“And as for you, the anointing you received from Him remains in you, and you do not need anyone to teach you. But just as His true and genuine anointing teaches you about all things, so remain in Him as you have been taught.” 1 Jn. 2.27
This scripture does not suggest there is no further need for teachers in the Body of Christ. That would be far from the truth. The Church will always have the need for those ministries with a Godly calling upon their lives to teach, “to see your face and to supply the things lacking in your faith,” 1 Thes. 3.10 and “to declare the mystery of Christ.” Col. 4.3 There will always be a need for such teachers. It is by such ministries as teachers that the Church is being built up and brought to maturity in the earth today. However, this particular scripture is speaking of the residency of the Spirit of Christ in the hearts of believers to be that silent inner witness in our daily walk of life. It is as Christ promised, “And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper (Advocate) to be with you forever— the Spirit of truth.”Jn. 14.16-17 This word “Advocate” literally means one who can make the right judgment call because He is close to the situation. Without this inner witness one may well accumulate vast knowledge from many teachers but not be able to apply this knowledge in the most practical and needful way. The ability to do so is what I am calling spiritual common sense.
There is a scripture that reads, “The one who thinks he knows something does not yet know as he ought to know.” 1 Cor. 8.2 It is amazing that, in the natural, there are highly educated individuals, or those skilled or artistic in ability, and those who do well in military, business, research, or financial endeavors, yet have no common sense. They can be leaders, innovators, investors, skilled artists and creative engineers who are successful in their own right, but are without sound judgment in every-day matters and perhaps things that really count the most. For example, I recently read of a world renowned neuro-scientist who was forced to resign from her position as director of the Institute for Human Cognitive Studies in Germany for “bullying.” One individual said that if someone went in to see her there is a 50/50 probability of coming out in tears. This doctor’s area of expertise is: empathy—the ability to share and understand another’s experiences. Brilliance without common sense always leads to frayed relationships or other personal destructive behavior. They are “always learning but never able to come to a knowledge of the truth.” 2 Tim. 3.7
In this The Spiritual Man Series, it was stated early on that a foundation must first be laid, and then built upon in subsequent chapters. Such is the case here. An understanding and apprehension of the preceding chapters must serve as a foundation for this message, for without that one cannot apprehend, or more importantly, walk in the realities of this message: Spiritual Common Sense. Of principle note is the understanding for the foundation scripture: “He saved us, not by works of righteousness that we did, but according to His mercy, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit.” Titus 3.5 The foundation for this scripture was just laid in the previous chapter.
Experiential or Head Knowledge
It is very important to understand the difference between practical or experiential knowledge and knowledge gained by other means, such as by reading a book or listening to someone explain something. The latter is what is commonly referred to as head knowledge. To the right are pictured two apples. What are they like to eat? If you have access to the real apples, go ahead and taste them and find out. If not, and you have never tasted apples like these, let me tell you the difference. I have first-hand experiential knowledge of them because I have eaten both. My favorite is the juicy very sweet Fugi apple. They are quite tasty, crispy, and enjoyable. Some people like the Granny Smith apple but it is much too tart for me. My jaws tighten and I salivate just thinking about biting into one of those Grannies.
If someone offered me a bag of Fugi apples, I would gladly take it, store the apples in a cool, dark location, and enjoy them one at a time. If however, someone would give me a bag of Granny Smith apples, I would gratefully accept them, hand them over to my wife, Petra, and ask if she would make an apple pie of them, adding lots of sugar, cinnamon, and other ingredients. Now that’s how you eat Granny Smiths! Now you know the contrast between these two apple types not because you actually tasted them, but because you were taught the difference.
So now you understand the difference between experiential knowledge and head knowledge. The first is knowledge gained as a part of life. It is living, realistic, and can be experienced. It is knowledge gained from within one’s own self. It may involve any of the five senses or a range of emotions and thought processes. You may know without a doubt what the apples taste like and how to enjoy them because you have eaten them. The second knowledge comes from outside of us as we learn by listening to another, reading about it in a book, or seeing its picture. Now to learn this way may be fine regarding apples, but what about spiritual realities? Would you be satisfied with volumes of head knowledge learned through teachings and sermons or would you prefer to learn experientially?
