Transcript of a talk by Fred Pruitt, given March 29, 2010, in Leawood KS.
Going a little further … we’ll see how things go. I just wanted to go over a few scriptures this evening. Boyd kind of touched on it. When we travel together we give each other’s talks every other night. So (laughter) … he says what I say, I say what he says.
I was thinking about Abraham, and Boyd spoke a lot about the Seed of Christ. And this afternoon, we went over to Topeka and had lunch with some people. One of our friends, that had gotten these people together, our friend Mary who we’ve known for many years – she made a statement, “We are Christ living in the world.” I think that’s kind of foreign – those kinds of statements can be foreign to some ears. It sounds, “too much!” Some people say it’s prideful, some say it’s blasphemous, because we’re not Him.
And yet, I think that is exactly why He came. He came to reproduce Himself! That’s what it says in Genesis. We’re made in the image of God. That’s what that means – that we’re to express God. That’s the purpose of humanity, to express God. And anything less than that is not living according to the purpose for which we were created. The problem is, how do you do that? And, you know, we bat that around, and there are thousands of churches and groups, denominations, whatever, that delve into that, and a lot of people have different ways of looking at that.
But I did want to talk about our identity, because we have to start with our identity first. Jesus said, “Call no man your father.” Now, that’s not talking about Catholic priests so that we don’t call Catholic priests, “Father.” It’s talking about understanding where your heritage is. That which is born of flesh is flesh, so we have our earthly parents, but that’s not our full inheritance. That’s not our eternal heritage. Our eternal heritage – inheritance – comes from our Heavenly Father. And that was the point Jesus was making when He said, “Call no man your father.” Consider GOD as your Father!
Paul talked about when he was in Athens, in Acts, in chapter 17. He was traveling round, and he got left there in Athens. His entourage had gone on into some other places, and he was waiting for them to come back. And he’s walking around, and he sees that Athens, Greece, is a very religious city, because there are shrines to all sorts of deities, all over the city. And so, there was a place in Athens called Mars Hill, where anybody could stand up – it’s kind of like the internet of today. It’s kind of like Facebook, if any of you have ever experienced that. On Facebook, everybody expresses everything they want to express. In London they have a park called Hyde Park. And anybody can go into Hyde Park, and say anything they want to say, gather a little crowd and say, “Here’s what I think the truth is ….” And anybody can say anything they want. And Mars Hill was kind of the Hyde Park of Athens.
And so, Paul stands up on Mars Hill, and he says, “You men of Athens, I have observed that you’re very religious. You have all these shrines to all these gods, but I’ve seen this one shrine, and it says, ‘To an unknown god,’ and THAT is the God I am declaring to you.” And he goes on and then he says something very interesting to these, what we would consider “unbelieving pagans,” or heathens. Heathen doesn’t mean redneck bikers, it just meant people who were worshiping the nature gods and things like that. And he talked about that we, all humanity, not just people who believe in Jehovah, but all humanity are the offspring of God. He says, “Your own poets, the Greek writers, said this.” So the Greek writers, prior to the time of Christ, had an inkling. You know, the truth goes out into all the world. And God didn’t only say the truth in Judea, and Palestine, in the writings of the prophets and the patriarchs of the Bible. There are little bits of truth that God planted all over the world. And it’s in nature. Everything testifies of Him. Paul says in Romans, that the visible things testify of the invisible things of God. If you look out and you begin to SEE God in everything – it’s really kind of easy to see Him in nature – it’s kind of hard to see Him in people. But, He’s there in people, too!
And that’s what Paul said to the Athenians. He said this incredible thing. “In Him – all of you Athenians,” (and none of them believed in Jesus at the time; they didn’t know who He was, they’d never heard of Him), he says, “in Him you live and move and have your being.”
So that we’re contained within God! I don’t understand that, but that’s what Paul says. “Being” means existence. You have your existence in God. God is the only Self-existent Reality there is in the universe. We don’t understand, really, what He is, Who He is. We only have our little toe in the tip of the ocean, touching the ocean of the truth of what reality is. We only get a small little glimpse.
But we know enough, because God has revealed enough, to know, that in Him we live and move and have our existence. Our existence is totally dependent on His existence! We live within the existence or being of God. My be-ing, my exist-ing, consists of the be-ing or exist-ing, of God. It says that in Colossians – “By Him all things consist.”
