Death Becomes Her

In the early 1990’s there was a film called ‘Death Becomes Her’. It starred Meryl Streep, Goldie Hawn and Bruce Willis. Basically, it was about a woman who took a potion to keep her looking young but it actually meant she lived forever even after being killed and while her body decomposed.  The title of this old movie came to my mind during the week reflecting on the life that the Lord has called us to as believers.

As believers into Christ Jesus, we were crucified with Christ and buried with Him. Christ rose from the grave and we are now only alive in Him. It is now no longer us who live but Christ who lives in us. We have been crucified to this world. No longer “I” but “Him”. This death that we have entered into by way of faith in Christ Jesus as Son of God has made us beautiful in God’s sight.

Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day (2 Corinthians 4:16)

In the Song of Songs we see how Christ our King (represented in King Solomon) speaks of His death and resurrection in chapter 4 verse 6;

Until the day breaks and the shadows flee, I will go to the mountain of myrrh (death) and to the hill of incense (resurrection).

He then tells His Beloved (us) that there is no flaw in her. In other words, through His death and resurrection, we have become flawless in His eyes. She was/we were always beautiful to Him but now through His death she/we have become flawless!

For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. (Ephesians 1:4)

His death and resurrection has done it all and the church is brought forth as His bride. It is at that point that He addresses her as His bride in verse 8 & 9;

Come with me from Lebanon, my bride…You have stolen my heart, my sister, my bride…

As she begins to know Him and express Him, she ministers to Him. And then in Chapter 5 verse 5, she experiences the cross;

I arose to open for my lover, and my hands dripped with myrrh, my fingers with flowing myrrh, on the handles of the lock…

This cross-like experience leads her into a time of searching for Him desperately because she has come to see who He is and how she loves and longs for Him more than life itself.  In Chapter 6 & verse 5 we read how she has been transformed through the experience of the cross in her life and in her pursuit of Him above all else.  As a result of this transformation the King says these words to her;

Turn your eyes from me, they overwhelm me…

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Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God – this is your spiritual act of worship. (Romans 12:1)

Death becomes us, saints. Our death in Christ and His resurrection Life in us, and our daily taking up of our cross, makes us beautiful in His sight.

How beautiful you are and how pleasing, O love, with your delights! (Song of Songs 7:6)

 

 

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Jesus our Dayspring

Another Aussie sunrise

Another Aussie sunrise

God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness.

 

I am always amazed when something I have read so many times in the bible, and revelations I have read from other authors, finally become life to me.

This morning Jesus revealed Himself to me afresh as the ‘Light of the World’. I woke to my usual onslaught of thoughts that do not originate with me, but rather by their very nature, clearly come from the enemy who is ever at large.

I praise the Lord for bringing His wisdom and insight to recognise that this onslaught was from ‘another place’ and so I was encouraged by the Lord to ‘bring every thought captive unto Christ‘ which I did, in faith.

As a result, the Lord lifted me, my mood was lightened, my thoughts were lightened as though elevated out of the muddy waters of accusation and confusion and into fresh sunshine, placed on dry land where they could bathe in the glory of His light.

The Lord drew my thoughts then, as He is able, to the reality that just as in the beginning of all creation, so He is now! My attention was drawn to Genesis Chapter 1, verses 2 and 3.

“Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light.”

Jesus revealed to me in this moment, that this formless, empty darkness is a shadow of the state that we were in before Christ entered the world as the Light. He truly was and is the Light of the world.

Jesus is called the Dayspring, which I always thought was a ‘spring’ but now understand He is the one who ‘springs’ the day into being! Glory, hallelujah! He separates the light from the darkness! (Genesis 1:4)

After every ‘night’ there comes a ‘Dayspring’ – the sun rises in the natural to remind us of the continuing light and revelation of Christ always delivering us from the darkness.

All praise to You our Heavenly Father who, through Jesus Christ Your Son, have delivered us from the darkness and into the light of Your love and life.

May we all continue to walk in the light as He is in the light.

The Temple of King Solomon – Part 2

photo by Arturo Sotillo on flickr - "Shadow of a Lonely Man"

photo by Arturo Sotillo on flickr – “Shadow of a Lonely Man”

What does it mean when we say that the bible is full of shadows and types? Well, a shadow and a type is a faint resemblance of the original. It only resembles in part, not fully. When I look at my own shadow for example, it is shaped like me and moves like me, but it is only an outline and is somewhat distorted. It changes its appearance dependent on the position of the light :-).  Even though it is still always my shadow and will belong only to me, it does not show the details of my appearance, personality or spirit. It says something of me but is not me completely.

