Facts Twenty Six through Twenty Nine

[Series Index]

A. Ward Brandenstein's To Walk In The Spirit

Part 2 – Who are we?

CHAPTER 3 continued – WHO I AM IN CHRIST BECAUSE OF WHO CHRIST IS IN ME

EXPOSITION OF THE 50 FACTS OF SALVATION

 
 
 
[learn_more caption=”CMC Editor’s Note”] In Ward Brandenstein’s introduction to chapter three he writes: “There is freedom from living a guilt-ridden life to those who have received Christ, once the person learns his true identity in Christ. All of the amazing facts occur at the moment that a person receives the Lord Jesus Christ as his or her Saviour!” Towards the close of his introduction to the 50 Facts he adds: “All of the facts are positional truths. Some may not be apparent as an evident experience at the moment of salvation. (What the believer is to do as a practical result of knowing who he is will be considered under the last section of walking in the Spirit.) These wonderful facts of salvation allow us to know who we are in Christ.” In our online presentation of these 50 facts of salvation we will consider one or more facts per week. We trust that you will be blessed as you follow along Ward Brandenstein’s unfolding of these precious truths.[/learn_more]  

“There is freedom from living a guilt-ridden life to those who have received Christ, once the person learns his true identity in Christ. All of the amazing facts occur at the moment that a person receives the Lord Jesus Christ as his or her Saviour!” – Ward Brandenstein

 

FACT 26 –  INDWELT BY GOD: FATHER, SON, AND HOLY SPIRIT

John 14:16,17a,e,f, And I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you forever; Even the Spirit of truth…but ye know Him; for He dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.

John 14:20, At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you.

John 14:23, Jesus answered…If a man love me, he will keep my words; and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.

John 17:23, I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.

I Corinthians 3:16, Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?

I Corinthians 6:19, What?  Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom ye have of God, and ye are not your own?

Romans 8:9, But ye are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you.  Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His.

Ephesians 3:17a, That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith.

Colossians 1:27b,c, …Christ in you, the hope of glory.

I John 2:27, But the anointing which ye have received of Him (God) abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you;…ye shall abide in Him.

I John 3:24, And he that keepeth His commandments dwelleth in Him, and He in him.  And by this we know that He abideth in us, by the Spirit whom He hath given us.

I John 4:4, Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world.

I John 4:12,13, No man hath seen God at any time.  If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and His love is perfected in us.  By this know we that we dwell in Him, and He in us, because He hath given us of his Spirit.

I John 4:15,16, Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God.  And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us.  God is love, and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.

The truth of the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit is understood by many believers as a reality in their lives based on some of the foregoing Scripture passages, and yet many of those who know that truth do not realize the teaching of the indwelling presence of God, the Father, and God, the Son, as well.  The difficulty arises from two considerations.  First, because of the truth of God’s being omnipresent, it is difficult for us to understand how it is also possible to think of God’s abiding in us.  But just as God is infinite in relation to time (i.e., eternal) and that He reveals Himself as the I AM (to Him everything is in the eternal present tense), so He is infinite in regard to space or location and is able to be everywhere at once.  Thus, He indwells all believers at the same time no matter where they may be.  The psalmist showed his realization of this in Psalm 139:7, when he asks, …Whither shall I flee from Thy presence?  Then in verse 8 and following, he affirms that God is present wherever he would go.  In a similar sense King Solomon asked the question at the dedication of the temple as recorded in I Kings 8:27,

But will God indeed dwell on the earth?  Behold, the heaven and heaven of heavens cannot contain Thee; how much less this house that I have built!

The problem we have of understanding God’s indwelling presence in each believer can only be resolved as we accept in faith the truth, as presented in the Scriptures, that affirms that God does so indwell us.
Secondly, we have difficulty realizing that Jesus indwells each believer because we tend to regard Jesus as being limited to being present only where He is in His physical presence.  Since Jesus ascended to heaven after His resurrection, it is difficult to think of His dwelling in the believer on the earth while He is seated at the right hand of the Father in heaven.  Nevertheless, in the realm of the Spirit, Jesus is able to be both at the right hand of the Father in heaven and indwelling the believer at the same time.  With God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit’s abiding in the believer and the believer’s abiding in God, there is that blessing of the believer’s nearness to God and God’s nearness to him or her which provides comfort and assurance throughout one’s entire earthly sojourn.
 

FACT 27 –  JUSTIFIED

Galatians 2:16c-f, …even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law; for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.

I Corinthians 6:11b-e, …ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.

Romans 3:23,24, For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God, Being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.

