Walking In Kingdom Assurance

Acts 17:11 ... 1 Thess.5:21-22

Living and Walking in Kingdom Assurance
"A TFC Handout" When someone really has a desire to move somewhere, what do they do? They start thinking about that place. They start to do research—they look at pictures, learn the local language, study the country’s history, the customs, etc. Their intention is to go and live there and become a citizen. In every way they prepare themselves for life in that new country. But if, after all the planning and preparation, they never translate this desire into action—never actually get into the plane, go into the air, leave their country, come off the plane and live in that other country—then what was the value of all their effort? Their life in that new country remains a dream. Is it not like that, spiritually, with many believers today? They want to live in the Kingdom of God. They study, go to meetings, pray, read, talk about it, get pictures in their minds, desire it—yet never actually move out of one state, and move in to the other, that they might live in the Kingdom and walk as Kingdom citizens. With this, it is our desire to bring to light some portion of understanding to such questions as: What does it mean to live in the Kingdom of God? What does it mean to walk as Kingdom citizens? What does it mean to walk in eternity while still compressed into human flesh? What is the assurance that we are in the Kingdom? How can we monitor our position and progress? Living In The Kingdom … Moving into and living in the Kingdom of God means we have moved out of one place—the old man—and moved into the place of being a new creature in Christ! It is nothing less than a covenantal relationship of marriage with the Lord. We are no longer the old man, separate from the Lord. The two have become one. (1 Cor. 6:17, 19-20) Leaving and cleaving must become a physical and spiritual reality! And, as true Kingdom citizens, we will show ourselves to be all one thing—new wine, unmixed with the old. (Luke 5:37-39) This new place in Christ is all we will think about. It is where we will live—new wine in a new wineskin! It is a dynamic relationship, a life of walking in covenant with Christ. We can see from the heart of the Apostle Paul that he had a burden to understand what it meant to become one with Christ. (See Phil. 3:7-10) He moved all the way out of the old man of flesh (vss. 7-8), and then, by faith, moved all the way into the new man. (vs. 9) And as he began to grow in the Lord, his whole burden was,

“that I might know Him.” He wanted to know more about this relationship with his Lord! And that is where grace will lead us, so that we might be more conformed to His image and likeness, and make His name a savor in all the earth. (2 Cor. 2:14-15) That is a Kingdom citizen! That is what it means to live in His Kingdom. We will not be pursuing the things of earth, having a “jolly good time” every day and night, just moving around and fitting in with all the crowds and situations that come along. No! Our heart will be like Paul’s heart, saying, “That I might know You, Lord.” We, too, will no longer consult flesh and blood. Everything else being left behind, we will begin living in that new country—a heavenly country with heavenly pursuits. We cannot possibly live in the Kingdom of God unless we begin conforming ourselves to His image, His mind, seeking to know Him “and the power of His resurrection.” We will be overcoming sin through the power of our Lord Jesus Christ and the blood of the cross, standing upon His Word and leaning upon the Lord in a full atonement. We will be living a victorious, overcoming, triumphant, abundant life with rivers of life-giving water flowing out of our innermost being. (Jn. 7:38) That is a true Christian! Personal consecration to this understanding brings us (by degrees) into conformity with Christ, in part or in full, respectively. But Paul does not stop there. “That I may know … the fellowship of His sufferings.” We cannot be truly “moved in” without identifying with every aspect of Jesus Christ. He is sharing His whole Kingdom with us—His whole life and all of eternity. And that does not exclude His life upon earth. (1 Pet. 2:20-22) It included suffering. And the Bible tells us that our lives will also include suffering, trials, afflictions, and persecution for righteousness’ sake and for His name’s sake. Through these refining and purifying fires we learn things that we would not learn any other way. (1 Pet. 1:6-7; 4:12-19) Then Paul went one step further … “Being made conformable unto His death.” What is this conformity to the death of Christ Jesus for which Paul was crying out? Death to flesh! Death to sin! Sanctification finished and final! Full resurrection life out of death! That he might move all the way into that heavenly country and live totally preoccupied and wholly consumed with the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ, as a true Kingdom citizen. And, as Paul was praying and crying out for these things, he counted all the things of the “old man” as loss, as so much dung, that he might win Christ. (Phil. 3:7-8) Walking In The Kingdom … Col. 2:6-7, “As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in Him.” Upon our entrance into this new life in Christ, we must now walk in it. Not just learn about it. Not just speak about it. Not just receive something. We must take actual footsteps, one after another, moving our whole being before the Lord —in the Lord, from the Lord, unto the Lord. We want to know Him—not just hear about Him, not just read about Him, not just intellectually understand Him, not just memorize things about Him—but actually, intimately know Him! Citizens of the new kingdom have all things available to them, all spiritual

