Part 1 of –
The Need to Know the Indwelling
“Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus”
I believe the subject of “the Spirit,” as used by the Apostle Paul, is one of the most misunderstood terms among Christians. Yet, no subject is as vital to the Christian because the Apostle Paul tells us the Christian’s life and walk is to be conducted in accord with, and by the supply of “the Spirit.”
Galatians 5:25 (NIV) Since we live (have life) by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.
From verse this we can see that ultimately the Christian must come to personally and experientially know “the Spirit” which is “the spirit of life in Christ Jesus” who indwells them, if the believer is to learn to live by Christ’s indwelling (Col 1:27) “…spirit of life in Christ Jesus” (Rom 8:2, 1John 4:13).
I believe that much of the problem for Christians stems from them most often subscribing to a misunderstanding of the “Trinity” that leads them to consider the “One Lord” and “One God” as being almost as three individual Gods. Many Christians seem to slice and dice the Godhead as though they were not one at all. Yet, Paul tells us in clear literal terms that there is but “one Lord …One God,” and “one Spirit” who indwells the believer.
Ephesians 4:4-6 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; 5 One Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.
Nobody can fully explain the Triune Godhead. For example, how can one explain Isaiah 9:6, which says the child born, the Son given and everlasting Father are one, except by faith to believe the Scripture?
Isaiah 9:6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
Here we see that the child is the Son, who is at the very same time the mighty God and everlasting Father. This would mean the Son praying in the garden at
Gethsemanewas the Father in heaven who was hearing that prayer. We can only accept this by faith.
Yet, Paul gives us some visibility in understanding the matter of the Godhead. Paul says the fact is that the Lord Jesus Christ now is “the Spirit,” and as we’ve seen, there is but “one Spirit.” Here we see who “the spirit” is today – it is the risen “spirit of life in Christ Jesus.”
2Cor 3:17 Now the Lord (Jesus Christ) is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.
Peter tells us the Lord Jesus Christ is the Lord. Acts 2:36 (KJV) Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.
Let’s now get a look at how the Triune Godhead worked to become available in order to indwell believers. Our communion or a union with God the Father exists…via the Lord Jesus Christ…who now “is that Spirit” in the believer’s spirit. This following verse attributes certain functions to the One, Three person, divine Godhead.
2Cor 13:14 The 1) grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and 2) the love of God, and 3) the communion of the Holy Ghost, be (is) with you all. (Bracketed numbers inserted)
1) From this we see that “the grace” that we receive from the Godhead is “the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ.” John 1:17b … grace and truth (reality) came by Jesus Christ.
Jesus Christ Himself is the grace-life that is given to us via the process that He endured; His incarnation, His death at the cross of
Calvary, and His resurrected “spirit of life,” received as the free gift of God the Father given to believers.
2) The “the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ” came as result of the “love of God” the Father. The singular motive of God’s heart is “love,” as a giver of His Son, as the expression of “the love of God.”
3) While it was necessary that God’s Son would first become incarnated in human flesh to accomplish the gift of God’s love, the Son still had to, in some way, become available to believers in a form that could personally reach and touch each person individually. That form was achieved in that the crucified and resurrected Jesus “became the life-giving spirit” (1Cor 15:45b). In this way, Jesus would become joined to the believer’s spirit and thus we enjoy “the communion of the Holy Spirit.”
Thus, we see that the Godhead, the One God, reached down to man by coming to mankind in the human flesh of the “Son of Man” – Jesus of Nazareth. Then upon His death and resurrection as “the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus,” God was enabled to enter into man’s human spirit, to become one with man’s human spirit (Zechar. 12:1). It thus became possible for God and man to come to spirit-union.
1 Corinthians 15:45 … The first man Adam was made (became) a living soul; the last Adam (Christ) was made (became) a quickening (life-giving) spirit. 1 Corinthians 6:17 But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit.
From this we can see that it was vitally necessary that the Godhead be processed, via Jesus of Nazareth, in order that He might become “the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus”; such that we might have “the communion” that we now enjoy with God, which is “the communion of the Holy Spirit.” In that union, the grace and love of God is with every one of God’s Spirit-birthed children.
Every believer can say, “We know by experience that it is God, in Christ, now as “the Spirit,” who is with us.”
Romans 8:16 The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: