Monday, January 9, 2012

Surrender Brings Freedom

Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth.  For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God.  When Christ, who is our life, is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory. 

Notice that this scripture uses the past tense in referring to the redeemed as having been raised up with Jesus.  We needn't needn't wait for our earthly deaths to find the kingdom of heaven.  Jesus already did that for us.  We must now only die to ourselves and be born again to enter His kingdom.

 Therefore consider the members of your earthly body as dead to immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and greed, which amounts to idolatry.  For it is because of these things that the wrath of God will come upon the sons of disobedience,  and in them you also once walked, when you were living in them.  But now you also, put them all aside: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and abusive speech from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, since you laid aside the old self with its evil practices,  and have put on the new self who is being renewed to a true knowledge according to the image of the One who created him—  a renewal in which there is no distinction between Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave and freeman, but Christ is all, and in all. 

Once again the text uses the past tense is stating that we have "laid aside the old self and have put on a new self".  It is this "new self" that seeks righteousness and see then worldly things as insignificant and valueless. 

  So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience;  bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you.  Beyond all these things put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity.  Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful.  Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.  Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father. 

We now turn to a couple of things what fall to us and our faith.  "put on a heart of compassion" and "put on love"  are our responsibility.  We can only approach this responsibility by faith and allow the Holy Spirit to create the urge within us to be compassionate and loving.  

Finally, we are next instructed to get ourselves and our life-learned desires out of the way to make room for the "peace of God" and the "word of God" to infuse our hearts.  We will know when this happens because no circumstance, no problem, no challenge will ever effect our hearts that sing out to our God continually.

Surrender to know the fullness of His release of the captives!

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