By Fred Pruitt
Continuing from Part Three
Here’s what I see in a nutshell. You have seen the truth of Who you are, but seem to me to still see “Christ in you” in the old way. You still seem to be looking to the flesh, an outer appearance — for a “focus,” for some graspable “evidence” to your outer mind that you are “focused” and living Christ in you. This isn’t something you “do” by your right focus, or maybe right believing, right way to see, etc. You basically “believe” you are Christ as you when you have the sense of it, but when you no longer have the “sense” then you no longer “believe.” That’s what I get from what you have written. That’s mental or conceptual belief maybe, and we all start there, so that is not wrong, but it’s now time to move on from that into the faith OF God — Galatians 2:20 faith.
What happens is I take a look at my attitude at the moment. I judge myself as to whether or not I am acting and thinking as Christ, whether or not my consciousness is indeed moved or inspired by the Spirit of God.
Wow, you’re pretty smart if you can always get that right.
It’s one thing to HAVE the mind of Christ and another to LET this mind be in you. I use the Word of God as a measuring tool so to speak, that Word being engraved in my heart. I know when I’m not letting Christ do my thinking. It is not that I totally cease to believe that I HAVE the mind of Christ but rather I cease LETTING Christ be my mind.
Well, sounds like you’re the guy in charge. God has all this stuff available, but you’ve just got to do the letting and the evaluating. Only thing is, you’re not always good at the letting part and not necessarily too accurate on the evaluating part, even though God is perfect in the part He provides. Tough luck! That’s the way the law is. A contract between unequal parties. However, when you have died, you cease to do anything, and then the Lord in you does all the stuff. Most people think that’s too good to be true, God helps those who help themselves and so on. It’s presumptuous, etc. Will God hold us up if we step out into the nothingness of Him only?
The will of the flesh seems to be the culprit.
I got tired of having a separate will from God so now my will is just His. Another one of his gifts. It’s like He says, “Hey, want my will to be your will? Take it, it’s yours!” (Jn 4:34 — can you believe it for yourself as it is offered?)
Galatians 2:20 faith, as I am meaning it, is as the scripture (at least in KJV) says, the “faith OF the Son of God.” All “faith” is, in its most basic definition, is putting trust in “something.” You put trust in a chair to hold you, even before you actually sit in the chair. You exhibit your faith that it will hold you — but not experiential knowledge — when you first sit on the chair, by your act of committal to sit in the chair. Then you trust, in effect, the chair itself to hold you, as the “object” of your faith. When the chair holds you, then the chair in a sense sends you back “knowledge” or a witness that you are held (by virtue of the fact you don’t fall on your butt), and you thus are taken, or upheld, by the object of your faith — the chair. So then faith has a “law” which is this: “what you take takes you.” Norman Grubb first said that to me, and I think he got it from somebody else.
I’m not sure I understand what you mean by the faith OF the Son of God, with the emphasis on ‘of’. To me “OF” means we’re talking about the Jesus’ faith, the faith that He has and that is intrinsic to Him. So, in the case of Galatians 2:20, the life I live, I live because Jesus’ faith is giving me life. When Jesus set His face like flint to go to Jerusalem knowing that he was to be crucified, Jesus’ faith also determined that it would be He who would dwell in us believers by the Spirit. Jesus was willing to go to the cross on our behalf as He was looking (by faith) to the result that we would be indwelt by Him. The fact that Jesus’ faith is the all true and all powerful faith has brought about in us the New Life, so we live by the faith OF the Son of God. I believe that though we as humans have human faith after the image of God, the faith that will do the works that Jesus did is the faith OF Jesus which is now IN us and is quite capable, yea unstoppable, to perform the miracles that He would have us manifest in the earth today. Our faith comes into play as we recognize and agree with His truth and faith and offer our hands, feet and mouths to be instruments of His righteousness.
