The Path of Life

December 11th, 2012

Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

John 14:6

As Truth is a person, so is The Way.  As surely as any understanding of who He was and what He taught could be expressed, it cannot be understood outside of the person of Who He Is, What He Did and Why He Did It.  The Path of Life therefore, as it were, is following Jesus.  For the original twelve apostles, this was through both observing who Him directly, as well as by hearing Him teach.  Today, while we do not see exactly how He lived the words He preached, we have His Spirit within us to guide us into all truth.

But, most assuredly, His Words are to be obeyed.  None of His Words can be fully embraced without the provision of His Spirit, but through Him, and His enabling power, we are able to overcome through faith.

Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.

John 3:3

What is the pathway to life, and living in His Spirit?  It is the same as has been expressed from the beginning, and that, the very beginning.

From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.

Matthew 4:17

Since we are talking about a Spiritual reality, we must understand that in our fallen state, all people are born blind.  Christianity is not a religion, but a supernatural revelation of God.  It is not an insight into the nature how how the world works, but into the one who built it, and therefore, is a revelation of the creator, Jesus Christ, through whom all things were made (John 1:3).

John 3:19 explains that the condemnation upon the world is their own, willful denying of the light that was given them.  They saw the true light in such a way that it was undeniable, and they were unable to refute it.  This then, is our spiritual condition, blind, yet refusing to come to the light.

Jesus said that His yoke was easy and His burden was light.  When it comes to the narrow gate and the hard road of the Gospel, we must take this hand in hand.  The way through the doorway of hope is repentance.  The way out of the valley of Achor (meaning, trouble), is through the hand of the one who helps you.

We must start at the beginning.

Jesus’ most famous sermon, the Sermon on the Mount, must be taken in the context of His life.  Most Happy are they, who being in some seemingly adverse or typically disdained position, because they are like He is.  He is talking about Himself.  His is the man living in the Kingdom, and demonstrating it by the signs and wonders (know by the Hebrews as His great wisdom), and therefore, His words are the reflection upon that life.

When one walks in His Kingdom, this is what adverse situations bring, is more Happy.

So, we see these eight “beatitudes”.  They cover most if not all of every trying situations a man can encounter.  And, for the man like He is, that man is Most Happy.  He is teaching about the Kingdom here, and not about the carnal man.  This is the man born of Faith, so it is safe to assume that He is not merely speaking of conditions that are somehow “blessed” in themselves, but that it is the man in the Kingdom, in Faith, that is happy.

This is that man.  That man who has faith towards God.  He is most happy, and is able to be a salt and a light to the world.

Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God,

Hebrews 6:1

Even as Paul described it, these are the buildings blocks to maturity.

Where faith is absent, where things are difficult to maintain our “Most Happy” place of faith, we have two places to look.

Much teaching has been done on the spiritual realm and the role of warfare in the life of the believer.  This cannot be overlooked.  Too often, the enemy tries to take advantage of us.

However, we have authority over Him.  Some battles are notably struggles to overcome, however, the root of our lack of faith generally falls to us.  God has given us everything pertaining to life and godliness.  But, while we know that faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God (Romans 10:17), we also see through the preaching of John the Baptist and Jesus, and the pattern of Paul describing the foundation of the faith (plus in many other types and analogies), that it is repentance that unlocks faith.  Rather, it could be argued that it was the sin, unforgiveness, or rebellion that has caused our inability to stand in faith in a particular area.

This then, is the direct consequence of such a state of being unable to fully walk in Grace.

Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

Matthew 5:17-19

Those who do not stand in faith in some area will undoubtably fall in their heart.  Unable to stand the pressure and the weight of their assignment, invariably, the heart that cannot see with the eyes of faith the provision of the Kingdom fails to enter into the rest provided, and therefore undergoes the burden on the soul.  Instead of keeping the eyes fixed and single, the vision is collapsed due to fear, worry, and dread.  For the person in this position, that knows the truth, prayer and focus can often remedy this position, but better to simply not have been distracted in the first place.

But, for the person growing in faith, the only thing ever required to overcome any obstacle is to see Jesus.  It really is that simple.  As the saying came forth regarding Abraham’s being willing to offer his son as a sacrifice, on the Mountain of the Lord it will be provided.