blessings in heavenly places—the whole work of God in giving His only begotten Son, the Holy Spirit to indwell and lead us into all the truth, participating in His divine nature, the Word of God, and the Body of Christ. Jesus Christ is the Resurrection and the Life and we have that life, now! But how do we give proof of it? How do we transform it from a dream to a visible, verifiable reality? By walking in it, step by step, closer and more intimately with the Lord. And “walking” is an action verb! So let us examine a few of the many Scriptures that encourage us to walk. Rom. 6:4, “Therefore we are buried with Him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.” The “old man” is dead and the “old country” has been left behind. We have now been raised into one new life—the resurrection life of Jesus Christ! God gives us the free ticket (justification) into this resurrection life, along with everything we need with which to build and establish ourselves. That is God’s part. But we have a responsibility, also, to commit ourselves fully and finally to true Christ-like walking and living. The Kingdom of God is not our vacation spot. It is not our condo on the beach to which we repair for a season of rest and recreation. The Kingdom of God is not a “short-term” mission. We want a one-way ticket. We arrive in this new country with all that we possess. And God will give us the means of grace and mercy, daily, to build our houses, establish our businesses, raise our children … and here we rest in Christ. If we have (in deed and in truth) moved out of one place and into another, we must remain there! Remain in heavenly places! In the Kingdom of God! In Christ! (Eph. 1:3) Rom. 8:1, “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but (walk) after the Spirit.” Again, we cannot be wandering back and forth. We have to move out of one (the flesh) to live in the other (the Spirit). And then, what is the result? No condemnation! What a great place to live! The enemy simply cannot trip us up and pull us back into our foul moods and our old nature any more. By God’s grace we will not allow ourselves to return to the old country with its futile modes of living. We are in the heavenly country and there is much to remind us, all the time, of the realities of God’s goodness. Gal. 5:16, “This I say then, Walk in the spirit and you shall not fulfill the lusts of the flesh.” This is a great promise! When we walk, with our whole life filled with the Holiest Spirit of all, we will not be fulfilling any inordinate desire for anything else. We will be a “new man” in Him! This will be clearly seen in how we walk and how we talk. Our whole life will be absorbed with the things of Christ, and we will no longer be satisfied with anything else. There will be a “No Vacancy” sign upon our hearts, because we will be fully occupied with the presence of Christ. The center chamber of the heart will be housing the Lord Himself, and all the other chambers will be filled with His character. Nothing else will attract our hearts, because we will be filled with Christ. We cannot have Jesus Christ in us in any other way. He will fill us as our all and in all—all things becoming new—or

