One with God

ONE

Jer 32:38-39 They shall be My people, and I will be their God; then I will give them one heart and one way, that they may fear Me forever, for the good of them and their children after them.

Eph 4:3-6, 11-15… endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all. And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting, but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head–Christ–

What makes us “ONE”?

IT’S NOT THROUGH:

CONSENSUS – a general agreement to an opinion. There is no challenge to one’s belief and commitment, just an affirmation of the items we can agree to believe together. One denomination can have consensus with another denomination when their doctrinal statements agree, even though their practices and ministry focus may differ. (e.g. brethren church government and the Christian and Missionary Alliance; or the Baptists and the Associated Gospel). However, this may be good unity, but it is not Biblical ‘oneness’.

COMFORTABLE FELLOWSHIP – Let’s understand one point I will mention but not dwell on here: our fellowship of the Saints should not be worshipped above loyalty to Christ. Upholding unity because of fellowship above all else is anti-scriptural. There are times when we must forsake fellowship out of our loyalty to Christ. Luke says:

Luke 14:26 “If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple.

What can this mean but that our desire for unity, fellowship, friendship, acceptance, should never override our ultimate desire to be ‘one’ with God – no substitutes.

So, very unique and most profound fellowship is reserved only for those who abide in Christ together.

NEGOTIATION – this is where all parties compromise to reach a minimum standard of agreement. The ecumenical movement for example seeks a minimum standard of belief in the name of unity.

The Ecumenical Movement, where the watering down of many faith teachings is required, evangelicals making the major compromises, are unifying to be a massive religious political organization toward the fulfilment of the Religious Whore in Revelation. Even as recent as last few years some major names in the evangelical community, including some Baptists denominations signed an agreement of unity that flies in the face of the Reformation and Biblical doctrine; unequally yoked are they. Liberal churches are not going to become more conservative to gain adherents, no, the fundamental denominations must weaken to meet the liberal standard. “Bad company corrupts good character. 1 Cor 15:33 NIV [because if good character wants bad company to feel comfortable, then good company must lower his standard for it to happen].

Rom 16:17 Now I urge you, brethren, note those who cause divisions and offences, contrary to the doctrine which you learned, and avoid them.

[And avoid them] Give them no [approval] or [esteem]. Do not follow them; compare 1 Tim 6:3-5; 2 John 10; Gal 1:8-9. That is, avoid them as “teachers;” do not follow them. It does not mean that they were to be treated harshly; but that they were to be avoided in their “instructions.” from Barnes’ Notes, Electronic Database Copyright © 1997, 2003, 2005 by Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved

2 John 9-11 Whoever transgresses and does not abide in the doctrine of Christ does not have God. He who abides in the doctrine of Christ has both the Father and the Son. If anyone comes to you and does not bring this doctrine, do not receive him into your house nor greet him; for he who greets him shares in his evil deeds.

The verse above is not against being one. It is warning us not to give credibility by association.

It was also true that traveling pastors and teachers needed homes to stay in (3 John 5-8). Believers who showed hospitality to these servants of God were “fellow helpers to the truth,” but believers who assisted false teachers were only sharing in their evil works. The doctrine of Jesus Christ is a test of truth, a basis for fellowship, and a bond for mutual cooperation. (from The Bible Exposition Commentary. Copyright © 1989 by Chariot Victor Publishing, and imprint of Cook Communication Ministries. All rights reserved. Used by permission.)

1 Tim 6:3,4 If anyone advocates a different doctrine, and does not agree with sound words, those of our Lord Jesus Christ, and with the doctrine conforming to godliness, he is proud, knowing nothing,

2 Tim 4:3, 4 For the time will come when they [many Believers] will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables.

“Doctrine is despised, truth is neglected and experience without biblical guidelines is glorified, especially new experiences. …The call for unity under the banner of a false love that won’t correct becomes one of the chief means of legitimizing the deceptions of the last days!” Dave Hunt, Berean Call, Dec 95

“Michael Green suggested at the International Conference of Itinerant Evangelists in Amsterdam in 1993, “Don’t talk about the new birth, talk about liberation… Identify with and befriend secular society. Become one with them…”

I Jn 2:15 Do not love the world, nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. (NAS)

CONSENSUS AND NEGOTIATED AGREEMENTS MAY ESTABLISH UNITY BUT DOES NOT CHARACTERIZE ‘ONENESS‘!

‘ONENESS’ is when we are committed to a third party’s will. Christ’s priestly prayer in John 17 illustrates that third party being God the Father.