Romans 3:28, Therefore, we conclude that a man is justified by faith apart from the deeds of the law.

Romans 5:1, Therefore, being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Romans 5:9, Much more then, being now justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him.

Romans 8:30, Moreover, whom He did predestinate, them He also called; and whom He called, them He also justified; and whom He justified, them He also glorified.

A very common explanation of the word, justified, is given as “just as if I’d never sinned”.  But that definition fails to convey the real impact of the truth concerning justification.  The words, justified and justification are from the word in the Greek, dikaios, which is also translated in other Scriptures as being righteous or having righteousness.  There are approximately 70 times that the various words occur in the New Testament that have just as the basic part of the word.  In addition to these seventy uses, there are more than 140 uses of the same Greek words in the New Testament with the word, rightrighteous, and other similar words with right as their base.  The resulting benefit to the believer of being justified is that God regards the believer as having Christ’s righteousness. The believer, therefore, can experience the benefit in the practical realm as he or she presents his or her members as instruments of righteousness unto God (Rom. 6:13).  Thus, righteousness also becomes a reality in the experience of the child of God.
 

FACT 28 –  KEPT BY GOD

John 17:11d,e, Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are.

John 17:15, I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil.

I Thessalonians 5:23,24, And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.  Faithful is He that calleth you, who also will do it.

Philippians 1:6, Being confident of this very thing, that He who hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.

I Peter 1:5, Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

I Peter 4:19, Wherefore, let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls to Him in well-doing, as unto a faithful Creator.

II Timothy 4:18, And the Lord shall deliver me from every evil work, and will preserve me unto His heavenly kingdom, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.

Jude 1, Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to them that are sanctified by God, the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, and called:

Jude 24, 25, Now unto Him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy, To the only wise God, our Saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen.

What assurance! What peace!  What a foundation for rest, to know that it is God’s desire and purpose that we be preserved throughout our present life to be presented blameless before Him at His appearing!  The basis for our assurance is God’s commitment to Himself to accomplish everything that is needed to present us blameless before Him at His appearing.
God has placed so much value on that which He has determined for our destiny in glory that He will jealously guard us on our journey in time.  (See Exodus 34:14 and II Corinthians 11:2.)  God’s keeping will necessitate His correction and chastening of us as He deems necessary according to Hebrews 12.  Even though God chastens us, He is committed to His higher purpose of preserving until Christ’s appearing those of us who who belong to Him.
 

FACT 29 –  LIGHT IN THE LORD

Ephesians 5:8, For ye were once darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord; walk as children of light.

Ephesians 5:13, But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light; for whatever doth make manifest is light.

I John 2:8, Again, a new commandment I write unto you, which thing is true in Him and in you, because the darkness is past, and the true light now shineth.

I John 2:10, He that loveth his brother abideth in the light, and there is no occasion of stumbling in him.

Being light in the Lord places the Christian in a position that provides him with the choice of living according to his new privilege, i.e., departing from darkness.  This truth is similar to the earlier one in which the children of God are also children of the light, p. 19.  In this instance of being light in the Lord, however, the implication is that darkness is equated with hating a brother.  Being light in the Lord makes it possible for the believer to love his brother and thereby to be protected from occasions of stumbling. 
Next Week: Facts 30+
Copyright © 1996 A. Ward Brandenstein

Used with permission.
[Series Index
 
A. Ward Brandenstein
Pastor Ward earned an M.A. in Guidance and Counselling from Eastern Michigan University after taking special courses in psychology at Wayne State University, and earned a Bachelor of Theology (Th.B.) from Baptist Bible College and Seminary with Greek and Hebrew studies, and earned a diploma from Philadelphia Bible Institute (now Cairn U.), including New Testament Greek studies. His knowledge of the Bible and close walk with God are appreciated by all who know him and have sat under his teaching. Pastor Brandenstein and his wife Rose Ann reside in California, teaching college level singles and married couples, young professionals, and retired pastors and missionaries.
 

