THE KEY TO ABUNDANT LIFE
By Pastor Max Solbrekken, D.D.
JESUS said, "Ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free. If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed." (John 8: 32, 36). "The thief (Satan) cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill and to destroy. I am come that ye might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly." (John 10: 10)
The truth that many theologians, preachers, and laymen alike have ignored or not understood is that the Christian life is Christ living within us! Not just a belief, doctrine or philosophy but a real-life changing dynamic. Not just a philosophical idea or dogma, but a living reality, a fundamental change!
A New man with Christ at the controls - a New Nature, a New Disposition, a New Creature: old things are passed away and all things have become new!
There are New thoughts from the mind of Christ with new desires; to love God with all our heart, soul and mind, and our neighbour as ourselves. (Matt. 22: 37,38)
A New outlook and New goals: A New agenda, to please Him who gave His life for us and has given us everything we need for this life and the next!
The Bible states: “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a New Creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things become new. And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to Himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation.
That is (to wit) that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto Himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and committed unto us the word of reconciliation. For He hath made Him to be SIN (sin offering) for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him.” (2 Cor.5: 17-19, 21).
IT IS NOT I, BUT CHRIST!
It is not I but Christ living in me. He is our life, living within us and praying for us and leading us by His Holy Spirit! The Bible says, "Even the Mystery which hath been hid from ages and generation, but now is made manifest to His saints: To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this Mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the Hope of glory." (Colossians 1:26, 27)
"I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh, I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me." (Galatians 2: 20)
If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.
"For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. When Christ, who is our life shall appear, then shall ye also be with Him in glory." (Colossians 3:1-4)
"But if the Spirit of Him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, He that raised up Jesus from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by His Spirit that liveth in you." (Rom 8:11)
QUICKEN OUR MORTAL BODY!
St. Paul declares that the same Holy Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead, who is now living in us has the power to quicken (make life) in our sick, tired body. This is not referring to the resurrection of a dead body, since the Holy Spirit does not live in a corpse, but in a living believer!
"Likewise, the Spirit helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit Himself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered." (Romans 8:26)
The literal translation of the above text is: The Holy Spirit "takes a hold of against" the infirmity and holds it away from us while He prays through us (in the Spirit) for our deliverance!
"Wherefore He is able also to SAVE them to the uttermost that come unto God by Him seeing He ever to make intercession for them. For such an high priest became us, Who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens;
Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and them for the people: for this He did ONCE, when He offered up Himself. For the law maketh men high priests which have infirmity: but the word of the oath, which was since the law, maketh the SON, who is consecrated for evermore." (Hebrews 7: 25- 28)
GREATER WORKS THAN THESE!
Jesus said: “Believest thou not that I am in the Father and the Father in Me? The words that I speak unto you I speak not of Myself: but the Father that dwelleth in Me, He doeth the works. Believe Me that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me: or else believe Me or the works’ sake.
“Verily, verily, I say unto you, he that beliveth on Me, the works that I do, shall He do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto My Father. And whatsoever ye shall ask in My name, that will I do, that the Father be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask anything in My name I will do it. If ye love Me, keep My commandments.” (John 14: 10-15)
“And I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you forever, even the Spirit of Truth whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth Him not, neither knoweth Him: but ye know Him; for He dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.
“I will not leave you comfortless (orphans): I will come to you. Yet a little while the world seeth Me no more; but ye see Me: because I live, ye shall live also. At that day ye shall know that I am in My Father, and ye in Me, and I in you.
“He that hath My commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth Me: and he that loveth Me, shall be loved of My Father, and I will love Him and will manifest Myself unto him.
“Jesus answered and said unto Him, if a man love Me, He will keep My Word: and My Father will love him and WE will come unto him, and make our abode with him.
“But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in My Name, He shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance. Peace I leave with you, My peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, either let it be afraid.” (John 14: 16-27)
“Greater love hath no man than this, that a man give his life for his friends. Ye are My friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you. Henceforth I call you not servants. For the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of My Father I have made known unto you.
“Ye have not chosen Me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in My name He may give it unto you.” (John 15: 13-16)
A NEW WORLD VIEW!
The Church needs a new world view! We begin by understanding that it is not about me, myself and I. It is all about God, my family, my neighbour and lastly myself. Jesus stated that the greatest commandment is:
“Thou shalt the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it. Thou shalt love thy neighbour, as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets!” (Matthew 22: 35-40)
The Key to Abundant Life is in giving ourselves to Jesus Christ in faith, and casting ourselves in repentance and godly fear upon the altar of Mercy and Grace!
Often, we are our own worst enemy. We are total failures by ourselves. We must surrender to a Loving God who said, “Love thy neighbour”, instead of a desert god who orders his devotees to rape, kidnap and kill infidels, Christians, and Jews!
King David glorified the Lord God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, who is the Creator of the world and all that is in it, the Cosmo and all therein. He glorifies the Giver of life and the Saviour, Healer and Deliverer of mankind!
“For Thou hast possessed my reins (inward parts): Thou hast covered me in my mother’s womb. I will praise Thee: for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvelous are Thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.
“My substance was not hid from Thee, when I was made in secret, and curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being imperfect: and in Thine book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there were none of them.
“How precious also are Thy thoughts unto me, O God! How great is the sum of them! If I should count them, they are more in number than the sand: when I awake, I am still with Thee.” (Psalm 139: 13-18)
JESUS CAME AS OUR REDEEMER!
When Jesus entered the world as our Redeemer from the evil powers of darkness, He began a new World Order where His focus was not just His chosen people through Abraham, but the entire world!
His Word had been rejected by Adam and Eve, who naively listened to the voice of the Traitor and Liar and disobeyed their Father and God, plunging the entire human race into sin, degradation, and death!
The Creator Himself changed the course of History! They didn’t realize that the Eternal God, creator of Heaven and earth had come into the darkened world of superstition and fear to create a New World Order!
How could they understand with their warped minds and carnal appetites of mythology and pagan beliefs, that these ideas of the resurrection of Jesus Christ, could possibly be true.
The answer is that God’s plan and purpose, from before the foundation of the world, was to reveal Himself to a lost and perishing world, by His vicarious Death on the CROSS, the shedding of His pure and perfect blood. And by sending His Holy Spirit to empower the Church and thereby call, draw, convict and rescue a lost and perverted human race unto Himself!
THE BLOOD OF HIS CROSS!
“Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by His own blood He entered in once into the holy place, having obtained Eternal Redemption for us. For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of a red heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh:
“How much more shall the BLOOD of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?” (Hebrews 9: 12- 14)
“And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more. Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin. Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way, which He hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, His flesh.” (Hebrews 10: 17 -20)
It is only by the grace of God, the mercy and love of His Son the Redeemer, that the glorious salvation is available to any and all who will humble themselves, repent of pride and unbelief and fall at His feet, receiving His Mercy.
“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world might be saved.” (John 3: 16, 17)
Jesus intercedes for us: “Wherefore He is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by Him, seeing He ever liveth to make intercession for them.” (Hebrews 7: 25)
To God be the Glory, great things He hath done and is still doing! Amen.