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The Law Of
By Malcolm B Heap, Midnight Ministries
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Paul was given new revelations by Jesus. He was given greater spiritual insight to reveal matters of the Spirit – deep matters, things that transcend the boundaries of mortality and humanity.
God’s purpose through Jesus was so sublime that it was too much for minds educated by merely Old Covenant mentality to comprehend. The physical mind cannot grasp these things, and new believers were finding it hard to come out of the old mindset. Many still don’t grasp what Paul was saying, to this day.
We have two extremes in the Church. On the left there are liberals, who distort what Paul said, to make out he was dispensing with all OT law. On the right we have legalists, who rigidly adhere to a strict legalistic outworking of biblical precepts, and who thereby deny the operation of the Spirit.
In between is a whole array of varying shades of these colours.
The truth is that Paul was NOT doing away with OT law, otherwise he wouldn’t have made the unambiguous statements in Romans 7:7 and 7:12 about the moral integrity of OT law, and of its further establishment through NT faith in Romans 3:31.
What he was trying to do was convey the far greater spiritual virtues which come through the Spirit, that can only be accessed by faith. And such faith is not human but divine – given by God through Jesus.
We are saved by Jesus, through faith in Him, and that faith is evidenced in our acceptance of the things of the Spirit. The Spirit refashions our own spirit, bringing a new level of obedience to God, purifying our thoughts, inner motives and emotions. In a nutshell that’s what Paul was trying to convey in his letter to the believers in Rome and which he also continued in his letters to the Philippians, Colossians and Ephesians.
In The Spirit
It is amazing how far-reaching, penetrating, and all-encompassing the potential spiritual change can be when God’s Spirit truly lives in us. Those who are nominal Christians, and who have not yet received the Spirit of God as a life-changing entity, do not experience the wonders of God. They are still "in the flesh" and "cannot please God" (Rom 8:8).
But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you (Rom 8:9).
And when this imbuing takes full hold (for this to occur, you have to submit to the Spirit, want the Spirit, love the things of God, and live, breathe and eat for God, so that you are one with Him), God takes you into a new realm of existence. He doesn’t take you out of this world, but He does things that confound rational explanation. Here is one example:
"John G Lake was a missionary to Africa many years before the modern Full Gospel movement. The deadly bubonic plague broke out in his area – hundreds died. He cared for the sick and buried the dead. Finally the British sent a ship with supplies and a corps of doctors. The doctors sent for Lake to come aboard and asked him, ‘What have you been using to protect yourself?’
" ‘Sirs,’ Lake replied, ‘I believe the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set me free from the law of sin and death. And as long as I walk in the light of that law of Life, no germ will attach itself to me.’
" ‘Don’t you think you had better use our preventatives?’ the doctor urged.
" ‘No’ said Lake, ‘but, doctor, I think you would like to experiment with me. If you will go over to one of these dead people and take the foam that comes out of their lungs after death, then put it under the microscope you will see masses of living germs. You will find they are alive until a reasonable time after a man is dead. You can fill my hand with them and I will keep it under the microscope, and instead of these germs remaining alive, they will die instantly.’
"The doctors agreed. They made the experiment and it was true. When they expressed wonder at what caused it Lake told them, ‘That is the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus’." (K E Hagin, In Him, pp 22,23.)
When the Spirit of Jesus finds a home in you, God gives you faith like He did to John Lake, and He performs wonders that defy human explanation.
What Lake was quoting were these words:
There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set me free from the law of sin and death (Rom 8:1,2).
I’ll come to what this law of the Spirit of life is in a moment. First, some more examples.
My wife and I were sitting in church many years ago, when a false minister (we didn’t know he was false at the time) delivered a message (you couldn’t call it a sermon, because it contained only one scripture at the end, of pitiful ‘relevance’) against us and our views. He didn’t name us by name, but he insinuated that my wife was a witch. He attacked our views on various spiritual matters and health remedies which we deemed were valuable (mentioned in The Mystery of the Invisible). His ‘sermon’ was so unscientific, so unfactual as to be risible, but his diatribe went unopposed – until later, when I took it apart, point by point, in a 10 page personal letter to the infidel (which he never addressed or answered properly).