What I’m talking about is something else beside. You are still talking out of being a separate person alone, which you are not and never have been. We have always been in a union, either with the spirit of error, whose lusts we did, or the spirit of truth, whose righteousness He now fulfills by us, but never just ourselves alone. When you realize Christ and you are joined as one person as 1 Cor 6:17 says (spirit being self), then what we do we realize is He doing it — so that my having faith is really faith out of His identity, His reality, Himself, in me, manifesting in through and as — me!
If in the illustration of the chair you mean that we trust in Jesus’ faith within when we in fact act upon that trust, and allow His faith to take over within our consciousness and our words and action, then I think I’m with you. Or do you mean to say something different?
Well, yes and no. You and He are one. One person. You keep talking about Christ and you as if you were separate. You are not the same, you the created human, He the uncreated eternal divine, (in His office in the Godhead), and yet He has come into you to indwell you and be “you.”
Therefore, when we operate His faith it is really He in us operating His faith as us. No, I really don’t think about “allowing” Him to take over anything in me, since the day I realized I had died and risen again with Him and that Jesus’ prayer in John 17 was fulfilled in me, not because of anything I had done but because the Father had answered Jesus’ prayer, so that the same oneness of selves that He was with the Father and the Spirit, is the same oneness of selves in which we live and eternally abide in Him. One day I believed it as real in me, by the Spirit’s revelation, through faith, and it would be funny from this perspective to be “allowing” Him to take over since I live “taken over” so to speak. It’s a done deal. I go to sleep taken over. I wake up taken over. I live taken over. I am a slave of God and slaves have little choice about doing the will of their master. I have to struggle to get OUT of Him, not to stay in Him. That’s because HE KEEPS ME, and I don’t do anything to keep myself. Everything I tried over years and years did not work, until I knew His permanent keeping.
That’s a simple analogy to demonstrate one of the deepest truths there is. You DO make your committal, your “choice,” (and you find later that even that is a gift of grace but we won’t get into that now), but your act of committing is very minor compared to the act of the chair holding you up. The object of the exercise isn’t really to get you to make the commitment to sit in the chair and to make the committment (choice) the point, but to actually SIT in the chair and thus be upheld.
Do you also mean, in other words, to actually step aside, sit down upon, or allow Jesus’ faith to perform its Power as it gives new life to us and new consciousness and performs the works of God?
And that’s how it is in this total faith of God. We lose ourselves to find ourselves. What sacrifice, what loss, is it to “believe” when it looks or feels like I am Christ living? Anybody can do that. It’s like anybody can “love” his friends. But Who can love his enemies?
To have my life hid in Christ instead of Christ’s life hid in me! That I understand. That is what I am pursuing, but beyond momentary manifestation into constancy.
The constancy you discover within, not in outer things and manifestations. Where God is in His actuality. He is the Eternal, and you learn to live in Him in the “secret place of the Most High” and from there life flows – and it is IN YOU. It isn’t an actual “place” but rather a realization through faith and a knowing of the Spirit that God gives. There is NO constancy in the visible world. It is temporal, which means everything is temporary. It is fleeting. It’s like a merry-go-round at all times, the scene changing every split second. You learn to find the Eternal which is THE REAL behind the temporal which is real, but only temporally so. You learn to “judge” from that perspective rather than from temporary appearances. From that perspective you change from Elisha’s servant to Elisha. (2 Kings 6:15-17).
Only God. Which means God Himself is the “object” of our faith, which means, if the law holds true that “what you take takes you” (and I have found that that law does hold true always), then in the faith of God (where HE ONLY is the “object” of our faith) we plunge into the invisible where there is no evidence to sight, to our senses, our ears, or our minds, falling headlong on past any accusing evidence of the flesh or appearances, ignoring the many judging or accusing voices we hear in our head or out in the world, to stand in the faith of God which cannot operate except in the nothingness of the flesh — i.e. our humanity — and we begin to believe that this “object” of our faith (committal faculty) — GOD HIMSELF — is the only means by which we are upheld and by whom we even consist in the present moment, so that He is now recognized in truth within us as All, in all.