To the one it is written, “We know that we all possess knowledge. But knowledge puffs up…” 1 Cor. 8.1 These words “puffs up” are quite interesting. It means being without substance, airy, like foam. One can become a walking encyclopedia of knowledge, Biblical or otherwise, yet be without much spiritual substance. I know of a local man who pastored a church for 30-some years. He preached, counseled, married and buried; he baptized and performed other church rituals, yet without much spiritual common sense. He eventually died a lonely man, isolated from his wife and children, even doubting his own salvation. You may ask, “How can this be?” Stories similar to this are more common than what you may think. “Religion” is a devious imitator of Christian life.
To the experiential way of gaining knowledge is written, “Now this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom You have sent.” Jn. 17.3 Here, it is quite important to understand that this Biblical work “know” actually means to gain knowledge by personal experience, to know by way of a personal relationship between the object or person being perceived and the one knowing. In this case, knowing is between the believer and God. And, the word “life” (Gk. zoe) here is expressing the fact that “eternal life” issues forth from coming into an experiential knowing God our Father and Jesus Christ. This is an inward impartation of a portion of God’s own life into our beings. No one has to tell us of this life because you know it when you have it. And even if a believer would attempt to tell an unbeliever of this life, the mind of the natural man could not comprehend it. We must experience it! And this experience is outside the normal senses of perception. John 14.17 goes on to describe this indwelling Helper or Advocate, “the Spirit of truth. The world cannot receive Him, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him. But you do know Him, for He abides with you and will be in you.” It is so very edifying to contemplate such truths. Think about it.
In our analogy we tasted apples, but now regarding spiritual things, we desire to be among those “who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, who have shared in the Holy Spirit, who have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the coming age…” Heb. 6.4-5 Even as we have physical senses in the natural, we also have spiritual senses, and it is by these we find our relationship with God and conduct our lives in the realm of the Kingdom of God. The difference between head knowledge and experiential knowledge in spiritual matters is vast, and is as distinct as between what may be called religion and what the Bible terms life. The first, religion, one may practice. The second, life, is something one lives and experiences. When our Lord declared that He “came that they may have life, and may have it abundantly” Jn. 10.10, He was speaking of this eternal life that begins now in the life of the believer and extends through the resurrection and unto eternity. And by it, He meant life not as mere vitality, but a life of knowing Him and His Kingdom.Bless His holy Name.
The Pursuit of Spiritual Common Sense
Rm. 12.2 “Transformed by renewing” literally means a change in thinking in keeping with a new inner reality.
We must now begin a course of understanding distinctly different from all our upbringing. From our childhoods until now we have been taught to think logically, to reason things out, use the scientific method for discovering truth, and that seeing is believing. These are fine if we wish to continue to only eat of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. But what if we want to partake of the Tree of Life? Aha! In Christ, man is restored to the primal condition of the Garden of Eden, but now with unrestricted access to this Tree of Life—which is actually Christ Himself. If so, then we must all, “…not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God.” Rm. 12.2 “Transformed by renewing” literally means a change in thinking in keeping with a new inner reality. I repeat, thinking in keeping with a new inner reality. “New,” not renewed or modified but altogether different. This is in keeping with 2 Cor. 5.17, “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away. Behold, the new has come!” It is a new way of thinking, of reacting, of living according to a new inner reality.
To speak about common sense in general is not an easy task, and God forbid we become philosophical about it, or treat it here in a mere academic manner—something I personally agonize over—it must be practical, applicable, experiential, otherwise we only become inflated in our thinking. May our Lord give us understanding in the simplest of ways, for we do not wish to be listed among the great thinkers of our time but simply to understand and apply to our lives the mysteries of God. I would desire to understand, apprehend, and ingest the simplest mystery of Christ and the Kingdom of God than all the encyclopedic knowledge gained through all the great Biblical scholars since the beginning of time. We do not wish to be led along the path of head knowledge, as in continuously eating from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.
The roots of the “great thinkers” of this world may have begun in Adam and Eve from the time of the Fall when they intentionally shunned the Tree of Life to eat of this Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, but its fruit in the earth became more tasty and more divisive when philosophy and science separated from theology, and man began to think totally outside the spiritual. Much may be acknowledged about these great thinkers advancing our knowledge about the natural world we live in and how technology affects our everyday life. But such knowledge has not brought us closer to God. Rather, the reality of this has shown that with every bound forward in this knowledge there is an equal but opposite step backwards from our spiritual understanding of God. Man becomes even more absorbed and focused on himself and this world in which he lives. God is being hidden behind a veil of philosophy and science. Theology is deemed to contaminate the purity of natural theories. However, my desire is to draw close to the Tree of Life, who is Christ, and eat of that fruit unto eternal life. (Please reference 1 Cor. 1.18-31 where the wisdom of God is contrasted with the wisdom of the wise of this world.)
