Authenticity

In his letter to the Galatians Paul refers to a process he calls “Christ being formed in you.” He makes it abundantly clear that this process somehow is reversed if we subject ourselves to external laws. The Israelites in the wilderness is parable of this same truth. There was a perishing, a death, before the new man could enter the Promised Land. It was the new man who perished in the wilderness, but out of the ashes the fully matured man arose. It is the same man, but not. He that crosses the river knows who he is and who is not. The wilderness or the law, if you like, has conditioned him well. In a sense he wouldn’t have known who he truly is without the wilderness experience. However, according to Paul Christ is impeded from being formed in you and me while in the wilderness. But, paradoxically, we cannot fully know who we are without that wilderness walk.

What does it mean then that Christ is being formed in us? First of all it denotes a shift in the consciousness from believing that outer laws is something we can obey to realizing that the law is written in our hearts. When we were born again from above the law became an integral part of our new makeup, so to speak. God does not follow a set of written rules in His dealings with human kind or the universe. He perpetually spontaneously expresses His self-for-others nature. Created in His likeness and as new creations indwelled by His Spirit that has become our nature as well. It effortlessly comes to fruition in the Promised Land.

Secondly, when we followed outer ordinances, rules and regulations those exact things we thought would lead to life we distressingly found had the opposite effect. The law killed us in the sense that under its influence we never was genuinely ourselves. We covered our shortcomings with fig leaves. We played a variety of roles to create an illusion of holiness. We erected protective fences in order not to be exposed as impostors on account of the simple fact that we couldn’t obey the law. In this wretched condition authenticity evaded us. Christ fully formed within in all its simplicity means that we finally are free to be ourselves trusting our new heart and fully knowing that we are forever embraced by God and further that we are a members of the Triune fellowship or union and thus included in the eternal conversation between Father, Son and Spirit.

The Israelites crossed the river by faith. The generation that perished was unable to cross due to unbelief, that is, they didn’t live by faith but by sight. We have all been that generation ridden by unbelief and hence clung to the law unable to cross the threshold in our consciousnesses. The bottom-line is that authenticity is a fruit of faith. Authenticity means that the Spirit’s work in us has been a success – He has unequivocally shown us that our self is a right self. We must learn that this new self is a right self despite circumstances, appearances, what we do and what we don’t do. This is a reality we live in by faith. Before we perished, some call it coming to the end of ourselves, we were so preoccupied with ourselves that we were quite unable to live by faith. All we could see was that we didn’t measure up. The author of the epistle to the Hebrews teaches us that not everyone respond favorably to the conditioning in the desert. Some harden their hearts and for some odd reason prefer wretchedness to emancipation.

God has created us in freedom to be free citizens of the new Jerusalem which is from above. As Christ is increasingly formed in us we move more and more freely in God’s freedom because we have learned who we are; safe persons expressing His nature and that every desire in us originates in that same outgoing self-for-others fire which is the Father’s self.

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17 Responses to Authenticity

  1. Nancy Thompson says:

    Excellent. Our collective prayer is that all may find that the external law has perished by our deaths and that our new man – the Christ man – is the fulfillment of the law in us, continually.

  2. cindi estep says:

    He is a consuming fire and thus so are we….Consumed and consuming by Love. What a ONEderful word my friend. I will be reading this ONE over and over again. Thanks for Being!

  3. Brian Coatney says:

    This has a beautiful fragrance wafting through it.

  4. Barbara Hughes says:

    The Israelites crossed the river by faith. The generation that perished was unable to cross due to unbelief, that is, they didn’t live by faith but by sight. We have all been that generation ridden by unbelief and hence clung to the law unable to cross the threshold in our consciousnesses. The bottom-line is that authenticity is a fruit of faith. Authenticity means that the Spirit’s work in us has been a success – He has unequivocally shown us that our self is a right self. We must learn that this new self is a right self despite circumstances, appearances, what we do and what we don’t do. This is a reality we live in by faith. Before we perished, some call it coming to the end of ourselves, we were so preoccupied with ourselves that we were quite unable to live by faith. All we could see was that we didn’t measure up. The author of the epistle to the Hebrews teaches us that not everyone respond favorably to the conditioning in the desert. Some harden their hearts and for some odd reason prefer wretchedness to emancipation.

    Ole man, I almost swore a couple of times reading this! WOW!!!!!! Absolutely right on article.
    Barbara🙂

  5. Michael Peele says:

    Was the problem the wilderness generation had that they lived by sight, or that they didn’t believe in spite of seeing? They had a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night, yet, they still acted as though the visible presence of God’s power and protection didn’t exist! Paul points out that faith is unnecessary when you see the manifestation. They had a visible manifestation for years. They only needed to believe He would continue to be there for them, and they had no reason to think otherwise. I don’t see that faith is the problem here.

    It’s not so much that they didn’t believe, I think, as they didn’t trust. And I think they didn’t trust because they still had the thought patterns of slaves. They had a VISIBLE manifestation of God RIGHT IN FRONT OF THEM yet, they expected to be abandoned because for all their lives in Egypt they had lived and died on the whims of the Egyptians. So they viewed God as just another capricious slave master.

    I have spent too much of my life suffering the whims of corrupt humans, so, I struggle with the “slave” mentality too. That’s why I think I understand them a bit.

    • Ole Henrik says:

      Hi Micheal! We are probably both right. The Spirit can illuminate the scriptures from different angels to each and everyone of us depending on His purposes and depending on what we need to see. I have no problems accepting that this is how you view this passage. Regarding the pillars; it suddenly hit me a week ago that they also might represent a mindset of separation: God over there and me over here. When the Israelites entered the Promised Land the pillars were gone denoting the revelation of Christ in us, that is, we begin to see Oneness.

  6. Michael Peele says:

    So, I think ancient Israel’s problem was in not renewing their mind to fit the reality of the truth. Their unbelief came from their minds rejection of the truth that they had displayed in front of them.

  7. Patti Musick says:

    I found this whole article encouraging but especially this…He has unequivocally shown us that our self is a right self. We must learn that this new self is a right self despite circumstances, appearances, what we do and what we don’t do. This is a reality we live in by faith.
    God has been impressing this upon me and I truly believe I am a right self…quite a resurrection! It is a blessing to hear it from you Ole…an encouragement and a blessing as we walk this faith together.

    • Ole Henrik says:

      It is an amazing thing to finally, after all that turmoil and struggling, come to this place of rest where we can embrace ourselves as right beings. The riches of God is an infinite source of blessings. Thanks for blessing me by your comment, Patty!

  8. Stephen from Texas says:

    From your article: “we were so preoccupied with ourselves that we were quite unable to live by faith” I cannot think of a faster way to self-pity and depression than to have a selfish occupation with me. Of course this is not an occupation with the new, Christ is my life, in union me. But the old I need more fixing me. Me, me, me. There is no end to this. Heb 11 says faith is being sure and certain of what I do not see. What I do not see. I have been too occupied with what I do see and with trying to make happen something I think I should be seeing (like me trying to change me) I think the people in the wilderness were there because they didn’t feel worthy yet, maybe someday they can make themselves better. No faith needed for this. It always seems to come back to trust, faith, belief. Do I trust God in this situation and even in this person I call me? Yes, I do. (sounds like a marriage vow) Great insight Ole.

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