MAN IS A SLAVE, THERE IS NO FREE WILL. [744a]

Although we say that man was made with the ability to choose right from wrong, and this is where it all went wrong because Eve decided to make the choice to entertain the thought that cropped up in her mind, that God was perhaps being devious with his prohibition on the tree; she actually had little choice because she had been “set up” for the fall due to her inherent inquisitive nature.

Scripture does not really say that we have a choice, it rather plainly says (Jesus said) that “The one who sins is a slave to sin”. And as it also says, that all have sinned (and most if not all continue to sin) then there is no choice, because we are all slaves, and a slave has to do the will of his master, and indeed does do the will of that which has “mastered” him.

So being slaves, without our own will, or at least without a will we can put into effect*; means that we DO NOT have a ‘FREE’ will. That we are captivated by the principle of an unwilling propensity to sin, and therefore we continue on our merry way in sin death until we die. UNLESS something or someone authoritatively breaks the chain of command.

And if and when that change in command comes, we become captivated to the new authority of the law of love (not the love of law) and again we become a captive slave or servant to the will of another.

Of course we could become captive to many things, including law or religion, (or religious law) all of which though, simply hold you within the arena of sin death. This means that the reality lies with either the one master or the other, life or death, as represented by God/Jesus/Spirit OR BY Sin in its various forms.

And all sin comes down to that which had its origin, being and power in LAW. Not that we want to be without law, which is lawlessness, but to be under the law of love and righteousness which is from and by his Spirit, his very essence of being.

Just as sinners are under the compulsion to sin, so Christ’s brothers are under compulsion to NOT sin, because they have been captivated by his LOVE. “We loved because he first loved us”.

So the “law” of freedom is one which is obtained by attachment to Him who IS THAT FREEDOM, the perfect law of liberty. To be captive to sin is to be enslaved to death, to be enslaved to God who is love is to be truly free. “For the law made nothing perfect, but the bringing in of a better hope did”. Rom.8-2. FOR THE LAW OF THE SPIRIT OF LIFE IN CHRIST JESUS HAS SET YOU FREE FROM THE LAW OF SIN AND DEATH.

Only when you accept that you are freed from sin and death can you truly be free to say you have freedom of will, and a choice.

The only time apart from the above, when you DO get a choice, is when the SPIRIT clearly presents the cross to you, [or when the cross clearly presents the Spirit to you] and you then have the choice to accept Him or reject Him.

*[Paul in Romans chapter 7 (Verse 19)][unless the person has been enlightened, they may not have the knowledge to realise that they are in captivity]

MAN IS A SLAVE, THERE IS NO FREE WILL. [744]

Although we say that man was made with the ability to choose right from wrong, and this is where it all went wrong because Eve decided to make the choice to entertain the thought that cropped up in her mind, that God was perhaps being devious with his prohibition on the tree; she actually had little choice because she had been “set up” for the fall due to her inherent inquisitive nature.

Scripture does not really say that we have a choice, it rather plainly says (Jesus said) that “The one who sins is a slave to sin”. And as it also says, that all have sinned (and most if not all continue to sin) then there is no choice, because we are all slaves, and a slave has to do the will of his master, and indeed does do the will of that which has “mastered” him.

So being slaves, without our own will, or at least without a will we can put into effect*; means that we DO NOT have a ‘FREE’ will. That we are captivated by the principle of an unwilling propensity to sin, and therefore we continue on our merry way in sin death until we die. UNLESS something or someone authoritatively breaks the chain of command.

And if and when that change in command comes, we become captivated to the new authority of the law of love (not the love of law) and again we become a captive slave or servant to the will of another.

Of course we could become captive to many things, including law or religion, (or religious law) all of which though, simply hold you within the arena of sin death. This means that the reality lies with either the one master or the other, life or death, as represented by God/Jesus/Spirit OR BY Sin in its various forms.

And all sin comes down to that which had its origin, being and power in LAW. Not that we want to be without law, which is lawlessness, but to be under the law of love and righteousness which is from and by his Spirit, his very essence of being.

Just as sinners are under the compulsion to sin, so Christ’s brothers are under compulsion to NOT sin, because they have been captivated by his LOVE. “We loved because he first loved us”.

So the “law” of freedom is one which is obtained by attachment to Him who IS THAT FREEDOM, the perfect law of liberty. To be captive to sin is to be enslaved to death, to be enslaved to God who is love is to be truly free. “For the law made nothing perfect, but the bringing in of a better hope did”. Rom.8-2. FOR THE LAW OF THE SPIRIT OF LIFE IN CHRIST JESUS HAS SET YOU FREE FROM THE LAW OF SIN AND DEATH.

