This week we launched into reflecting on what it might take to ‘DWELL in the REVELATION Christ has brought’ and we were reminded that ‘dwelling’ is residing or settling IN. So, effectively, the revelation Christ has brought by becoming flesh and dwelling amongst US, is/becomes our new home or platform from which we live, make decisions and act, on a daily basis. It is important for us to grasp that God the Father sent His son into the world in order to literally SAVE US from ourselves and show us what living out the kingdom of God on earth as it is in heaven should look like. He came to challenge us NOT to try and fix or re-invent our own lives but to trust the intimacy with God that comes by a relationship with Jesus – the sort of intimacy which can transform and not just adjust our lives. (I.e. REPENT = turn towards God NOT try in our strength to get rid of bad behaviors or the like from our lives)
Graeme used 1 John 3:18 to the end of 1 John 4 to demonstrate some foundational things that became accessible to us because they were revealed IN Christ. He suggested that there were others but ALL these foundational revelations are non-negotiables when it comes to making daily decisions from our home base of Christ’s revealed God truth. Have another read through this core scripture, asking God to show you his truth as you do.
Here is a brief summary of the first 4 foundational revelations that Christ represented as presented by Graeme last week.
- Jesus was the essence of the Father God become flesh so he could take our place and show us the ultimate expression of selflessness – incarnation is not just a pre-condition for salvation, it is a transforming fullness that you and I can engage.
NB: Dwell in this revelation and your family, friends and neighbours will meet SEE JESUS
- Jesus was the pioneer who showed us what living out the kingdom of heaven culture ON EARTH should look like. Jesus was a true disciple – he said what the Father told him to say and did what the Father told him to do
NB: Dwell in this revelation and we will discover what true discipleship actually looks like – followers of Jesus living together. Local mission communities that form a part of an extended family called the church that looks more like Jesus operating in the world and less like a club or a human organization
- Jesus showed us how humans can defeat the devil. All our fallen, degrading, exiling stuff was nailed to a cross that the devil thought was a good idea, because he didn’t get that Jesus was LOVE and was about the redemption of souls; not a vengeful force that indiscriminately rips out the weeds without regard for the crops that are growing successfully and healthily alongside.
NB: Dwell in this revelation and learn how to discern the spirit of truth and life from the spirit of deception and death so that we judge by God’s standards and not by our perceptions
- Jesus came to show us what mutual indwelling with God AND with human beings is supposed to look like. Dwell in this revelation and we will discover what the ‘upon this rock of revelation I will build my church, my body on earth as it is in heaven’ (emphasis mine) looks like (more about this next week)
Practical Application Ideas
During your prayer time this week, consider the idea that if you dwell in the revelation Christ has brought you will be able to discern more clearly the difference between releasing truth and restraining deception that has worked in your life. Allow God to speak to your heart about this. Think of some things that you have at some stage in your life believed that God would want you to do and reflect firstly on whether those things became reality or remained a dream. If they remained a dream, ask God to show you whether those restrained ideas still have some legs – in one form or another. Write down and pray about what you receive as you seek him about this. Are you bold enough to talk with someone you trust about what you have discovered? If you are, do it this week and agree with that person that you will both keep praying until something actionable emerges.
Individual Response or Group Questions
- Have you ever thought about your relationship with Jesus like you would a key relationship you have with another human? (I.e. wife/husband/child/close friend etc.) Did the intimacy idea challenge you in a new way? Do you think if you focused on the love you share with Jesus that you might say and do more that would please him? Is this too weird to think about or is it a helpful analogy? Share your thoughts or write some things down that you can pray and work on.
- Re-read the note at the end of point 2. What do you think Graeme meant by the difference he describes? Does it make sense? Is it too simplistic? What about this is helpful? What about it isn’t?
- ‘Repentance is NOT about worrying about purging a particular behaviour, it is about turning to God and trusting him with the transforming work.’ Have you ever heard this definition of Repentance before? Did it challenge you or help you in any way? Reflect, write, and share.
John 1, Ephesians 4: 1-10, Matthew 6, Matthew 13