And it’s talking about Christ, the Word of God. And the Word of God, which is not this book, CHRIST is the Word of God, and this book expresses Him and is to lead us to Him, but it is not Him – HE IS the WORD OF GOD! And so, by Him, by the WORD of God, the LOGOS, the eternal speaking of God, all reality exists. And it’s upheld by Him – every moment of every day. If God were to say, “Be no more!” it wouldn’t “BE” anymore! It would be as if it had never been.
But for some reason – and I know the reason, the reason is because God is love – this all exists and we’re all here, that God might reproduce Himself, because of the fact that He IS love. Love has one drive; it has one compulsion; it has one desire – to go out of itself to reproduce itself to continually expand itself. Love seeks to expand – to propagate love, to continually propagate it and propagate it and propagate it and expand it and expand it and expand it. That’s why the scientists say the universe is expanding. That’s another parable of this thing that God is love. And love is not like a black hole that sucks everything into itself and won’t let it out. God is this explosive love, that goes out that goes out of Himself. And He even demonstrates the quality of His love, because in the center of the universe, in the center of the heart of God – it says this in Revelation – is a Lamb as if it had been slain. At the heart of God, though all eternity, before there was a sinner who needed to be saved, in the heart of God there is this little helpless, vulnerable Lamb, that God says HE IS, it sits in the middle of His Throne. So we say the Cross is in God’s heart forever! He exists that He might give Life to His universe, that He might be the Servant of it, that He might be the Life of it. So that He is eternally an other-lover!
Well, the opposite of that is a self-lover, and God eternally said, “I’m not going to be that, I’m going to be an other-lover, and I’m going to demonstrate myself, by the fact in My Heart, there is this Lamb Who is slain for the life of others, that Life might come to others.”
When I first heard what we’re talking about tonight, the man who presented it, a man named Norman Grubb, said “there’s two spirits in the world. There’s the spirit of other-love, love for others. And there’s the spirit of love-for-self, or self-for-self. The spirit of self-for-self says, ‘I’m for me and to hell with you,’ and the Spirit of other-love said, To hell with me and I’m for you!’”
There’s a big difference. That’s the spirit of error, that has grasped the whole human race since the Fall. You see the evidence of it – we were trapped. The god of this world blinds the minds of those who believe not, (2 Cor 4:3), and he’s caused us to believe that we are these little self-sufficient, self-reliant, islands of “self,” that exist in a little shell, and we do everything we can to protect ourselves, and not let you in, and not let much of “me” out, and hide ourselves. That’s what it means when they saw that they were naked and they began to cover themselves. It wasn’t talking about genitals, it was talking about the whole reality. They come into this – they’ve known nothing but freedom and love – and now suddenly they know guilt and shame, and are cowering and hiding. It was because they had bitten into the wrong spirit. A spirit that says, “If you’ll eat of this tree, the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, which is just simply the tree of, “I can do it myself and I can be myself as wise as God, and therefore can become God. “If you’ll eat of that Tree, you’ll become,” the serpent said, “as wise as God. See, God has been holding out on you! You eat this Tree, you’ll know what I know. You’ll know what God knows.”
And that’s what they bit into, and then they immediately fell, because only God can be that. So that, when Boyd talked about the “Seed of the woman,” what he is talking about was in that Genesis passage, Genesis 3:15. You know, where the Lord God calls Adam and Eve. He’d never had to look for them before! And it says He’s walking in the Garden in the cool of the day, and He says, “Adam, where are you?” He’d never had to look for Adam before. Adam and Eve could still hear Him, so they weren’t out of earshot of God. We’ve never been out of earshot. We didn’t fall into hell and become raging devils for that one disobedience. But we came under his (Satan’s) power and his sway. It says we became children of disobedience. (Eph 2:2). And so, the whole human race was trapped there.
But, God didn’t leave us without a Redeemer. Right there on the spot, He says that, “The Seed of the woman will crush the head of the serpent.” The serpent will sting His heel, but the Seed, will crush the head of the serpent.
So now “the Seed” appears and this is what I want to talk about. As briefly as I just said all that. [Fumbling with book] You can tell where my revelations occur; I’ve got toilet paper for bookmarks.
This is in Genesis 15 when God gives Abraham his first vision of who he is and how Abraham is going to be blessed by the Lord. In Genesis 15 verse 1, he says, “After these things the word of the LORD came unto Abram in a vision, saying, Fear not, Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward.”