Only when you accept that you are freed from sin and death can you truly be free to say you have freedom of will, and a choice.

The only time apart from the above, when you DO get a choice, is when the SPIRIT clearly presents the cross to you, [or when the cross clearly presents the Spirit to you] and you then have the choice to accept Him or reject Him.

*[Paul in Romans chapter 7 (Verse 19)][unless the person has been enlightened, they may not have the knowledge to realise that they are in captivity]

TAKING EVERY THOUGHT CAPTIVE TO CHRIST, HOW CHRIST IS CREATED IN US. [701a]

EXPLORATORY THEOLOGY

Following on from the previous post, the way that Christ Jesus comes to live in us and how he controls us, is surely getting close to the nitty-gritty of things. The creation and maintenance of the Jesus in you is pretty much the whole thing?

I live, yet not I, but Christ lives in me. Christ in you, the hope of glory.

The reality lies in letting Christ control us, his thoughts, not ours. This can come through the conformation of our thinking with His thoughts, and can arise initially via our conscious submission to his vetting of our thoughts. He owns them, he accepts or discards them. We allow this to happen. (Our will in submission to His will).

The key in all this is that it is not of us, it is of our submission to Him. Our autonomy must be denied and his rulership must be supreme. Our autonomy must be “put to death”. Our thoughts must cease to be an expression of/from ourselves, because HIS thoughts must now be that expression.

Let us now appreciate that every time we deny him in any way at all, then we are denying his application in our life. If we deny he exists, then we have killed him off from our life, we have introduced death to the Spirit of Jesus. If we allow a bad thought through to its fulfilment, then we have effectively brought death to him and his spirit. And therefore to ourselves. By denying him, we deny ourselves the right to life. By refusing to express Him, we are denying his very existence to the world, and to ourselves. We suppress the truth by living the lie.

It also is a matter of the origin of our thoughts, what they are based on and where they are coming from.

The birth of Christ within us comes from our submission to him, through faith in him. We submit ourselves to this new creation within, and step aside to let Him rule and guide and mediate our every thought and action. When we deny ourselves, we are denying the authority and validity of the origin of our natural thoughts, which comes from ourselves, our flesh, and instead we submit to the newly created being within us, whom we recognise as Christ.

Biblically, the flesh dies*. or is mortally wounded, and this body, this “clay”, is allowed to be moulded by its maker. It is the birth of his Spirit within, or that which his Spirit has instigated. There can be no moulding shaping or pruning of the old life, there is only the birth within, from his Spirit, of the new life, and it is this new life that feeds us and to which we must submit at all times. We deny ourselves.

His seed finds in us fertile ground, and his nourishment enables it to grow and mature. We then ultimately are in that position of “Christ in me, the hope of righteousness”.

But all by trust, by hope and believing. “It is by faith from first to last”. The definition of faith indicates that we create from nothing (other than the seed) the finished product. We are  perhaps, recreating Christ in us, recreating ourselves in his image, in his very being, that on that last day we will be found IN HIM.

The denial of THE REALITY OF GOD AND HIS SON is by disallowing** his presence IN YOU. Your faith brings him into being, validates him, like God brought into being the creative process which culminates in your revealed new creation, which by faith you are from day one of your acceptance of Him.

The power of this is not that we modify either our thinking or our behaviour, even from the best of knowledge bases, be they scriptural or otherwise. No, the POWER of this comes from the complete handover of your life to Him, so he can build in you his own presence from the source of His own Spirit, by which He can renew you and ultimately immortalise you.

The reality is seen in that dispensation of the Holy Spirit, the comforter, from and as a spiritual source, from his power base, which must totally overwhelm our own, and can never be instituted by or as some religious form of obedience to the written word. We have to become totally reliant on Him, otherwise the Spirit cannot flow freely between us and Him. “I saw the Lord always before me” said Paul. It is NOT “of ourselves”. “Without me you can do nothing”.

The denial of the intercessor, the living Spirit of God, of the risen Jesus, as a supernatural life to be reproduced in us, is the denial of life himself, and is the acceptance of our death. Christ has to be allowed to live his thoughts through us, and we not our own. “you were bought with a price”, therefore let him, through your body, your life, reveal His glory. We can either let him live in us, or we can deny him and release instead the murderer within, [who is by nature in control] the fleshly origin and source of selfish autonomous thought. We must submit to His nature which is now newly imbedded within us.

