There were a lot of great comments on part one of this series; I really appreciate your feedback and thoughts. Please don’t hesitate to continue to ask questions and share your thoughts. Quite frankly, they scare me from time to time, but I know why I write, and I trust the Lord to handle it all. I hope you do, too. With that in mind, let’s get on with part two.
You’re Not as Spiritual as You Think You Are
Does that statement offend you in any way, shape, or form? If so, then you substantiate the validity of the statement. Spiritual people, ie, kingdom people, ie, those who live by the indwelling Life of Christ/the Holy Spirit are to live without offense. In other words, if we have denied ourselves (our soul life), then we have nothing left to be offended. It is as simple as that, but it is also as difficult and complex as that.
Look at Jesus. He was God incarnate, and He lived without offense. His own creation spat on Him, mocked Him, beat Him, and hung Him on a cross. Yet, He says, “Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing.” (Luke 23:34) That is the life that we, as kingdom people, have coursing through our veins. That is the life by which we, as believers, are to live.
I am not speaking about or to ordinary people here. I am speaking about and to the kingdom people, those who claim to be Christians, those who claim to have Christ. Ours is not to be concerned with those who do not have that indwelling life. How can they not be offended? Christ is the most offensive thing to the flesh; He goes against everything an unholy person wants, namely the self.
But what about us who believe? We still get offended, don’t we? How easily are you offended? Does it take a lot or a little to get you riled up? Hey, I’m talking to myself here, too, folks. I’m not perfect. To borrow from the apostle Paul, “Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus.”
Okay, but what does this have to do with need? Everything! I point out that you and I are not as spiritual as we think we are, so we can better understand what Jesus was saying in Matthew 6. If we were more heavenly minded/kingdom minded, then we could more clearly see Christ as the source for everything we could possibly need, including food and clothing. Including everything else that I hope to address in future posts.
Are We Captivated?
To be captivated is to be attracted to, and your attention or interest held by, beauty or excellence. It is to be enchanted. So, what grabs your attention? What enchants you? Anything in this world? Yourself? Christ? Let’s look at the apostle Paul; what captivated him?
“Christ is all, and in all.” ~ Colossians 3:11
Have you read Colossians 1 recently? By that, I mean, have you spent any real time gazing into the amazing Christ that Paul presents in Colossians 1:12-20? Oh, to be captivated by such a Christ! To be enchanted by such a Lord would make Paul’s statement, “Christ is all, and in all”, seem like an understatement! Paul expounds on the all and in all-ness of this Christ in that passage. We can see that the apostle was indeed captivated by such a Lord.
As kingdom people, as those who believe on this Christ, the chiefest thing is not our salvation, our rescue from sin and death. That is important, yes, but it is not the end goal. No, the chiefest thing is to go on in and with this Christ, to inherit the land! He is our King and our kingdom, our savior and our inheritance! Christ is the all-inclusive land! If ever I move on from this Christ, then I haven’t really seen Him, I haven’t really known Him. I know this to be true, because the Father never moves on from His Son. He is in the Son, and the Son is in the Father.
All the Fullness Dwells in Him
“For in Him all the fullness was pleased to dwell…” ~ Colossians 1:19
As Witness Lee puts it, “The full expression of the rich being of God, in both creation and the church, dwells in Christ. All creation and the whole church are filled with Christ as the expression of God’s riches. Such a fullness is pleased with this. This is pleasant to Christ.” (notes from Colossians 1:19 Holy Bible Recovery Version)
All the fullness was pleased to dwell in the Son. It’s not all the fullness except such and such or so and so. It is all the fullness. Nothing gets left out. It is all included. Hence, the all-inclusive Christ. This all-inclusive Christ is our King and our Kingdom. Do you understand that? Do I? Fully?
I don’t know that we do. I think if we fully understood what it meant for all the fullness to be pleased to dwell in this Christ, then we wouldn’t have over 33,000 different Christian denominations, and we wouldn’t have endless books, movements, and debates on ethics, spiritual gifts, leadership, evangelism, and even the church. I think we would all be one in Christ, and I think He would be our only conversation. Why? Because the ever-loving fullness was pleased to dwell in this wonderful, marvelous person, Jesus Christ! This is our King!
It’s All Downhill From Here
This is still “heavenly”, R.C.! You’re still not getting practical! Hold on, Saint! Look unto Jesus. Look unto Jesus! Be so captivated by Him, enchanted by Him, consumed with Him, and He gets so practical. I promise. This land that is Christ is full of hills and valleys. The hills are the heavenlies and the valleys are the practicals. The source is in the hills, the heavenlies. This Christ starts there and flows out and into the valleys. We will get there. Soon. But are we properly captivated by our Source? Are we so consumed with our “practical” lives that we miss His divine life? I do not mean this as a criticism. I mean this as a wake up call. Even to me. Wake up, R.C.! See your Lord!
As T. Austin-Sparks once wrote, “But this needs something more than just a kind of mental appraisement. We can so easily miss the point. We may admire the words, the ideas; we may fall to it as a beautiful presentation; but, oh, we need the captivating to wipe out our selves – our reputations, everything that is associated with us and our own glory – that the One who captivates may be the only One in view, the only One with a reputation, and we at His feet. This is the gospel, the good news – that when Christ really captivates, the kind of thing that is in this letter (to the Philippians) happens, it really happens. Shall we ask the Lord for that life captivation of His beloved Son?”
“For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son.” ~ Colossians 1:13
His is the kingdom and the King. Oh, to be captivated by the King. “Shall we ask the Lord for that life captivation of His beloved Son?” Shall we, saints?