Grace Design

Eph 1:4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:

“Holy and without blame” is more than conduct, but relates here to an identity, a self worth, a dignity and ultimate nobility. “Without blame” defines a self image which does not impute sin or trespasses to itself and this person is blessed as in Psalm 32:1-2. Sin was originally imputed or “reckoned” to the whole human race, from Romans 3, 4 and 5, then the very same sin was transferred onto Jesus in Isaiah 53.6, 1Peter 2:24, and in 2 Corinthians 5:21 He became sin that we would become the righteousness of God in Him. This refers to His righteousness being imputed to us at the point of salvation. Following this?

So, “holiness” becomes not an issue of conduct, but a setting-apart unto God’s imputed righteousness, a judicial imputation, and a gift received. Paul wrestled to not live in conduct-based righteousness, or even a falsely felt self-right, nor to compare one’s stature with another to gain a righteous edge. He cried out to be found in Christ, not having his own stuff but the “righteousness which is God by faith.” Philippians 3:10-11.

So, these “influential spheres of knowing” such as “righteousness” or “sin” make us wonder if there are others. The commonality of these two mentioned worlds is that they seem to be complete-without-activity, yet supporting their characteristic brand of action. One of these misses the mark and one has an opposite motif, blueprint, design, enterprise, and venture.

Richard Sibbes in his book on “Liberty” talks about the realm of the Spirit. “Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.” This is 2Corinthians 3:17. Some of his comments go “In effectual grace the Spirit works upon the soul thoroughly. The Spirit preserves the manner of doing of things, and it is the manner of the reasonable creature to do things freely. The Spirit, though working effectually on the soul preserves that mode. The more He works effectually, the more the soul sees reason to do good.”

Dr Carl Stevens said, “The realization of revelation gives us illumination, which is the ability to walk in that truth through the Holy Spirit working in us. As we enter into this glorious place of illumination, we begin to discover God in the glorification of His truth.” “When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the LORD shall lift up a standard against him” (Isaiah 59:19b). The “standard” is to live by every Word of God in the life of the Spirit (Matthew 4:4). It is reflective thinking with precise illumination of how Christ thinks.”

So, The Spirit creates by illumination a “Realm” in which we are elevated into a freer, more valuable, and more spontaneous existence, which desires the good and wholesome. It appears as if we are released into our design as man and women also, enabled to glorify God in our particular thought and action, in a place far more heavenly than here.

Well this takes us to another thought, “don’t men and women express this Spirit enhancement in different ways? Of course, they too exemplify two different spheres of design. Yes, when Spirit illuminated and freed to express their individuality, men express true manhood, and women, true womanhood. Wow, what happens? Dare we say?

Delitzsch helps, “of sensitive excitability, of variable vivacity, of delicate powers of observation, and of direction to the individual and the special,” these are predominant in the woman. “…the life of the woman is more manifoldly and more closely linked with the whole life of the creature….” ie. The domestic and the spiritual. The man “forms the principle which is positive, independent, operating productively, and expanding from within outwards,” ie. Toward nobility. Women, “turn from the circumference to the center.” Enough! My objective is only to sincerely demonstrate the existence of two separate spheres within the Spirit illuminated one. To go any further would incite a riot! Let’s regather ourselves.

So, if there is this realm of Spirit-illuminating-designs, does an opposite realm also exist? This one would take away our liberty, limit or distort our design as humans, and remove the dignity of individuality. The spirit of darkness, yes, provides this possibility. A false light accompanies this action and folks in its influence believe a lie, yes the lie of the old sin nature. In here, delicate powers of observation in females pervert, and men distort their nobility.

Friends, Acts 1:8 tells us that, “you shall receive power after that the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you shall be my witnesses in Jerusalem, Judea, and to the uttermost parts of the world.” The Spirit brings with Him power. This is not the power of a blasting cap on compressed gun powder, but of heavenly love’s penetrating intimacy. The invasion meets my humanity in its rawest form, which form I hid until now, but can now bear to look at, in the presence of such gentle caring. I am overtaken with the sensitivity, the understanding, the willful condescending to my design with all of its inherent weakness and propensities. I am nursed, coddled, doted upon and it is my time of love.

Lastly, in Ezekiel 16, the master says “live” and live we shall. Remove the stained wrappings and wash the neglected body and we shall be witnesses unto the Christ. Then we shall do what it says in 1Corinthians 2:1-5; “And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with Excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God. For I determined not to know anything among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.” 

Paul goes on to say, “And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling. And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power: That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.” Folks its not by might or power but by my Spirit, saith the Lord! Love and amen

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