[The flesh is temporary, and the law that was brought in to govern it was also temporary. By faith we abolish law by putting flesh to death, by faith in his death for us, so Spirit may reign. But in reality the flesh has already been assigned to death, and Jesus has released us from our obligation to it by taking it upon himself ].[His righteousness is of and by the Spirit of life; self righteousness is of the flesh].**[not acknowledging Him who is the truth]. The joy of the Lord is our strength. [And so we have come to know and rely on the love God has for us].[For the love of Christ constrains me].

TAKING EVERY THOUGHT CAPTIVE TO CHRIST, HOW CHRIST IS CREATED IN YOU. [701]

EXPLORATORY THEOLOGY

Following on from the previous post, the way that Christ Jesus comes to live in us and how he controls us, is surely getting close to the nitty-gritty of things. The creation and maintenance of the Jesus in you is pretty much the whole thing?

I live, yet not I, but Christ lives in me. Christ in you, the hope of glory.

The reality lies in letting Christ control us, his thoughts, not ours. This can come through the conformation of our thinking with His thoughts, and can arise initially via our conscious submission to his vetting of our thoughts. He owns them, he accepts or discards them. We allow this to happen. (Our will in submission to His will).

The key in all this is that it is not of us, it is of our submission to Him. Our autonomy must be denied and his rulership must be supreme. Our autonomy must be “put to death”. Our thoughts must cease to be an expression of/from ourselves, because HIS thoughts must now be that expression.

Let us now appreciate that every time we deny him in any way at all, then we are denying his application in our life. If we deny he exists, then we have killed him off from our life, we have introduced death to the Spirit of Jesus. If we allow a bad thought through to its fulfilment, then we have effectively brought death to him and his spirit. And therefore to ourselves. By denying him, we deny ourselves the right to life. By refusing to express Him, we are denying his very existence to the world, and to ourselves. We suppress the truth by living the lie.

It also is a matter of the origin of our thoughts, what they are based on and where they are coming from.

The birth of Christ within us comes from our submission to him, through faith in him. We submit ourselves to this new creation within, and step aside to let Him rule and guide and mediate our every thought and action. When we deny ourselves, we are denying the authority and validity of the origin of our natural thoughts, which comes from ourselves, our flesh, and instead we submit to the newly created being within us, whom we recognise as Christ.

Biblically, the flesh dies*. or is mortally wounded, and this body, this “clay”, is allowed to be moulded by its maker. It is the birth of his Spirit within, or that which his Spirit has instigated. There can be no moulding shaping or pruning of the old life, there is only the birth within, from his Spirit, of the new life, and it is this new life that feeds us and to which we must submit at all times. We deny ourselves.

His seed finds in us fertile ground, and his nourishment enables it to grow and mature. We then ultimately are in that position of “Christ in me, the hope of righteousness”.

But all by trust, by hope and believing. “It is by faith from first to last”. The definition of faith indicates that we create from nothing (other than the seed) the finished product. We are  perhaps, recreating Christ in us, recreating ourselves in his image, in his very being, that on that last day we will be found IN HIM.

The denial of THE REALITY OF GOD AND HIS SON is by disallowing** his presence IN YOU. Your faith brings him into being, validates him, like God brought into being the creative process which culminates in your revealed new creation, which by faith you are from day one of your acceptance of Him.

The power of this is not that we modify either our thinking or our behaviour, even from the best of knowledge bases, be they scriptural or otherwise. No, the POWER of this comes from the complete handover of your life to Him, so he can build in you his own presence from the source of His own Spirit, by which He can renew you and ultimately immortalise you.

The reality is seen in that dispensation of the Holy Spirit, the comforter, from and as a spiritual source, from his power base, which must totally overwhelm our own, and can never be instituted by or as some religious form of obedience to the written word. We have to become totally reliant on Him, otherwise the Spirit cannot flow freely between us and Him. “I saw the Lord always before me” said Paul. It is NOT “of ourselves”. “Without me you can do nothing”.

The denial of the intercessor, the living Spirit of God, of the risen Jesus, as a supernatural life to be reproduced in us, is the denial of life himself, and is the acceptance of our death. Christ has to be allowed to live his thoughts through us, and we not our own. “you were bought with a price”, therefore let him, through your body, your life, reveal His glory. We can either let him live in us, or we can deny him and release instead the murderer within, [who is by nature in control] the fleshly origin and source of selfish autonomous thought. We must submit to His nature which is now newly imbedded within us.

