Jesus can revolutionize your life and world view. The idea of grace in its fullness characterizes the very nature of Jesus and changes our concept of the worth of humanity. Our world view in the past has been filtered through religion, which tainted our ability to accept those that would not qualify to be a part of our family. All the while hoping that the outcast and the freaks would conform to our image so that we would be more comfortable with them among us. After all we don’t want that kind of person to representing us, right? How ugly is that, how sad, bland, boring and comfortable.
In the old covenant only the high priest could go into the holy of holies in the presence of God. The high priest were the very upper crust, the closest to perfect that existed. They were the only ones worthy to even attempt to meet with God and even they would drop dead if they did not fully qualify. How frightening, how intimidating, how confident, how self assured would you have to be to attempt a journey into the presence of God?
The magnificent exchange was that the very God that the high priest feared, the God that reigned down manna from heaven and whose presence lived in the form of Shekinah glory behind the veil had a plan all along to come to us. To go to the darkest places and the deepest earth to identify with us. The very God we feared became one with those who would never qualify. Because what we failed to admit is that no matter how hard any of us try, none of us can ever qualify. It is only by grace through faith in this man Jesus Christ.
So you see, it’s not a matter of qualifying to get to God, it’s a matter of God qualifying to get to us. Who am I to disqualify anyone? Who am I to claim Christ death returns insufficient on anyone’s behalf. God wanted us all along. He wanted us to admit our dependence on him all along. So if you are an outcast, freak or classified weirdo Jesus came to you, identified with you and brought you freedom, grace, and love. Not freedom from who you are, but freedom from having to be who you’re not. We are all dependent on him, we require him, we thirst for him and in him we find our life. Run to him, don’t be afraid!
Hebrews 4:14-16, Romans 5:8, 2 Corinthians 12:9, 2 Corinthians 5:19, Ephesians 3:19
From Adam to Christ
From death to life
From old to new
From darkness to light
From works to rest
From law to grace
From judgment to righteousness
From exhausted to seated
From me to Him
From busy to content
From do to done
From anxiety to peace
From religion to relationship
From “what’s next” to “what’s finished”
From “have to” to “want to”
From temporal to eternal
From glory to glory to glory
Wynema Clark 5/26/15
On this day darkness met light
Sin met righteousness
Life met death
A reconciliation of all things and all people into One
Not a sin forgotten
not a nationality left out
For God so loved the whole world
For God’s plan included the whole world
And into His Son would be placed all sin
In Him would be the final seperation
In Him would be all law exacted
In Him would justice meet love
In Him would the blood make its final payment
Darkness fell and the earth shook
The wages of sin were deposited into the bank of eternity
Making way for the gift of God to be withdrawn
Unto all and upon all them that believe
Days later Light broke through
Righteousness came forth
and eternal Life conquered death
What was without was placed within
What is now within is being seen
Out of death came Life eternal
and it’s exceedingly, abundantly above anything we could ask or think.
Heaven on earth, Heaven in earth
It is finished!
Wynema Clark 4/3/2015
The majority of my Christian walk has been riddled with wild and exciting expectations. With every new revelation came a fresh sense of revival or rapture. Every unveiling brought a goal of something dramatic and big. I remember sitting at the edge of my seat as a young woman thinking that I could be one revelation away from walking right into Heaven. I’m serious. These expectations kept me hungry, in fact I think they were even a little addicting. But it wasn’t really a hunger for Jesus it was a hunger for something more. The promise of a big event, a big feeling, something more and something better. That was where the excitement was found.
Even in practical life there was an expectation of more. More money, more health, more happiness. I had been conditioned to expect it. But what I’ve learned is that more is never enough. The more you have, the more you want. And that mentality is exhausting. In it there is no contentment. In fact, contentment, is a bad word. But it’s not.
For me this New Covenant understanding has been something completely new, fresh and exciting, because it shines such a blinding light on the biggest event of all time, the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. It actually completely disarms my need for drama, because I can’t think of anything more dramatic than what has already been done. I mean God will do what He is going to do regardless of my expecting it or not, but if I don’t know what He has already done I am robbed of the joy of completion in that work, the understanding of the deepest kind of love possible, and the total freedom in who I am today.
