Today we continue our series, “As Jesus Is”, under the banner of the overall series for the year, “Supernatural Manifestation.” We have been looking at 1 John 4:16,17 for months. Recently I added Colossians 1 to it. Let’s get back to both passages today.
The Apostle John said:
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. Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world.
(1 John 4:16, 17 KJV)
The Apostle Paul said:
“I am happy in my sufferings for you. There is much that Christ must still suffer. And I gladly accept my part of those sufferings in my body for the good of his body, the church. I became a servant of the church because God gave me a special work to do. This work helps you. My work is to tell the complete message of God. This message is the secret truth that was hidden since the beginning of time. It was hidden from everyone for ages, but now it has been made known to God’s holy people. God decided to let his people know just how rich and glorious that truth is. That secret truth, which is for all people, is that Christ lives in you, his people. He is our hope for glory.”
(Colossians 1:24-27 Easy To Read Version)
Today I will focus in on this statement: “That secret truth, which is for all people, is that Christ lives in you, his people. He is our hope for glory.”
So what does this mean to you today? A few things.
1. Paul was not there when Jesus walked on water. He was not there when Jesus raised three people from the dead. He was not there when Jesus fed 5,000 with two sardines and five biscuits. Paul was not part of Jesus’ team, while Jesus was performing ministry in the earth. As a matter of fact, Paul was on the wrong team. He was against the Jesus-movement. So when Jesus appeared to Paul and revealed to him to that he was called to be an Apostle before he was born, Paul was overwhelmed. This was “shock and awe” of the God-kind. Paul accepted the call. He preached Christ, and Him crucified, for the rest of his life. Paul was so amazingly dedicated to his assignment that God used him to write over half the New Testament. This is what happens when you have a person who:
a) Knows they don’t deserve the goodness God extends to them.
b) Feels inadequate, undeserving and unprepared.
c) Fully embraces the fact that God has chosen to live inside of him/her.
d) Relies totally on the God in them, placing no confidence in their own power, ability or strength.
*** You too, can be like Paul. Accept God’s goodness and allow Him to live through you!
2. Paul is an example of what happens when a human gets a revelation of the God’s indwelling presence inside of him/her, and then fully yields to that presence. What God did in, with and through Paul, He can do in, with and through you. But like Paul, you must realize that Jesus is IN you and that He wants to live through you. You must develop this mindset, “As Jesus is, so am I, in this world!”
3. When you couple the abiding presence that Paul taught, with the unconditional love that John taught, what you have is one amazing Gospel. You realize that Jesus has chosen to live inside of you, that He loves you despite your faults/flaws/failures, and that He wants to use you to change the world! Have you embraced this truth? Once you do, everyone around you will know it, because they will begin to see Jesus IN you!
4. If God could use Paul (a man who terrorized the church), to lead the church, then He can surely use you. The key, though, is getting to the point where you see yourself “As Jesus is, in this world!”
5. Embrace what Paul taught you: Jesus lives in you. And also embrace what John taught you: God loves you with an unconditional love, because He IS love! When you fully embrace those two truths in your heart, you will be in position to unleash the love and power of God everywhere you go. Not because you are so good, but because God is. Not because you have all the answers, but because God Himself is living IN you; He gives you the words and He performs the work. This is how you become the man/woman God called you to be. This is how you change the world. This is how you live, “As Jesus is, in this world!”
Closing Confession: Father, this is a year of Great Victory for me, because I no longer rely on me, my power, my ability or my strength. You are freeing me from ME! I am dying to self, and the more I do, the more You are able to live through me. I know what Paul taught me: YOU LIVE IN ME! I also know what John taught me: YOU LOVE ME! So I accept Your love. I believe Your love. I become Your love and Your power in this world! Not because I am so good, but because You are! This is why I boldly declare: “As Jesus is, so am I, in this world!” I declare this by faith. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
This is Today’s Word! Apply it and Prosper.