[The flesh is temporary, and the law that was brought in to govern it was also temporary. By faith we abolish law by putting flesh to death, by faith in his death for us, so Spirit may reign. But in reality the flesh has already been assigned to death, and Jesus has released us from our obligation to it by taking it upon himself ].[His righteousness is of and by the Spirit of life; self righteousness is of the flesh].**[not acknowledging Him who is the truth]. The joy of the Lord is our strength. [And so we have come to know and rely on the love God has for us].[For the love of Christ constrains me].

ARE THERE THREE WILLS? [624a]

God’s will, man’s will, and “the devil’s” will?     “…After having been taken captive by him to do his will…” (2 Tim.2-26).

God’s will is perfect “..His good and perfect will..” (Rom.12-2). Man’s will is that which flows from an autonomy of being, although it is really that will which is being controlled by other forces, as man is “a slave to sin”. His flesh is in control.

In Romans 7, Paul finds that the “I” that he is, is not in control. He discovers his enlightened will that has been initiated by an awareness of law, has no power, it is a toothless tiger, because that which his mind decides to pursue, never comes about, is thwarted by inner internal forces.

Then he declares his  personal identity (“I”) as being in separation from the identity and will of his flesh.  He  realises he is out of control, that something ELSE is in control of him. The law has pointed out the difference between GOD’s will and his own; that God’s will is not being done, and neither is Paul’s. The Paul that he is, is being manipulated by his natural human nature, with all its selfish and self protective desires. This is called FLESH.

Part of this “flesh” makeup is that which is called “the heart”. The “works of the flesh” and the works of the corrupted heart are pretty much the same thing. “Out of the heart comes…”.  “Why have you conceived this thing IN YOUR HEART? (Acts 5-4). ‘The heart of man is deceitfully wicked’. (Jer.17-9).

The original captivity was of Adam by the “serpent”. Again we see the conception of evil arising within the heart of man, the first man. d.evil takes control.

Separation from God has brought about another entity, one with its agenda firmly against that of God, because God has become the enemy, the accuser of man, in man’s own thinking. His mind has been taken captive and become a separate entity to God. His mind is the mind of the flesh, autonomous and selfish, self protective. Primitive.

Then law re-arouses his rational logical thinking processes, just as it had when it destroyed him as the commandment in the garden (Rom.7-9) initiated those thinking processes in the first place. He sees his current enslavement, and sees freedom in the righteousness of which the law speaks, it having caused him to have recall of his innocent origins. (V22). But pursuance of law leaves him even more gutted that before, because that which he has become has provided no way out, no way to return to the garden of God, the law simply reinforces the death which is within him. (22,23,24).

His captured will has to be bought back from the law of sin and death. LOVE steps in and provides that way, provides that purchase, by removing at its own cost, the result of that unlawful activity. In doing so it releases man’s will to exercise its freedom from the captivity of the law, the law of sin and death, the law by which man was held captive to and by his autonomous processes, the law into which man first entered when he decided to go his own  way, and institute his own governance of his own being, his own self.

Man’s conscience is released by love, based on the legality of the reality of law and its end results. The pain that was introduced by man in his hunt for meaning, has been borne by the nature of love, GOD’S love. Christ’s love. The Creator feels the pain, this creative pain that was necessary to give man free reign to sort out for himself what good and evil really amounted to. LAW is simply a word that describes the state of reality of God’s existence, and our existence, and the two wills involved in the conflict of which one has the right to survive, of which one is good, and which is bad.

When man decides to pursue God’s will, he can again fall into the trap of re-entering the realm of law, of trying to do it by himself, and not relying on God and his nature of love, which is communicated to us by his Spirit, his life force, his redemptive love-force, JESUS his son. He either tries to follow and fulfil the law itself, or he distorts the message and introduces other laws, just as the Pharisees did, in order to avoid capitulation to God himself, his love, his Spirit. They do this out of ignorance, sometimes, but also simply  because their flesh is still in control, they want THEIR WILL to prevail, and to prevail over their fellow man.

There are then, multiple wills, but only two of them are “in force”, or are a force at all. The ineffective will is that of man under law (in sin), who is essentially the instrument of the effective law of sin and death, which though it was good, was the catalyst which brought sin and death into the world. The Good effective will is man in Jesus. And the perfectly effective will is that which is always actively in force in God’s world, GOD’S WILL. These last two could be considered to be the same.