I believe I’m with you here. Just calling to mind what you have written above moves me into the Union. Here comes the ‘but’ :– Later today I have to tend to the mundane affairs of paying bills. I know that while I am going through with the mechanics of opening envelops, writing checks, adding and subtracting, etc., I am Christ in truth, BUT I will be putting my consciousness and thoughts on other things. I could take breaks and remind myself of my Real being, pray for the needed finances, determine to give offerings, etc., BUT my thoughts will return from the mind of Christ to the mind of Doug. However, even as I am writing this I can see myself as Christ, keying in the data and living the mundane mechanics of human life. And perhaps that is what you are saying. Certainly God foreknew today’s business demands on my life from before the foundation of the world.
The “mind of Christ” uses the “mind of Doug” as its house to live in and express the righteousness of God through, in, and as, your humanity. Why do you see those “mundane” things as something lesser? Why wouldn’t God busy Himself with doing those things? Don’t you think He would grill burgers with you in the backyard and that would be the most wonderful praise session of all time, even if all you talked about was baseball? Wouldn’t He have yelled and cheered for the Nazareth Hilltoppers when they played the Capernaum Fullnets?
I think you’ve got the wrong idea about “putting your consciousness” on Christ. I think you’re seeing it like some mental exercise or method of concentration. But God doesn’t live in the realms of mental exercises. That’s what we call “the flesh,” or human self-efforts. We don’t improve ourselves. We don’t improve something that has died. What comes out of us by His grace is Himself as He pleases, not “according to our understanding,” but according to His will which He works in us for His good pleasure. (Phil 2:13).
We cannot conjure Him up by some attempt at self mind control, or some method of concentration, or by a repetition of phrases or affirmations, etc. That’s what “the heathens” do. HE IS, and we learn that we “live and move and have our being (existence) in Him.” THIS is something that IS, not something we whump up.
God is resistent to our efforts to train ourselves to be like him, but when we in futility and failure by God’s grace shed such a notion, we find Him more gracious and giving than we ever knew before, because we’d always thought at least subconsciously that we had to earn our grace and our acceptance and our blessing. And since we really couldn’t give ourselves a break, then we thought God couldn’t give us a break either.
But one day that all crashed down to the ground, because even though we had weighed ourselves and found ourselves lacking, all of which we found out through sorrow, suddenly there was One over to the side who did not nod his head with a critical “aha” when we spoke of our deep poverty and nothingness, but whose face only reflected favor and friendliness. ”Rest in me,” He says, “and I will be your Life.”
One day, a long time ago when I was contemplating all these things even as you are contemplating them now, I had a thought about Jesus’ promise to the woman at the well. “But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.”
This came to me after my first involvement in a ministry in the Lord, through the 70s, went sour, and my Christian “experience,” which had started out in bubbling joy and liberating freedom, had turned in seven years to drudgery and fear. Long story, but after getting out of that my wife and I were hurt and struggling and I began to get wind of the liberation of Christ in me.
I remember one of the first things that occurred to me was that I had no conscious connection anymore with Jesus’ word to the woman at the well, that drinking His water would quench her thirst forever, that she would nevermore thirst.
I thought, “Well, all I do is thirst. I thirst for God, thirst for His kingdom, thirst to see His manifestation.” But there I saw Jesus saying His water would quench that thirst. How could that be? My first inklings of an answer came when I saw He Himself was an inner well of water that sprang up out of me, by His life and power and will, and that well never ran dry and inwardly I began to know from that day that He was my permanently abiding inner sufficiency, always present, always accomplishing His purposes. I was a babe in it, and as Jesus our forerunner did, I “grew in wisdom and stature” and we all do, since this isn’t something special to me, but common to all God’s beloveds.
My thinking is this: I need to translate living Christ, with me hidden within Him, to doing the works of ministry and healing my friend. I can ask for whatsoever and He will do it; that’s His promise. Do you agree?
