Living by Christ’s Indwelling Life


The link below is an audio file by Frank Viola speaking to an organic church. I highly recommend listening to this. This really is a life-changing message. The focus is not on being “saved” from your sins, imitating Jesus, pleasing God, doing evangelism or ministry, or being “baptized by the Holy Spirit”.

The focus of this message is on how we can actually live our life through the presence and power of Christ’s divine life that dwells in His believers, based on what Jesus taught and modeled for us as He lives by His Father’s life.

You probably haven’t heard a message like this before.

Listen here.       Subscribe to iTunes podcast here. 

What are your thoughts and reflections on this message?  Is this different than most mainstream Christian teaching today?

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Hebrews 13 Paraphrased


Submitted by: CW

God to His Son’s Bride,
 
If you experience difficulties, pain, shame or  humiliation because of me, ”I’ve got you covered” said God .  Remember, Jesus is your Helper. You should not fear.  What can mortal man do to you?  (Ps 118:6.)  Remember, Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. Remember, I am your Father and I am doing everything possible to make you complete in every good work to do My will, working in you what is well pleasing in My sight, through Jesus Christ.  I am  preparing YOU,  Jesus’ Bride for the upcoming marriage celebration.  So hang tight and do not give up.  Remember all who have worked and are working to make sure this wedding celebration goes off without a hitch.  They had suffered humiliation, physical abuse and have gone without many comforts for the sake of Christ and his Bride.  You are their responsibility.  Give them a reason to rejoice when they are asked to give an account of their conduct. 
 
Jesus to His Bride,
 
My Beloved, you are so beautiful and precious to Me.  I have known of your beauty in eternity past.  I have seen what you have done and still I choose you to be My Bride.  I have suffered pain, humiliation and shame to return you to Me, because I LOVE YOU.  I have placed people amoung you to protect and guide you.  They are there to help you remember that you are My Bride.  They suffer much for Me and for you. So do not forget them and treat well.  I am your Groom.  I will protect you, perfect you, and never leave you.  Remember, you are betrothed.  Please, My Beloved, I exhort you: do not defile our marriage bed by sleeping with the world.  Remember, this is not our home.  I am preparing our home as we speak.  While you are waiting for Me, remember how you are to conduct yourselves so that people will know that you are all Mine.  For I am proud of you.  I love and long for you always, your Groom, Jesus.

What new insight does this give you into Hebrews 13?  What would you add?


Who is Jesus Christ?


From Michael at Blogging for Jesus…

Click here.


Dying to Live


And Jesus answered them, saying, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified.  Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.  He who loves his life loses it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it to life eternal.”      — John 12:23-25

We tend to be pretty scared of death.  Many people worry about how their life will end.  And that’s the fear – coming to the end.  From a physical perspective, death is a pretty scary thing.  Endings usually are.

Jesus said that someone who loves their life will lose it.  I think this is more than being willing to die physically.  I believe Jesus is talking about a spiritual sort of death, where death is brought to the things that stand between His life living in us.  Selfishness, self-centeredness, pride, jealousy, fear, worry.  Living by His life will bring these things to their end.

And here is the beauty of this kind of death: it is not an end, but a beginning.  Each time a piece of our fallen self dies, a new life sets forth.  Christ’s life is expressed more fully in and through us.  Christ Himself is the fruit of our dying.

We die to ourselves by putting on Christ.  We put on Christ when we live by His indwelling life.  The focus is not on the dying, but on Him!

21 Since you have heard about Jesus and have learned the truth that comes from him, 22 throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception. 23 Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. 24 Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy.  Ephesians 4:21-24

Jesus Christ is our new nature!


Christ and the Church


The attached article from Frank Viola reveals 14 illustrations of Christ and the church in the New Testament.  It’s a very enlightening and challenging read.

Click here to read the article on the Reimagining Church blog.


Don’t Be Surprised…


12 Dear friends, do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though something strange were happening to you. 13 But rejoice that you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed. 14 If you are insulted because of the name of Christ, you are blessed, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests on you. 1 Peter 4:12-14


The Eternal Dance


There’s an Irish hymn called Lord of the Dance.  It’s sung to the tune of Simple Gifts (tis a gift to be simple, tis a gift to be free…).  But why write a hymn about dancing?  I think it is because dancing is always linked to life.  We don’t dance at funerals; we dance at weddings.  We dance to celebrate.  We dance after a victory.  Living with the Lord’s indwelling life and in the community of the ekklesia is like a never-ending, life-giving dance with the creator of the cosmos, entwined together for eternity!  The chorus of the song goes like this:

Dance, dance wherever you may be,

I am the Lord of the Dance, said he.

And I’ll lead you all wherever you may be,

and I’ll lead you all in the dance, said he.



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