Friday, April 23, 2010

Christ’s final moments at Calvary

God’s plan of redemption was accomplished in the final moments of the crucifixion when Christ stated, “It is finished”. (John 19:30) Only dimly revealed through the Law and the Prophets, the truth of the promised Messiah according to God’s plan was climatically revealed at the actual death of a Savior. The miracle of Salvation for all mankind was contained within the very sacrificial offering of Christ. What Christ gave at Calvary provided fallen man with deliverance from the bondage of sin; divine healing for the body; and an escape from Eternal Judgment in the afterlife. According to the purpose of God, Christ came down from Heaven as a man and gave his life as a ransom. The ransom He paid was His suffering and death on the cross.

• Matt 20:28…Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.

In the final moments of Calvary there was loneliness within the heart of the Christ. He was alone when the Father turned away from the sin’s of humanity that He bore in His physical body at Calvary. Christ, who was without sin, bore the punishment in His body... for the sins of humanity.

• Matthew 27:46…My God, my God why has thou forsaken me…
• 2 Corinthians 5:21…For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin;

What Christ bore on the cross was a payment to God for all humanities hopelessness, helplessness, and rejection of the truth concerning Christ. The long awaited ransom prophesied through the ages was now paid to the Father through the completed work of suffering and death on the cross. Within the death of a Savior an exchange was made for God’s Divine Judgment of putting away sin and its Eternal punishment (the unbeliever’s consequence for the sins committed in this life) that comes in the afterlife.

• Heb 9:26…For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself. And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:
• Heb 9:28…So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.

Isaiah the Prophet vividly foretold that Christ was to be like a lamb brought to the slaughter. (Isaiah 53) Innocent from birth Christ was the very Lamb of God who was without sin and spoke no guile from His mouth; however he did bare grief, sorrow, and Eternal punishment for all the sins of humanity, in His own body on the tree.

• 1 Peter 2:22-24…Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth: Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously: Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.

God’s righteous Judgment required that Christ bare punishment for the sins of humanity. In return Calvary provided deliverance for all believers in Christ first to receive a clean heart to live holy rather than unholy in this present life; and second to miss the consequence of sins Eternal Punishment for the unbeliever beyond the grave. In Christ’s final moments of human life on earth, God who does not stand present for sin, turned away from the sin’s of humanity that Christ bore in His body at Calvary. This was the reason Christ cried out, “My God, my God why has thou forsaken me”.

According to Divine Law the physical body of Christ was given as a sacrificial offering to God. For this reason, God created the spiritual body of Christ, the church as a place of security for those who trust in the shed blood of Christ alone for the forgiveness of sins. The redemptive power of Christ at Calvary is why those with faith in Him can have refuge and deliverance from sin, death, and eternal punishment. By the Grace of God Christ himself experienced death as a man so God could destroy* him who has the power of death…that is the Devil.

• Heb 2:9-10…But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man. For it became him, for whom are all things
• Heb 2:14-15…that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil;

*Divine Judgment has been granted upon the Devils existence. At the end of time in the Kingdom Age (when everything becomes Eternal as it was in the Garden of Eden) the Devil, death, and Hell are all cast into the sea of fire. Revelation 20:10-15

The redemptive work of Christ at Calvary can destroy the power of sin and death that separates man from God. The redemptive power of Calvary offers any believer a new heart and new life in Christ. What Christ did at Calvary can provide divine healing to the physical body of man. Calvary was the last part of Christ’s human life of suffering that paid the price for all humanities infirmities and sicknesses. It pleased God to bruise Him. Why? God’s plan of redemption allows every situation of every human being (since the fall of Adam) to be judged in light of the Savior’s suffering and death on the cross.

• Matt 8:17… That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias the prophet, saying, Himself took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses.
• Isa 53:3-10…He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions; he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth. He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken. And he made his grave with the wicked and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth. Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him

From the fall of Adam until Christ’s earthly ministry, men of God looked forward to a fulfillment of the promised Savior. The Savior appeared; He was then crucified to complete the plan of redemption for fallen man; and then resurrected from the grave as spoken by the Prophets. Today, He’s exalted and seated at the right hand of the Father where He resides as the head of the church, the body of Christ. Members of the body of Christ are miraculously united in the comfort and directive of the promised Holy Spirit sent down from Heaven.

