3. The Living Word of God

“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

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Getting to Know Jesus in the 21st Century

3 Responses to 3. The Living Word of God

  1. I’m sure you have heard this before but my understanding and experience leads me to this line of logical reasoning as far as I can take it in words. The name YHWH is the holiest of all names of God. When God breathed life into us and created us in His image…He gave us an eternal spirit, for God is Spirit. By Adam’s sin, we fell. The only way to have a relationship with God is in the spirit. Christ is not intrinsically “in us”. Christ paid the price for reconcilliation. One must believe, for the convenience of time The Apostle’s Creed…I’m sure you are familiar with it. Once you believe, you receive the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit begins to teach your spirit the spiritual realities of God and is the agent of change. Faith is a gift that is given; belief gets us to the door knocking. Faith is a gift from the Spirit. I’m sure you know Scripture well enough that I don’t have to “whip it out” for you…the Spirit then prepares your heart for Christ to live in you. You can’t have Christ in you already…there is necessarily a process. We all have a spirit…we aren’t intrinsically endowed with the “I AM”…that would mean that our hearts are in essence “good”…the Scriptures are very plain in this regard in that the heart of man is deperately evil! We can be restored by receiving the gospel, being filled with the Holy Spirit, and then having our heart prepared by said Spirit for Christ living in us. In the half-dozen posts of yours I have read, I have not even seen a passing shadow of the Holy Spirit…I know you are trying to be “outside the box”, but I’m afraid that my life and experience has proved the veracity of Scripture…and the process is laid out for those that would “seek God with all their heart, diligently”. To state that Christ already lives in an unbelievers heart is simply un-Biblical. I do however like the love you have and it is evident in your writing! Christ asks us to die to ourselves, to take up our cross daily, that many are called and few are chosen, and that the road to destruction is broad but the path to life is narrow. I would love to “sugar coat” the gospel to be more inclusive, but that would dilute the gospel and would not be representative of Christ’s message…that is dangerous territory. Jesus’ message is a call of self-denial, not self-affirmation…not very sexy today! I have tried to skin this cat a different way for almost 30 years, I studied philosophy in college, read a pleuthora of works on mysticism, etc. The point here for me is that I was never able to live a Christian life successfully until I was empowered by the Holy Spirit. I thank God every day for His unfathomable gift…namely the sacrifice of His Son and then the awesome power of resurrection in the spirit through the Holy Spirit. By the way, I think you would really like the teachings and works of Watchman Nee. He really goes “deep diving” into the difference between the soul, the spirit, and the Holy Spirit and how they work together. I’m sure you have read Thomas Merton as well, but if you haven’t I would point out that it is very enlightning as well. Don’t take my comments as offensive…please! I may have missed some things along the way and may need more time to digest and read further…so I can and will plead ignorance if I have stated something that is covered elsewhere in you work. I will be back. God bless you, my friend!

    • yeshua21 says:

      Many thanks, Disciple Gideon, for your thoughtful comments. The purpose here is not to debate scripture or attempt to persuade anyone to “believe” differently, but to point them to Christ and let their behavior and their beliefs be informed by the light of Christ and the power of the Holy Spirit.

      Speaking of the Holy Spirit, as you read further, I believe you will find a number of references to the Spirit, the power of the Spirit, and the Spirit of God. Granted, this blog is primarily about Getting to Know Jesus, but I think you would agree that if (and as) we get to know Jesus, we will be filled with the Spirit (who will “lead us into all truth” (John 16:13).

      While I don’t wish to debate the points you bring up too much in this context, I will give you a general outline of my reasoning in these regards:

      • * Adam’s sin is my sin (just as Christ’s righteousness is my righteousness)
      • * The apostles’ creed, like scripture, is a pointer to the living Word
      • * We are chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world. In time and space, there is a process which unfolds. But in eternity, I Am the same — yesterday, today, and forever — in Christ.
      • * As Descartes said, “I think [feel, doubt, experience], therefore I am” (cogito ergo sum). This is a universal truth. And if I Am and You Are, God IS (see The Boy in the Bubble).
      • * The carnal mind is the “heart” of fallen humanity. But we have the mind of Christ (I Corinthians 2:16). As soon as the prodigal son or daughter turns toward the “I Am” presence, they make contact with the Word of Life and begin to be conformed to the image of God. The carnal mind isn’t reformed — the carnal mind gets nailed to the cross. Thus the call for “self-denial.”
      • * We are “God’s offspring” — in Him we live and move and have our being” (Acts 17:28). We are alienated from God and from Christ, by virtue of our sin, in Adam, but there is a way back… (not through mere “belief”, but through trusting and relying on the “I Am” presence within us.

      There is no desire, here, to disabuse anyone of their “beliefs” if they are honestly held and are effectively orienting them to the Reality of Christ. The narrow way is not a narrow creed — it is, in the words of T.S. Eliot, “a condition of complete simplicity, costing not less than everything” (Little Gidding).

      BTW, I am somewhat familiar with both Thomas Merton and Watchman Lee and have truly benefited from my (somewhat limited) exposure to their writings. Thanks again for the feedback — feel free to share your thoughts, anytime — publicly or privately!

  2. Marian Carter says:

    It is important to know that YHWH was a god of the Canaanite Pantheon – one of the Elohim (plural) ideas of god. In the Torah or Old Testament, all of those gods were from pantheons. Only during the canonization of Scriptures around 100 BCE were they declared idol gods and denounced/renounced, and the One Living God of Spirit became recognized. When the Masoretes added vowels to a formerly all consonant language did it become Yahweh. The vowels were added to make it more readable. Imagine a continuous text with all consonants – no chapters nor verses until the 14thy century when a Frenchman divided into Chapters. Later, verses were added. Now, we know that Quantum Physics has declared that everything is energy, either expressed or depressed. That energy as Power is Omnipotent – all power – God as we know that Divine Principle.

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