If God never did anything else (and I am not saying He won’t) I could spend a lifetime utilizing what He already did. I believe we have only experienced the tip of the iceberg, the cherry on the top of the chocolate cake of redemption.
I am so thankful for what He did and this new covenant of grace that I am able to walk in every day. I am thankful for the freedom and peace that it has brought. For the surety of a love that is bigger than my mind could ever grasp.
Have you ever tried to bake a cake with the wrong ingredients? It just never quite turns out. This example has been used by church leadership and ministries many times to evoke a need to re-evaluate what we are doing to see a desired end result in our lives. The other day I woke up thinking about this. As I lay in bed meditating on what that means from a new covenant paradigm I thought the most logical thing: If I am the cook then all this cake needs is Jesus to be perfectly perfect. Then the Holy Spirit stopped me and said why do you suppose that you are the cook in the equation? I had never thought that way before. I had always assumed that I had the major role in what goes in. But as I lay there in bed I realized that everything I need for life and Godliness has already been placed within me in Christ, so the ingredients are already there. Then as I rest in Him, He is cooking up His life and His nature through me that is as fragrant to a hurting world as baked cake is to a hungry nose. Neither the cook nor the ingredients are up to me the only thing I do is put myself in His hands and believe that He is cooking up more through my life than I could ever cook up on my own. I yield to His life within me, rest in what He has already done and then taste and see that the Lord is good. And when I say good, I mean Jesus, He is the “good” that will be seen in me and He is the fragrance that will be smelled on me. God really does have it in our lives.
2 Peter 1:3-8; Galatians 2:20; Philippians 1:21; Hebrews 4; Colossians 1:27; Romans 6:13; Psalm 34:8
Walking in the spirit doesn’t mean doing churchy things. Doing churchy things can and often is very very fleshy. You know as well as I that the more you do the more you feel you have to do. If you pray an hour you feel two is better. If you give there is always more needed and if you go to classes there is always another class to take. Then have you ever tried to step away from these things? Yikes watch out because forget what you have done it’s a perpetual state of do do and give me, give me, give me. This is the life of your everyday enthusiastic church goer. This life is exhausting!
When your churchy actions are done to gain something from God or even keep something bad from happening then you are depending on what you do and that is walking in the flesh. By definition walking in the flesh is dependance on you and your actions and walking in the spirit is dependence on Christ, who He is and what He has already done.
Walking in the spirit is very simply resting in the finished work of Christ that has already been given to you when you believe. That includes righteousness, favor and blessing. All of this in Christ now, today without doing a single churchy thing. It is faith and rest “in Him” and what He already accomplished. See “you” died with Christ (Colossians 2:20, Romans 6:8, 2 Corinthians 5:14) and then Galatians 2:20 says he gave us Christ life and it’s out of His life that we live. Do you think God is counting how many times Christ is going to church or taking communion? No way, Jose! And His life is your life. That is the life of grace instead of law.
This isn’t laziness or doing nothing, this is the capacity to actually be more productive doing what you were put on this planet to do. It’s the most natural way to live (as a spirit being) and it is all from a place of rest.
Now before you run to FB to set me straight, think of the story of Rachel and Leah. Jacob fell in love with Rachel and worked for seven long hard years to have her. In Hebrew Rachel means “ewe or lamb”. So Jacob worked for the lamb (see the picture). Only when you work to gain the lamb you wake up with Leah. What! After seven years of hard labor Jacob woke up on the wedding night with Leah. Leah in Hebrew means “weary”. That is a dirty rotten trick, but it happened. And that is what you get when you work for the lamb you get weary. After that Laban gives Rachel to Jacob and Jacob works seven years because he has her. So you can work to get and end up weary or you can work because you have and end up at rest. God’s plan is good!
This story illustrates to us that when you work to get you will end up weary. Or you can realize that the lamb is yours, that He loves you already and gave His life as you and for you and to you. The truth is you will get more done from love than from fear and obligation. It isn’t about your churchiness but about His life in you.
Do you realize that you are perfectly compatible to be the dwelling place of Christ on this earth? Did you know that we are called the temple of the living God, as well as the temple of the Holy Ghost?