We members of the body of Christ look back 2010 years ago to the place where Christ suffered and died according to the testimony of the Prophets and Apostles. We are blessed with thankfulness for the new heart received and the revelation of Christ we have through the Holy Spirit. Better yet we have a future hope that lies in the better life beyond this present evil world*. As God in the flesh,

• Christ was the Suffering Savior
• Christ was obedient unto death even the death on the cross
• Christ carried deep sorrow because of the condition of man’s heart
• Christ was Israel’s final sin offering
• Christ bore the punishment for sin in His body

• 1 Tim 2:5-6…For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.

*I am personally thankful for everything Christ did in His final hour; and the future I have with Him on the other side in Heaven. With gladness I testify to everything I know about Christ in the content of these writings. May His Spirit continue to inspire this writer’s heart and life to inspire others as I have been blessed. These writings are made in memory of Dr. Hubert Lindsey…I was able to get this writing to my mother also...before she went to Heaven. Blessed be the holy name of my Lord....Forever.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The crucifixion of self (the path to the fullness of Salvation) Pt.2

Crucifixion of the Old Man, revealed to the heart of a believer by the Holy Spirit, also deals with man’s conflicting inner and outer problems of life. It deals with a life out of harmony with the Spirit of God and out of harmony with the moral truth of the Bible. It deals with a life of holiness (living without sin) that many think cannot be achieved in this life. A believing soul longs for a deliverance from the conflict of the flesh, as the Holy Spirit reveals Calvary to the soul. Like the Spirits conviction upon the sinner…the Spirits deliverance from the bondage of sin at the new birth…the crucifixion of the Old Man is the Spirits directive that prepares a believer for an entire sanctification. Another Biblical term for the crucifixion of self is called…putting off the Old Man.

• Col 3:9…seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds;

• Eph 4:22…put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts;

• Col 2:11…in whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ

Putting off, getting away from, cutting away, circumcision, or being severed from, are all-definitive to Biblical sanctification. Here are the two sides of sanctification:

1. The human side…which is a believers crucifixion to the flesh
2. The Spirits side…which is God’s deliverance from committed sin or inherited sin

Sanctification through the Spirit gets man away from the lust of the flesh, selfishness, doubt, rejection of truth, etc. The Holy Spirit leads a believer to the crucifixion of self through the revelation of Calvary. Christ’s crucifixion reveals the crucifixion to self to the heart of a believer. The Bible confirms this by saying, “The Old man is buried in baptism”.

• Col 2:12…Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God

This baptism has no reference to immersion in water but relates to an operation of God upon the soul of a believer. After the penitent sinner believes, he is baptized by the Spirit into the body of Christ where the Spirit begins it’s ministration to the soul. The Holy Spirit testifies Calvary to the soul and thus reveals the negative side of man, which still exists in the life of a believer. The Holy Spirit ministers death to the Old Man through the Spirits baptism into the body of Christ. Without the Spirit’s baptism there is no directive in the heart of man to do right, or to be right. A believer is led to the crucifixion of the flesh by the Spirit’s baptism. When a believer dies to all that he is…he is crucified and thus…can bury the Old Man.

• Rom 6:4-5…Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death,

After the Old Man is dead and buried the Bible says we are planted in the likeness of Christ’s death. When the old life is gone the Holy Spirit takes full possession of the body, soul, and spirit. A believer’s desires are changed, his attitude is different, and all doubt is taken away as belief turns to full assurance. After sanctification the believer is renewed in the spirit of his mind. His whole life and way of thinking is renewed by the work of the Holy Spirit under the power of the Divine Grace of God.

• Eph 4:22-23…That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; And be renewed in the spirit of your mind;

Renewal takes place, after sanctification. This new part of the Christian life is built upon a life governed by the Holy Spirit and not the flesh. The believer no longer has two conflicting natures but is governed by one, which is the…divine. He is with less attachment to the weights and burdens encountered through life itself. He now has an ability to trust and depend totally on the power of a resurrected Christ. Renewal is another part of the Christian walk where the completed work of sanctification through the baptism with the Holy Ghost allows the believer to be yet a new man. The old man is dead and buried. The renewed man is made true to God because of an entire sanctification.