You see, it is by revelation of the Spirit.  Prayer is essential, but it is the prayer of faith that avails much.  Much prayer is great, but it is the faith that operates through the veil and commands the dead things back to life.

So, we have Jesus’ exposition of the Law in Matthew 5.  This is not simply trying to make the Law of Moses even more strict, for that was a perfect law, and there was no need to improve it.  But, rather, with the original intent and Spirit of that law, Jesus instructs believers on the ways of the Kingdom.

Those who are not in faith will always be found violating the Spirit of the original Law at some point.  In anger, in lust, in adultery, in oaths, in prideful and selfish exultation, and in the inability to see the Spirit of God.

So, as repentance gives forth to greater faith, so faith, in the progression of Paul, gives way to greater baptisms (Hebrews 6:1-2).  First, when we have faith in God, we are baptized in water, representing our death, burial, and resurrection with Christ.  Then, we are baptized with His Spirit.  Reading the witness of Acts, even the apostles were baptized, and filled repeatedly, often with greater and greater manifestations and demonstrations of the Spirit.

So, we have the progression of faith.  We go from faith to faith, and glory to glory.  The only reason, in my opinion, why one couldn’t go from mountain top to mountain top is if you haven’t yet figured out how to walk by faith!

But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.

John 3:21

As each level of progression continues, we must be willing to let the Light of His Word penetrate us completely.  We must remember that we are not contrasting “good” with “evil”, nor are we attempting to be what in our mind “good” might be.  We must not succumb to the fruit of the knowledge of good and evil, as it were.  But, rather, we do truth, and when we do truth, we freely come into His light to be fully exposed for what we are and what we are doing.  We have no fear to have our inward-most parts exposed, our deepest motives, thoughts, and intents examined, for we have done so by His Spirit, the Spirit of Truth.

So, with each progression further into maturity in Him, while we do fight not against flesh and blood, the greatest victory is a pure heart, and being doing only what He is doing.

The clearest requirement for the ministry of deliverance is found in Matthew 7.  The one who has cleaned his own eye first is fit to clean that of another.

Jesus never did give a great rendition of all the great many conditions in a man that would cause him to be unable to walk out the life in the Spirit, He merely gave the simple instructions to hear His Words and do them.  Those who hear his words and do them are those that “dug deep” (Luke 6:48) to the rock, that is, they worked through whatever was in the way until they got to something solid.  They weren’t able to build on the level they started, but had to go below the surface, to something else, something previously unseen.

So too, for all those who would venture into the unseen of the Kingdom of God, we are not explicitly told in the Sermon on the Mount of generational curses, we are not directly told that we need to process all of our life history of hurts and wounds through inner healing, nor does it explicitly say whether or not we need to repent for each and every sin individually.  But what does it say?

It says that if we’re angry at our brother without cause, we’re subject to the judgement, if we call him “stupid” (the meaning  of, “Raca”) we are liable to the counsel, and if we say “You Fool”, we’re in danger of hell itself.  Pretty steep words.  Not ones that are heeded much these days.

Yet, these are the very direct words that Jesus spoke and said that if you hear His Words (these words), and do not do them (go on sinning anyway and hating your brother), you will fall with a great crash.  This is His Gospel, and these are His Words, the creator of Creation, the God of the universe.

But again, you can’t get there without help.  But what does it say?  The sinner went to the altar of God, cried, “Forgive me, for I am a wicked man, a great sinner.”, and he went away with his head down.  The Pharisee went to the same altar, and said, “Thank-you that I am not like that man, for look at all the great things I do.”  And the former, not the later, went home justified.

If you keep digging, you’ll hit something sooner or later.  If you take His Word serious, know that as you climb higher in the Spirit, it requires a corresponding depth of humility, cleanliness of heart, and faithfulness and devotion, you’ll fall at His feet again, and cry, “I am the chief of sinners.”, and in so doing, He Himself will show you what the deep condition is within your soul that prevents your next step.

Just a closer walk with Thee, Grant it, Jesus, is my plea.
Daily walking close to Thee, Let it be, dear Lord, let it be.