He will not fill at all. (2 Cor. 5:17; Col. 3:10-11) It is “all or nothing” when it comes to the Kingdom of God. This is walking in the centrality of Christ. Gal. 5:25, “For if we live in the spirit, let us also walk in the spirit.” We cannot live in a place without walking in that place. We cannot live in the spirit without walking in the spirit. It is so clear! 2 Cor. 5:7, “For we walk by faith and not by sight.” It gives great glory to God when we, by faith, live in His presence while we are still upon the face of this earth. While we are on earth we do not see the Kingdom of God with our natural eye. But, by faith, we have left the natural “realities” and live with Christ in His Kingdom, our minds set on the things above. (Col. 3:2) He has given us the grace to do that. “Whom having not seen, ye love; in Whom, though now ye see Him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory.”—1 Peter 1:8 Eph. 4:1, “I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called.” We are no longer our own. We have a righteousness not our own. We must walk differently now. It is as if a metamorphosis takes place and we begin to look and sound like we are in our new country. We are caught up and preoccupied with the subjects and the interests of this new Kingdom. And as true ambassadors of this Kingdom life, fully assured by faith, guaranteed of our security in Christ, we will want to walk worthy— accurately representing and speaking about this heavenly Kingdom. But if that is not the first and final preoccupation in our lives, then other things will flow out. People will see that our values have been compromised and that we are alloyed with other things. If others cannot see our walk as changed into the walk of Christ, then there has been no change! We must walk worthy of our calling. “Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.”—1 Cor. 6:19-20. Rom. 13:13, “Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying. But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill the lusts thereof.” Walk honestly. Live in the day, not in cloaks of darkness and hiding. To “put on” the Lord Jesus Christ is to be so “in Him” that never again do we seek to satisfy any inordinate affection toward the things of our old life. There will be no darkness in us, no hypocrisy. Eph. 5:8, “For you were sometime darkness; but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light.” It is commanded. If we are Kingdom citizens we must not walk in darkness—lawlessness, without direction. If we have Jesus our Lord ruling and reigning in our hearts, then we have command over our flesh. Is that not the first real qualifier of a true Christian—that they are overcomers with the Lord over their flesh? To rule and reign with the Lord actually starts with commanding our flesh. (Rom. 6:6, 11-12, 14, 16-19, 22) “I die daily,” Paul said. He lived in a constant state of keeping that old flesh-man down, staying alive to

the righteousness of Christ. 1 John 1:5-7, “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. If we say we have fellowship with Him and walk in darkness we lie and do not the truth: 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 cleanses us from all sin.” We cannot even have fellowship with one another in Christ unless we are walking in the light! 1 John 2:6, “He that saith he abideth in Him ought himself also so to walk, even as He walked.” In this life! Just like Jesus did. He was led by the same Holy Spirit of truth who leads us into all the truth—in this life. We are fed with the same graces and mercies which are new every morning. Brethren, Jesus demonstrated that a man of flesh and bone can walk this Way. Morning by morning He “prayed-in” the riches of overcoming grace and power. Remember, He lowered Himself to be a man, tempted and tried in all ways as we are, to show that in the Spirit of Christ, in the graces of Christ, in the Kingdom of Christ, we can so walk. 2 John 6, “And this is love, that we walk after His commandments. This is the commandment, That, as ye have heard from the beginning, ye should walk in it.” The Ten Commandments of God are His moral law—the moral character of God. We cannot be Kingdom citizens made in the image and likeness of God, raised from the dead in Christ Jesus, and not mirror His moral character. 3 John 3-4, “For I rejoiced greatly when the brethren came and testified to the truth that is in thee; even as thou walkest in the truth. I have “no greater joy” than to hear that my children walk in truth.” Revelation 16:15, “Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame.” We do not want to show up before the throne of God naked and ashamed, do we? Blessed are they that know God will come swiftly, in a way and in an hour that cannot be predicted. And how will we be found walking at that moment? Naked and ashamed? Caught up in the pleasures of this life? Surfeiting and soaked in compromise? Or alive to the realities of Christ—a good steward, found giving unto each one as they have need? (Matt. 24:45-47) Another illustration ... In our town there are many places to walk. We have many paths and trails. On the sides of these paths are thorn bushes which we try to avoid! But if, when we are walking down the path, we get a little bit too close to them, we may get caught on the thorns. Does it take all the thorns in the bush to pull us off to the side? No. It only takes one or two. To what can we liken those thorns? Sin! It only takes one or two to drag us off the path of walking in Christ. One or two can be enough to pull us out of service. Now, what do we do when one of our friends is caught on one or two thorns in the bush and they cannot free themselves? Do we just jerk them out? No. We stop and

