Applying our walk with Jesus: part 1 in a continuing series
Jesus wants a bride (His Church) to share an intimate relationship with Him (Isa 62:5, Rev 19:7-9, Rev 21:2). While it is not revealed in any great detail as to why Jesus wants or needs a bride, we do know that Jesus wants to enter into a very intimate relationship with those who are saved for eternity. Indeed, Jesus’ death and resurrection paved the way for His bride to enter heaven. To be sure, understanding the why of the bride of Christ is critical in understanding why He chose to create us.
Why Free Will?
We all have free will to choose who our spiritual authority will be. Choose God’s sovereignty and heaven is yours as is the privilege of being His bride. By choosing to submit to God’s sovereignty, you are declared righteous and perfect; indeed, righteousness is imputed to you. If you choose the “Prince of this world” (John 12:31) a hellish eternity awaits you. It is no small matter when we consider that Lucifer, a third of the angels, and Adam and Eve chose to come out of Godly authority, even though they were in the presence of God Himself. It's difficult to imagine that anyone who is in the presence of God would want to be anywhere else!
The Danger of Free Will
Free will presents an almost irresistible urge to know what we do not know and to have what we do not have. “… the woman saw that the fruit …. was desirable for gaining wisdom (Gen 3:6)”. Jesus’ bride must be faithful. To prove that we are faithful, we must have a valid choice that allows us to prove ourselves faithful. Indeed, those who experienced God’s direct presence chose to fall; it follows that we also are allowed to choose to accept or deny God as Sovereign authority. We choose either believe on God and submit to Godly authority out of love or we follow Satan. To choose to deny Godly authority is, by implication, to come under Satanic authority. We call that idolatry which leads to condemnation.
Why Do We Have to Experience Evil?
To put it another way, it is imperative that we must “be like God, knowing good and evil. (Gen 3:5) … Indeed, Satan’s statement was, in fact, true: “the LORD God said, "The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil." (Gen 3:22). Certainly, this was foreseen by God; Lucifer, Adam and Eve, as well as a full one-third of the angels did not have experiential knowledge of evil. In order to choose God, they had to have a legitimate choice. They needed to know what it was like to exist out of Godly authority in order to be able to truly choose Godly authority. It is also crucial that we understand that death, suffering, blood and sacrifice must be in the mix. Without the finality and horror that death and blood suffering bring, we would always try to find a way out. It had to be demonstrated that God was and is our only hope. God’s existence requires that we be faithful to Him and Him alone; there cannot and will not be another besides El Elyon, the Most High God. To comprehend more fully, we must understand idolatry and belief systems and the repercussions of the fall.
Next time: Salvation is not a covenant of works: part 2 in the "The Walk Applied" series
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Mr. Marica contributes incisive and contemporary Christian commentary for Examiner.com on a regular basis. He holds an MA from Liberty University, and he is the Director of Godly Training Ministries. You can find out more about him by clicking here.
You can contact Mr. Marica at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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