188. Live And Not Die

file831241993385Mike Parsons
with Jeremy Westcott

Our inheritance is to be heirs of the world, to bring God’s government to creation (Rom 4:13, Gal 3:29). God promised that David’s seed would sit on his throne for ever (Psalm 132:11-12, 2 Samuel 7:16).

The land promised to Abraham was intended as a starting point from which blessing would spread to all the nations. Israel failed in that, but Jesus’ disciples accomplished it by taking the Good News out to the rest of the world, making available to everyone the blessing of God.

As the original Joshua generation began to take that starting point, that land of promise, they reinstituted two important practices (Joshua 5:6-10). The first of these, circumcision, we considered before. The second was the Passover.

Passover

Jesus is the ultimate fulfilment of Passover – John the Baptist identified Him as “the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world” – and when He celebrated it with His disciples, He reinterpreted it in light of what was to happen to Him, investing it with new power and significance.

For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus in the night in which He was betrayed took bread; and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, “This is My body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of Me.” In the same way He took the cup also after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood; do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me” (1 Cor 11:23-25).

Authority and power

…and just as My Father has granted Me a kingdom, I grant you that you may eat and drink at My table in My kingdom, and you will sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel (Luke 22:29-30).

When we enter into the full revelation of what it means to take communion, we find that it enables us to be seated on thrones in another dimension: it confers upon us the authority to sit at His table in the heavenly realms.

But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. (Eph 2:4-7).

This is new, fresh revelation that God is making known in our days.

God releases to us the blessing with which every family on the earth will be blessed (Gen 22:17-18), so that we in turn release it and pour it out upon the earth. We are in a position to do that because not only have we been saved, redeemed, forgiven, but because we have also been brought into that place of authority, seated with Him in the heavenlies. When we break bread we are sharing and participating in that blessing which operates powerfully in and through our lives. We are joint-heirs with Christ.

Continually devoting

They were continually devoting themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone kept feeling a sense of awe; and many wonders and signs were taking place through the apostles. And all those who had believed were together and had all things in common; and they began selling their property and possessions and were sharing them with all, as anyone might have need. Day by day continuing with one mind in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they were taking their meals together with gladness and sincerity of heart, praising God and having favour with all the people. And the Lord was adding to their number day by day those who were being saved (Acts 2:42-47).

Their continual devotion to the apostles’ teaching, fellowship, breaking of bread and prayer had an effect: a sense of awe, miracles, generous sharing, and salvation. They were experiencing blessing for themselves, for one another, and for others.

Live and not die

Therefore whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner, shall be guilty of the body and the blood of the Lord. But a man must examine himself… For he who eats and drinks, eats and drinks judgment to himself if he does not judge the body rightly. For this reason many among you are weak and sick, and a number sleep (1 Cor 11:27-30).

Because there is power in it, we need to be careful. With a Hebrew worldview, though, we understand that if eating and drinking unworthily can bring weakness, sickness and death, then doing so in the right way can bring strength, health and life.

“I am the bread of life… the bread which comes down out of heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die… not as the fathers ate [manna] and died; he who eats this bread will live forever” (John 6:48-58).

Jesus’ Jewish audience were not allowed to even eat the flesh of an animal with blood in it. So they were horrified when He spoke about living forever by eating His flesh and drinking His blood. But a few sentences later He went on to underline the importance of what He had just said:

“…the words that I have spoken to you” – that is, about eating His flesh and drinking his blood – “are spirit and are life” (John 6:63).

What does it mean to live and not die? It means an end to the principle of death operating within our genetic material, an end to the patterns of sin and iniquity which cause death. Death came about because of sin, but life, health and wholeness come through participating in the body and blood of Jesus.

I want to fulfil the purpose God has for my life, and not die. There are biblical precedents for not dying: both Enoch and Elijah were simply taken by God instead. And there will be a whole generation on the earth when Jesus returns who will not experience death either. That is what I would like for myself, and I am sure the same is true of some of you.

Apply the blood

Applying the body and blood of Christ has the power to remove the blockages to receiving our eternal inheritance.

Israel had to defeat the ‘-ites’ nations, the kings and the giants in their Promised Land, and we too have to deal with them in our bloodlines: the enemy activity, familiar and familial spirits, sinful and iniquitous behaviour and genetic patterns in our lives.

The death of Egypt’s firstborn struck at the heart of that nation’s inheritance. And just as the blood of the original Passover lambs had to be applied to the doorposts (or the angel of death would have visited the sons of Israel as well), so too the blood of Jesus has to be applied to our lives if our inheritance is not to be denied us.

We do not need to only do this once a year, or once a week, as a religious ritual: we can celebrate this communion every day. We can participate in it and in faith apply the body and blood of Jesus to our genetic material, transforming us into Christ’s image as sons; a whole new dimension of transformation, bringing glory to Him. The body and blood of Jesus will renew us so that we can enter into everything God has for us and fulfil His purpose for our lives.

Nothing need prevent us from receiving our full inheritance as sons of God

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3 thoughts on “188. Live And Not Die

  1. Pingback: The Books Are Being Opened | Sons Of Issachar

  2. Pingback: 187. New Dimensions of Authority and Power | Sons Of Issachar

  3. I think God must be talking to me — this was my reading this morning:

    14 Since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, he himself likewise partook of the same things, that through death he might destroy the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil, 15 and deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong slavery. Heb 2:14,15
    And;
    … and which now (his own purpose and grace) has been manifested through the appearing of our Saviour Christ Jesus, who abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel, 2 Tim 1:10
    Awesome God!

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