Yes, He gives you the desires of your heart. Again I say, over and over and over, get settled in that you are not yourself alone, but Christ in you living in a union of selves with you. Your “you” is “He” expressed as “you.” That can make no sense to human reason but makes sense by the Spirit.
The first statement above in this paragraph, outside the reality of union, is impossible for you. “I need to translate Christ ….” is not part of the realm of that which is within your purview. Even the thought, “now that I know union, therefore I can [fill in the blank] …” is not the truth. NOW that we know union, we learn to the uttermost we do nothing. Until we can do nothing we cannot do anything. And we learn, that when we finally do end up getting to do anything by the will of the Father, it turns out it’s Him doing it. Not only that, we’re still a clay pot — an earthen vessel. And we’re still weak!
We still are in the dark about a bunch of stuff, and still appear (in my case) as the same old stumbly-bumbly guy we’ve been all our lives! But we have found out something more than that, in having been content to be a clay pot and do nothing but tend sheep in the desert, lo and behold — a Treasure can be seen! A bush burning on a mountain we hadn’t noticed before. And we go up on the mountain, surprised that after all this time the Presence has come and remembered us, and we find in the realization of that Presence we discover we’re the common bush that is on fire with the Fire of God, that whatever we thought we could accomplish 40 years ago we’ve long since realized we have no ability, wisdom nor power to do, and in that moment the Presence says “I will be all that in you, even though you will still be as weak and unwise as you have always been, that you might know, and that they might know, that I AM the Lord and no other.”
And in accepting our weakness, we find strength not our own but appears in the midst as if it is ours. Moses wanted to deliver the children of Israel and thought he had started the ball rolling with killing the one Egyptian. Had to flee into the desert and do nothing but MUNDANE stuff, tending sheep, for forty years. Whose timetable was that? Moses? I think not. It was God’s! And what had Moses learned in 40 years? That he couldn’t do anything. THEN he was ready for his commission, which was fulfilled in weakness from the burning bush to Mount Nebo. You are SO worried about fulfilling “works,” but what is the problem of resting in faith until the Father “gives” you the works He’s ordained for you to walk in from the foundation of the earth? Since He’s gone to all that trouble, don’t you think He’ll see to it you not only get the message of what they will be, but also He’ll see to it that He fufills those works by you, since, by the way, from the foundation of the earth they were ordained good works for you to walk in, with Him as you! So they’re His works, too!
Remember the spies. The 10 who did not enter were not refused because of their behavior, but only because of unbelief. God said, “Go into the Promised Land” and they said, “No, because the giants might get us.” Kind of like, “I know I’m in union, but I might get road rage.” That person doesn’t really believe the government is upon HIS shoulders, and not his own. The 10 spies had faith, but only in themselves and in their abilities, forgetting all that God had done, and not believing God. “To the pure thou wilt show thyself as pure, to the froward thou wilt show thyself froward.”
Result? Perishing in the wilderness. But, as Hebrews says, we see better things than that, because we are not of those who fall back into unbelief!]
Consider what it means for God to be the ALL in the all that we are, and that, like the Son to whom we have been made conformable according to His word and HIS working, we find we do NOTHING of ourselves. NOTHING. We lose our “own” will, our sense of being able to judge good and evil, our ability to be responsible and somehow “keep ourselves,” even down to losing our very selves, in saying this simple thing: “I live, yet not I, but Christ liveth in me.” This is not a mathematical formula where you have a certain percentage of the equation, and God is a certain percentage of the equation. This is instead the heavenly economy, that says we are nothing in ourselves, that “no good thing” dwells in us, that we have no virtue of our own, that we have died and now live purchased by His precious blood and our life is not our own anymore forever, but that we now live unto him.
This is something HE DOES, and He gives us the witness within us that He IS now our very reality in every fiber. The solution to the Galatians 2:20 equation is this: God does ALL.
End Part Four