Prayer. Lord, we dare not venture forward from this point under the strength, understanding, and wisdom of our natural man. We humbly submit ourselves before you and seek reliance on your Holy Spirit to teach and impart and to open our understanding. We ask that you draw us upward in a spiritual way, into your ultimate purposes in Christ. Make clear, we pray, the mysteries of Christ. Bring to fulfillment His promise to us, “I came that they may have life, and may have it abundantly (in all its fullness).” Jn. 10.10
Core Principles of Spiritual Common Sense
Natural common sense may be explained as having sound practical judgment concerning everyday matters based upon a simple perception of the situation or facts before us – in other words, sound judgment in what we experience or observe. Two individuals may perceive the same situation and react very differently. Common sense is a judgment leading to good and fair results. Do you have good sense? Are you able to see things the way they really are, without being duped by imitations or myths or misled while appraising a situation? Do you do things the way they ought to be done? Perhaps you do to one degree or another. If, however, this describes having good common sense, then what is its counterpart in the spiritual? In the natural realm of man, we perceive and interact by way of the physical, the logical, and the emotional elements of our makeup. Every minute of the waking day we are observing through our five senses, feeling some sense of emotion, and reasoning the thoughts in our minds, and forming opinions. These define our natural or created environment.
A new look and understanding must be given to these elements as we consider an altogether different realm, the uncreated realm of the eternal God and His Kingdom. It is in this uncreated realm of the spirit that things like time, space, and matter become less relevant, as does those elements of perception, logic and emotions that interact with them. Simply, one cannot assess invisible and intangible spiritual matters, like Christ, prayer, morals, and the throne of God, in the same way as one would assess a prime minister, conversations, social conduct, or a court room. The first is perceived inwardly, in and by the spirit. The latter is perceived outwardly.
At this moment we stand at a threshold. A decision must be made whether to continue to function as before, as in the natural, or give ourselves over completely, to a new realm of the Spirit. Repeating Romans 12.2 is necessary, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God.” A worm-like caterpillar is transformed into a butterfly when its outward appearance changes form in keeping with its new inner reality. Our minds must undergo a transformation being renewed by the new inner reality of the presence and power of God in our hearts. Shall we continue?
The Way of Spiritual Common Sense
We will now let the following explanations serve as a foundation for the pursuit of spiritual common sense by briefly comparing the way into common sense: Natural and Spiritual.
COMMON SENSE COMPARED
Matter: Visible, Tangible Invisible, Intangible
Time: Temporal, Beginning/Ending Eternal, no beginning and/or no ending
Space: Place, 3-Dimensional Non-Dimensional, w/o Boundaries or limits
Being outside the realm of natural understanding, spiritual common sense interacts with the invisible and intangible realm of the Kingdom of God. One no longer just presumes to enter a prayer room or church building, interact with clergy and other members of the congregation, the reading of scriptures, and singing of songs. Something more than all of that is taking place. Jesus matter-of-factly said to Pilate, “My kingdom is not of this world.” Jn. 18.36His Kingdom has authority, power, inhabitants of citizens, and even a “place” of existence, but it cannot be observed…in the natural!
The only way possible to perceive this reality is by faith—as the “evidence (or conviction) of things not seen.” Heb. 11.1 Faith is the seat of our spiritual senses. We may still see, hear and taste, but it is of an inward perception that now feeds the mind and our understanding. Even a different set of emotions may now flood our being: a sense of peace, joy, and even brokenness. If one’s “belief” system is founded upon the tangible, such as icons of the faith; ministers and priests; rituals, or commandments, then it is really not of faith….it is only of religion, because by its very Biblical definition faith is the evidence of things not seen. Faith ushers the believer into spiritual realities.
One may “feel” spiritually poor, abandoned, and alone. And, “feel” desperate and thirsty for something more of God. Life’s circumstances may seem to have closed in. The emotions can no longer be motivated, to lift us up for more than a few hours at most. The sense of reason in an attempt to sort things out brings no help. But then faith lays hold of some scriptural Godly promise and light and life begins to enter. Darkness begins to separate and light shines upon a path of hope. The following are a few smithereens, a foretaste of a catalog of spiritual promises waiting to be opened and applied by faith. To the natural man they are a mystery, but to the spiritual man they are the realities of the Kingdom of God.