Now, let’s just think about that for a second. Although Abram did have lands and houses and much possessions, much cattle, he had many servants in his household, so that he was a wealthy man. This isn’t what God is promising him, here. Nor is he really promising him “real estate.” You know, a certain piece of territory. HE says right here, “I am thy shield! I am thy reward!” So the Lord God is laying it out right here. “I myself, am your reward, Abraham!” Abram was still his name at that point. So that is an important thing to remember.
And Abram answered, “Lord GOD, what wilt thou give me, seeing I go childless, and the steward of my house is this Eliezer of Damascus?” Now, we might be tempted to think, well gosh, God has just told him that He’s his reward, and is this kind of unthankful for Abram to immediately say, “Well, how come I don’t have a son?”
Well, you have to understand what I just said earlier, it’s the “love-drive” in us. The first thing God said in Genesis to the people, to the first humans, He said, “Go ye out into all the world and multiply! Reproduce! We’ve been pretty good at the physical part of that. But God really wanted to reproduce spiritual sons, and this is His means whereby He does that. And so, the “drive” in Abraham, is the drive already of the Spirit in him, to reproduce. And to reproduce is the whole purpose, [it is] to create this family that multiplies and multiplies and multiplies, so that it will cover the face of the earth. So, that’s why this desire is in Abraham. It’s natural; it’s a godly desire.
And Abram says, verse 3, “Behold, to me thou hast given no Seed: and, lo, one born in my house is mine heir.” You know, he’s thinking, I’m not going to have a son, and so my servant’s son is going to have to be my heir.
And then in verse 4 Abram is told, “And, behold, the word of the LORD came unto him, saying, This shall not be thine heir,” – in other words, your servant’s son is not going to be your heir – “but he that shall come forth out of thine own bowels – in other words, it will be your son, from your own body. Now this is the key, right here, what I want to get to here in a minute:
“And he brought him forth abroad, and said, Look now toward heaven, and tell the stars, if thou be able to number them: and he said unto him, So shall thy Seed be.” (Gen 15:5). So the Promise that Abraham was given – his name was later changed to Abraham, which means “father of many nations” – God gave him that name before he even had his heir born – that’s the way God does things. He calls things “which be not as though they are.” He says a thing is “SO” before you see it! And that’s one of the key principles, of understanding of what it is to live in God and how to walk in Him. Because we see things in the invisible, before we see them in the visible. So God is calling this “thing” that does not exist yet, He’s saying, “This is what is going to be.”
And righteousness was imputed to Abraham at that point, because He agreed with God, and said, “Okay, I’ll take what you say as true.” And that’s all our life with God is based on, it’s just saying, “Okay, Lord, I’ll do it, or I’ll believe it or I’ll take it. You know, when two men shake hands, and one says, “I’m going to give you 500 dollars and you’re going to give me this car,” and shake hands, then that’s an agreement between the two, and it’s a binding contract. It’s just a given thing – you just take it and accept it as fact. And so that’s all this is.
Faith is not some magic thing where we work up some sort of mental gymnastics to believe something impossible. It’s a simple acceptance. It’s like a marriage vow. The minister says, “Do you?” and you say, “Yes I do,” and “Do you?” and “Yes, I do,” and BOOM, you’re married! That’s it – no fireworks, no nothing, it’s just the word. The word seals it. And the word causes the next, theoretically, the next 50 years of your life if that’s what happens – you know, you’re married! And it all happened just because you agreed to it, by just speaking the word.
So, that’s what happened. God says, “You’re going to have a Seed,” and now look at this part, verse 15 again: And it shall be as the number of the stars. In other words, it’s going to be a vast number that you can’t number, you can’t count.
And going to Genesis 23, no I’m sorry, Genesis 22, this is just after Abraham has taken his son, Isaac, up onto the mountain of Moriah, and almost sacrificed him but the Lord stops him at the last minute. We won’t go over that, but I want to go over what He says to Abraham AND Isaac after that happened. He then repeats the same Promise that He gave to Abraham, but this time he includes Isaac in it. And this is right after the ram appears in the bushes just before Abraham is about to plunge the knife into his son.
And so that part is over with, and then in verse 17 – this is the Lord speaking: “That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy Seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore. and thy Seed shall possess the gate of his enemies; And in thy Seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice.”