carefully pull off the thorns, handling them all very gently so that nothing gets torn and no one gets scratched. Now, it would be odd for our friend not to want to be free of the thorns or to refuse help. It would be strange for someone to like being caught up in thorn bushes. The pain alone, along with the restriction, should be motivation enough to want freedom. But it takes gentleness in order to help remove someone who has been held captive. How do we avoid these thorns along the path? The first thing we can do is stay in the center of the lane. If we get reckless and careless, not watching what we are doing, we can roll right into the bushes! It happens very easily when we are not paying attention. We just roll right into the bushes of sin and are ensnared. We can avoid that by staying in the center. A well-lit path is also essential to avoid the ensnaring thorns. The paths of this world go through many dark places and the careful traveler will carry a good source of light to illumine the way. “Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path. The entrance of Thy words giveth light …” (Psalm 119:105, 130) God’s word will drive the darkness from before our feet, keeping us in the center path of righteousness. How important it is to walk in the light as He is in the light! It is the visible evidence that we are Kingdom citizens. All else is falsehood. Without the light of truth, we will entangle ourselves in the thorns of everyday sin. There are many souls who repeatedly get “caught up” in sin, doubt, despondency, or fear. A saint pulls them back to the altar of God, convinces them to take another glass of the water of life, and then sets them off walking down the path again only to watch them fall right back into the bushes. When this cycle repeats itself over and over again, then we must conclude that there is no convincing evidence that the Spirit of God is alive and well in that life. Something is very wrong there! It is not the victorious, overcoming, triumphant life of a true saint! True saints are spilling out life-giving water in every direction, always showing forth a regenerated life, continued growth in holiness, and the word of God always in their mouths! God is not the problem. They are the problem—keeping themselves out of the love of Christ. When we move out of the old man and into the new man, because of Christ’s work—plus or minus nothing of our own—how can we forget so great a Savior? If we are truly in love with the Lord Jesus Christ how could it not affect our speech, our thought patterns, our hearts, our desires, our motivations, our friends, and all the rest of our lives? How could other things drag us away? What can separate us from the love of God? We will have to admit that if we can be dragged away from the realities of Christ back into the old man, into the old despondencies, doubts, fears, or angers—if there is something greater in us on that level than of the things of Christ—then we are just not walking in the ways of the Lord. We do not know Him! We must be rooted and grounded in love, settled and established in the truth, before there is going to be any reality in our lives. We must get unleashed from the hooks and barbs of our sin, admit that it is sin,

then get back into the center lane and walk uprightly with Christ. He did not die a cheap death. He gave us an abundant life! If we are not extolling that before others, then we must question what we have. If natural people cannot see it, then they will not believe it! “That they may see your good works …” (Matt. 5:16) It starts with us. And it starts with our local fellowship—by the love we have one for another will all men know that we are His disciples. Why? Because we care enough for one another to keep one another from going out and getting “caught” in sin. Do we want to stay in the barbs and thorns on the sides of the path, or do we want to be in the center lane of life with Christ Jesus—on the Highway of Holiness? Kingdom Assurance Now, what is the evidence of the Christian’s biblical assurance of faith? The security that we are in Christ? First, there is the peace of God ruling in the heart. Secondly, there is a yearning for the completeness of our rest in Him. We will not be comfortable just settling into “Old Mother Earth.” We will be eagerly seeking the second coming of our Lord Jesus Christ! We will be yearning in prayer for the King of kings to come down to earth with His governments, that we might be fully occupied with His presence, His person, His power, and His plan for ages yet to be revealed! But, we cannot pray those prayers unless we want that heavenly country! And that yearning will give us the security, the assurance of faith in Christ Jesus that we are with Him. It is when we do not yearn for and desire these things that we can be confident that we are not yet in the heavenly country. If everything is going so swimmingly well that we can peacefully go about our day-to-day business with a confidence that we understand the Bible and a feeling that we have it all under control, have attended many meetings, that our intentions are good and our hearts sincere, yet there is no visible reality that we have “moved in,” then there has not been a covenant cut with God making us one with Him in His heavenly country. Once we have entered into Christ, into the Kingdom of God, we may have to go through some troubled waters, yet we will not be losing our security in Christ through it all. We may feel the wind and waves, but we will continue to hold on to the promises and the reality that we are truly saved and in Christ. The assurance of a true faith will be there. The peace of God cannot be taken away. What can separate us from the love of God? Any thing? Any person? Any substance? Anything derived from the earth? May we suggest that if there is not a walking in the clear assurance of faith and a crisp understanding of the security that we are in Christ, then we have not yet “moved in” to the new man. The “new man” has no more reality for us than a dream—a notion, a shadow! Let us examine a few Scriptures that point to our security in Jesus ... 2 Cor. 6:16, “What agreement hath the temple of God with idols? For you are the temple of the living God; and as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people.” This is such intimacy from the heart of our Father God! We are the temple of the Living God! These

