The Last Day

 "Buried with Him....that....even so we also should walk in newness of life." Romans 6:4....."No one enters through the experience of entire sanctification without going through a 'white funeral' - the burial of the old life....a death that has only one resurrection - a resurrection into the life of Jesus Christ.....Have you come to your last days really?....Death means you stop being.....you stop being the striving, earnest kind of Christian you have been. We skirt the cemetery and all the time refuse to go to death." Oswald Chambers

 

Since I first became a follower of Christ more than 30 years ago, there has been in the Church a fascination with the doctrine of "the last days." That is, teaching on the return of Christ, and what events and conditions will precede it. Interest and discussion have risen and fell over that time. Right now, both seem very high. "We're living in the last days," proclaim many. As I dwell on Chambers above words, I can't help but think how we can so easily focus on the concept of the last days of the world, and all the while ignore the matter of whether we have ever reached the last days of ourselves? As Chambers asks, have you come to your last days really? Or, as it is more commonly put, have you really come to the end of yourself? It's there alone that you will finally enter into the fullness of who He is.

I'm a believer in the teaching and doctrine that John Wesley called "entire sanctification." This is the place where a believer is faced with the question as to who it is that will hold completely all the concerns of their life? The Father, or themselves? Will they enter into the fullness of life in His Holy Spirit, or will they go on in a life lived out in their own strength, in the power of their flesh? It's a question that can be answered in only one place.....the cross of Christ. It is there that the self-life will go to its death, and its there that the Christ life can be fully manifested in us. There and there alone. When that happens, and only then, we fully die to ourselves and also fully live unto and in Him. We have come to our last day in the self-life, and entered fully into His Life. Christ Life. Are you living in your last days? Have you reached the last day?

Chambers uses the word "striving" to describe that self-life. It's an apt one, for what marks the walk of so many is just that: strife. Our lives seemed filled with it. We strive to find peace, joy, fulfillment, contentment, but we always fall short. We try to do our best, but our best is never enough. It never can be. If it was, we would never have needed Christ. Until we come finally to our last day of dependence upon ourselves, striving will be what marks us. Victory as overcomers will begin to mark the life of those who surrender that old life to Him, and walk in the fullness of life in Him. There will still be challenges, but because we nailed that old way to His cross, the power to live in His new way is ours, and ours abundantly. This is what victory in Jesus truly is.

So, Chambers question is before us. Have we come to our last day yet? Or, will we go on yet another day in something less than the fullness of His life? The last day, or another day. Which is our choice?

Blessings,
Pastor O 

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