John 17:11 Now I am no longer in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to You. Holy Father, keep through Your name those whom You have given Me, that they may be one as We are.

John 17:21 that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me.

“Has it ever occurred to you that one hundred pianos all tuned to the same fork are automatically tuned to each other? They are of one accord by being tuned, not to each other, but to another standard to which each one must individually bow. So one hundred worshippers [meeting] together, each one looking away to Christ, are in heart nearer to each other than they could possibly be, were they to become ‘unity’ conscious and turn their eyes away from God to strive for closer fellowship.” A. W. Tozer

THIS ‘ONENESS’ DEMANDS WE DIFFER ALL OUR PERSONAL RIGHTS AND AMBITIONS TO THE CAUSE AND WILL OF GOD. There is no charter of rights with God. We must reckon our self as co crucified with Christ Rom 6:6 knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin.

Matt 10:34-39

34) “Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword.

35 For I have come to ‘set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law’;

36 and ‘a man’s enemies will be those of his own household.’

37 He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me.

38 And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me.

39 He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for My sake will find it.

Excerpt from note: 1HaveYouDied

“In his book, The Cross of Christ, F. J. Huegel quotes from the Sunday School Times as follows:

Dr. J. G. Fleming tells how, in the days of the Boxer uprising in China, Boxers captured a mission school, blocked all gates but one, [laid] a cross before it, and sent in word that anyone who trampled on that cross would go free, but that anyone who stepped around it would be killed. The first seven, we are told, trampled on the cross, and were allowed to go free. The eighth, a girl, knelt before the cross, and was shot. All the rest in a line of a hundred students followed her example [and fate].”

The young girl in particular had already become crucified with Christ, before she could die for Him.

The great challenge for the unsaved, as you once were, is overcoming darkness and submitting to the light of Christ. The second step for the believer is the steps of faith, not for salvation, but understanding SANCTIFICATION, that believes God in spite of my feelings, to live from a position of having been forgiven all my sins. The third and final stage is the most profound and painful of all three; being found crucified with Christ.

End of note excerpt: 1HaveYouDied

How is ‘one’ with the Father, or being IN Christ illustrated? Read footnote re Born Crucified [i]

“Self is our greatest curse. But, praise God, Christ came to redeem us from self… And there you have the reason why many people pray for the power of the Holy Ghost, and they get something, but oh, so little! Because they prayed for power, for work, and power for blessing, but they have not prayed for power for full deliverance from self.” Andrew Murray

A personal relationship with Christ and death to the ‘self life’ is the root of the matter of salvation. If you have any other motive, other than coming to Christ through the need of mercy in light of the sinner you are and trusting His blood to cover your condition, and thus releasing you to live your entire life to the lordship of Christ, you may not be truly saved. If you have just added Christ to improve your lot in life you may not be truly saved .

John 6:66 From that time many of His disciples went back and walked with Him no more.

A change of loyalty, serving and living for a different kingdom is the issue. 1 Thess 1:9 for they themselves report what kind of reception you gave us. They tell how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, NIV

WHAT ACTIVE INGREDIENTS INTEGRATE US INTO THE WILL OF GOD? WHAT IS THE BASIS FOR TRUE INTIMATE COMMUNION WITH GOD? PURSUIT OF HOLINESS* AND A ONE TIME DECISION OF SURRENDER TO GOD’S SOVEREIGNTY.

*PERFECTION is practicing loyalty, the single vision of the goal of a godly life and surrender of all of our aspirations and rights to the will of God.

Excerpt from 4DividedLoyalty:

God is not in competition for our loyalty. God will not compete with another person’s goal; we have to give our loyalty. He will only have us willingly loyal to him.

Deut 13:6-8

6 If your very own brother, or your son or daughter, or the wife you love, or your closest friend secretly entices you, saying, “Let us go and worship other gods” (gods that neither you nor your fathers have known,

7 gods of the peoples around you, whether near or far, from one end of the land to the other),

8 do not yield to him or listen to him. Show him no pity. Do not spare him or shield him.

NIV

Matt 6:24 “No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.

End excerpt

Luke 14:26-27

“If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple. And whoever does not bear his cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple.

WE DO NOT MERELY FOLLOW GOD, WE SUPPORT HIM, WE ARE FOR HIM, WE ARE WITH HIM; WE ARE ON HIS SIDE AND ARE CAPTURED BY HIS AGENDA.

