standing at the crossroads

September 20, 2016

Image result for picture of man standing at the crossroads

Today’s devotional was “sparked” by Terry who asked a very good question; :Dear Pastor, you keep mentioning “our position” could you explain what you mean by that?”

Well Terry that’s a good question and it also reminds me that sometimes I forget the English language and use Theo-talk or bible babble and not explain my self clearly, so thanks for the reminder. And please to all of you don’t hesitate to ask me questions.

  1. Standing – position

  2. State – condition

  3. Justification – a legal declaration that I am innocent and righteous. No direct feelings are experienced when we are justified.

  4. Sanctification – positional sanctification is being set apart for God. Practical or progressive sanctification is the process of being made holy.

  5. Glorification – a state of perfection involving both standing and state which will become a reality when I am with the Lord.

  6. Saint – God calls me a saint when I experience new birth, and through practical sanctification I am learning to live like one. (one note of clarification, singly I can’t really be called a saint by myself, literally, we are saints as part of the collective body of Christ. If you’re into Star Trek we are saints like we are part of The Hive.

It is important for every Christian to understand the difference between standing and state. Standing deals with my position with God by virtue of the new birth which I have experienced, John 1:12. This position is one of perfection, since I am justified. (Be sure you understand the meaning of the word justification which is a central doctrine of salvation.) Because the righteousness of Christ has been imputed or reckoned to me, I am just as perfect as Christ in the Father’s sight. As Christ is, so am I in this world, 1 John 4:17. Finally, this standing is one of permanence, Romans 5:2. I don’t “step in and out of grace.” The permanence of my relationship with Christ is spoken of also in Romans 8: 1,38-39.

State is quite another matter. State deals with my condition in this world. It is involved with what kind of a child I am as a member of God’s family. What is the nature of my walk with the Lord? At best, one can say it is imperfect. It will vary from day to day. I may or may not be efficient in my practice of spirituality — keeping step with the Spirit.

State has to do with practical sanctification. The writer of Proverbs states: “But the path of the righteous is like the light of dawn, that shines brighter and brighter until the full day,” Proverbs 4:18. Hopefully this practical sanctification will bring one’s state or condition to be more consistent with his standing. But the two will never be equal until we experience glorification with the Lord, 1 John 3:2. Then, “we will be like Him, because we will see Him just as He is.”

The casual observer of Christians and the Christian life is quickly aware of the halting and stumbling of most of us in our Christian walk. It seems we will begin our walk with vigor, only to falter soon and slip into lives that characterize mediocrity. We find ourselves doing battle with our three arch enemies: the world, the flesh and the devil. Many become discouraged and fall away.

If we remember our position with God, that we are beneficiaries of His work and we get the benefits, our motivation to not be carnal should improve because the truth is there is nothing we can add to our position. My job is to improve my state, be holy and do the things God asks me to do, i.e. walk righteously. Sometimes we get mixed up and think that what we are doing improves our position (salvation) and that is pure nonsense because we didn’t do anything to warrant our salvation.

Hope this helps, blessings from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Questions, comments and prayer requests at the above email address.

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