Proverbs: Warnings Against Unfaithfulness (III)

 

Probers for Living

Series: Digging Deeper into Proverbs

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[learn_more caption=”Proverbs 5″] 1 My son, be attentive to my wisdom;
incline your ear to my understanding,
2 that you may keep discretion,
and your lips may guard knowledge.
3 For the lips of a forbidden woman drip honey,
and her speech is smoother than oil,
4 but in the end she is bitter as wormwood,
sharp as a two- edged sword.
5 Her feet go down to death;
her steps follow the path to Sheol;
6 she does not ponder the path of life;
her ways wander, and she does not know it.
7 And now, O sons, listen to me,
and do not depart from the words of my mouth.
8 Keep your way far from her,
and do not go near the door of her house,
9 lest you give your honor to others
and your years to the merciless,
10 lest strangers take their fill of your strength,
and your labors go to the house of a foreigner,
11 and at the end of your life you groan,
when your flesh and body are consumed,
12 and you say, “How I hated discipline,
and my heart despised reproof!
13 I did not listen to the voice of my teachers
or incline my ear to my instructors.
14 I am at the brink of utter ruin
in the assembled congregation.”
15 Drink water from your own cistern,
flowing water from your own well.
16 Should your springs be scattered abroad,
streams of water in the streets?
17 Let them be for yourself alone,
and not for strangers with you.
18 Let your fountain be blessed,
and rejoice in the wife of your youth,
19 a lovely deer, a graceful doe.
Let her breasts fill you at all times with delight;
be intoxicated always in her love.
20 Why should you be intoxicated, my son, with a forbidden woman
and embrace the bosom of an adulteress?
21 For a man’s ways are before the eyes of the Lord,
and he ponders all his paths.
22 The iniquities of the wicked ensnare him,
and he is held fast in the cords of his sin.
23 He dies for lack of discipline,
and because of his great folly he is led astray
(Proverbs 5:1-23 ESV)
[/learn_more]

..

 Solomon does not sugar coat harsh realities.

Proverbs 5:3–6 “For the lips of a forbidden woman drip honey, and her speech is smoother than oil, 4 but in the end she is bitter as wormwood, sharp as a two-edged sword. 5 Her feet go down to death; her steps follow the path to Sheol; 6 she does not ponder the path of life; her ways wander, and she does not know it.”

 
We have noted that Proverbs uses the imagery of the “forbidden woman” as a type of all temptation to sin. The picture is especially poignant for a young man, but we do not want to lose the impact of it for both men and women in all sorts of temptation. The idea is, that it is alluring and appeals to the natural appetites, but contains the element of drawing us toward what is not rightfully ours.
The 6th verse contains a massively important insight.  Temptation always includes this element of failure to consider the end of what it is proposing.
The first part of that diversion is found in that It offers “an” end – some pleasure, some satisfaction, to supply something which we imagine is missing and “ought” to be ours – but not THE end. It obscures, distracts us from seeing the ultimate end of succumbing – death.
Here is why the appeals of sin and temptation have such an apparent sincerity to their claims – they are deceived themselves. The arguments they use are plausible and seemingly filled with good will. But the deception of blindness is there. And we must bring the Light to it to understand. We must bring Christ into the situation. We must ask: How does what we are contemplating accord with Who He is and what He is about in the world? This is the question which must ever be in our hearts and minds.
We must also ask – as Believers – How does what we are contemplating accord with who WE are IN Christ? With how our mission as His ambassadors in the world fits with this act, or attitude, or pursuit?
This theme of considering what is fitting given who Christ is and who we are in Him is found throughout Scripture – and it brings us back to think about ultimate ends versus immediate ends. If I have planned a trip to California as a final destination where my family is and my job is and all the things I truly love are, but someone has said if I go to New York City I will be really happy for a day – I have to ask myself, can going east get me west? No. Obviously not.
Can any sin move me closer to Heaven? No.
Can any sin move me closer to the image of Christ? No.
Can any temporary pleasure which will be immediately followed with days or even years of guilt, shame, regret and the ruinous impact on other’s lives if not my own really be worth it? No! And yet that is the very decision we often make. No wonder one old wag said that “sin is the divorce of reason from the will.” In it, we will what is in the final analysis unreasonable.
So the Apostle Paul writes in Ephesians 5:2–3

“And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. 3 But sexual immorality and all impurity or covetousness must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints.”

We don’t want to overstate this, but more important than asking “does the Bible say this is sin or that is OK?” is asking – how does this fit with who I am as God’s image-bearer? Is it “proper” among the saints? Does it fit? Will it take me where I am supposed to be going?

~ Reid

Next week: Chapter Six
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Reid Ferguson
Reid serves as the pastor for preaching and vision at Evangelical Church of Fairport in Fairport New York. A native of Rochester, N.Y., he has served in various ministry areas during his life, including: a founding member of the former Mark IV Quartet, Youth Pastor at ECF, former board member of the Fellowship of Independent Reformed Evangelicals (F.I.R.E.), and author of The Little Book of Things You Should Know About Ministry (Christian Focus Publications, 2002). Pastor Reid blogs regularly at Responsive Reiding.