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Separating Separator

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Peace with God on our side can be unnecessarily interrupted when we think there could be times He may not be at peace with us on His side, which could never be. In Christ, He punishes not out of anger but rather disciplines out of love. Thus, everything a believer encounters and does is merely that which has to do with Him manifesting His love for us.

God is completely clear of all that we may think could interfere with His unbroken love and peace concerning His—and His desire is the same for us—to rest assured that we can always walk in peace toward Him. We may find disappointment in ourselves, but God is never disappointed in us (neither should we be), for He knows our “will” (regardless of the sin) is always to “please” (Phil 2:13) Him.

One of the encouraging concepts I find concerning “made us meet” is that of God lifting us above ourselves in our thoughts of unworthiness. The significance here is that though we realize we are unworthy apart from Christ, we learn that we are made (meet) worthy in Him; and the imputation of His righteousness unto us gives us one of among many divine attributes, so that we can see ourselves relating to Him in the holiness which He stands.

Understanding that we are holy because He is holy provides for us a shameless union concerning our conscience, resulting in ourselves being more open towards God in the joy of our fellowship with Him; and this is what God joys in—our joy in Him!

Separating Separator

Our acceptance with the Father on the ground of the work of the Son (Eph 1:6) has been done perfectly, and is therefore unimprovable. It never alters, and it is very important for us not to mix our acceptance itself with our enjoyment of it. The acceptance is “in Christ,” and therefore unchangeable; the experiential enjoyment is “by the Spirit,” and therefore often hindered (because of the working of the indwelling old man).

In Romans 5 we have the truth presented on the Father’s side: the terms He is on with us. There is another vital point for us to consider, namely, how we are before Him. This we get in chapter 8. The prodigal could have no doubt as to his father’s feelings towards him, when he covered him with kisses. His trouble was his own unfitness for the place—his unsuitability. He says, “I am no longer worthy to be called thy son.”

It is at this point that serious and protracted troubles arise in souls. The knowledge of grace and forgiveness is an assured reality; and then, too often, the effort is to make the flesh (old man, not the body—NC) subject to the law of God, which (we read) it “neither indeed can be” (Rom 8:7). The prodigal had the grace of forgiveness when His father embraced him; but he had to be made fit to enjoy this grace, and this also is effected for him. The best robe is put on him; he is no linger in his rags. In Christ there is no condemnation; everything of the old man is renounced. “If any man be in Christ, he is a new creation.” “Giving thanks unto the Father, who has made us to fit to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light” (2 Cor 5:17; Col 1:12).

How blessed to know that you are not connected in God’s sight with the man (original nature; old man—NC) under judgement, but with the Man who bore the judgement, and who has been raised from among the dead by the glory of the Father! What a blessed utterance for you in Romans 8:2: “The law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.” You have changed from Adam to Christ (concerning your nature—NC).

As before the Father, positionally, we are clear by faith through Christ (this is Romans 4 and 5), but as to yourself, your condition, it is not by faith that you get experientially clear, but by the Spirit of Christ (faith is the medium for transfer of power—NC). This is exceedingly important. No one is in liberty who is trying to improve the old man. He (it—NC) cannot be improved; you must be apart from him altogether. The death of the Cross is the separation; the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus is the Separator. In the end of Romans 7 you get experientially clear of him, and in the beginning of Romans 8 you are set free “in Christ” (while the old man yet indwells—NC). In Romans 5 we have the love of God shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who has been given unto us; but in chapter 8:2 it is not love but life.

The love of God is shed abroad in our hearts first: then life in Christ is known and enjoyed; ability by the Spirit to behold the Lord’s glory—all the Father’s satisfaction according to all His attributes expressed in Him. It is “the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ” (2 Cor 4:6). The growing result of our thus “beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, (is that we) are changed in to the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord” (2 Cor 3:18). Thus, in our growth, we become here descriptive of the Man seated at the right hand of the Father, not of the fallen, sinful and earthly man—Adam.

- J B Stoney

Excerpt from MJS devotional for August 21:

“The love motive is not adequate to carry the believer through to fruitful walk and service. Few seem to be able to face up to this fact, possibly because they see no higher alternative. But there is one: the life motive. “For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death” (Rom. 8:2).

“The law (i.e. of sin and death—NC) is for the man who departed from God—that man has been removed from God’s sight in the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, and I rejoice that now by the ‘law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus’ I am ‘free from the law of sin and death’ (Rom. 8:2).”

None But The Hungry Heart
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