Now let me just emphasize this point. The Seed he’s talking about, he says, will be as numerable as the stars in the sky and as the grains of sand in the sea. In other words, it’s a vast number that He’s saying is going to come out of this “Seed” that is coming through Abraham. And the Seed is passed through Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and then it goes on through Judah, then goes on down to David, and then it goes through the line of David, until it finally comes to Mary, and then Jesus Christ is born.
Now let’s jump ahead, oh a couple thousand years or so. To Galatians. Paul is talking about this same thing. He’s talking about the Promise given to Abraham. And he says, remember when God showed Abraham, up in the sky, he’s talking about an innumerable company, and when he shows him the sand of the sea, he’s talking about an innumerable company, and he says, “So shall they Seed be.”
And this is what Paul says about this. He says, “Now to Abraham and his Seed were the promises made.” (Gal 3:16a). Now Paul gets real technical here. This is [the last part of] verse 16 of chapter 3 of Galatians: “He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy Seed, which is Christ.”
He promised Abraham that one Seed would come from him, and that “Seed” is Christ! And then, again he says in verse 19 – he was talking about why did the law would come, “It was added because of transgressions, till the Seed should come to whom the promise was made. and it was ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator.”
So Paul is taking this Promise to Abraham, who in Genesis talks about this innumerable company, and he says it is one Seed – not plural as in “many seeds,” but just “ONE” Seed. But look what he says about this “one Seed.”
Starting with verse 26, chapter 3, “For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.”
And THEN he says, “And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s Seed, and heirs according to the promise.”
Now, what do you get when you plant squash? Squash comes up. And when you plant tomatoes, tomatoes come up. When you plant Christ, Christ comes up! Now that’s Who’s been born in us. He is born in us, to BE us. But it looks like us. We’re not named Jesus – I’m named Fred, he’s Tony, you know, we all have our own names. But Christ has come up, in us, so that the life that is being expressed in us, the life that’s being lived in us, is not just our own natural human life, trying to emulate God, imitate Christ, trying to figure out what Jesus would do and then do that, but He is the Himself the instigator. He is the One Himself Who has grown up in our own midst to be Himself in us.
So that Abraham’s Seed, is – the way that it is fulfilled in its multiplicity – is that it’s “one Seed,” but that “one Seed” has come into all of us, and grows up, and Paul says in this Galatians, chapter 4 v19, “I labor in travail that Christ may be formed in you.” So that when we say, we are Christ … those of us who are in Christ are Christ walking around on the earth, or are He living in our humanity, or He living in our form, or any other expression that says that, we’re fulfilling, or we’re acknowledging the fulfillment of this reality, that when God comes into us, His Seed brings forth Himself in us.
So that as Paul says in Galatians 2:20, he says, “I am crucified with Christ,” and that old me, that “old me” that I inherited from the Fall, which was this false sense of self-consciousness, this false sense of independence from God and separation from God, this false sense that God’s up there and I’m down here, and I have to continually “do things” to get closer to God, or to get Him to bless me. You know, I’ll have to say it’s like heathenism. We have to “do certain things” to make God come down and do for us. “God, if I do this and I do this and I do this, come down and bless me, fill me, do all these things.”
No, God’s desire is to come up from inside us. Jesus said, “Don’t look over there. Don’t look over there. The kingdom of God is inside you. It’s within you.” He is within you. Boyd quoted it a minute ago. “He that believeth on me, out of his innermost being, or belly, shall flow rivers of Living Water.” If they’re flowing out of my innermost being, guess where they are! They’re in me!
You see, I spent years in my early Christian childhood thinking God was “up there,” and He was giving me stuff. I was trying to get love; I was trying to get peace; I was trying to get patience. All of these attributes of God and I thought He would have little bits of it He could give me. If I just studied enough, prayed enough, and did all those things. Then one day, through a series of events, I saw that all of that was in me, because HE is in me! He IS all of those things. The completion is in Him in me.
Paul says we don’t have our own righteousness, but we have the righteousness of God! Thank God, we don’t have our own righteousness! Paul said, in 2nd Corinthians 5:21, which is one of the key verses of the New Testament, it says, “He – God – made Him – Jesus – Who knew no sin, to BE sin for us. In other words, He took on Himself what we were, and then it says a really important thing, for us to grasp and to realize, and not to continually to think of ourselves as less than we are. He said, “that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him.”
