Today I am writing from Spain. I had a wonderful time in Bulgaria this past weekend. God was in the house! The family of God is strong and God’s presence is bringing abundant life to the hungry! Thank you to my church family in Bulgaria. Stand fast in the faith and see the glory of God revealed in greater ways in the days before you!
As members of the body of Christ our heritage and inheritance comes from a different tree than the family tree of the world. We were once people of the world and of the world system, but now we have become the children of God. As children of God we must grow in maturity to see our lives led by the Spirit of God and not the wisdom of our own hearts and minds. When we are led by God’s Spirit we take on the testimony of being sons of God. What we believe, how we act, how we respond to others, how we receive from others, how we contribute to others, how we relate to others, and how we stand with others in this life is motived by the Holy Spirit of God in our lives.
Romans 8:14-17 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father.” The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs — heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified together.
The old administration of our lives was one of the knowledge of good and the knowledge of evil. The decisions of our lives were governed by the informative input of knowledge of good and knowledge of evil in the world in which we found ourselves. We were trying to be good people, making good decisions, and living a good life as we determined it to be. Our family tree was the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thus the decisions of our lives were determined by our own assessment of what was good and what was evil. In truth, we sought to govern our own affairs, make our own decisions, and create our own worlds. We lived with others with an independent will, an independent attitude, independent actions, and we sought independent results in life. We were expressions of a kingdom unto ourselves – a kingdom of the world.
The new administration of our lives is one of life and peace in Christ Jesus. It is a different family tree. Our new heritage and inheritance comes from Jesus Christ and the Tree of Life. It is a tree of transformation, not one of information. Our decisions in life are no longer determined by the assessments of our own minds, but by the transformation of our hearts and minds that comes by the power of God’s kingdom within us. It is an internal relationship with God where we know that God is our God, we are His people, and we live together. It is internal revolution empowered by the eternal realities of righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit. We are internally activated by the Spirit of Christ to know that God loves us. We are internally motivated to love Him. We are experiencing an internal revolution of God’s glory that is significant enough to affect every area of our lives. The outward decisions, actions, and influences of our lives are a testimony that our kingdom has become a kingdom of our Lord and Christ. We are the people of God.
In order to be the people of God, we must be like Jesus. Our decisions cannot be based upon what we see and hear naturally. Our decisions must be empowered by the sevenfold Holy Spirit in and upon our lives.
Isaiah 11:1-3 There shall come forth a Rod from the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots. The Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon Him, the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord. His delight is in the fear of the Lord, and He shall not judge by the sight of His eyes, nor decide by the hearing of His ears…
The old tree has been cut down and the eternal tree of life has sprung up where the old one once ruled. We are new creations in Christ and the Holy Spirit is the anointing in and upon our lives. The Spirit of the Lord, Wisdom, Understanding, Counsel, Might, Knowing, and Fear of the Lord is the activating substance of our lives. This means, we are no longer governed as we were in the past. We do not seek to become something through the things we do, but rather do all things because of who we are in Christ. Our identity determines our strategy; our strategy does not create our identity. Natural sight is not the ruling factor of our lives. What things look like, sound like, feel like or what we think they look like, sound like, or feel like does not determine the attitude, action, or attributes of our lives.
Isaiah 11:4-5 But with righteousness He shall judge the poor, and decide with equity for the meek of the earth; He shall strike the earth with the rod of His mouth, and with the breath of His lips He shall slay the wicked. Righteousness shall be the belt of His loins, and faithfulness the belt of His waist.
The substance of who we are in Christ is enough to give life to those who lack it. We are the substance of good news to the destitute, healing to the broken hearted, liberty to the captives, an open door to freedom for the bound, restored heritage and inheritance to the enslaved, deliverance to the controlled, comfort to the mourning, clarity to the confused, beauty to the destroyed, joy to the sorrowful, and praise to the oppressed. Who we are is a testimony to who all can become! We are the people of God and our love for another is not dependent upon them loving us – it is an anointing upon our lives given to us by our Father in heaven! We are trees of righteousness; the planting of the Lord that God might be glorified!
Ted J. Hanson