Finally – the New Covenant! (Part One)
Via the final death of ‘Mr. Control Center’
By Fred Pruitt
The following pages are taken from a lengthy dialogue (53 pages) I had with a brother in 2006. (Not the same dialogue already posted on the blog.) The theme of this piece is “entering the New Covenant.” If believers truly understood the difference between the Covenants, it would solve a whole host of issues. Unfortunately, however, the overwhelming majority of Christ-believers are walking in the world and relating to God according to the Old Covenant. Most people think the difference between the Old and New Covenants is purely a matter of knowing the difference between the “kind loving God” in the New Covenant, and the “wrathful punisher” God of the Old Covenant. That is the most commonly held understanding, not just among believers, but among most people either of other faiths or of none. A second commonly held belief about the two covenants, sees a progressive continually growing human perception of God, reflected in the covenants. Therefore, according to that understanding, the Scriptures are purely man’s growing understanding of God, i.e., authored by man. However, if we believe the Scriptures are God-breathed, God’s revelation of Himself to humanity, then it behooves us to understand the difference between the two covenants.
A brother wrote me:
(Luke 22:39-44) And he came out, and went, as he was wont, to the mount of Olives; and his disciples also followed him. And when he was at the place, he said unto them, Pray that ye enter not into temptation. And he was withdrawn from them about a stone’s cast, and kneeled down, and prayed, Saying, Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done.
Here we see clearly that Jesus had his own will and could have used it in opposition to the Father’s will. Jesus previously said: “For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.” (Joh 6:38). “not to do mine own will” clearly indicates that Jesus had His own will which could have differed from the Father’s will.
Consider this; Jesus “was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.” (Heb 4:15). For Jesus, as the Son of Man, to be as we are, He must have had a will that could have differed from the Father’s will. All the unsaved and carnal Christians have a will separate from the Father’s will.
Dear brother, you have a dilemma, and the dilemma is yourself! Last night I reread something you sent me a while back. Something I missed last time jumped off the computer screen at me last night. Here is the sentence:
“So, the shared life – the “new creation person” – is Christ and us as one!…… We the control center that must firstly choose Christ’s will, and then the Christ in us supplying the wisdom and power for us to say and do His will.”
Now, I don’t know if those are your words or someone else’s, but you have hit the heart of the matter. This is a very mixed message. You first say, “Christ and us as one,” to which I can only add my hearty “AMEN!” But then you immediately deny the oneness, by going back to two again. What you describe from then on is not union, not an “as one” life, two living as one, but still two, with you, the “control center,” who must first choose Christ’s will, and then something separate from you, in language that seems to run throughout much of what you write, about a “something” separate from you, but still “inside you,” which you call “the Christ in us” etc. With “you,” separately, being the “control center.”
Always in separation, even though lip service is given to our union. If we maintain a separate “control center,” which “decides” whether something is from the Holy Spirit or the enemy, frankly, we’re standing apart from God, judging God, and never able to close the gulf between us in our consciousness and understanding.
And that is the dilemma. Who is this separate, last-ditch, hanging-on-for-dear-life control center? Where does it come from and where does it exist? Upon what store of knowledge and understanding does it draw?
I had a specific time years ago when “discerning” which “voice” was speaking – the Spirit, the enemy, or the imaginary “me,” (though I didn’t know that at the time). I realized I was not smart enough to always know. I realized I could be fooled in my emotions and reason. I had been taught and was living under a doctrine that still left us with the “desperately-wicked” heart of the Old Covenant, even while being born again and filled with the Holy Spirit. I could not trust anything about myself. I had nowhere to go. One would point out that I could continue to trust God but to trust God for what? That was part of the confusion.
I was new to the temptation game but I sure learned a lot as the Spirit brought me through over a period of two to three months. Somewhere in the beginning of that time, the Spirit opened the beginnings of a new consciousness of Christ, as for the first time in my then seven years in Christ, I saw all “responsibility,” any “something” I thought I had to do or could contribute, in order to pursue righteousness and flee sin, being taken from my hands by being taken up into His.
Reason number one – I died in the Cross with Jesus. Now that death is a total death. Death to what? Ultimately, death to the false mask, ours from birth, the product of the Fall. Adam and Eve left their first estate, seeking to become wise as God, knowing good and evil. As soon as they ate the fruit (an invasion of the enemy who darkened our minds) it produced in them a false independent self-consciousness of separation and self-reliance. Its only cure is death, and that is what dies in us at Calvary. But we do not yet know it usually.
That is one reason why our maintaining an independent control center is full of hot air. We’re dead! Surely we do not think we should be the one running the control center, do we? Wouldn’t that be the exclusive domain of the Living God, to Whom we have tossed our crowns, and before Whom we have forever prostrated ourselves, in whose Presence we are completely undone? The One who runs the whole universe? “And the government shall be upon HIS shoulders.” (What government? Any government you want I suppose, but for our sake, the government of our lives is now upon HIS shoulder, and not our own.)
If you’ll allow me further, you seem to be saying to me that you have an effective Christ, but only insofar as “you,” Mr. Control Center, “will” Christ’s will. Don’t you see that the whole thing really is dependent, not on Christ, but on you to do what you need to do, in order make Christ do His thing? * Like tossing a virgin into a volcano to appease the angry volcano god. If you don’t do your part, toss the virgin (“firstly choose Christ’s will”), then the second part does not happen, i.e., the mean demanding volcano god isn’t satisfied and therefore no blessings for you! *(We really could stop right here and say, “Case closed,” since Paul in his famous Romans 7 passage plainly told us: “For to will [God’s will] is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.” [Rom 7:18b]. In other words, “I earnestly will God’s will, but can’t bring it to fruition.”)