Now see, unbelief and false humility says, “Well, I’m not really righteous …” Sigh, well, He’s righteous and He’s righteous in you. You’re right that you’re not really righteous in yourself alone, but you’re not yourself alone anymore. If He has come into you then He’s your Life. And He’s your righteousness, and He’s your wisdom, He’s your power, He’s your strength, He’s your love, and it’s always there, available, every moment, at the drop of a hat when it’s needed it’s there! See, we can trust Him every day and every moment to be Himself in us, because HE’s the instigator, He’s the doer!
Boyd says, a lot of prayer is “getting God up-to-date.” He’s already up-to-date! He’s the One Who prays in us. It’s not us going to Him and asking Him for things. It’s Him moving us, to speak what He wants us to speak. It’s Him moving us to desire what He wants us to desire. When you begin to trust that the Life is in us, that He’s the One Who has come in, and He’s my “ME!” He’s the “I” that I am. He’s the Real Person inside me, and I didn’t do it myself.
Paul has … when I first read Paul I thought he was some kind of egotist. “I labored more abundantly than they all,” “God is mighty in me,” I thought, “What kind of boaster is this?” Until I realized, he was speaking faith! He wasn’t speaking as if he was anything; he was speaking of the fact that God was everything, and how dare we say, “He’s not mighty in us!” How dare we say, “He’s not righteous in us.” He IS, and we almost make a mockery of the Cross to say He is not!
You know, they wanted to crucify Jesus because He said, “I and my Father are one.” They said, “You can’t say that, you’re a man, and you make yourself as if you are God!”
Well, He says in John chapter 17 that we have the same oneness. He prayed, in John chapter 17, that the same oneness that He had with the Father, is our oneness. The oneness that we have, is the same that He has. That’s what He prayed in John 17 – I’m not going to go over it now, but look it up.
That’s what Jesus prayed, and He said, “I and my Father are one… and the Father that dwells in me, He does the works.”
Well, that’s the same thing as the Holy Spirit doing the works in me! It’s the same thing as bearing the fruit of the Spirit. It’s not the fruit of my effort – it’s the fruit of the Spirit Who lives in me! And when you see that He’s the One that does it, life becomes – you discover an inner sufficiency you never knew you had, because He’s the sufficiency. I’m not righteous but He is. I’m not love but He is. But He’s become one with me, so the love comes out of me. The wisdom comes out of me – it’s not mine, it’s His, but it’s His good pleasure to give it to us. He says in Luke, “Fear not little flock, it is your Father’s pleasure, good pleasure, to give you the kingdom.” We act like He doesn’t want to give it and we have to beg and do all this stuff, crawl on our knees and do the stations of the cross, and stuff like that so God will feel sorry for us and give us … “Fear not little flock … It is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.”
It’s His greatest desire. Any of us here who are parents know, our greatest desire is to give good gifts to our children. We want our children to have the best. Well, how much the Father in heaven? He wants us to have everything that He’s got for us, and what He’s got for us, is heirs of everything. Jesus said, “All power in heaven and earth is given unto Me.” And, we’re co-heirs with Christ, it says in Romans 8. So we participate in that inheritance.
So how dare we say we don’t have that. How dare we say we’re not there yet. It’s not up to us to say that. It’s up to us to agree with what He’s told us – “This is Who you are, now believe it and walk in it!”
I’ll stop with this statement. “As ye have received Jesus Christ the Lord” – how have we received Him? We’ve received Him by faith – “So walk ye in Him”… As you have received Christ the Lord, so walk ye in Him. You have received Him, now walk in Him. Same way you received Him, now walk in Him the same way, by faith. “Lord, You’ve got me. Lord, You’re living this Life. I don’t live anymore, it’s You living in me.”
That’s it, that’s the whole deal. There is no more. Proverbs says, “Keep thy heart with all diligence, for out out of it are the issues of life.”
And this is it. That’s the total deal, the inside “you.” When you see that, everything falls into place. All the other issues of the world, you can relate to through this reality of knowing that “He is my inner Life.” It’s not a hit or miss thing – as Boyd says, “It’s not visitation, it’s habitation!”
“If ye abide in Me” – and that just simply means, “live in me,” “remain in me,” just don’t go out – and you don’t go out, because He’s got you. You know? Every moment of every day, He’s got you! He’s got you in His Arms. Trust Him. Believe Him.
“Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure, to give you the kingdom.”