• Eph 4:24…And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness

After the crucifixion of the Old Man; after indwelling sin is removed; the new man becomes a …renewed man. He’s a controlled man by the Spirit of God. Calvary offers him a greater meaning of life with victory over the selfish side. The world’s influence and the lust of the flesh are now subject to a single minded and single-hearted believer. With a renewed mind the believer is not conformed to the world but rather transformed from it.

• Rom 12:1-2…I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

• Acts 2:46…And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart,

Because of the new man that’s put on and the renewal of the Spirit this man can prove from the heart what is the good, acceptable, and perfect will of God. His will has been changed. The revelation of Calvary has become even more vivid as his consciousness to the Holy Spirit reveals more of Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection to the heart. The flesh is no longer in control of the believer’s physical body. Since the flesh no longer governs the physical part of man the Spirit of God gives him the power and strength to keep the deeds of the body mortified.

• Rom 8:9… But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.

• Rom 8:13…For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.

Old Testament prophecy concerning the Indwelling Spirit pointed to the fact that God would take away the heart of stone. A renewed man does not war after the flesh. His conflict has been removed. The struggle has been taken away. A renewed believer is mentally and physically controlled by the Indwelling Spirit.

• Ezek 36:26-27…A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh. And I will put my spirit within you

• Gal 5:16…Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.

• Rom 8:11…But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.

Religion does not offer this kind of power and truth. Worldly teachers do not teach this form of doctrine but, “The Bible does…and the Holy Spirit does”. This Biblical truth cut’s deep into the soul…but yields fruit produced by the Spirit of God. It’s a fruit that offers moral victory through Jesus rather than defeat from the Old Man. It’s a fruit that gets people to heaven by having victory over self. All that’s required is death to the Old Man. When self is crucified and buried the struggle is taken away. The Spirit’s adoption allows the renewed heart of the believer to rejoice seven days a week, 365 days a year. Not just in church on Sunday. With much gratitude toward the Holy Spirits witness the renewed heart of a child of God will cry daily, “Abba Father”.

• Rom 8:15…For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.…The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:

"True Life in Christ"... is found by death to the Old man… Hubert T. Lindsey

Monday, April 19, 2010

The crucifixion of self (the path to the fullness of Salvation)

There are two crucifixions spoken of in the Bible. First is the crucifixion of Christ at Calvary that every man is familiar with. The second is a crucifixion that pertains to self or what the Bible calls the “Old Man”. The crucifixion of the Old Man is a part of the Spirit’s sanctification that gets the believer away from the …I…me…and mine…part of life, to a better life that comes through the fullness of the Indwelling Spirit. The Old Man is a great hindrance to a life in the Spirit. Both the Holy Spirit and the Word of God agree on the fact that a believer can…crucify the lusts flesh.

• Gal 2:20-21…I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. I do not frustrate the grace of God

• Gal 5:24-25…And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.

Crucifixion of the old man is an actual Christian experience of putting away selfish lusts in effort to obtain a totally surrendered life to Christ. This is perhaps one of the greatest blessings a Christian can receive in this life pertaining to the fullness of Salvation. Crucifixion leads to a life of full contentment in the Spirit without the conflict of the flesh. Unfortunately the crucifixion of self is often hindered, dodged, or misunderstood throughout many believers’ courses of life. One reason for this is because it’s not taught or encouraged from behind the pulpits today. By not being taught, it allows very few to hear of, or realize the great worth of…death to the old man. This has caused many to miss the fullness of the Spirit’s work in the life of a believer. Crucifixion of the flesh gets the believer away from the self controlled life, to a completed life in Christ controlled by the Spirit of God.

• Gal 5:16-17…This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.