Isn’t that the same as is taught most everywhere by everybody, including by Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, etc., that we have a part to do, (meditate, eat the right foods, say the right things, believe the right things, pray the right things, confess the right things, follow the rules meticulously), and then God, or (as other people think) the Universe, or Allah, or Rama, will do His part and bless us and come through us, etc.? The entire human race, not just Christians, is under this false fleshly separated consciousness, by virtue of the fact that the whole world lives under the sway of the wicked one (1 John 5:19).
The Old Covenant was a covenant of separation between two completely unequal partners. God, who could fulfill His part of the bargain, and the people of Israel, who could not fulfill their part of the bargain. Now that’s pretty much where everybody lives. We try to do our part, but keep messing up, and there is continual bemoaning by preachers and church folks everywhere over how God is continually thwarted from doing His mighty acts in the world because most of us are such lousy Christians. (And poor God, since He’s so ineffective!)
Certainly, the vast majority of the believers unknowingly live in that old contract, “I do my part, God, and you’ll do yours.” But that deal was replaced in the Son. I know we were taught the “do your part and God will do His,” but such an arrangement has nothing to do whatever with the New Testament. That concept is all over the Old Testament, permeating everything. The reason it is found in such a plentiful quantity in the Old Testament, is because “I do my part and God will do His,” is straight law right out of the Law of Moses. That concept IS the Old Covenant! Let me repeat for double emphasis: “If I do my part, God will do His part,” IS THE OLD COVENANT, and is forever doomed to failure!
Remember when Moses descended from Sinai the second time, holding the tablets of the law, written in stone? He then proceeded to read the Law to the Israelites, finishing by sprinkling blood on the tablets, the altar, and the people. Moses then asked the people to give their response, to which the whole congregation, 600,000 strong, said in unison, “All that the LORD hath spoken we will do.” (Ex 19:8).
The new contract (will, covenant, testament), the new will from God, the new testament ratified through the death of the Son, is a party of One. He is the fulfiller. We are the temple of God, and He is the glory in it, not us. We’re branches of Him Who is the True Vine, and we bear fruit because He is the Life of the vine, and abiding (continuously living in, remaining where we are) in Him we bear much fruit by simply abiding (remaining) in Him. We are those to whom He makes the Promise: “I will dwell in them and walk in them and be their God.” And, “But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people.” (Jer 31:33)
This is the rest we enter into in the New Covenant, which is Christ in us, not as two, but as one, and we live, will, desire, and love as one person doing the desiring, willing, and loving. Not as two cooperating. I will what He wills because He and I are one person willing. The only time when “two” comes in the picture is when I am pulled by temptation.
Let’s look at this from Hebrews 3:
1 Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus;
2 Who was faithful to him that appointed him, as also Moses was faithful in all his house.
3 For this man was counted worthy of more glory than Moses, inasmuch as he who hath builded the house hath more honour than the house.
4 For every house is builded by some man; but he that built all things is God.
5 And Moses verily was faithful in all his house, as a servant, for a testimony of those things which were to be spoken after;
6 But Christ as a son over his own house; whose house are we, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end.
“Whose house are we …,” the writer says. What does he mean by that?
First of all, He is comparing Jesus to Moses. Moses is a servant, who gives and administers the law. The law speaks to the separated consciousness, requiring of it something which it cannot fulfill. It is “weak through the flesh.” (Rom 8:3). The law speaks to the flesh, making demands on it, and the flesh — separated consciousness, self-responsibility — deludedly thinks it can fulfill the law and confesses that it will do so, and therein its failure is assured. Peter’s denial of Jesus is a perfect example, just as is Jesus’ statement upon seeing the apostles asleep in the Garden, “The Spirit is willing but the flesh is weak.” What “flesh” hears in that statement is, “try harder.”
That hasn’t ever worked and it is not going to start working now. It is an impossibility because the self that tries to will and do what God wills and does, cannot in itself do either. That is exactly what the law is for, to expose this deluded flesh consciousness of separation which comes from sin. And it can only be exposed by letting it run in its delusion until the delusion is worn out.
Now a great distinction is given here between Moses as a “servant,” and Jesus as the Son over His own house. A servant is not lord and master; only the Son and heir is. And Moses did his job in the house, which was to train the kids by giving the law and to demand obedience to it, but it is Christ as the Son over His own house who fulfills the law Himself, and, says the scripture, “whose house are we.”
When the law has done its job, i.e. killed us* (the fleshly self-consciousness which we received from our former master and slave-boss, the devil), then the servant (the law) hands us over to the Son (grace and truth), and we begin to take our share in the inheritance, as sons in the Son by means of a free gift from God (and not by our having earned it), and now with the full rights of a Son.
Co-heirs with Christ — that’s a pretty big inheritance, and we fully share in it, and operate not as servants in the house, but as full sons with all the rights of sons. And we could only be fully sons, by being One with The Son, even as He is One with the Father, so that we are One with the Father as well, He in us, we in Him.
*(Understand, I am not advocating putting people “under law.” We don’t need to anyway, because the whole world, Christian or not, is still caught in this “good and evil” delusion of being selves capable at least of some sort of improvement whereby we could “sharpen” our God skills. Not to worry! The Holy Spirit is quite good at disabusing us of that concept time after time after time, until one day our coconut brain cracks open and all the sour coconut milk pours out. Then we’re ready to see!)
END PART ONE