To be called a temple is a big deal. Have you ever read the specifications for the tabernacle in the old covenant? I don’t recommend it unless you like lots and lots of details because God was amazingly detailed. I mean he was pretty clear with Moses that every little stitch had to be perfect or He wouldn’t move in. Amazingly Moses built everything to scale and God indeed moved in. Of course that still meant that only the High Priest could talk with Him and that is another story for another day.
I think we have had that same kind of idea about God’s presence. That we need to make everything ready for Him to come, like our heart, our attitude and we certainly can’t have any un-forgiveness, that’s a deal breaker for sure. If you have all of these things just right and the mood is properly set you could get a visitation from God. And some people go from conference to camp-meeting just to be present for one of these visitations.
News flash!! In the new covenant, on this side of the cross you do not go to a location to meet with God. In the new covenant, because of Christ and His finished work He made you the temple so that God could move into YOU. You are His temple. Where Moses was the builder in the first house, Jesus in the builder of God’s house today and you are that house!
Remember that I said, everything in the first tabernacle had to be perfect on every level and every detail or God would not move in. Well, Jesus the builder of the last house got every detail right, He finished His job with perfection so that God could indeed move in. You are that house he finished, every detail of your heart was made perfectly right. All of your old stuff was moved out and all of God’s stuff was moved in when you believed. There is no need for visitation because God moved in!
So the next time you are feeling less than right, remember that you are His workmanship, his craftsmanship, that the builder who is Jesus got all the points right, God inspected it and said well done good and faithful servant and then He moved in. He got rid of all your stuff and brought all of His stuff therefore you must be A-OK!
Reference: Exodus 25, I Cor. 6:16-20, I Cor. 3:16, Hebrews 3:4, Ps. 127:1, Gal. 2:20, Eph. 2:10
In response to a ministers attempt to tackle the issue of sin:
Thank God that in Christ God dealt with our sin. Not just the sins prior to Christ but all of them. He even dealt with the nature of sin that was left to us from Adam (1 Corinthians 15:22) and the sin that is a result of the weakness of our flesh (Romans 7:24-25).
The old covenant dealt with each individual sin through the law, but this could never bring righteousness (2 Corinthians 5:21). Because of the blood of Christ (Hebrews 9:22) we now live our lives in a perpetual state of forgiveness (Ephesians 1:7) and in eternal righteousness with God because we are In Christ.
James 4:17 says simply “sin is knowing what you should do and refusing to do it”. In our American culture there are certain sins that repulse people and the church has a hard time loving people in that kind of sin. But it is those very people that Christ died for (Romans 5:8). I heard someone say, but once they come to Christ then they have to change. Ideally yea, but not everyone will and if they don’t does Christ forgiveness stop? Does the blood payment get returned as insufficient? The answer is “No”.
As a brother or sister in Christ begins to grow in grace and an understanding of who they are in Christ the natural progress will be change. When that time comes there are counselors and teachers that are there to help. But if that change were to never ever happen Christ blood is still sufficient, and the forgiveness that he bought continues forever.
Rather than focusing on how the broken people need to be set straight. Perhaps we should ask ourselves how can we see the broken from the eyes of mercy and grace. To bind their wounds and give them a place to heal. Instead of being repulsed by their sin we need to love them as Christ said in John 15:12 “My commandment is this: Love each other as I have loved you”.
There is a beautiful story in 2 Samuel 9 about a boy named Mephibosheth. He was the only son of David’s blood brother Jonathan. David had a covenant with Jonathan and I believe David is a type of Christ. After the death of Saul (the king) and Jonathan David ascended to the throne and Vs3 of 2 Samuel says this “is there not someone of the house of Saul to whom I may show the (unfailing, unsought, unlimited) mercy and kindness of God? Ziba replied, Jonathan has a son who is lame in his feet (in other words he cannot walk this out). David immediately went out to get this boy, brought him back to his house, set him at his table and he lives forever as a child of the King. Vs 13 says “so Mephibosheth dwelt in Jerusalem, for he ate continually at the Kings table, even though he was lame in both feet.
I tell you this story to say that the covenant that we have today is sufficient for all even those who may never walk it out. That is the heart of our loving God. That is how much greater the work of Christ is than that of Adam, than the work of Moses and greater than your finest effort to clean up people’s mess.
That is why we don’t need to worry about sin…
For by the death He died, He died to sin[ending His relation to it] once for all; and the life He lives, He lives to God [in unbroken fellowship with Him].