Friday, 20 September 2019

Heirs by agreement

One thing we seemingly do not understand ...

We are heirs!

But we do not understand what it means. And because we do not understand what it means, we are rendered powerless.

To make it even worse, the institutional church got it all wrong for more than 2000 years!

So, how do you become an heir? And what is the difference between the two covenants that says you are or you are not?

What is a Covenant?

Generally speaking, there exists only two kinds of agreements (covenants) an individual can ever enter into: (1) an agreement with someone else (between two or more people; two or more interdependent parties) and (2) an agreement with yourself (but with other parties independently benefiting).

We find the exact same covenants in the Bible. 

The first kind of agreement is the old covenant of the law kind where, typically in the fashion of any law, there are two parties involved in the contract, the promise-maker and the promise-receiver. Both has to perform. Each party has certain obligations and/or responsibilities in terms of the contract terms and it can work both ways, even simultaneously. The performance and outcome of the one is reliant on the performance and outcome of the other. Simple basic contract law.

The second kind of agreement is an agreement with yourself, called a (last) Will or Testament. In this example there is only one obligating party to the agreement. It is essentially and agreement with yourself. The promise-giver is the only one with any obligation and the promise-giver is also the only one that has to perform. The performance of the promise-giver is not reliant on the promise-receiver. And it works one way only. The best example we can ever have, is the New Testament Gospel example.

Covenant confusion

The modern institutional church (of all kinds) has inherited a rather peculiar tradition. It believes that all of mankind has agreed and is a signatory to both these covenants as found in the Bible.

Even when we read the Bible, we think that we are part of the former, when really we can only be part of the latter.

The Bible is very clear about the parties of the old covenant. It was between God and the nation of Israel. At the time both parties had agreed to that covenant. That covenant is now defunct. Also for Israel.

But ...

The parties to the New Covenant (Testament) is the Godhead agreeing with Himself. The independent benefactors are whosoever believes in Christ. The only obligation of the beneficiary, like in any Will or Testament, is either to reject or receive.

That simple!

What is the New Testament Agreement?

Starting with Romans ...

The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: 

And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. Rom 8:16 - 17

And ... continuing in Ephesians ...

Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he hath purposed in himself: 

That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him: 

In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will: 

That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ. 

In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise

Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory. Eph 1:9 - 14

And in Colossians ...

Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son: In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins: Col 1:12 -14

And in Hebrews ...

But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building; 

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 an 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? 

And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance

For where a testament is, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator

For a testament is of force after men are dead: otherwise it is of no strength at all while the testator liveth. Heb 9:11 - 17

And following through in 1 Peter ...

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. 1Pe 1:3 - 5

What does it mean to be an heir?

Well, being an heir of a will entitles you to inherit the full complement of what has been left to you by your benefactor.

Your inheritance is, however, limited to the extent of the benefactors wealth, position and authority and what he or she has determined in his or her will for you to inherit.

And then, the portion of your inheritance is determined by the benefactor and not by you or what you do.

So, Jesus says in Revelation 21:7  He that overcometh (nikaō; to carry off the victory - Jesus) shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.

Remember our post on who overcomes, here?

What am I saying?

This is exactly the will of God.

Let's have it clear.

As heir in the kingdom you inherit all of the wealth and material possessions of your Father - salvation, health, protection ... and authority - every good and perfect gift.

As heir, your inheritance is limited to what your Father possesses. Our Father has limitless wealth and authority.

As heir, you are limited to what the will determines you get.

The portion of your inheritance is determined by your Benefactor. It is all and sundry of what belongs to ABBA, to such an extent that you are made co-heir with Jesus (Romans 8:17). You receive ALL. As Jesus is, so are you in this world.

... enters the enemy

There is one part of your inheritance the enemy conveniently wants you to forget that you have inherited. And that is your authority.

When a mighty king passes down his will to His child to succeed Him, it includes the power and authority to rule and have dominion. We should never overlook this and abdicate our positions. We are not given delegated authority from God. Instead, we have inherited power and authority to rule with God.

Let's read some more ... just to psych us up some more ...

Reading from the Message Bible translation, let's understand our positions as benefactors and heirs in the kingdom of ABBA.

Now what I mean [when I talk about children and their guardians] is this:

as long as the heir is a child, he does not differ at all from a slave even though he is the [future owner and] master of all [the estate];

but he is under [the authority of] guardians and household administrators or managers until the date set by his father [when he is of legal age].

So also we [whether Jews or Gentiles], when we were children (spiritually immature), were kept like slaves under the elementary [man-made religious or philosophical] teachings of the world.

But when [in God’s plan] the proper time had fully come, God sent His Son, born of a woman, born under the [regulations of the] Law,

so that He might redeem and liberate those who were under the Law, that we [who believe] might be adopted as sons [as God’s children with all rights as fully grown members of a family].

And because you [really] are [His] sons, God has sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying out, “Abba! Father!”

Therefore you are no longer a slave (bond-servant), but a son; and if a son, then also an heir through [the gracious act of] God [through Christ].

But at that time, when you did not know [the true] God and were unacquainted with Him, you [Gentiles] were slaves to those [pagan] things which by [their very] nature were not and could not be gods at all.

Now, however, since you have come to know [the true] God [through personal experience], or rather to be known by God, how is it that you are turning back again to the weak and worthless elemental principles [of religions and philosophies], to which you want to be enslaved all over again?

[For example,] you observe [particular] days and months and seasons and years.

I fear for you, that perhaps I have labored [to the point of exhaustion] over you in vain. Gal 4:1-10

How are we to react in light of this?

But whatever former things were gains to me [as I thought then],

these things [once regarded as advancements in merit] I have come to consider as loss [absolutely worthless] for the sake of Christ [and the purpose which He has given my life].

But more than that, I count everything as loss compared to the priceless privilege and supreme advantage of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord [and of growing more deeply and thoroughly acquainted with Him—a joy unequaled]. For His sake I have lost everything, and I consider it all garbage, so that I may gain Christ,

and may be found in Him [believing and relying on Him], not having any righteousness of my own derived from [my obedience to] the Law and its rituals,

but [possessing] that [genuine righteousness] which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith.

And this, so that I may know Him [experientially, becoming more thoroughly acquainted with Him, understanding the remarkable wonders of His Person more completely] and [in that same way experience] the power of His resurrection [which overflows and is active in believers], and [that I may share] the fellowship of His sufferings, by being continually conformed [inwardly into His likeness even] to His death [dying as He did]; Phil 3:7 - 10

That is exactly how we should react as heir in the kingdom ...

... but (gulp) what was paul saying here to the Phillipians? Fellowship in Christ sufferings? Dying His death? - check out my next post for some Spirit-filled revelation that will ignite your passion!
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