Posts Tagged ‘new nature’

“For I tell you, unless your righteousness (your uprightness and your right standing with God) is more than that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.”



Are you aware this very day you have available to you righteousness that exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees? You also have before you relationship with One Who dwells ever within the kingdom of heaven, and it is available without price, without penalty, already purchased for you.  But there are demands that will be made of you: to submit, to obey, to trust, and primary to all …BELIEVE in the One Whom the Father has sent and to cleave to, trust, rely on, and have faith in His messenger (Jn 6:29).

But the demands that are asked of us are far eclipsed and exceeded by the delight of knowing the Lord here today, and of course in eternity that we get to enjoy in Him and dwell with Him.

But how can we have the righteousness required to even enter the kingdom of God? How can little old you and me meet the standard required?

Under the Old Covenant, the scribes and Pharisees possessed a righteousness that was of a legal, performance-based, external nature. They personified the cup that was cleansed on the outside, but inside is full of greed and robbery and extortion and malice and wickedness. Their own righteousness had a limitation, it could not penetrate into the heart of man because the covenant could not cleanse the inside of man.

Hebrews 9:9 portrays the situation this way: “Seeing that the first [outer portion of the] tabernacle was a parable (a visible symbol or type or picture of the present age). In it gifts and sacrifices are offered, and yet are incapable of perfecting the conscience or of cleansing and renewing the inner man of the worshiper.”

This Scripture is saying that under the Old Covenant, cleansing of a person could not penetrate to the inner man or conscience. Rather, it cleansed only the outside and was to tide mankind over until the New Order of the Messiah came that would bring a better covenant (Heb 9:10-11).

But the Good News is that the Messiah has indeed come! He has enacted a better covenant, by which no area, especially the inner man, is left uncleansed. Rather, all of man is cleansed – especially the inner man, the heart, the conscience, the seat of man’s thinking and personality – all are cleansed.

This then is what makes the way for man’s righteousness to exceed that of the scribes and Pharisees… to receive Jesus Christ as the Messiah, to enter into covenant with Him as Lord and Savior – and to receive His cleansing that penetrated to the very inner man! It is only “in Christ” that we can possess such righteousness – because this righteousness is of His very own nature that comes to dwell within us by the power of the Holy Spirit.

In so entering into relationship with Jesus, you then also enter into His Kingdom which He Himself has advanced. You are now a new creation where the old has passed away – and the new has come!

It is important to understand a basic requirement for walking in such righteousness, for it is not automatic. The need is to not only be saved, but it is to remain responsive to the leading of the Holy Spirit. It is only those who are led by the Spirit that are called the sons of God (Rom 8:14).

The difficulty which remains after salvation is that you have a continual choice. Sometimes even a moment by moment choice…to obey the new resurrection life of Christ now in you, rather than your old nature which has technically been made dead with Christ by being nailed to the Cross with Him (Rom 6:6).

It is in the failure to recognize this need and to exert proper self-control that people fall into a life-style of ignoring this truth – and thus become perpetual “sons of disobedience” (Col 3:6). It is here that people deify themselves and only obey their earthly nature and appetites and fail to rest in faith in the new nature of Christ that should be in headship over their lives.

These are in fact people who have received Christ as Savior, but have never worked out their salvation with fear and trembling, nor have disciplined themselves to rid themselves of things like anger, rage, bad feeling toward others, curses and slander, and foulmouthed abuse and shameful utterances from their lips!

In essence, their old nature (which has been nailed to the Cross- and which they should reckon as dead) has retained rights and place and status that it should not, and so it still makes demands. They continue to respond to these demands and thus lead a rollercoaster life … sometimes having victory, others plummeting deeply into sin and failure.

The real problem is they have not become servants of righteousness (Rom 6:18). Instead, they have continued to cater to their flesh. You must understand, this is a very dangerous place! A new choice is needed here, and every power that is needed to make that choice has been already given!

Listen to Romans 6:19 as Paul instructs: “I am speaking in familiar human terms because of your natural limitations. For as you yielded your bodily members [and faculties] as servants to impurity and every increasing lawlessness, so now yield your bodily members [and faculties] once for all as servants to righteousness (right being and doing) [which leads] to sanctification.”