2 Corinthians 7:1 Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.

2 Tim 2:11 This is a faithful saying: For if we died with Him, We shall also live with Him.

2 Cor 5:15 and He died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again.

You cannot see clearly God’s perspective on any issue if you are trying to maintain loyalty with anything or anyone other than Christ ultimately. You cannot freely walk in the Spirit if your ultimate loyalty is not Christ alone.

Matt 5:8 “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.

The pure in heart comes before sight!

Furthermore, once I have committed myself to the will of the One who is greater than myself, it becomes His responsibility to provide the resources and knowledge to do His will . For to be sure, he was crucified in weakness, yet he lives by God’s power. Likewise, we are weak in him, yet by God’s power we will live with him to serve you. 2 Cor 13:4 NIV

Ø God knows we do not have the power within ourselves! who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. 1 Peter 1:5NIV

Ø God knows we wrestle against our flesh. For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. Gal 5:17-18

Ø God knows we have an enemy who knows we are Christ’s. Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. James 4:7

Ø God knows we are but dust. For He knows our frame; He remembers that we are dust. Ps 103:14

Ja 4:10 Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.

(Phil 2:13 for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure; 4:11-13 Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.).

This personal integrity, or godliness, is ultimately demonstrated by humility. To those who learn a true attitude of submission and servant-hood God frees more than all the freedom the rebel could want.

How did Christ communicate His ‘oneness’ with the Father?

John 5:30

30 ” I can do nothing on My own initiative. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is just, because I do not seek My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me. (NAS)

The Christian often wants the self-ambitions and Christ to dwell in harmony. To this there is no harmony – only Christ

1 Cor 2:2 For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.

Gal 2:20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. (KJV)

There is a life to live that is far beyond all present feelings and circumstances. There is a life lived with Christ that in spite of what life or relationships may bring us (remember the woman in Siberia?) The cost? YOU must turn over your ambitions to God – give up your perceived rights. Every believer who is truly saved is drawn toward their own cross.

A teacher wrote some very sad words:

“Some Christians have more or less given up on knowing God intimately. …Christ grows increasingly distant. With each such (failure), their souls become scorched, and they succumb to the belief that only a chosen few seem to be able to overcome the barriers to walking with God.”[1]

The inheritance we have in Christ will never be clearly seen or experienced without our first becoming ‘one’ with God.

Immature Christians’ ask, ‘What’s in it for me.’ Instead of, ‘Yes, Lord.’

Immature Christians’ use God for furthering their own dreams.

God loves the immature as much as the mature, to the immature he conveys that which Max Lucado surmises: ‘God loves you just the way you are, but refuses to leave you that way.’

Tribulation will always be with us in this world you will have tribulation said Jesus, but be of good cheer for I have overcome the world.

God’s greatest gift is in conforming us to the image of Christ and this sometimes requires harsh situations before the flesh will surrender. Without pressure you and I will never build holy and surrendered character, for, left to itself, our own nature will never abide by any authority but its own. It’s been said, “No one will change his belief system of what brings happiness until the pain exceeds the reward of his present path” L Crabb.

If you are truly saved, you will learn this lesson, the hard way or the easy way (see Jonah who resisted God’s will).

Jesus Christ the Son of God submitted to his earthly parents, and also to secular and religious authorities which ultimately sent Him to the cross. But He submitted to everything God the Father purposed for Him without rebellion regardless of the pain and cost to his personal rights. Jesus Christ had the right to be treated with dignity by man, He was the Son of God, he did no sin to warrant hate, and He didn’t deserve crucifixion at the hands of the authorities. But through His obedience He became the name above any other name, in heaven, on earth or under the earth. [2]

So then what is the advantage to holiness and surrender? What’s beautiful about being ‘one’ with the Father?

Isa 33:14-17

14The sinners in Zion are afraid;

Fearfulness has seized the hypocrites:

“Who among us shall dwell with the devouring fire?

Who among us shall dwell with everlasting burnings?”

He who walks righteously and speaks uprightly,

He who despises the gain of oppressions,

Who gestures with his hands, refusing bribes,

Who stops his ears from hearing of bloodshed,

And shuts his eyes from seeing evil:

He will dwell on high;

His place of defence will be the fortress of rocks;

Bread will be given him,

His water will be sure.

Your eyes will see the King in His beauty;

They will see the land that is very far off .

Matt 13:11-12 He answered and said to them, “Because it has been given to you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given.

12 For whoever has, to him more will be given, and he will have abundance; but whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken away from him.

