Noble Ambition to be like Jesus - Two
We are back again, friends, to continue from where we stopped last time, as we discuss the Noble Ambition to be like Jesus. We read Luke 1:26-38 and John 3:3-8.
We started with what Blaise Pascal the French mathematician, physicist, inventor, writer and Christian philosopher said. Blaise Pascal said, “Everything that happened in the life of Jesus Christ should take place in the experience of the true believer.” This corresponds with that Jesus said in John 14:12
12 “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father.
And the key is in that last phrase: because I go to my Father. Going to the Father was what sent down the Holy Spirit who will enable the believer do the works that Jesus did.
Father again, we say thank You for the privilege we have in this part of the world to hear the Word freely. There are some in other parts of the world who don’t have that freedom. We thank You. And may we not take it for granted. May You speak to us now, we pray, in Jesus Name. Amen!
What Blaise Pascal said, and Jesus also said in John 14:12, go to tally with what Oswald Chambers said also. Oswald Chambers said, “The true pattern for the experience of a Christian is the life of Christ. The Christian ideal is not the outward and literal imitation of Jesus but the living out of the Christ life implanted by the Holy Spirit.”
Last time, we said that since everything that happened in the life of Jesus Christ should take place in the experience of the true believer, the true believer should then have a parallel experience with Jesus Christ in these ways:
In his birth.
Jesus was born from above. A true believer must be born from above [even though we have that unfortunate translation born again]. We will see that where the scripture, especially in John where that appears, in John, other passages that the same word appeared, is translated above. But unfortunately in John 3:3 it says: again. I don’t understand.
So we have to have this parallel experience with Jesus in His birth and anointing. He was anointed by the Holy Spirit, and He went about doing good, healing all who were oppressed by the devil. He was anointed. This anointing took place at His baptism in Jordan. In the same way the true believer must be anointed with the Holy Spirit and with power. That took place on the day of Pentecost. And that day the Holy Spirit incarnated man as it were and has been here since then. And He is the one who will fill the believer with the fullness of Christ’s anointing. People talk of anointing today so much, but they emphasize oil more than the true thing. The oil is the shadow; the reality is the Holy Spirit. How I wish we will emphasize the Holy Spirit rather than oil.
And also the parallel experience of His temptation. He was tempted as we are, the scripture says, but without sin, and then of course in His sacrifice or crucifixion. No wonder Jesus says, if any man would be my disciple let him take up His cross and follow Me. And in His resurrection, that is the newness of life. The old nature being buried at baptism and we resurrect as it were in the newness of life. How can I be like Jesus in His birth? Remember Luke 1:30-31, 35, 38
30 Then the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. 31 And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name Jesus. 35 And the angel answered and said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will overshadow you; therefore, also, that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God. 38 Then Mary said, “Behold the maidservant of the Lord! Let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.
I believe that this was when the conception took place – at this point. So the parallel between the believer and Jesus Christ in terms of being born from above. So in the same way, the believer though from the human race, comes into the family of God from above.
12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: 13 who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.
In other words, what it is saying is: who were born of God.
3 Jesus answered and said to him [Nicodemus], “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” 6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.
The One born of God is born from above. Above being a way of expressing God’s dwelling place. Born again, as I said earlier, is an inaccurate translation. In all places John used the same Greek word anothen. It is translated above. Let me give you some of them.
31 He who comes from above is above all…
Above here is the same word that was translated or is translated again in John 3:3, he who comes from above. He could have said he who comes from again or he who comes again. But it is not so. He who comes from above is above all. He who is of the earth is earthly, and speaks of the earth. He who comes from heaven is above all. So above is heaven.
23 And He [Jesus] said to them, “You are from beneath; I am from above.
The same word that is translated again in John 3:3.
You are of this world, I am not of this world.
11 Jesus answered, “You could have no power at all against Me [Jesus was saying to Pilate] unless it had been given you from above. Therefore the one who delivered Me to you has the greater sin.”
Jesus was saying to Nicodemus, unless one is born from above, that is, from heaven or from God, he cannot see the Kingdom of God. You came into your family by birth. You were begotten of your father. You come into the family of God by birth, begotten of God, born from above.
But the question is, are you born from above? Are you born of God? Notice that what Jesus said is in the passive voice. You cannot bring about your being born into the family of God. It’s God who does it. And so when you try to become a Christian by your good works, see, you are destroying God’s plan and God’s purposes. It cannot work. Nobody can be like Jesus except he or she is born of God. Are you born of God or are you just a church member? Those born from above become new creatures. Old things are passed away. All things have become new. New in the sense of something not resent but something as if it were out of this world, something entirely different.
If you have a 2014 or 2015 Toyota Camry that is a new car. But it is not in this sense that it talks about the new creature. It talks in the sense of a new creature, if you were to have a car that does not use petrol or that does not use diesel, but it uses air, and it travels at the speed beyond any speed any car can travel. In that case you have a new car. New in the sense of something entirely different.
So when you are born of God you will be a new creature in that sense. Many churches today are populated by many people who do not have this vital relationship with God. They join the church but have not been added by God to the church through the new birth.
In Acts 2:47b
47 And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved.
It is the Lord who adds to the church.
14 And believers were increasingly added to the Lord, multitudes of both men and women,
When you are born of God you will have the nature of God just as you have the nature of your father who has begotten you. You have his DNA. In 1 John 3, it tells us about the DNA of heaven. Whoever has been born of God does not sin, does not practice sin, and does not live in sin, for his seed, the DNA of heaven, the divine DNA, the sperma of God (the original word in Greek) remains in him. And he cannot sin. He cannot habitually sin because he has been born of God. If you are a habitual sinner you are not born of God yet.
Why don’t you give your life to Christ, friend, and be born from above? That is the only qualification for entrance into heaven.
Father, we have come to the end of our discussion now. We want to say thank You. And I want to commit into Your hands my friends, asking O God, that You minister to them at the various points of their needs. Thank You, Father. Bring healing for the souls, spirit and body and circumstances, in the Name of Jesus. Amen!