Blog In Audio:
Yesterday we had an outdoor gathering of ALife Church. It was good to see some faces that we haven’t been able to see for some time. We look forward to the day of increased gathering together. The restraints of the present time are not the end of the story. God is going to make a way where there seems to be no way.
As I consider the present situation in the earth I am stirred in my spirit to remind us of the greatness of our mandate and destiny in Christ. We are the body of Christ, not individuals unto ourselves. Right now there are distracting spirits at work to thwart who we are in Christ. We are the people of God and that is a corporate identity, testimony, and purpose. We cannot live for ourselves and think that we are fulfilling our purpose in life. We cannot live for the purposes of the world and think that we are fulfilling our true purpose in life. As the people of God we are led by the Spirit of God, not the spirit of the world. The world is under the sway of the wicked one. That doesn’t mean that God hates them. It means they are confused as to who God is and therefore they are also confused as to who they are really meant to be. If we succumb to the agendas of the world we are also submitting ourselves to the sway of a wicked agenda. This will cause us to have misconceptions of who God is and who we are. The result will be a self-seeking, self-inspired, and self-oriented direction in life.
1 John 5:19 We know that we are of God, and the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one. 20 And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us an understanding, that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life. 21 Little children, keep yourselves from idols. Amen.
The way of the world is a way of deception. Wherever there is a dry place, there must be a devil. God subjected the serpent to crawl on his belly in the dust. When our hearts are dead to God, we become a place where deceiving, conflicting, and devouring spirits must rest. God subjected the earth to this futility in the hope of all becoming sons and daughters of God who are led by His Spirit. Only God’s Spirit can transform the dry and barren places of our lives to become a watered garden of God’s life-giving presence. Only the Lord who gives life can expel the things that rest in the dry places of our hearts. It is the Spirit of the Lord that makes us come alive!
Ephesians 2:1 And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins, 2 in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience, 3 among whom also we all once conducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, just as the others.
It is disobedience to live our lives for our own identity, testimony, and purpose. To live for ourselves is to live for a consequence of missing the mark of true life in Christ. When mankind lives for their own agendas it results in the consequence of wrath they place upon themselves by not coming to the place of God’s grace. God is love and to live apart from Him is to live for something less than true love and life. God has called us all to be the people of God and to live for the corporate identity of the family of God. That means that each of us are part of a greater testimony than our own personal testimony. Our purpose is greater than living for ourselves. It is living to be the community of God that invites all to find their part in the corporate expression of Christ.
Hebrews 10:19 Therefore, brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus, 20 by a new and living way which He consecrated for us, through the veil, that is, His flesh, 21 and having a High Priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. 23 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, 25 not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.
These verses describe the greater purpose of humanity. Jesus gave His life so that we could be a part of His house. He gave His life so that we could live our lives in the hope of His calling, the testimony of His inheritance, and the purpose of His life in all things. The Holiest place is to be a part of the corporate dwelling presence of God. It is to live as a member of the body of Christ and not a body of self. As I approach this topic, please consider the greater destiny of your life. This is not a time to be distracted, divided, or disconnected from our purpose in Christ. Look for creative ways to focus on God’s will, be united with God and one another in your testimony and be connected to God and one another in His purpose in all things. The enemy has formed weapons against this, but by God’s Word and Spirit we can become sons and daughters of God who live for our true identity, testimony, and purpose in life.
Ted J. Hanson