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You’re Still You

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I believe it has been well said that after rebirth believers have the same character, person-hood and personality, all which comprises individuals apart from their nature. It’s the work of the Father in the “life” of the Son (Col 3:4) by the power of Their Spirit that we have another nature (hence “new”), and in all this we now and forever have relationship with Them and one another (2Co 6:1; 1Th 5:10).

I see it as an acceptable understanding that saints are not supplanted from their individuality but rather supplemented with the “life” of the Lord Jesus (Col 3:3), via an additional nature which is “after the image of Him that created him,” or “it” (Col 3:10). This makes us “complete in Him” (Col 2:10) and the Spirit by this new nature the believer is “separated” (circumcised) from the old nature (“old man”), and though it yet dwells within them (Rom 7:17, 20) they are not in it (Rom 8:9), esp. concerning its guilt (Rom 8:1) and its control (Rom 6:12, 14).

The testing (strengthening) of faith using the “old man” is continually glorifying God by manifesting His “work” (Phil 2:13) within the redeemed. The sin nature and its effects are no longer a part of the saint’s life (other than its presence) concerning its ability to effect sinful desire. The natural man cannot but desire sin but the spiritual man cannot, due to the Spirit’s work within (Gal 5:17), and the Father’s “work” within.

For believers, all the “newness” (“all things are become new”) is in the nature which is of Christ (Col 3:10), which supplements believers—not supplants them! It is a common concept that it is all Jesus and none of believer, but this is in reference to that which produces “all things that pertain to life and godliness” (2 Pe 1:3), in which that which is created could have no part in effecting, but only in receiving. If the individuality of the person was eliminated, with who would there be to have fellowship? Our Father already has fellowship with the Son, and therefore desires the same with those who come to Him.

- NC (BobH)
 

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