Therefore,  we can see shadows and types of Christ in the life of King Solomon, but only up until the point that he disobeyed God (1 Kings: Chapters 1-10). Some of the ways we can see him as a shadow/type of Christ are;

The Temple of King Solomon – Extravagant Giving! Part 1

Solomon’s Temple Built for God

(Picture found at http://biblestudyoutlines.org/bible-study-lessons/old-testament-bible-study/1-kings-6-bible-study/)

Have you ever read the account of Solomon’s building the temple for God? I’ve been recently struck by the extravagance of Solomon’s ‘giving’ to the Lord. No, God never asked for it to be built, it was King David’s desire, that was given to his son King Solomon to fulfill but God sure accepted it.

What struck me, is that King Solomon at the time of building the temple, knew in his inner-man, the worthiness of God. He knew that God was worthy of extravagant giving and sacrifice and he went all-out to express that knowing of the Lord’s glorious worth.

There is so much to learn in this story about the gold and precious materials he used in this building. One might say in today’s terms that King Solomon was a ‘perfectionist’. Nothing less than extravagance would do – and he could afford it! King Solomon had soooo much blessing from God that he could hardly give enough! His blessing from God far outweighed what he could give back to God but he was adamant about doing all that he could to create the biggest, best, most glorious, most appropriate, most true representation of the Lord’s glorious ‘deservance’ (I made that word up ’cause I’m free in Christ to do so – lol!!) 

There was purpose and meaning in every single aspect – the entire process from beginning to end. That is every type of material used, every item and where it was positioned, every section, every boundary etc.

You know, at the completion of the building it still wasn’t enough! King Solomon STILL had plenty of blessings to spare because the Lord had blessed him so. The scripture says that King Solomon made so many sacrifices that there were too many to count. Talk about over the top – talk about extravagant giving!

This all reminded me of the Lord and us of-course. God has given us so much in His Son Jesus, that we could NEVER spend enough on Him, we could NEVER return to Him what He has given us. We could NEVER sacrifice enough to meet His ‘deservance’! (worthiness)

Those who have seen the Lord and His glory, who He Himself is, have seen that He is worthy. We have seen that He may not ask us to build Him a temple, like He didn’t ask David, but we see that simply by being Who He Is, He demands our all! We want to give Him EVERYTHING we have to give! And we realise that anything we have to give has come from Him in the first place! There is this exchange of gift-giving, love, sacrifice. He sacrificed His Son Jesus to give us EVERY blessing in heaven! We have been made most rich! And now we seek to give back to Him by sacrifices and gifts of pure love and adoration, as He Himself leads us by His Spirit.

Once again, it is all HIS work – nothing of ourselves. What an extravagant God we serve and love! We have seen He is worthy! So worthy! 

Of-course, King Solomon at the time of building the temple, was a type of Christ – but that is for part 2………….

The Israelite in Us!

Just before reading this post, here’s a little tune from the 1970’s that kind of relates to the post, just for a little fun….(be sure to turn your speakers up before clicking on this link) Larry Norman’s Moses in the Wilderness.

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I’ve been on a mission lately to look for shadows and types of Christ in the old testament. This includes things that shadow the church because of-course, the church is the Lord’s bride and she is His body.

So, looking at the story of Moses leading the Israelites out of Egypt……you know the story.

Moses = type of Christ (deliverer, leader of his people, high priest on behalf of the people to God)

Israelites = the church, us (chosen people, called to be a holy nation of priests, to be God’s people and He their God)

Egypt = the world, the world system (lost, slavery, without hope, Satan’s domain)

Pharoah = Satan and his army

The parting of the Red Sea = representative of baptism, going into the waters of death and coming out the other side in freedom from the hold of the world, in resurrected life

6 million Jews (men) = the number six representative of mankind (free gift of salvation for all mankind)

Sadly, many of the Israelites still held Egypt in their heart. They complained and longed for the ‘good old days’ where they were prisoners. They had forgotten their conditions of slavery and preferred to look back rather than to go forward toward a promised land they had not seen and could not imagine. They died in the wilderness.

Only a few made it into the promised land.

Are we like this? The church has been like this ever since Israel came out of Egypt! So many of God’s chosen ones (those who are saved) still hold Egypt in their hearts, still are not prepared to walk through the wilderness fearlessly and in faith, believing in the promises of God to deliver them into a land of milk and honey. And JESUS is that promised land! He IS that land of milk and honey! Only a handful took possession of this land.

All through history, there has been only a remnant that has taken possession of the promised land, this glorious Christ, in preference over Egypt and the wilderness. Some have decided to settle in the wilderness, not being prepared to pay the cost to get to the promised land. Some have fainted and died there.

I sometimes wonder if this is what is meant of the scripture “Many are called but few are chosen?” I don’t know. Perhaps.

If so, I want to be one of the chosen…….Lord sever Egypt from my heart.