In order to pass on to us the blessings which [Jesus] received from the Father, He must become ours and live in us. Jesus is called our head (Eph 4:15) and the first born among many brethren (Ro 8:29), so we are grafted into Christ (Ro 11:17) and clothed with him (Gal 3:27). Until we become ‘one’ with him, everything Jesus possesses is limited toward us. This is gained by faith, not works, but not everyone lays hold of Christ’s offer made in the Gospel. So we have to look further and find out about the working of the Spirit, and how it is through him that we enjoy Christ and all his blessings… “(from Calvin’s Institutes, PC Study Bible formatted electronic database Copyright © 1999, 2003, 2005 Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved. ‘I modernized quote[ii]‘)

Prov 10:22 The blessing of the LORD makes one rich, and He adds no sorrow with it.

John 17:22 “And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one:

John 14:21-23 He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him.” Judas (not Iscariot) said to Him, “Lord, how is it that You will manifest Yourself to us, and not to the world?” Jesus answered and said to him, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him.

Let’s work with God, cooperate, be fellow workers with God in what He wants to do in and through our lives. Let’s be a part of His program. Let’s pray His prayer requests and do His will through separated and surrendered lives.

Acknowledge this decision to God in prayer verbally,

“I believe You made me a new creation in Christ Jesus, that I have been crucified with Christ by your decree, and I judge this to be true in spite of my feelings to the contrary, now Lord I submit myself to you in this newness of life. Based on this acknowledgment I ask you to establish this reality through the work of the Holy Spirit that dwells within me because of Christ. I surrender all Lord to your will.”

Suggested reading

BOOKLETS

Radio Bible Class (available through me upon request or free from Radio Bible Class – mailed or free PDF download at: www.rbc.org)

Ø What Does God Think of Me Now? Q0604

Ø Why Would I Want To Be Holy? Q0305

Ø What is a Personal Relationship With God? Q0103

Ø How Can I be Filled With the Holy Spirit? Q-0301

BOOKS

Ø Born Crucified by L E Maxwell 192 pages Classic writing style

Ø Pursuit of God A W Tozer 119 pages contemporary writing style

Ø Green Letter Miles Stanford 91 pages short chapters easy read


[1] Intimacy with the Almighty; The Evangelist; August 2000.

[2] Phil 2:9, 10


[i] Writing from her place of utmost suffering and exile in northern Siberia, “Mary” says, “There is a

Godless Society here; one of the members became especially attached to me. She said, ‘I cannot

understand what sort of a person you are”; so many here insult and abuse you, but you love them all.” She had caused me much suffering, but I prayed for her. Later she asked me whether I could love her. Somehow I stretched out my hands toward her; we embraced each other, and began to cry. Now we pray together. Her name is Barbara.”

A few months later another letter came from Mary telling of Barbara’s bold confession before the

Godless Society, and for which she was sent to prison. Mary says, “Yesterday for the first time I saw our dear Barbara in prison. She looked very thin, pale, and with marks of beatings. The only bright thing about her was her eyes, bright, and filled with heavenly peace and even joy. How happy are those who have it! It comes through suffering, hence we must not be afraid of any sufferings or privations. I asked her, through the bars, ‘Barbara, are you not sorry for what you have done? “No,’ she firmly responded, ‘if they would free me, I would go again and tell my comrades about the marvelous love of Christ. I am very glad that the Lord loves me so much and counts me worthy to suffer for Him.”‘ (Quoted in Romans by Wm. Newell.) Note that the Lamb of God so indwelt Mary that Barbara caught her first glimpse of the supernatural Saviour, and was drawn unto Him. She could not understand, but she felt that Mary had a spiritual secret. Mary had embraced her cross. There Christ was seen. Mary’s love for her enemies was the key which opened Barbara’s heart. L.E.Maxwell of Born Crucified p. 135f

[ii] Chapter 1: The Benefits of Christ Made Available to Us by the Secret Operation of the Spirit

To communicate to us the blessings which he received from the Father, he must become ours and dwell in us. Accordingly, he is called our Head, and the first-born among many brethren, while, on the other hand, we are said to be ingrafted into him and clothed with him, all which he possesses being, as I have said, nothing to us until we become one with him. And although it is true that we obtain this by faith, yet since we see that all do not indiscriminately embrace the offer of Christ which is made by the gospel, the very nature of the case teaches us to ascend higher, and inquire into the secret efficacy of the Spirit, to which it is owing that we enjoy Christ and all his blessings.

(from Calvin’s Institutes, PC Study Bible formatted electronic database Copyright © 1999, 2003, 2005 Biblesoft, Inc. All rights reserved.)