The Spiritual Walk
Our acceptance by God has no conditions. Our acceptance by God is unconditional. If this truth is not good enough for you, then you will never live victoriously. This truth was planed by God in eternity past and this fact was accomplished by the Son of God and is a forever given promise. So… I hear you ask – what does that verse in Romans mean? There is therefore now no condemnation to them that are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the spirit? As always, Scripture alone provides the answers to all and every quandary and Paul tells what to do – walk in spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.
The Spiritual Sphere
And throughout his epistles, he gives countless instructions for a spiritual life. Throughout Paul’s writings, he instructs us how to live our life as God desires… to walk in the spirit; to live in the spirit; to pray in the spirit – and we are told that when we walk in spirit and truth we will bear the fruit of the Spirit. Ahhhhh they say… what of the one that walks and lives and prays in the flesh? Hmmm, they say… how does such one return to the sphere of the spirit? Well, Paul again comes to the rescue and tells us what to do…. judge yourself. Scripture is always is its own, best interpreter – because Scripture is the Word of God.
Judge Yourself; examine yourselves, to see whether ye be in the faith. Check your life to see if you are living by God’s standards or your own. Are you living and walking and praying in the spirit or in the flesh? Examine yourself, to be restored from the realm of the flesh into the sphere of the spirit – for if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged (of God). 1 Corinthians 11:31 This instruction from Paul is to believers. It does not refer to initial salvation.. but to the ongoing process of sanctification.
Confession of Sins
Paul is not saying: examine yourself to see if you are saved…. this examination is to see if you are you living and walking and praying in spirit and truth – by faith. And John also tells us clearly what to do if we are walking in the flesh. We are to confess our sins – for if we confess our sins, God is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:
Consequences of Sin
We are fallen beings and we live in a fallen world, and so day by day and moment by moment, we need to examine ourselves.. to see if we are walking in the spirit.. to see if we are walking in truth and love. And if we are not, we need to do something about it. We need to confess our sins and He is faithful and just to forgive them. Oh yes, there is no condemnation to those that are in Christ Jesus, none… but there are consequences if we do not live in spirit and in truth. Living in spirit and truth is a conscious choice each believer needs to make.. day by day and moment by moment throughout our Christian life.
A Conscious Choice
One dear saint of God put it like this… ‘The truth is that God has not altered. His eye rests on the work accomplished by Christ for the believer. When you are not walking in the spirit you are in the flesh: you have turned to the ‘old man’ which was crucified on the cross. You have to be restored to fellowship, and when you are, you find your acceptance with God unchanged and unchangeable. When sins are introduced there is a fear that God has changed. He has not changed, but you have. You are not walking in the spirit but in the flesh. You have to judge yourself in order to be restored. ‘For this is my blood of the new testament which is shed for many for the remission of sins’.
An Unchanging Love
‘But if your sins are not met there, where can they be met? ‘Now where remission of sin is, there is no more offering for sin’ (Hebrews 10:18). God has effected the reconciliation; He always remains true to it. Alas! we diverge from it, the tendency is to suppose that the blessed God has altered toward us. He certainly will judge the flesh if we do not, but He never departs from the love which He has expressed to the prodigal, and we find that when the cloud (which walking in the flesh produced) has passed away, His love, blessed be His Name, had never changed.’
A Cry of Victory
When Jesus cried, “it is finished” on the cross, He meant “it is finished”. All the punishment and pain for all sin and all the power of sin is finished: completed. That was indeed a cry of victory that shook the foundations of hell to its core. This truth has remained unchanged since that pivotal time in eternity’s history. This reality is forever engraved on the heart of God in heaven’s council chambers.
Accepted in Christ
God does not change, and He recognises Christ’s work on the cross as finished and complete – and because of that, God accepts you in Christ. God accepts Christ’s forever finished work on Calvary’s cross – on your account, and He accepts it forever and forever. Amen! What a promise!
8 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
31 For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged.
1 That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life;
2 (For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;)
3 That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ.
4 And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full.
5 This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.
6 If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth:
7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.
8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.
9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.
18 Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin.
11 And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots:
2 And the spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord;
3 And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the Lord: and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears:
4 But with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and he shall smite the earth: with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked.
5 And righteousness shall be the girdle of his loins, and faithfulness the girdle of his reins.
6 The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them.
7 And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the ox.
8 And the sucking child shall play on the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the cockatrice’ den.
9 They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea.
10 And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious.
11 And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of his people, which shall be left, from Assyria, and from Egypt, and from Pathros, and from Cush, and from Elam, and from Shinar, and from Hamath, and from the islands of the sea.
12 And he shall set up an ensign for the nations, and shall assemble the outcasts of Israel, and gather together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth.
13 The envy also of Ephraim shall depart, and the adversaries of Judah shall be cut off: Ephraim shall not envy Judah, and Judah shall not vex Ephraim.
14 But they shall fly upon the shoulders of the Philistines toward the west; they shall spoil them of the east together: they shall lay their hand upon Edom and Moab; and the children of Ammon shall obey them.
15 And the Lord shall utterly destroy the tongue of the Egyptian sea; and with his mighty wind shall he shake his hand over the river, and shall smite it in the seven streams, and make men go over dryshod.
16 And there shall be an highway for the remnant of his people, which shall be left, from Assyria; like as it was to Israel in the day that he came up out of the land of Egypt.
12 And in that day thou shalt say, O Lord, I will praise thee: though thou wast angry with me, thine anger is turned away, and thou comfortedst me.
2 Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the Lord Jehovah is my strength and my song; he also is become my salvation.
3 Therefore with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation.
4 And in that day shall ye say, Praise the Lord, call upon his name, declare his doings among the people, make mention that his name is exalted.
5 Sing unto the Lord; for he hath done excellent things: this is known in all the earth.
6 Cry out and shout, thou inhabitant of Zion: for great is the Holy One of Israel in the midst of thee.