If you have received Jesus as your Savior there is a need to have reflected a corresponding change in your life and the way it is lived! If you do not see such progress and change, then you should question the reality of your salvation! You should not delay but resolve the issue today!

If your current vehicle for transportation is undependable for a trip across town you would not set out on a journey across country with it. Likewise, if your current relationship with the Lord is weak and undependable in your eyes, how is it that you would trust it to usher you into eternity safely? The Lord would have you rectify the situation even today!

So today, is your righteousness more than that of the scribes and Pharisees? Is your relationship and interaction with the Lord such that you are ever seeing progress in how you live your life? Are you tender and humble before the Lord, or is a two-by-four the implement of choice to get your attention?

Warning. You are too far away from the flame of the Lord in your life. Move closer! Seek Him continuously! Pursue Him in love! Be responsive and able to be moved by Him easily! Live and move and have your being in Him – there is no counter-fitting this! Press in with all your heart. It is to your benefit – not His!

Last thing. A servant of righteousness conforms to the divine will in thought, purpose, and action. Like dentures lacking enough adhesive bonding, are there big gaps between your thinking and the Lord’s? Your actions and the Lord’s? Your purposes and His? If so …ask Him to bring you in line.  Ask Him to bring what is needed.

Today, become the slave of God with your present reward in holiness, and your end in eternal life with Him! Have His righteousness that exceeds and far surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees!


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Day Eight

Two Wisdoms

“This is not the wisdom which comes down from above, but earthly, natural, devilish.” Darby Jas 3:15

There is a wisdom that you should not be looking for – and should never yield to!  This wisdom is your soulish natural wisdom – stuff that belongs to your old nature.  It is what you were born with.  But it is the stuff which the Lord will not operate out of – for it is flesh!  The wisdom you want – is from above, from your second nature – that is the redemptive nature of Jesus Christ.  You can only walk in it when you are saved, and continuously yield all of “yourself” to Jesus as a living sacrifice, reckoning yourself as “dead to sin, but alive to Him.”

If you are already saved, the potential to operate in the wisdom from above is always there, ready – and waiting.  You must first yield and surrender your old nature and your natural wisdom – it must be handed over to the Lord, daily!  It is a continuous process – renouncing that old nature so that you may walk in the new redemptive nature of Christ.  It is in-fact a conscious refusal to operate outside of the life of Christ which dwells in us.  The moment we fail to do this, that old nature, and our old wisdom stands ready to be the “fall back” posture – literally!  However, it is indeed earthly — (it is of the flesh – and therefore profits nothing)!  It is natural, and even devilish!  Why?  Because the closest thing in us to Satan is our old reprobate, rebellious, fleshly nature, which includes even the wisdom of our soul.  And yet many of us are unfortunately ignorant of this.

How do we know what wisdom we are operating in – that from our earthly nature, or that from Christ which is from above?  We know it by the result.  If we use our “natural” wisdom – then there will be produced jealousy, envy, contention, rivalry, confusion, unrest, disharmony, rebellion, and all sorts of evil and vile practices (Amp Jas 3:16).  However, true wisdom from Christ and His nature operating in us yields unobtrusive humility! (Jas 3:13)  That is because the wisdom from above is a perfect representation of the nature of Christ Himself.  Indeed it IS Christ in us – the hope of glory!  His wisdom is first of all PURE (it is not defiled but of a single substance).  It is also peace-loving, courteous, considerate, and gentle.  (Are you seeing Jesus yet?)  It is willing to yield to reason (reason prompted and led by the Holy Spirit).  It is also full of compassion and good fruits.  It is whole-hearted (not divided in interests serving more than one master), and it is straight-forward, impartial, and unfeigned (free from doubts, wavering, and insincerity).

In any given moment, you and I (if we are believers) have the opportunity to walk in our earthly wisdom (which becomes an incubator for great evil), or in the wisdom from above (which produces great blessing and life).  Look around you.  Either you will see carcasses of death, contention, jealousy, and every evil thing, or you will see fruits of righteousness and peace.  These are the warning lights on the dashboard of our lives.  Pay attention!  Do not be deceived!  Before you unfolds the choice to walk out a life: full of life (from Christ’s wisdom); or full of death (from our earthly wisdom) — of blessings or cursings.  Choose LIFE!


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