Third Day People

And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[a] neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. 39 No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:38-39...."O  Death, Where Is Your Victory? O Death, Where Is Your Sting?.....Thanks be to God who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ." 2 Corinthians 15:55, 57

 

I received an email the other day from a spiritual mentor I get together with regularly for prayer. He was speaking in part about the above verses and how they relate to his, and all lives that are truly in Christ. A loose rendering of his words to me would be that though death and its workings unceasingly seek to swallow up our lives, they in turn have been swallowed up by His Victory over death itself. Powerful words indeed, but what he said last made the deepest impact upon me. He said that we, the people of the cross need to live as "3rd day people." People of the resurrection. Living resurrection lives in the midst of a world of death. We live in a sin and death drenched world, and it is the effects of that drenching that get all the attention. The desperate need of the hour for that sin and death drenched world is for a people of the resurrection. Third Day people who are drenched, not in the sin and death of this world, but the life and power of the resurrection. To live such lives, to be such people, that is what overcomes the world and all its death. Are you and I such a people? Are you such a person? Am I?

The other night, at a denominational gathering, I heard one of our leaders speak of the deep need for the Holy fire of God to fall once again upon His church. It put me in mind of two kinds of fires that we can be found at and in. The first fire is that which Peter was found, as he warmed himself at the fire of the guards and onlookers during Jesus trial. At the fire where he denied his Lord three times. I once saw a powerful portrait of Peter at that fire while they were leading his Lord away. As they led Him, Jesus looked upon Peter not with anger, or disgust, but with deep sorrow and sadness. That fire could not keep him from Jesus' eyes. Neither can it keep them from us. Our standing at the fire brings the same response from Him that it did for Peter. It broke both the Lord's and Peter's heart. Does it break ours? The fire that Peter was at is appealing to our flesh. It consumes us, and makes us like it. That's the fate of all who warm themselves at it;s flames.

The other fire, the true fire, is that of the Holy Spirit. Against it, the world's fire cannot stand. It consumes all that is not of it, and leaves only that which is of Him. Such fire fell upon all those in the upper room at Pentecost. Peter was among them. He left the fire of the world and was laid hold of by the fire of the Kingdom. In that place, he became a 3rd day person. All those present became 3rd day people. People of the resurrection. People that know by experience that death has no real power over them. Death is at work all around them, but life is fully at work within them. They were 3rd day people in a last days world, for the reign of sin and death have been in their last days ever since, and the proof is found in the lives of all who are 3rd day people. 

Have sin and death lived their last days in you, or do they yet reign? Do defeat, discouragement, despair, rule in your heart and mind? Do you live a life of self-absorption, or Christ absorption? Does the dark fire of sin and death consume you, or the holy white fire of His Life? Third day people know the answer to that. I want with all my heart to be among them. Consumed by His fire, consumed with and by Him. To live such a life, to be such a people yields victory. Swallowed up by His Life, and in turn, living a life that swallows up not only the effects of death, but all of it's intents for me....for you.....for us all. Third Day people. People of the resurrection.

Blessings,
Pastor O

 

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