bodies are the temple which God has chosen. He has humbled Himself to live in them because they have been covered by the blood of the Lamb. But, He cannot dwell within unless the temple lives and walks in the truth and reality of being freed from sin. Otherwise, it is just a sham religion. It is not real. The Holiness of God will not come in to the temple and fill it until, at the heart level, it is clean! Otherwise, He would be living with sin! And if we can live with some deprecation in our life, we must not think that God is pleased or that the Holy Spirit of God is dwelling within. He says, “I will dwell in them, and walk in them.” He will walk in us! He will take our carriage and again manifest the living Christ upon the earth. The incarnation of His Word is now through “His Body Corporate”… the Church! There is a victorious, overcoming, triumphant Church. Even the gates of hell have not and cannot ever prevail against it. With all the institutions, denominations, distractions, and discord that is all around, there is still the Church in this world giving testimony to the Living God. It is indeed God who walks in His temple, His Church. And as slaves to His righteousness we will want Him to walk in us. We want the security of Christ Jesus being with us. We have found our Lover and we will not let Him go! Eph. 2:10, “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” We are His workmanship. He is light. He said, “I am the light of the world.” That title was also given to His Church when He said, “Ye are the light of the world.” Being light and salt in the earth is being in Christ. And we are to let that light shine in such a way that it does not compromise the reality that Christ lives and dwells in us, that men might see our good works—putting our faith into action—and give glory to our Father in heaven. The world will then understand that Jesus Christ is in His Church; that it is His abode, where He lives. He has designed and ordained that we would do these things! (Eph. 3:10, 21; 2 Thess. 1:12) When He is dwelling in us, then He will walk through us and bring His goodness to every place, that it would bear upon the conscience, mind, and sight of all men. This is the life of the heavenly Kingdom. (1 Cor. 6:19-20; 2 Cor. 6:15-7:1) It is the heavenly country to which we have been called in Christ. We are no longer strangers. We have been saved from sin and are now raised, a new man in Christ, victorious in all things, overcoming, triumphant. Just as death reigned through Adam, because of that one man, after we have laid that old man down and left that country—through the cross of Christ Jesus—and are raised into a new life, so life —the grace of righteousness—shall rule in men and women who are in the Kingdom’s heavenly country. (Rom. 5:17) The Book of Romans gives us a good view of what it means to stand confidently in the Lord. Here is a brief overview … Chapters 1-3 speak of the fact that man is sinful, that he has all kinds of thorn bushes all around him that have him ensnared, and that every mouth is stopped from giving any excuse for sin. In Chapter 4, we read about how a man can stand before God without sin—by receiving justification, by faith in the atoning blood

of Jesus Christ. Only this Justification allows a man to stand before God without sin, without guilt, without shame, in a full atonement and the cleanness of the life of Christ. And what has the Lord done? He has taken the records of sin and death away, nailed them to the cross, and has imputed His righteousness unto us. We can receive all these things by faith. In this justification, God loves us just as He loves Jesus Christ. (John 16 and 17) What a fascination this will command upon the conscience of all true Kingdom citizens! It will cause us to walk like it is true! (2 Cor. 7:9-11) And as it is true, it will be true in every dimension, not just in spiritual things, but in the physical realm of this life, also. Because we are enslaved to Christ, in His righteousness, we are going to walk righteously, as He is righteous, even in a fallen world. We will walk in the light, as He is in the light. We will be transformed and transfigured from the old man into revealing the holiness of the Lord in the new man! (Rom. 12:1-3) Chapter 5 shows us the blessing—the blessing that results from being justified. The Lord let Abraham know that He would bless him, and that Abraham would also be a blessing unto all the nations! This is the responsibility of being a Kingdom citizen. We cannot hold it in! It is like light. It has to shine forth. It has to radiate out and light the path for others as well. Chapter 5:1 reads … “Therefore, being justified by faith we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” True Kingdom citizens have peace … already! Nothing can disturb our peace if we are really dead to the flesh, resurrected, and alive to Christ. (Ps. 119:165) Chapter 5:1-2, “We have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: by Whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.” Here Paul writes very specifically about this grace. It is grace that rules and reigns in the resurrection life, that causes us to walk by faith and not by sight. It produces a heart disposition, a heart covenant, a heart transfer—devoted and loyal to God. Vs. 5:3-4, “And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also.” Here is the secret of identifying with Christ. Even in His sorrows, even in His suffering, look what it produced! Oh, that we might know the fellowship of His suffering, “knowing that tribulation worketh perseverance.” And oh, that we might persevere through all! Perseverance leads to experience (proof). Once we have experience (familiarity), that gives us hope. This is describing the building of character! Vs. 5:5, “And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit which is given unto us.” So, glorying (demonstrating, operating) in tribulation produces perseverance. Perseverance produces experience—proof of character. Then our persevering experience with the Lord through it all produces hope. And hope produces the love of God shed abroad in our hearts, filling us completely full. If indeed we are Kingdom citizens, we have all things in Christ Jesus. And we will act like Kingdom citizens who are rich in faith, who have all the storehouses opened to us in Christ Jesus. Vss. 5:6-11, “For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for

