“The hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father seeks such as these to worship him. God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth” (John 4:23-24).
At this point, the possibility of distinguishing between the Reality that IS Christ and “beliefs about Christ” (or beliefs about “the historical Jesus” or “the Bible”) should be clear. As such, it is time, without further adieu, to meet the Reality that IS Christ-in-you:
The “I Am” presence within you IS the living Christ
This is the same Divine presence and living Word of God that is said TO BE prior to Abraham (John 8:58); that spoke to Moses from the burning bush (Exodus3:14); and that continues to speak within the heart of every human being (John 1:1-9; cf. Psalms 36:9 and Revelation 3:20).
Once again: The “I Am” presence within you IS the living Christ. And, in accordance with the scriptures, the “I Am” presence also comes to light as:
- Emmanuel –aka God with us (Matthew 1:23);
- the living water that Jesus offered to the woman at the well (John 4:14; cf. John 7:37-38);
- the light that lights everyone that comes into the world (John 1:9; cf. Psalms 36:9);
- the grace of God which has appeared to all men (Titus2:11);
- the free gift of eternal life that is ours for the taking if only we are willing to turn toward Him in faith (Romans 6:23; cf. I John 5:20).
To turn to the “I Am” presence within you is to simultaneously confess and repent [for everything exposed to the light becomes visible and everything that becomes visible is light (Ephesians 5:13-14)]. And to fully place your trust in that light and to rely wholly on that living presence is to experience salvation by grace through faith (Ephesians 2:8).
Once again: To turn to the “I Am” presence within you is to simultaneously confess and repent. And to fully place your trust in that light and to rely wholly on that living presence is to experience salvation by grace through faith.
Of course, many objections will immediately spring to mind – this is understandable and perhaps unavoidable. But if you will please suspend your objections for just a moment and simply rest in silent awareness of the “I Am” presence within you, you will make contact with the Word of Life. At that point, you need only learn to abide in Him as He abides in you (John 15:4). As it is written:
“If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free” (John 8:31-32).
The fact is that this presence is not entirely new to you. Indeed, the chances are good that you already associate it in a confused sort of way with the presence of God in your life. What may be new is the idea that this light of awareness or living presence (which is universally accessible) is the fundamental Reality toward which our scriptures and traditions are pointing—the only Reality, once again, in which we may fully trust and upon which we can rely unconditionally:
“For with you is the fountain of life; in your light we see light. O continue your steadfast love to those who know you, and your salvation to the upright of heart!” (Psalm 36:9-10).
But it must be stressed – and it can hardly be stressed sufficiently – that this is not an idea to be “believed” in. Rather, it is our point of contact – living and powerful — with the One in whom we live and move and have our being (Hebrews 4:12; Acts 17:28). This living presence is immediately accessible and fully verifiable here and now! Indeed, “Now is the accepted time . . . now is the day of salvation!” (II Corinthians 6:2). Whosoever will may come and drink of the water of life freely!(Revelation 22:17; cf. John 7:37-38). Good news—the kingdom of heaven is at hand!
–> Chapter 4: Getting to Know Jesus in the 21st Century