Romans 8:2 – “For the law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.”
2 John 4 – “I rejoiced greatly that I have found some of your children WALKING in truth, as we received commandment from the Father.”
2 Corinthians 3:6 – “…who also made us sufficient as ministers of the new covenant, not of the letter, but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.”
Hebrews 13:7, 9 – “If you endure chastening, God deals with you as sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten? Furthermore, we have had human fathers who corrected us, and we paid them respect. Shall we not much more readily be in subjection to the Father of spirits and live?”
Okay, Sue – how are you going to put all those Scriptures together? J
In John the Apostle’s last two epistles, he talks about doctrine; the doctrine of Christ and abiding in it. Doctrine is a big word among Christians. It is important to know and understand doctrine. Another way to say it, the facts regarding Jesus Christ, His cross, His resurrection, His ascension, seating, return, etc.
Yet if we examine John’s life as well as the Apostle Paul (and of course the other apostles), they understood something far beyond what had always been their history of being Jews. That we’re not talking about Jewish religion or any religion, but a powerful reality of Christ Himself now dwelling in believers. And speaking too of what all Christ Himself had accomplished.
When John refers to children walking in truth, the operative word is walking. Walking denotes to me a genuine activity of reality working in a person’s life – not just the words on the page, but movement.
If we ignore the ministry of the Holy Spirit today, we would find ourselves merely learning doctrine and not walking out the reality. It really is the Spirit’s ministry to REVEAL first of all the living Christ not only from when he was on earth, but His ascension and His now living within us.
Doctrine without the Spirit, itself alone can lead to the letter that kills. Yet doctrine (the Word of God) and the Spirit in us, then puts it all together in the powerful reality we all need. For the Spirit is life and so is His ministry.
I always think of the Wright brothers working on an airplane. They had the plans all laid out, day and night probably discussing it, talking about the possibilities of being in the air, what was not in alignment yet, the law of aerodynamics versus the law of gravity, etc. This would be a picture of doctrine.
Then the day came. Oh my, think about it. They actually got in the plane they built and it went up in the sky! Now that’s the reality of all they worked on, studied, discussed and the like. This then, is a picture of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus.
I wonder what it was like. I say it was indeed, joy unspeakable! Hear him in the airplane in the sky, “Oh man, this stuff is really true – I can fly!”
Get the picture? This is why I believe that if a person has communion and fellowship with the Lord by His Spirit in a very personal way, and is leaning upon Him all the time to unveil the Christ to their mind, they will walk in the very truth (doctrine) we Christians always talk about. They are both important.
Yet sometimes someone might go for the personal relationship and intimacy and find themselves knowing truth (because the Spirit Himself is truth) because they are leaning on Him to bring understanding to their mind. Then later discover – “hey, that’s in the Bible!” That happens too.
Lastly, the Scriptures I believe in Hebrews about the Father’s chastening is regarding Truth – and when John refers to having received “commandment from the Father…” that’s pretty important. For the Father God Himself is watching over our lives so that we know and understand HIS SON – all that He accomplished through Him and yes, the reality of His Son dwelling in us.
We are God’s sons and daughters. Therefore it is important that we understand God’s way about all these things and have our hearts before Him in such a way that we want to really understand and walk it out His way
“Truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son, Jesus Christ.” I John 1:3
Let’s get in the plane! J