While he was speaking, however, Helena was enveloped in what she could only describe as a protective spiritual bubble. It completely surrounded her, isolating her from the extremely hurtful untrue comments and false accusations. She was shielded supernaturally. It was wonderfully reassuring.
You are safe in the abiding presence of God:
He shall cover you with His feathers, and under His wings you shall take refuge; His truth shall be your shield and buckler (Ps 91:4).
When you are in God’s will, the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus sets you free from the law of sin and death.
A young woman was imprisoned for her faith as a Christian in China – one of very many! She was handcuffed, which made it impossible for her to do the necessary things to take care of bodily functions. She had to eat like a dog on all fours, just using her mouth. Her bed was a top bunk. She couldn’t climb into it without falling down onto the hard concrete floor. The harsh metal cut into her wrists, and the steel was ice cold in the bitter winter weather.
Her situation was very distressing! Yet she didn’t want to complain to God. She accepted her lot with humble resignation.
But the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus sets you free from the law of sin and death. He tells you that you can ask Him for anything (Jn 14:14). In every situation God enables you to conquer. He is always there with us, in every circumstance.
Humbly, she prayed. "Father, if it is your will that I must endure this, then so be it. I accept whatever you say. But if it be your will – that I may praise you and magnify your name, though I am not worthy – I humbly ask you to remove these shackles from my wrists." Immediately the handcuffs fell to the floor.
When the guards found out, she did what she had promised God – to praise and magnify His name – she told them God had answered her prayer. The miracle was undeniable. It was a witness to hardened communist guards of the reality of the God they deny.
I have mentioned in God Speaks To The WCG of the despicable duplicity and heinous hypocrisy of the Worldwide Church of God. Their ministers rose up against my wife and me, opposing and vilifying us.
But the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus sets us free from the law of sin and death. God demonstrated it again.
In 1998, God spoke in a dream, depicting me flying like superman. I was given supernatural power to do God’s will, to witness against the enemy.
When the enemy comes in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord will raise up a standard against him (Is 59:19).
And so He did. Under the unction of the Spirit I wrote a series of 50 articles blitzing the WCG’s failings, misdemeanours, hypocrisy and sham. It was a witness against them. God judged them.
They accused us of wrongdoing, but we were free because of the Spirit of life. They are the ones deceived and in prison to demonic spirits through malice. They will not get out until they have paid God the last penny.
The Law of The Spirit
What did Paul mean by "the law of the Spirit of life", and "the law of sin and death"?
You and I live in a world that is governed by laws. They are automatic in the way they operate. You don’t have to understand about the law of gravity to see how it works. It is irrevocable.
So is the law of sin and death. If you sin, you will eventually die. You won’t live forever. Automatically, you have come under the force of this unavoidable principle. In that sense Paul called it a ‘law’. It is philosophical terminology.
But Jesus has set us free from that irrevocable law and its penalty by dying to pay the price for us. If we want to live sinlessly from now on – that’s true repentance – He rescinds the penalty of our sins, so the law does not claim us as its victims.
Jesus didn’t do away with the righteous requirement (Rom 8:4) – our need to be completely obedient to God’s commandments and principles of righteousness. But, through the power of His indwelling Spirit, we have what we formerly lacked, so that we can obey Him now in every way.
With Jesus’ Spirit living in us, we have new motivation, a new heart, a cleansed outlook and will. It is to do HIS will. And so, the law of the Spirit of life is now an equally irrevocable force working within us. If we are totally yielded to Him, so that His will is our will, we have His life. We are "in Christ Jesus", and we don’t "walk according to the [desires of the] flesh but according to [the will of] the Spirit" (Rom 8:1).
Such a person, completely sold out to God, automatically comes under the protection of the Spirit for the purposes of God, that He can accomplish His plan through that person. In John Lake’s case, he was a missionary to Africa about 100 years ago, and what God was doing through him was indispensable. Thus, the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus set him free from the law of sin and death.
The devil wanted him dead. He wanted Lake to die of disease, and there were many in Africa that he could have died from. But Lake declared his complete trust in God, because of Jesus. He knew that life in Jesus is more powerful than potential death that Satan could bring.
You can have that same assurance of faith. It is as sure as law. Give your life to Jesus. Let it go. Take His in its place and you will know this law of life. Malcolm B Heap
Bible quotations are from the New King James Version (NKJV) unless otherwise stated
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