- “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms.” Eph. 1.3 Has blessed us!!!! Past tense!!! Meaning its fullness began at the time of the new birth in Christ. Morally, legally, in all conceivable ways, each and every blessing unto their sum total reserved in the heavenly realm, has been granted to us by God. This promise is dogmatically founded upon the incontrovertibly true statement: to each and every believer who is “spiritually” in Christ. There is no spiritual blessing, unseen and unbeknown to natural man, that has fallen upon the greatest men and women of our faith, that are outside the grasp of any believer. It is not a matter of status, attitude, memorization, or repetition of words. It is only a matter of faith, believing in the unseen reality of God and the Kingdom of God, and the total redemption that is in Christ Jesus. It is a matter of being convinced or persuaded in the unseen realm of the kingdom. “Listen, my beloved brothers: Has not God chosen the poor of this world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom He promised those who love Him?” Jam. 2.5
- The Israelites of the Old Covenant had a physical covenant with God. They were chosen people in the earth. They were to be a witness to all other tribes and nations of the only true God. And God in turn would provide for their physical well-being. Under this covenant the invisible heavenly manna from heaven was made visible and tangible to the Israelites to sustain them in their wilderness walk of 40 years. Now, under the spiritual covenant in Christ, the visible and tangible bread and wine of the communion table is invisibly received as the body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ to sustain us in our Kingdom walk. In the Old Covenant the Israelites were protected from their physical enemies of opposing tribes. Today, believers are protected from our spiritual enemies who operate in high places. The believer, in Christ, has been given the authority and power to rebuke, resist, and “stand against the schemes of the devil,” as our struggle “ is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this world’s darkness, and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” Eph. 6.11-12 In the Old Covenant the Israelites were promised a kingdom, a physical kingdom of land, cities, homes, crops, etc. The believer in Christ is promised an eternal kingdom and “To an inheritance imperishable and undefiled and unfading, being reserved in the heavens for you.” 1 Pet. 1.4
- In the beginning of time we see Eve in Adam, taken out of his side, to become his bride and wife in the earth. They were given power and authority to rule over every living creature and all the earth itself. Now, in the end of times we see the spiritual Church, being formed and matured in Christ, being taken out of Christ to be His eternal bride and to sit with Him on His throne as He rules over the eternal Kingdom of God. (See 2 Cor. 11.2; Rev. 19.6-9)
“So… we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” 2 Cor. 4.18
I wish to reveal a marvelous mystery which is a spiritual fact but beyond the comprehension of the natural man. And, I wish to do this by first presenting two scriptures for consideration:
“For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity dwells in bodily form.” Col. 2.9
But out of Him (God), you are in Christ Jesus, who has been made unto us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification and redemption.” 1 Cor. 1.30
We cannot minimalize this great truth. These are but simple words that describe a magnificent mystery. God, the great I Am that I Am, the eternal self-existent One, divinely places the spirit of the believer into Christ Jesus in whom the fullness of the Father dwells. This is unimaginable and illogical to the natural man. It is spiritual and fulfills the priestly prayer of Jesus, “that all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You, that they also may be in Us, …” Jn. 17.21 Physically, I am not around the atmosphere, above the atmosphere, or in the vicinity of the atmosphere. I am in the atmosphere. I can feel its elements of temperature, moisture, and wind. I can breath it into my lungs where its oxygen enters our body system bringing life to my blood. Even so, I am now in Christ. In Him the believer enters the timeless realm of eternity, which has no beginning or ending. As Christ is in time, I am. The body of the believer has yet to enter this dimension but upon the resurrection, at the second coming of Christ, he most certainly will enter the timeless dimensionless of eternity in spirit, soul, and body. This is the great hope (anticipation) of all believers.