Ultimately only two wills are the real players in this scenario. Those of  Good and Evil and which two wills arose from the knowledge gained by Adam in his deviancy from God himself, causing the production of man’s will in opposition to God’s will, which is the Spirit. Jesus causes the shift of man’s will from evil to good, from flesh to Himself.

ARE THERE THREE WILLS? [624]

God’s will, man’s will, and “the devil’s” will?     “…After having been taken captive by him to do his will…” (2 Tim.2-26).

God’s will is perfect “..His good and perfect will..” (Rom.12-2). Man’s will is that which flows from an autonomy of being, although it is really that will which is being controlled by other forces, as man is “a slave to sin”. His flesh is in control.

In Romans 7, Paul finds that the “I” that he is, is not in control. He discovers his enlightened will that has been initiated by an awareness of law, has no power, it is a toothless tiger, because that which his mind decides to pursue, never comes about, is thwarted by inner internal forces.

Then he declares his  personal identity (“I”) as being in separation from the identity and will of his flesh.  He  realises he is out of control, that something ELSE is in control of him. The law has pointed out the difference between GOD’s will and his own; that God’s will is not being done, and neither is Paul’s. The Paul that he is, is being manipulated by his natural human nature, with all its selfish and self protective desires. This is called FLESH.

Part of this “flesh” makeup is that which is called “the heart”. The “works of the flesh” and the works of the corrupted heart are pretty much the same thing. “Out of the heart comes…”.  “Why have you conceived this thing IN YOUR HEART? (Acts 5-4). ‘The heart of man is deceitfully wicked’. (Jer.17-9).

The original captivity was of Adam by the “serpent”. Again we see the conception of evil arising within the heart of man, the first man. d.evil takes control.

Separation from God has brought about another entity, one with its agenda firmly against that of God, because God has become the enemy, the accuser of man, in man’s own thinking. His mind has been taken captive and become a separate entity to God. His mind is the mind of the flesh, autonomous and selfish, self protective. Primitive.

Then law re-arouses his rational logical thinking processes, just as it had when it destroyed him as the commandment in the garden (Rom.7-9) initiated those thinking processes in the first place. He sees his current enslavement, and sees freedom in the righteousness of which the law speaks, it having caused him to have recall of his innocent origins. (V22). But pursuance of law leaves him even more gutted that before, because that which he has become has provided no way out, no way to return to the garden of God, the law simply reinforces the death which is within him. (22,23,24).

His captured will has to be bought back from the law of sin and death. LOVE steps in and provides that way, provides that purchase, by removing at its own cost, the result of that unlawful activity. In doing so it releases man’s will to exercise its freedom from the captivity of the law, the law of sin and death, the law by which man was held captive to and by his autonomous processes, the law into which man first entered when he decided to go his own  way, and institute his own governance of his own being, his own self.

Man’s conscience is released by love, based on the legality of the reality of law and its end results. The pain that was introduced by man in his hunt for meaning, has been borne by the nature of love, GOD’S love. Christ’s love. The Creator feels the pain, this creative pain that was necessary to give man free reign to sort out for himself what good and evil really amounted to. LAW is simply a word that describes the state of reality of God’s existence, and our existence, and the two wills involved in the conflict of which one has the right to survive, of which one is good, and which is bad.

When man decides to pursue God’s will, he can again fall into the trap of re-entering the realm of law, of trying to do it by himself, and not relying on God and his nature of love, which is communicated to us by his Spirit, his life force, his redemptive love-force, JESUS his son. He either tries to follow and fulfil the law itself, or he distorts the message and introduces other laws, just as the Pharisees did, in order to avoid capitulation to God himself, his love, his Spirit. They do this out of ignorance, sometimes, but also simply  because their flesh is still in control, they want THEIR WILL to prevail, and to prevail over their fellow man.

There are then, multiple wills, but only two of them are “in force”, or are a force at all. The ineffective will is that of man under law (in sin), who is essentially the instrument of the effective law of sin and death, which though it was good, was the catalyst which brought sin and death into the world. The Good effective will is man in Jesus. And the perfectly effective will is that which is always actively in force in God’s world, GOD’S WILL. These last two could be considered to be the same.

Ultimately only two wills are the real players in this scenario. Those of  Good and Evil and which two wills arose from the knowledge gained by Adam in his deviancy from God himself, causing the production of man’s will in opposition to God’s will, which is the Spirit. Jesus causes the shift of man’s will from evil to good, from flesh to Himself.