By Fred Pruitt
A Full Share in Sonship
We become co-heirs with Christ. To say the least that’s a pretty big inheritance, and we share fully in it. We operate no more as servants in the house, always having to remember the rules and working continuously for our keep, but now as full sons with all the rights of sons, to whom the total inheritance is given, we make full use of the possessions of the Father which are now ours in Christ.
And we could only be fully sons by being One person with The Son, even as He is One with the Father, so that in His union with the Father and the Spirit we are One in and with the Father, Son, and Spirit as well: They in us, we in Them. (John 17:21-23)
In this union reality there is no more confusing separation of wills, because we have forever found the One will expressed individually in each of us who are called by His name. And in this oneness, we live no longer under the law – it speaks to us no more. Now instead we live in freedom and spontaneity through the grace that works in us, which is unveiled access into the Father through the Son, receiving revelation and empowerment in the Spirit, in Whom we walk continuously by His continuous keeping (1 Pet 1:5).
Contrary to what we have mostly been taught, this life in union with Christ is not something that we have to pump up everyday. It is instead a perpetual living reality, which flows out of us continuously because we have discovered the inner spring in us, always bubbling up to overflowing with the Life of Christ, as Jesus promised the woman at the well. He told her that if she drank the water He gave her, she would never thirst again. When we discover that well in us, we, too, never thirst again. We go to bed and it is flowing as we fall asleep, and we wake up and it is still flowing. It flows throughout all the day in all we do, and not just for our benefit. He is an unfailing a stream of blessing and light, filling the world with Christ through and as us funny-looking and funny-acting bunch of scalawags.
So we are now the dwelling place of the Son who is over His own house. What does it mean to be the house of the Son? When it says we are His house, it means that the whole of us is His house, i.e., all that is us, He lives in. He does not come into just part of us, or someplace in us side-by-side with us. He takes possession of the whole house as soon as we ask him to do so. The whole house is all that we are, spirit, soul and body. This whole person that we are, becomes the house in which He lives and expresses His life. What kind of half-baked divine indwelling would that be, for the Lord to come only into part of us, when in the very beginning didn’t we ask Him into our hearts, our innermost selves and place of deepest intimacy? We had no clue what we were asking, but He knew, since He instigated the prayer, and not we ourselves. “No man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost.” (1 Cor 12:3).
Don’t we think that He, the Lord of all, would not take possession of the whole house that we are, since we are His and He has bought us with a dear dear price. His intent from the beginning to was to take possession of His own house and to dwell in it “I will dwell in them and walk in them, and be their God.” (2 Cor 6:16)
Some might say, “Well, He won’t force Himself on us,” and I would certainly agree, but faith says that if we have invited Him in and to take over, which is surely the heart’s cry of millions of God’s people, then HE HAS ANSWERED that prayer. We don’t have to keep asking the same things over and over and over. Does He not tell us to believe that we HAVE RECEIVED the things we have prayed for? For years I prayed He would fully reveal Himself in me. One day the Spirit answered, “When are you going to believe that I have?”
But back to this one central point. And that is that at the heart of everything, is the “I” that we are, and right there, in that “I,” THAT is where we are ONE with God. Our “I” has now been made one with “I AM.” He inhabits our “I” to express His “I.” It is our “I” – indeed the whole of our humanity, whatever and however we describe ourselves –spirit, soul, and body – that He has come to fill with Himself, and to be the doer of all in everything that we are, as our total All in all. He is not some nebulous “Christ in us” that exists in us as some sort of battery if we can figure out how to hook up the poles correctly, (which is how I used to view the Holy Spirit in my earliest Charismatic days), but He who has become “one spirit” (one person) with us in deepest love and intimacy.
Do we think Jesus endured the Cross and the depths of horrific darkness, just to leave the whole shebang up to our faulty little dim selves to get it right and operate this thing correctly? We can fall into His arms, ceasing from our self-labors, and see if the everlasting arms don’t bear us up. We can relax in Him, and come out of the boat; we can step out on the water, and if in our little faith we fear we’ll sink, does He not take us up? “My yoke is easy, my burden is light.”
As the Hebrews writer said, let us enter into the rest of God, where we find continually, “The Father that dwelleth in me, He doeth the works.” That’s where we find our sabbath rest, when we cease from our own works, as even God did from His. (Heb 4:10)
“What must we do to work the works of God? they asked. And this is the work of God, that ye believe on Him whom He hath sent.” (John 6:29)
How do I “do” this? Simple faith, simple agreement with God, as God has revealed Himself in us. God is continually giving us a gift, and all we have to do is receive it by faith. It is the gift of knowing that we ARE NOW one person with Him, so that we living in the world is He living in the world, so that we talking is He talking, so that we loving is He loving, so that we willing is He willing. “As He is, so are we in THIS world.” (I Jn 4:17).
Galatians 2:20 is not an academic problem or formula to work out, but something to take as absolutely literal fact about ourselves in the present moment, without further explanations, definitions or analysis. We believe Him in a simple acceptance!
If we are in Christ, then we have been crucified with Christ. This is a fact! We did nothing to make it happen. We have been crucified with Christ, period. We don’t attain to this; we don’t work at it; we don’t practice it; we simply take it by faith and believe God that it is so.
This is Jesus’ accomplishment, and we are the fruit of His labor! He did it! He made it happen. “This is the Lord’s doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes!”
Likewise, “Nevertheless I live, yet not I, but Christ liveth in me,” is also literally true in us in this present moment. This is not something we figure out beforehand, like a mathematical formula, what the correct quantities of this and that are, in order to make the formula work. This is a reality which is ongoing in us in Christ, and we trust God that it is so, that He is the one who causes its reality, not by anything we do. We rest in His performance of His life in us, and leave it to Him to give us increasing understanding of Himself in us.
Again, this is something the Lord does, not something we conjure up by right formulas or correctness of words. The Holy Spirit is the One Who testifies of Christ in us, who reveals Christ, and it is not by our rational mind that we comprehend the things of God. The things of God cannot be fully understood in a 1-2-3 logical way as we know the things of this world. Only God can reveal Himself, and He unveils Himself by the Holy Spirit in our spirits, and not necessarily in a way we can or will understand with our conscious minds. But somehow we just “know,” and it is a solid knowing and nothing can shake us from it, even as we know, without any possibility of proof, that we are born again. “He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself” (1 Jn 5:10).
So we take nothing less. We take nothing less than the total God expressing Himself in His totality in our lives totally perfectly. This isn’t the old admonition from the preacher in church getting us to rededicate one more time, resolving again to do better for God. We find instead that this is what God has “apprehended” us for, for Him to find in our inner nothingness, the riverbed through which His water of life might flow out into the world. And we see Him living not just “in” us as some separate entity in us, but living as the very “I” that I am, He having put us on as we have put Him on, He in us, we in Him, walking in the rest and peace of the Lord. Our hands are expressing His hands, our eyes His eyes, our feet His feet. Isn’t that what every Christian prays for? Let us then believe He has answered our prayers, and that what Paul said is true not just for Paul, but for us right now in this present moment: “For me to live is Christ.”
We are then living in a “truly free will,” a will that seeks to go out of itself to give and expend itself for others, that seeks not for itself, to elevate or promote itself, but only to give the life that it knows in itself out to the whole world.