To understand this great mystery requires a way of thinking, we can call spiritual common sense, that the believer has not had before. We cannot spiritually compartmentalize time according to eras or dispensations, which are true in the natural realm, but are insufficient for understanding the spiritual. Returning to the beginning of time, all mankind (which includes you and me) was present with Adam in the Garden of Eden as being in the seed of Adam. Being in his seed, we were present with Adam as a living organic part of him. As such, all mankind has a share in his history, his offense, his guilt and sentence of death. It is written,
“Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, so also death was passed on to all men, because all sinned,… death reigned from Adam until Moses, even over those who did not sin in the way that Adam transgressed. He is a pattern of the One to come.” Rm. 5.12-14
Thank God for this closing sentence to verse 14, “He is a pattern of the One to come.” Even as all mankind was physically in Adam, and sharing in his sin, even so all believers who are now in Christ are spiritually born of the seed of Christ (…having been born again not of corruptible seed but incorruptible… 1 Pet. 1.23) , and now have a share in His history, His righteous acts, and His gift of grace. (Please refer to Rm. 5. 12-21 for a more complete account.)
With this understanding of our core position in Christ regarding time, let us now reckon upon these facts. I like to use that term reckon at this point, as it is used in Rm. 6.11, “So also you, consider (reckon) yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but living to God in Christ Jesus.” Here it means to reason to a logical conclusion. Let us reach into our spiritual common sense, that core of instinctive understanding, and unveil further mysteries of Christ with regard to time and eternity.
- Let us begin by examining and reckoning upon the scripture, “I have been crucified with Christ, and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.”Gal. 2.20 By truly reckoning upon the reality of this scriptural mystery, one is delivered from all attempts at making one’s self “good” in the eyes of God, for our new common sense reckons it a completed fact. Rest is now the key word. Rest in this truth that “I”, that self-promoting “ego”, has lost its power over our lives by being rendered crucified in Christ. Now we are motivated by a new life within, “I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.”
In addition to this marvelous truth, scriptures go on to confirm the finality of the reign of that “ego” or “I” over our lives: “we were buried with Him through baptism unto death,.” Rm. 6.4 Suddenly, that rite of baptism takes on new meaning. In the natural, baptism represents a public confession of one’s life to Christ with submersion into water, which only represents a watery grave. But the reality of this grave is real by way of the Spirit in which the believer reckons his self both crucified and buried…in Christ. Religious baptism is outward, tangible, and visible, but true spiritual baptism into Christ is inward, invisible, and life changing. And, there is a spiritual resurrection to follow: “just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may walk in newness of life.” Rm. 6.4 Oh how we must be convinced, persuaded of this fact, that our walk, today, this minute, is in newness of life.
All of this, beloved, is not happening in some futuristic time, but it is to be experienced now in this life. Spiritually, time has been swallowed up into eternity as we are joined together in Christ.
- In grand conclusion regarding time, Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me will live, even though he dies,” Jn. 11.15 He said, “I am,” and not that “I will be” for in the timeless realm of the Christ, resurrection is a present truth. In the natural created realm, these bodies must await their resurrection. Biblically, for the believer, the death of the body is termed *sleep because though all its body functions are suspended, it shall soon be followed by coming back to life to a more enduring and functioning life than it has now. *(See 1 Cor. 15.51, 1 Cor. 11.30, 1 Thes. 4.13, 1 Thes. 5.10.) One’s spiritual common sense must be dictated by maintaining this timeless truth. So you too must count yourselves dead to sin, but eternally alive to God in Christ Jesus. Our waking hours must be predicated upon this truth—thus separating religious activities from life.
Our natural life upon this earth is as inescapably bound to space as it is to time and matter. We are constantly confronted with “Where is it? How far is it? How big is it? What is its shape? “ For example: The distance of my home town of Shippensburg, Pennsylvania to where the great temple was located in Jerusalem is 9445 km (5868 miles); The Most Holy Place, the inner-most sanctuary of the temple was a perfect cube, 20 cubits (40 feet, 12m) by 20 cubits by 20 cubits. A Sabbath-day’s journey, the distance under rabbinic law a Jew might travel on the Sabbath from the city, is 2000 cubits (3000 ft., 914m)—which is, by the way, the distance from Jerusalem to the Mount of Olives, to where Jesus led His disciples on the day of His ascension. (Acts 1.12)
However, our spiritual common sense must tell us that there must be something different when considering space and spiritual matters. For instance, “How far away is heaven? How big and what is the shape of the throne of God? After His death, burial and resurrection, and “while the disciples were together with the doors locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them.” Jn. 20.19 The resurrected Christ did not walk to the house, knock on the door, and asked to be let in. He simply crossed the realm between the seen and the unseen. Eph. 4.9 speaks of Jesus ascending and descending. This does not imply that He had to travel light years from the edge across the universe and back, He simply crossed the invisible and intangible threshold between the Kingdom and the physical earth. Distance (space) is spiritually irrelevant.