the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die … But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of His Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.” We were enemies. We needed to be reconciled. We were “without strength.” Have we received a full atonement? If we have, then we are truly Kingdom citizens. This section of Scripture shows us that our security, or assurance in Christ, is with strength! When we are without strength, He gives us strength. When we know that we are dead—dead to the sensations of this life, we also know that we are saved by His resurrection Life. If we have now received the atonement, reconciliation is complete. We have a righted relationship with the Lord. The joy of the Lord is our strength! And in His presence is fullness of joy! This is a great portion of our salvation. And we have it available to us right now. We are free! Free from the burdens of sin, guilt, and destruction! We have hope in Christ! Eph. 3:16-21, “That He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might by His Spirit in the inner man; that Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fullness of God.” (When? Now! It is a “now atonement!”) “Now unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think according to the power that worketh in us, unto Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.” All ages! That includes this one! God has destined Himself to receive glory in the Church!— those who are actually true, living, walking, talking citizens of His Kingdom. Notice that there are four dimensions to the love of God: breadth, length, depth, and height. -Breadth: love … to the whole world! -Length: love … to the giving of His only begotten Son! -Depth: love … to whomsoever will! -Height: love … unto life everlasting! (Jn. 3:16, 17:3) In Conclusion ... Romans 5:10, “For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of His Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.” When Jesus died for us, we were sinners. He can save rebels. He can save sinners … all the way out of hell, into His marvelous light! But this verse points out the fact that if God saved His enemies, how much more shall He preserve His saints! Glory to God! Let us gather this up as our true encouragement and assurance—