Lack of knowledge or wrong indoctrination concerning the crucifixion of self can sway a believer’s life in the Spirit. Selfish inclinations like doubt and rejection of truth can also sway him. A child of God must understand, “its Calvary and the Holy Spirit’s witness that draws all believers to the crucifixion of the old man”. Crucifixion of the old man is a Gods way of purging the believer from worldly lusts, or earthly things which are not sin that attach to selfish side of man. Unfortunately some believers never experience this part of the Christian walk until their final hours. However, when the flesh is mortified the fullness of the Holy Spirit comes in and takes full possession of a part of man that self once governed. A crucified man is… dead…to the old man.

• Col 3:1-5…If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory. Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth;

Crucifixion of the flesh is a believer’s path to receive the fullness of the Indwelling Spirit. A believer must realize that all of self must be emptied out before the Holy Spirit can fill him. After a believer dies to the old man, sanctification through the Indwelling Spirit thus destroys the inherited body of sin not dealt with at the new birth. This inherited nature is the selfish side of man that a believer is unable to get rid of through forgiveness from God or confession of sin. When the believer realizes that a conflicting helplessness exists and surrenders it totally to Christ, the sanctifying power of the Holy Ghost destroys and purifies that soul from a fallen condition.

• Rom 6:6…Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.

Crucifixion of the flesh does not take place at the new birth as many think. Crucifixion takes place after a believer experiences Salvation of the soul, where the Holy Spirit changes a man’s desires, affections, interests, motives, habits, etc. These functions within the make-up of man are swayed by the power of the Holy Spirit’s witness and lead him to the crucifixion of self. Remember after the new birth, self’s natural inclination begins to conflict with the Holy Spirit’s witness! Crucifixion or death to the old man gets the believer away from this inner struggle however; human struggle is not limited to an inner struggle only.

There are three types of struggle that man deals with:

1. Man struggles to obtain salvation by works rather than by Divine Grace
2. An inner struggle between the flesh and the Spirit; a war within the members of a believer
3. Man struggles with outer circumstances such as the problems of life; and attachments to the world that can pull the believer away from Christ

God reveals to all believers the need for a crucifixion to self. Self takes man away from the things of the Spirit of God. Self is wrapped up in…I, me, and mine. Self pays little attention to Christ. Self attaches easily to things of the world.

In the new birth a believer begins his separation from self through a union made with the Spirit of God. Calvary thus becomes a revelation to the heart of a believer through the Holy Spirit’s witness. Calvary reveals the negative side of man by revealing to him what he is in the presence of a Saviors love, mercy, and goodness. When man sees himself in light of Calvary he realizes more of his own helplessness and inability to obtain Grace by works. Calvary shows man how to get away from…self. The Holy Spirit urges the selfish side of a believer to die through the power and glory…of Calvary.

• 1 Cor 1:18…For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.

• 2 Cor 4:6...For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

Crucifixion of self is the path to an entirely sanctified life. After conversion the Holy Spirit leads a believer to the crucifixion of self where man is shown how to die to an old part of himself that is in direct opposition to the power of the Holy Ghost. Unlike a selfish man, a crucified man desires the fullness of the Spirit of God without self-sufficiency. He becomes a surrendered man with a Spirit given desire to be right in light of a Savior. His conscience is purged by the Holy Spirit. A crucified man delights in obedience to God. He confirms the moral holiness of the Bible by the Spirits directive. He never uses the Bible to condone sin. He is ashamed of disobedience to God because of memories from the past life.

• 2 Cor 10:6…And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.

• Rom 6:21…What fruit had ye then in those things whereof ye are now ashamed?

After the believer lays down the old life and empties from all that he was; the Holy Spirit in sanctifying power is then able to destroy the inherited Adamic nature and take full possession of mans being…body, soul, and spirit. As the Holy Spirit takes full possession of mans physical being, the inner evidence of this sanctifying power is the believer’s victory over indwelling sin; which is the holy heart and holy life in subjection to God…without sin or struggle. Speaking in unknown tongues becomes an outer evidence of this work which shows that Christ controls the anatomy of a believer from the Throne Room. (1 Corinthians 12:1-12). This Divine operation comes through Christ’s baptism with the Holy Ghost and fire the same as the Apostles received at Pentecost. It is a completed work of sanctification through the Spirit that follows the crucifixion of the old man in the life of a believer.

• Rom 6:6…Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed,

• 1 Thess 5:23-24…And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it.