Our spiritual common sense must tell us that “place” is irrelevant and must take second place to “presence.”
In the same context of time, our spiritual common sense must tell us that “place” is irrelevant and must take second place to “presence.” Oh how many are seeking a place to spend eternity rather than an eternal presence of our Father and Lord. Religiously, in the natural we travel a distance to a church building of a certain size and shape, sit in chairs or pews arranged in some configuration, and invite God to come and fill that space. Now, there is nothing wrong with the gathering or assembling of ourselves together, for we are commanded to do so. (Heb. 10.25) But what is actually happening spiritually? What facts must we consider when gathering for worship? What must be our mental assessment of the situation? Let us consider some scriptural truths.
- Firstly a great and awesome mystery uncovered: “God raised us up with Christ and seated us with Him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus.” Eph. 2.6 Do you see it? Can you grasp the fact (truth) that though you might be gathered together in a room of some nature in the physical you are simultaneously, in the spirit, seated with Christ in Heaven? This truth must dominate our thinking and attitude. We must consider that fact rather than asking God to descend into the midst of our church gathering. We have spiritually ascended into heaven itself and are seated with Christ. How often we dress up our gathering places to have some sort of religious appearance to them, when in reality that gathering place has little significance at all. The truth is we have spiritually ascended into the presence of God. This attitude must accompany and envelope our time of worship. Our spiritual common sense must hold us to the belief of the very presence of God in our midst. This is beyond natural reason and logic, beyond emotions and feelings. It is spiritual truth.
- We must have, and maintain, an attitude that this is a most holy and glorious environment! How privileged we are that our redemption by and through Christ has bought for us a spiritual resurrection, a translation into the heavenly realm, and the presence of God our Father and Christ, the Lamb of God. Worship and thanksgiving rises from within as we join the heavenly host and say,
“Holy, Holy, Holy,
is the Lord God Almighty,
who was and is and is to come!” and…,
“You are worthy, our Lord and God,
to receive glory and honor and power,
for You created all things;
by Your will they exist, and came to be.” Rev.4.8, 11
- Jesus’ promise of His immediate presence has become a literal spiritual fact: “For where two or three are gathered together unto My name, there am I in their midst.” Mt. 18.20 We now enter into this truth not by any outward perception, or emotional feeling, or logical reasoning, but by faith alone. This faith, having absolute confidence in these spiritual truths as revealed in the Word of God, has become our basis of thought (spiritual common sense) and focus. We continue with the heavenly host to worship,
“Worthy is the Lamb who was slain,
to receive power and riches
and wisdom and strength
and honor and glory and blessing!”
To Him who sits on the throne,
and to the Lamb,
be praise and honor and glory and power
forever and ever!” Rev. 5.12-13
- Read now a further confirmation. Following, what begins as a description of a spiritual place (Mt. Zion, Heavenly Jerusalem) quickly changes focus to spiritual presence (heavenly hosts, those of the church who have gone before, God (our Father) and Jesus (our Lord.)
“You have come to Mount Zion, to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem. You have come to myriads of angels in joyful assembly, to the congregation (church) of the firstborn, enrolled in heaven. You have come to God the judge of all men, to the spirits of the righteous made perfect, to Jesus the mediator of a new covenant.” Heb. 12.22-24.
Thus, the believer’s mindset must be altogether changed. We must become not so much aware of our physical surroundings as to our spiritual environment; and not so much concerned about time or place but concerned about eternity and in whose presence we are. “Therefore, since you have been raised with Christ, strive for the things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.” Col. 3.2-3. This should be, no must be, our spiritual common sense and basis for reckoning All our words in song, prayer, and testimony, our attitudes, and our actions, must flow forth from and be in compliance this reality.
When Jesus walked this earth, He alone represented the Kingdom of God on the earth. He said to the people, “The Kingdom of God is in the midst of you.” Lk. 17.21 I can picture multitudes gathered at some city or mount around Jerusalem, and at the center of all of that is Jesus saying to them “The Kingdom of God (Christ Himself) is in the midst of you.” But today, the believer, who has transcended time, space, and matter, may now consider him or herself as being in the midst of the Kingdom of God—that eternal, unshakable, invisible and intangible, realm of God’s holy presence: “who has delivered us from the dominion of darkness and transferred (translated)us into the kingdom of His beloved Son.” Col. 1.13