our sins (1 Timothy 2:6). If we truly love Him, we will keep His commandments (John 14:15). God’s love for us does not depend on our lovability, and does not require that we act in a loving manner. God’s love is unconditional; however, any negative behavior on our part will break His heart.

God would not love us any more if we walked in perfection before Him, and He does not love us any less if we fail unexpectedly (1 John 3:6; Hebrews 10:26). His love for us is contingent upon His dependability, not on our deportment. Christ’s death on the cross is love in action (John 3:16). If we accept this sacrifice as the payment for our sins, we are justified and have peace with God (Romans 5:1).

Although we all deserve an eternity of condemnation, at the moment of our salvation, our spirit is reborn and our over-riding desire for sin dies. We are in Christ and He is now our whole life (Colossians 3:3-4). As authentic Believers, we no longer need to wonder if we are pleasing God or doing enough to earn His love, because Christ’s sacrifice already made us an acceptable member of His beloved family (Ephesians 1:6).

Prayer:
Father God, due to the saving work of Christ on the cross, we can draw near to You and enjoy Your blessings and presence every moment of every day (James 4:8). We enjoy our continual fellowship with You. Our sins are forgiven and Christ in us makes us suitable to fellowship with You (Galatians 3:16). Remind us to set aside time for You every day and to remain in Your presence all day long regardless of the duties of family and employment. We give You all of the praise, glory and honor for everything we are, everything we accomplish and everything we have in this life.

Thought for the Day:
We enjoy the privilege of being near to God, because we made Him our sovereign Lord; He is our refuge, and we enjoy His overwhelming love and all of His generous benefits.      – Psalm 73:28, 103:2

Know That He is God

God brought Israel out of the bondage of Egypt to give them the promised Canaan Land. Even after that miraculous deliverance, the Isrealites discounted the benefits of their freedom from bondage. They missed the delicacies of Egypt. They forgot that their 40 years of wandering were the result of their disobedience to enter the land after God delivered them from Pharoah’s army.

 

Even after that disobedient generation died, the next generation also despised God’s provision for them. Our Father God wants to provide a blessed life for us, as we follow His will during each of our days. We may not have the delicacies of this world, but we will have more than we need. God desires for our focus to change from self-reliance to reliance on Him for everything.

 

The more we take our eyes off our self and focus them clearly on the Lord, the more peace we experience in our life. We have no idea what God is capable of doing and providing for us until we put our total trust in Him. He is faithful and worthy of our faith in Him. He often provides our needs before we even ask Him. He cares about every area of our life.

 

Sometimes, we demand blessings from God. We attempt to hold Him over a barrel, as if we have something to bargain with that God actually wants. God does not want us to grasp at the gifts He is waiting to supply. He wants us to sit still and know that He is God (Psalm 46:10). He wants us to wait with open arms to receive all that He has for us. He has a blessed life just waiting for us to receive.

 

Prayer:

Father God, our unbelief keeps us from entering Your promised land, just like it did the Israelites. Help us to relinquish the secret sins, which we think we cannot live without. We want to devote more time to seeking You than we do to pursuing an income, a family, our hobbies and our earthly priorities. Remind us to obey by faith instead of trusting only in what we can see with our natural senses. You will supply all of our needs, according to Your glorious riches, if we simply trust in You (Philippians 4:19).

 

Thought for the Day:

God gave His own life to ransom us from sin; yet, we defile His gift with our disobedience and rebellion.