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Tuesday, October 20, 2015

The Gospel According to Paul # 18

In His Letters to the Galatians (continued)

The Intelligence of Christ Within (continued)

Now, here are these poor Galatian Christians, torn between the Judaizers and Paul. They do not know what to make of this. These, on the one side, are so strong about their lines of things; and on the other hand, here is Paul, saying that they are all wrong! What are they to do? The answer comes: "If Christ is in you, you will know - you will know what you ought to do". And that is the only real way of knowing what you ought to do - what is right, and what is wrong; Christ in you. But you WILL know.

Christ Within: The Power of Endurance

Now you say, 'I have not realized that, I do not feel that, I do not see that; I have not got all that intelligence, I do not sense all that power.; You see, as Paul is always trying to point out, there is such a great difference between the human kind of knowledge and spiritual knowledge. We have knowledge of this kind, not by information, but by experience.

Some of us have been on the Christian way for many years. If it had been left to us, should we be still going on with the Lord? If we had had to carry on, struggle through, fight it out, on our own resources, should we still be here? I think I can say for you as for myself, Certainly not! We would not be here today; we should not be rejoicing in the Lord, going on with the Lord. If satan could have had his way, we should not be here, for both in ourselves and in satan we have found every conceivable thing inimical to Christ, to make it impossible for us to go on with the Lord. Everything in our own selves is against us spiritually. Everything in satan is up against us, and everything that he can use is thrown into the battle for our undoing.

But we are here, and that is the proof that Christ in us is a living power, and it is found - through not yet in fullness - in experience, in fact, and not just in our sensing it. We would like to have the sensations of this great power, to feel it; but no, there is often the hiding of His power, and it only comes out in facts - often in quiet long-term facts.

The Disposition of Christ Within

Power, intelligence knowledge: and then disposition. This is one of the realities of the Christian life. When Christ is within, we have a different disposition altogether. We are disposed to new things, disposed in new ways. Yes, our disposition has changed. The things which we once found to be our life no longer draw us to them. We are not disposed to them any longer. This is the world's problem with the Christian: 'Why do you not do this, that, and the other?' And the only answer we can give, but which never satisfies them, is, 'I have lost all disposition for that sort of thing: I am no longer disposed that way: I have a disposition in another direction altogether.' It is like that: another disposition - Christ within. That is Christianity!

You see, Moses says, 'You have got to do this, and you have got to do that, and you must not do this, and you must not do that'; and my disposition is altogether against Moses. Moses says, 'You must do this' - I do not want to do it; it may be quite right, it may have come from God, but I just do not find it in my nature, in my disposition, to do it. Moses said, 'I must not do this', and my disposition says, 'I want to do that - that is just the very thing that I do want to do!' Somehow or other, in myself I am just across God in every way.

What is the solution to the Law? Christ in you. If Christ is in you, then you will be disposed to do what God wants you to do, and you will fulfill the Law. If Christ is in you, you will have no disposition for doing what God does not want you to do, and you will again fulfill the Law. But, you see, you fulfill it on another basis altogether. You fulfill it, not because Moses said it, but because Christ is in you; not because you must, but because Christ gives you another disposition. This is the gospel, the good news, of the indwelling Christ.

~T. Austin-Sparks~

(continued with # 19 - (The Work of the Holy Spirit Within)

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