that if He could die for us and raise us out of the stink and stench of the pit of hell, how much more can He preserve us who are already in His marvelous light! Why does He constantly labor for us in intercession? That we might stay with Him in true resurrected life! When we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of His Son. Now much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by His life! This is what true justification is. It is His resurrected life being “manifested” in our physical lives as we purpose to maintain careful obedience (consecrate ourselves) to the righteous ways of Christ. Paul frames the Book of Romans with the words “the obedience of faith”—the revealing of what has been imputed unto justified men. (Matt. 5:16; Phil. 2:12; 3:20; 2 Cor. 10:3-7) It is one thing to have our sin atoned for. It is quite another to be resurrected into life! But, we cannot separate these two different activities of the Lord Jesus Christ. If God saved His enemies, how much more will He keep those in love with Himself. He saved His enemies, He can keep His friends much more! Oh, are you in love?! He has given us so much! Have you seen your Beloved? “I am my Beloved’s and my Beloved is mine!” Is He your cloud by day and your fire by night? Has He brought you into a land flowing with milk and honey? Enter in! He is much more able to save us alive than when we were dead. And there was no contest when we were dead. We had to come out of that old country and into the new country of Christ Jesus. That is the message we have … Confident Living in Christ Jesus. A confidence that we might know Him and have fellowship with Him. (Eph. 3:12; Heb. 3:14, 10:35; 1 Jn.2:28, 3:21, 5:14) Doubt (unbelief) does not believe that God loves you. If there is no application of His love in our life then … there is no love. Israel could not receive the promises that God wanted to give to them—that He might dwell with them as they walked with Him—and an eleven-day journey turned into forty years for them. Only two men finally entered the promised land, by the providence, grace, and love of God. They were of a different spirit! They loved the Lord and could see the strength, power, and activity of the Lord. They knew and proclaimed that, because God was with them in power, nothing could overtake them. It did not matter to them what the circumstances looked like. It only mattered “who God is!” They knew that if God had said it, then He would do it. They believed the truth and it showed in their lives as a walk of faith. Joshua and Caleb walked with the Lord right through the forty years of wilderness and death, and then walked in to the land of promise. The only two, out of six hundred thousand men, that had entrusted themselves to their faithful Creator! Unbelief is always the crippling agent in our lives. It will kill us, brethren, if we get into the Slough of Despond, a wretched wreck of despondency. If we mess around with “distorting” the image of Christ, the work of the Holy Spirit and blaspheming His holy name, then we will not enter in to His rest. And God’s wrath will overtake us. (Rom. 2:2-11) It is historically recorded what happened to Israel in their walk out of Pharaoh’s Egypt and the grasp of the flesh, delivered through the sea of baptism. They could not enter into the promised land even though they had been delivered. They had to “leave” one place before they could “enter into” another. Having completed the

first course, they failed to enter in … after deliverance! And we see that today. Many Christians profess that they have been delivered … and they have! But somehow, something is preventing them from going forward. They have not let go of the “spiritual crud” that is in their hearts. When it is placed upon us to give up our flesh at the heart level, what do we do? Who will we be in our freedom when there is just a little section of time for us to prove where our loyalties really are? God will give us a window of opportunity. But when it closes down … We cannot tamper with the glory of God and think that we can get away with it forever. (1 Thess. 5:1-11; 2 Thess. 2:9-13; Zech. 5:6-8) Because of His holiness and infinite justice, when He knows that we have fully known, “these ten times!” … then He will close the door. We will have proved ourselves to be rebels, and no one will contend with the justice of God’s love shown toward us. Do we see that the love of God is valuable? He first loved us when we were dead in our sin. And now He raises it even higher—when we are justified and raised up, He will keep us! But, if we are not keeping ourselves (the responsibility to walk) in the love of God, then that is evidence that we are not living in the Kingdom of God. God does not have to beg His citizens to stay! If we have entered in, we know the goodness and the riches of His glory. Does God see us as valuable? Oh, yes! All of us have been made in the image and likeness of God to serve, worship, and obey Him perfectly, eternally, and righteously, in and with His authority. Nothing is able to pluck us out of His hand. Once we are there, He will keep us there. It is like this with marriage. We can be married, but unless we put our heart into it every day, we may be cultivating distance! It is that way in prayer with our Lord, also. If there is an estrangement between us and God, it is because of us, not Him. He is very married, very loyal, very pure, and overflowing with goodness. He can be nothing else. God is love. We are a peculiar, that is, a rare and precious, purchased treasure unto Him. He ever lives to make intercession for us. Oh, let us thank Him in our prayers for His constant labors … for taking our sorrows and death at the cross! He died to save us … and lives to keep us with Him. He was delivered for our offenses, and was raised again for our justification. Brethren, He has paid the whole price! Receive it! And enter in—by acting our faith and life upon it! Thank you, Lord Jesus! Heb. 7:22, “By so much was Jesus made a surety of a better testament. And they truly were many priests, because they were not suffered to continue by reason of death: but this Man, because He continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood. Wherefore He is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by Him, seeing He ever liveth to make intercession for them.”

Step By Step He does not lead me year by year, Nor even day by day. But step by step my path unfolds, My Lord directs my way.

Tomorrow’s plans I do not know, I only know this minute. But He will say, this is the way, By faith now walk ye in it. And I am glad that it is so, Today’s enough to bear. And when tomorrow comes His grace, Shall far exceed its care. What need to worry then, or fret? The God who gave His Son, Holds all the moments in His hand, And gives them one by one.

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